Bob Olinger and Rachael Blackmore © Photo Healy Racing
Bob Olinger powered away in the closing stages to run out an impressive winner of the Lawlor's Of Naas Novice Hurdle this afternoon.
Henry de Bromhead's charge went to post the 6/4 favourite in the Grade 1 contest on his third outing over timber.
Rachael Blackmore tracked the leaders on the Sholokhov gelding before moving up to challenge approaching the second last flight.
He jumped into a narrow lead there and asserted when asked for an effort before the final flight.
The six-year-old galloped on strongly in the closing stages to stretch away from nearest rival Blue Lord and record a six-and-a-half length win.
Blackmore said afterwards:- “He’s always shown us a lot at home and I think today was the stamp of the kind of horse he is for the future. I’m delighted with him.
“I wanted to ride a straight forward enough race on him. He’s a simple horse to ride in that sense and I was happy most of the way.
“He jumped better today in the latter half of the race. The jump is there if you really ask him.
“He quickened up well and he seems to tick a lot of boxes.
“I’m delighted for Brian Acheson and Robcour who are very supportive of the game and to get a Grade 1 winner is brilliant.
“I don’t think he’s a real sharp Champion Hurdle horse in the making. Two and a half is ideal for him now but I wouldn’t rule out two either.
“For the future he’s probably going to be one for longer trips. He’s won a point-to-point and looks one for fences in the future.”
It was a quick double on the card for Blackmore and de Bromhead following the victory of Epson Du Houx in the preceding handicap chase.
(Quotes by Alan Magee)