Cimeara showed plenty of class and battling qualities to lift the spoils in the BetVictor Bet 5 Get 30 Offer Irish EBF Noblesse Stakes at Cork.
The four-year-old filly was a Group Three and Listed winner for Jim Bolger last term and struck at the latter level for a second time on her first run for trainer Joseph O’Brien.
Ridden by his brother, Donnacha O’Brien, the daughter of Vocalised was always close to the pace set by Warnaq and was able to pounce at the right time.
Cimeara (7-1) quickened up to good effect, holding Who’s Steph, the 11-8 favourite, by half a length. Warnaq stuck on well for third, just half a length away.
The winning trainer said: “Obviously she was a good filly for Mr Bolger last season and it is nice to get the season off to a nice start with her.
“She stays well and her best form last year was at one-mile-six – we’ll step her up in trip now as the year goes on
“We didn’t expect her to win, but she has done well with a penalty and the Vintage Crop Stakes at Navan is an option next.
“Her main objective this year is to win a Group Two race as she has already won a Group Three.”
O’Brien was pleased his brother escaped injured in a tumble 24 hours earlier.
“Donnacha was grand after his fall at Leopardstown yesterday. He was lucky he didn’t get a kick or anything,” he said.