Camelia collects Grade Two honours at Thurles

Mullins-trained mare building solid record over fences

  • Sunday 20 January
  • News
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Camelia De Cotte ran the opposition into the ground to record a convincing success in the Order Of St George Coolmore NH Sires Irish EBF Mares Novice Chase at Thurles.

Paul Townend was in cruise control on the Willie Mullins-trained seven-year-old as she took her record to five wins from six starts over fences.

The 11-10 favourite quickly built up a handy lead and was never in any danger in the Grade Two affair, as she strolled home 20 lengths clear of Grey Waters in second place.

Mullins was not present, but Townend said of the Rich Ricci-owned winner: “That was probably her best performance and fences have just turned her inside out.

“She has jumped out to her left a few times and in Listowel she actually went right so that’s just her.

“She is a tricky ride and is not straightforward, but that was an impressive performance.”

Ucello Conti benefited from the final-fence exit of Gwencily Berbas to register his first win under rules in Ireland in the Arctic Tack Stud Hunters Chase.

There was little to choose between the pair at the last, where Alan Fleming’s charge crashed out to leave the 4-6 favourite to land the odds under amateur Barry O’Neill for trainer Gordon Elliott.

Samanntom was four and a half lengths away in second, with Myrons a neck back in third.

Ucello Conti, who won a point-to-point a week ago, has run in the Grand National for the last three years.

The Aintree showpiece could again be on the cards along with a trip to Cheltenham.

“He’ll be entered for the English National, but we wanted to qualify him for the Foxhunter’s at Cheltenham, so he’ll go straight to Cheltenham now,” said Elliott.

“There’s still plenty improvement in him and Barry said he landed on his hind legs at the second-last and it took him a while to get going, but he was confident he was going to win and was only getting into top gear again.”

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