Henry de Bromhead and Rachael Blackmore combined to claim two winners on the belated final day of the Christmas Racing Festival at Limerick.
The six-race card was saved and swiftly re-scheduled to a midweek slot, following Sunday’s abandonment because of a waterlogged track.
Proceedings got under way with the ‘David Fitzgerald – Take It Easee’ Maiden Hurdle, which saw French import Kalkas open his Irish account at the second attempt.
Third on his only start in his homeland a year ago, Kalkas subsequently changed hands for £210,000, but was comprehensively beaten on his debut for De Bromhead at Navan earlier this month.
However, dropping back in distance, the 2-1 shot raised his game in the hands of Blackmore – ploughing through the mud to beat 11-10 favourite Rajsalad by two and a half lengths.
“He is a beautiful horse to ride. Derek O’Connor rode him the last day, and it was his idea to maybe step him back to two miles – he was spot on,” said Blackmore.
“It was tough going out there, but he did it nicely.”
De Bromhead and Blackmore doubled up with Atlantic Fairy, who was even more impressive in the Roches Feeds Mares Maiden Hurdle.
Placed at Clonmel and Cork on her first couple of appearances over hurdles, the daughter of Jeremy was the 6-4 favourite to make it third time lucky – and came home 20 lengths clear of Nelly’s Money.
Blackmore added: “She was second in a point-to-point for Michael Byrne and she is owned by my sponsor Mark Phelan (of PCI Insurance), so it is great to ride a winner in his colours.
“Obviously her run the last day behind Master McShee got a form boost in Leopardstown, and she is nice – so hopefully there will be a lot more fun to be had with her.”
The Johnny Levins-trained Wishmoor was an 11-4 winner of the Goggin Buckley Veterans Handicap Chase under Ricky Doyle.
Levins, who is better known as a Flat trainer, said: “I thoroughly enjoy training this fellow. I was keen to get a few jumpers, and the plan is to get a few more so we can be busy during the winter as well.
“To be honest I didn’t watch one jump, I was looking at the ground – I get very nervous with the Flat, never mind the jumps!
Staker Wallace rewarded odds-on backers in the Earl Of Harrington Memorial Maiden Hunters Chase.
Fourth in the Foxhunter Chase at last season’s Cheltenham Festival, Enda Bolger’s charge had since been beaten in successive point-to-points this winter.
But ridden by leading amateur Barry O’Neill, the JP McManus-owned gelding made no mistake back under Rules as he eased to a near two-length verdict over Super Citizen.
“We’ll follow the hunter chases around with him, but they are very hot and if I have to stay away from the better horses – at the back of my head, I think he could win a Ladies Cup at Punchestown,” said Bolger.
Moonlight Glory (5-2) won the Convermax Handicap Hurdle for trainer Eoin McCarthy and 7lb claimer Gearoid Brouder, before father and son Charles and Philip Byrnes teamed up to land the bumper with 7-2 chance Blazing Khal.