Our Nana Rose riden by Pat Martin in the Handicap Hurdle at Bellewstown last weekend.
Fine double for Pat Martin
Bellewstown racecourse hosted the first of two summer festivals at the weekend when there was a mixture of sunshine after the rain for the opening three days of action at the hillside track.
The crowds each day were influenced by the versatile weather conditions with rain on Friday and Sunday and sunshine on Saturday as local trainers obliged with a number of winners.
Betting turnover on the Tote held up quite well with €298,000 wagered over the three days, down by €26,000 on last year's figures, although this time around there were two races less.
Slane-based Pat Martin recorded a double while Tony Martin, Ger Lyons, John Carr and Gordon Elliott were on the mark with Meath jockeys Andrew Thornton, Declan McDonogh and Keith Donoghue also in the winners' enclosure.
Irish Grand National-winning jockey Thorton teamed up with Pat Martin on Saturday for a victory with the in-foal Our Nana Rose (pictured) in a handicap hurdle which the trainer and jockey won last year with Nivek's Dream.
Our Nana Rose has now won at Navan, Fairyhouse and added Bellewstown to the tally on Saturday with two lengths to spare from the Robbie Hennessy-trained Magnetic Force Windwood Lad and Robbie Colgan back in third place.
Tony Martin maintained the Meath theme on Saturday when Thomas Edison justified favouritism in the opening maiden hurdle to win by almost 10 lengths.
Pat Martin initiated the first part of his double on the all-flat card on Friday evening when California Rose recorded her maiden success as she took the last race with Ben Curtis on board.
"She is a crotchety sort, she seemed to cope with that ground so we will keep her going as long as it keeps raining," suggested the trainer.
Also on Friday, McDonogh made it a good week for trainer Kevin Prendergast, who celebrated his 80th birthday the day before, when Lucked Out won a two-year-old race.
Sunday saw the rain return, but that didn't prevent Boom To Bust following up on a recent Naas victory by landing another handicap for trainer Lyons with Emmet McNamara doing the steering.
Elliott was on the mark with Discoteca which shaded Dibella for a fourth victory in-a-row with Dunshaughlin jockey Donoghue in the saddle while Carr, edged out with Benash on Friday night, saddled a one, two in a handicap hurdle as Dunroe Boy and Ian McCarthy and Turnonthegas under Jason McKeown were the first two home.
Navan trainer Michael Mulvany made the long trip to Limerick worthwhile on Sunday when he won a handicap hurdle with First Impressions which caused a 20/1 shock under John Cullen.
The trainer suggested that Galway could be on the radar for the six-year-old which has had a few problems in the past.
Tony Martin also travelled south and was rewarded with a win for Victrix Gale in the Galway Plate Trial Handicap Chase.