For the second time in three years Ger Lyons took the honours on the opening day of the Irish flat season at Naas when Karawaan landed the €100,000 Tote Irish Lincolnshire with Colin Keane on board.
On a first run since last June the bottom weight was produced in great shape by Lyons and he tanked his way through the race under the 2017 champion jockey Colin Keane.
When the five-year-old was able to get into the clear he shot to the front for a convincing success over Trading Point which ran a huge race for Damien English on his first run since being picked up for 6,000gns last October.
The Matthew Smith-trained (in Kilmessan) Warnaq was a close fourth with Robbie Colgan on board.
“His action suggested that he would go on this type of ground and that is a very, very pleasant surprise. Colin said the horse gave him a great feel going to the start and full credit to David Spratt and Gaelic Bloodstock who sourced him at the sales last year,” said the trainer’s brother Shane Lyons.
Jim Bolger made a stunning start to the new season as he recorded a big priced treble while Aidan O’Brien also made his mark as he combined with his son Donnacha to take the Naas Racecourse Business Club Madrid Handicap with Never No More.
Jessica Harrington’s Still Standing continued his rise up the ranks as he claimed the first running of the Listed Devoy Stakes.
The four-year-old won three of his four starts last autumn and continued that progress into the new season with a dominant effort under new stable jockey Shane Foley.
“He just loves that ground. He never really got his ground last season but he was still able to win on it. I’ll probably keep him at a mile and a quarter for the moment but he will have no trouble going further,” said the trainer.