WARRENPOINT trainer, Leanne Breen in a blanket finish won the historic Joe McGrath Premier sprint handicap at the Curragh on Sunday with ‘That’s Mad’.
While ‘Strong Johnson’ filled second, Scarvagh handler Natalia Lupini supplied the third with ‘Arnhem’ – the latter yet again running a great race, only to have settle for a place again.
The winner, with Kevin Manning aboard, was only produced by the top rider in the final hundred yards to prevail in the £50,000 contest.
‘That’s Mad’ won by a half-length, with ‘Arnhem’ a head behind the second.
Breen said: “I thought the gap was going to close on him, but thankfully it stayed open and Kevin just said he keeps improving.
“The whole year was mapped around the Joe McGrath. We ran him here out of the handicap just to see he’d handle the track and that was his first run of the season.
“We have low-grade handicappers in the yard, but it’s great to have one to put our name out. He’s been a great servant for the yard.
“He loves Bellewstown and when you come back to a straight track you have to weave him in and out to keep him interested.”
The local trainer is enjoying her first full season and gained experience with top trainer in Britain, Mark Johnston, while her stable star has now won three out of his last four starts.