Peter Farrell

After being crowned as the GRI ‘Bitch of the Year’ last weekend at the National Greyhound Awards, Raha Mofo created a piece of history last night at Limerick Greyhound Stadium as she landed the final of the Epic Hero Limerick Oaks in exceptional fashion.

Owned by Marissa Molloy, Raha Mofo was bidding to land her third Oaks title in under a year after sealing the Sporting Press Irish Oaks at Shelbourne Park back in June of 2022, as well as the GRI Galway Oaks, a stake were she smashed the track record on two occasions, back in November last year. Despite tasting a shock defeat in her semi final assignment, the brilliant tracker bounced back emphatically as she took control late on to record an historic treble.


Sent to traps as the 4/5 favourite, Raha Mofo looked well-housed in trap three and she trapped smartly from the middle to dispute early doors with 5/2 shot, Rafas Friend, in trap one. However, the latter had too much acceleration on the fence and Noreen O’Connor and Lorraine Keane’s charge displayed eye-catching pace to the opening corner to lead Raha Mofo. At this point, it was very much game-on upon entrance to the back straight.


Holding a lead of around one and a half lengths entering the back straight, Rafas Friend was setting an electric gallop in front and this contest quickly became a two-dog affair as Raha Mofo gave chase in second, pulling clear of Glengar Aurora, who currently occupied the third place position. At this point, Raha Mofo was to make her first move. Upping the ante approaching the penultimate turn, the Murt Leahy-trained star went for a daring run up the inside but Rafas Friend slammed the door shut as she clocked a fine 16.12 sectional to the third turn.


Despite being forced to check slightly at the penultimate turn, this wasn’t to deter Raha Mofo in her quest to seal an historic hat-trick. Switching to the outside around the final turn, the daughter of Droopys Sydney and Clares Queen coursed around Rafas Friend to storm to victory to the delight of her connections. Rafas Friend ran an exceptional race to finish just one and a half lengths adrift, while Quivers Magic filled the podium a further five lengths back in third. The time was a rapid 28.23 and no doubt we will be seeing Raha Mofo back at Shelbourne Park next to defend her title. A fitting end to a terrific renewal, many thanks are extended to Ger Hutton for his generous sponsorship of the event.


Elsewhere on the card, the opening round heats of an ON2/3 525 got underway and although she won’t be taking his place in the final next week, Coolavanny Mercy produced an outstanding performance on debut.

Trained by Michael O’Donovan for Noel Browne, Coolavanny Mercy is just a December 21’ whelp and she may well has rocketed to the top of the pile in terms of the hottest property around right now. Sent to traps as a 4/5 shot, the daughter of Droopys Sydney and Coolavanny Tutsy had some modest qualifying efforts but she was to dismantle her fellow debutants in exceptional fashion. Running from trap five, a level break saw Coolavanny Mercy emerge from the pack within a blink of an eye and she already held a six length lead rounding the opening turn. From here, the talented youngster excelled down the back as she opened an unassailable lead o her rivals. Running a virtual solo out in front, Coolavanny Mercy came home twelve lengths clear of Magical Axel to record a fantastic 28.38.

Elsewhere in the heats, Pub Talk led from the outset for the Trickin-And-Tradin syndicate. Going off the even money favourite, the 91-pound son of Ballymac Bolger and Mystical Moll pinged the lids to lead home Clonleigh Gareth by two and a half lengths, in a time of 29.20.

In heat three, Singalong Tully also ran out a convincing winner at odds of 4/5. Owned by Gilbert Anderson, the son of Tullymurry Act and Beaming Rosie made his intentions clear right from the off with a flash start from trap three. From here, Singalong Tully drew clear around the opening two bends before maintaining a relentless gallop to the line. Over fifteen lengths too good for his rivals, the time was 28.83.