We have two runners in the opening Supreme Novices Hurdle over 2 miles. Getabird (Ruby) was very impressive at Punchestown last time and he will handle this heavy ground. He has only had two runs over hurdles which is not ideal for a race of this caliber but he has plenty of ability and is in great form. We’re confident of a big run. Sharjah (Paul) is in good form but won’t appreciate this testing ground.
Footpad (Ruby) goes for the Arkle Novices Chase over 2 miles. He arrived over in great form and is in tip-top order. He will handle the ground and we are hoping he will have the measure of these rivals.
We run four in the Champion Hurdle over 2 miles. We are fitting cheekpieces on Faugheen (Ruby) to give him every chance to be at his best. The ground shouldn’t be a problem but we don’t know if he can reproduce his old sparkle after such an exasperating season. Melon (Paul) ran a great trial here in the autumn but disappointed with a hood last time. We are dispensing with the hood this time and hopefully he will go well on ground that that he will handle. Wicklow Brave (Patrick) was fourth here last year after a bad start and was a wide margin winner of the County Hurdle here on soft ground. He has each-way prospects. Yorkhill (David Mullins) hasn’t enjoyed jumping fences this season but is unbeaten around this track. Hopefully, this ground might bring out the best in him.
We have two runners in the Mares Hurdle over 2m 3f. Benie Des Dieux (Ruby) has not run over hurdles for us but had plenty of experience over them in France. She won on heavy ground at Auteuil as a 3yo which bodes well for these conditions. We think she holds a strong chance here. Pravalaguna (Danny Mullins) has been a little disappointing since she took a bad fall at Auteuil last June. She has taken time to reach racing shape but has plenty of ability. However, she will need a career best to win this.
We also run two in the National Hunt Chase over 4 miles. Rathvinden (Patrick) was unfortunate on his last two starts but won on heavy ground at Tipperary and and Listowel. This recent rain will be a help and the trip won’t be a problem. Pylonthepressure (Katie Walsh) lacks experience but is a great natural jumper. He has place potential here.
We have two in the 2m 4f Novice Handicap Chase. Demi Sang (Barry Geraghty) is nice and fresh and has form on very soft ground in France. He is not without a chance here. Livelovelaugh (Ruby) will handle the ground and is a great jumper. He was beaten over 3 miles last time but we think this could be his ideal trip.