2 Feb 2018 Race Previews

We have two runners in the 2m 6f Grade 1 Novice Hurdle. Carter Mckay (David Mullins) was third over 2 miles at Punchestown last time and this longer trip will suit much better. That race will also have brought him on and he should go very well. Fabulous Saga (Paul) has improved hugely all season and hopefully this trip won’t prove too short. The drying ground is also not ideal but he has been in great form at home.

We have three in the Grade 2 Chase over 2m 1f. Min (David Mullins) may not have been at his best here at Christmas but this drier ground will be more to his liking. Yorkhill (Paul) will like this ground and track and should prove easier to ride over this shorter trip. Ballycasey (Katie Walsh) will love the ground and trip but realistically a place is the best we can expect here.

We have two in the Arkle Novice Chase over 2m 1f. Footpad (Paul) has been very good to watch in his two chase outings at Navan and here at Christmas. If he can hold that form he should be hard to beat today. Demi Sang (David Mullins) did well to get up and win at Naas last month and is an improving horse. He is a nice acquisition to the yard.

We also run two in the 2m 1f handicap chase. Townshend (Paul) disappointed on heavy ground the last day but this ground will make a big difference if he can handle the weight. Patricks Park (Rachael Blackmore) has an in-form jockey and a lovely weight. He could be a lively outsider.

We have three in the Irish Champion Hurdle over 2 miles. Faugheen (Paul) disappointed badly here at Christmas but we hope he can put that run behind him today and resume winning ways. Melon (David Mullins) ran a very good race at Cheltenham last time. We are fitting a hood for the first time today and that could bring about some improvement and put him in at the business end here. Bapaume (Katie Walsh) ran well at Christmas but could find this trip a little short.

we have five runners in the 2 mile handicap hurdle. Bleu Berry (Paul) is having his first run of the season and would have to be at his very best to be competitive off this mark. Karalee (David Mullins) has been disappointing of late and we will just have to see how she gets on here. Makitorix (Brian Hayes) is having his first run in a handicap and we are fitting a hood for the first time to see if that will help. Deal D’estruval (Katie Walsh) is a very interesting novice having his first run in a handicap. He is coming back in trip after his Tramore win and seems to have a nice weight here. Low Sun (Denis Hogan ) ran a cracker here at Christmas and a reproduction of that run would see him go close off this weight.

We have two runners in the bumper. Minella Encore (Katie Walsh) improved a lot from Fairyhouse to win again here at Christmas. The dry forecast will suit him well. Blackbow (Patrick) is also a course and distance winner and we think he has improved since Christmas. He looks to hold a strong chance here.