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Closutton, Bagenalstown, Carlow, Ireland
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Cheltenham 18th March

We have two runners in the 2m4f Marsh Novices’ Chase (Grade 1). Asterion Forlonge (Paul) jumped well for Patrick the last day and if Paul gets him into a good rhythm he could be placed behind the hotpot Envoi Allen. Blackbow (Bryan Cooper) had a promising enough run last time. He jumped well and hopefully going out in trip today will bring about improvement.

Dandy Mag (Paul) runs in the Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) over 3 miles. It’s obviously a very competitive handicap but he has his chance over this trip and on the ground.

We have four in the 2m4½f Ryanair Chase (Grade 1). Allaho (Rachael Blackmore) won on very heavy ground over this trip at Thurles and will be more suited by the better underfoot conditions today.  Melon (Bryan Cooper) seems to reserve his best form for this track and the drying ground is in his favour. Min (Paul) won this race last year and a reproduction of that form would put him right in the picture today. He will like this ground. Tornado Flyer (Danny) ran a cracker in the John Durkan over a similar trip last December and if everything goes right for him here he could in line for one of the minor places.

Bacardys (Paul) goes for the Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle (Grade 1) over 3 miles. He always runs well here and will benefit from the drying conditions. He has an each-way chance.

We run four in the 2m1f Parnell Properties Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2). Paul has sided with Gauloise as he thinks she may just have run a bit flat last time. However, at these weights she would look to have a tough task to reverse with the two that finished ahead of her that day. Glens Of Antrim (Jonjo O’Neill) who is closely related to Glens Melody, has been pleasing us at home and could run a big race. The drying ground will benefit Hook Up (Danny) more than any of our horses this week. If Danny can produce her late it could pay dividends. Pont Aval (Brian Hayes) won impressively at Punchestown last time and is in very good order. She’s improving but needs softer ground to be seen at her best.

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