Closutton, Bagenalstown, Carlow, Ireland
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+353 (0) 59 9721786

Leopardstown 3rd February

We have four runners in the Grade 1 Novice Hurdle over 2m 6f. With Paul riding Predators Gold he looks the pick of ours. The step up to this trip will be a big advantage and he should be very competitive. Patrick has opted for Loughglynn which is a big positive. He jumps and stays well and has won a bumper and two hurdles. We will see today if he has the class for a race of this standard. Dancing City (Danny) won his maiden over 2m 4f at Navan and this longer trip will really suit. I Will Be Baie (Brian Hayes) is no back number here. He beat My Trump Card easily at Fairyhouse and that one went on to win next time out so the form looks very good.

Like a lot of the races this weekend, the Grade 1 Juvenile Hurdle will be a revealing contest and will tell us where a lot of unexposed types lie in the juvenile ranks. Bunting (Brian Hayes) was impressive when winning on heavy ground at Limerick and has improved since that run. Who knows how good he is? Ethical Diamond (Mikey O’Sullivan ) was very disappointing here at Christmas and has to leave that run behind today. Highwind (Rachael Blackmore) did well to overcome inexperience and come from a bad position to win at Punchestown. He has a big engine and with that race under his belt he could be anything. Mark Walsh rides Majborough for J P McManus. He came to us with a good reputation from France but had a few little niggles and is only getting to the track for us now. He shows us quite a bit at home and we are keen to see how he measures against the Irish juveniles. Storm Heart (Paul) was very impressive on New Year’s Eve at Punchestown where he showed an abilty to jump and quicken. He has a great chance here. Kargese (Danny) ran a cracker here at Christmas even though she ran a little too free. Danny will have a good handle on her here and she could improve enough to go close.

We have three runners in the Arkle Grade 1 Novice Chase over 2m 1f. We were contemplating running Facile Vega over the longer race tomorrow but he showed his old sparkle in his final piece of work so we decided to run here. We think he is better prepared now than he was at Christmas so fingers crossed he will get back to winning ways. Il Etait Temps (Danny) has won a grade one hurdle here and this extended two miles will help if he keeps his jumping together. Sharjah (Brian Hayes) has won four times at this track but doesn’t run well at this particular meeting on the hurdle track. He’s an 11yo now so we decided to let him take his chance here and on his best day he would be competitive.

We will have two runners in the Listed Handicap Hurdle over 3 miles. Shanbally Kid (Danny) goes back over hurdles and could be on a nice mark. If he jumps well he could be in the reckoning. Fine Margin (Brian Hayes) ran very well at Haydock last time and a repeat performance should see him go very close off this handy weight.

Galopin Des Champs (Paul) attempts to win the Irish Gold Cup for the second year in succession. He was very impressive over this course and distance at Christmas and if that race hasn’t left its mark he should be good enough to collect. I Am Maximus (Jody McGarvey) is improving all the time but will have to improve an awful lot to get involved.

Henn See (Mikey O’Sullivan ) goes for the Listed Handicap Chase over 2m 1f. His running and jumping style means we like to keep him to the minimum trip. If he’s not outclassed he won’t be far away.

We have five in the Grade 2 Bumper. My Great Mate (Tom Costello) has won two bumpers and deserves to take his chance. The drying conditions will be a big help to him. You Oughta Know (Jody) was unbeaten in two bumpers over the summer and has improved nicely since. This will give us an indication of how good he is. Hens Tooth (Charlie Mullins) was very impressive when winning in very testing conditions at Limerick at Christmas. This is a huge step up in class on better ground and he could find it tough. Joystick (Pat Taaffe) won over 2m 4f here at Christmas. It will be interesting to see how he operates over the shorter trip today. Patrick rides Redemption Day who is a course and distance winner. He ran a great race here when second at Christmas and should go close against the hotpot, A Dream To Share.

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