Palm Beach is a full brother to Southern France who was placed in a really strong renewal of the English St Leger, so he was certainly bred to make his mark on the flat. He had two quick runs in that sphere in September, finishing fourth in Tipperary over 1m 4f, before getting off the mark on his second start at Listowel over the same trip.
He hasn’t run since and has switched to Joseph for a juvenile hurdle campaign but considering his breeding and the ability he has displayed in just two starts on the flat, he is an intriguing addition to the jumping ranks.
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This isn’t a bad little maiden hurdle and while Truckers Pass has had a dose of seconditis, he might be capable of breaking his duck here. Second in a point, he was second on his bumper debut beaten only a half length by the very useful Soaring Glory and filled the same position in an Exeter bumper.
Truckers Pass was second on his hurdles debut in October in Ffos Las, where the winner Do Your Job handled the testing ground better and didn’t let the form down when following up at Ayr and then finishing second in a listed novice hurdle at Haydock. The better ground here will suit and the Hobbs yard are in better form now than they were in October, so there should be no excuses if he can’t get his head in front now.
This 3m handicap hurdle should be a serious test of stamina considering the ground will be riding heavy. Fennos Storm and Classic Concorde come into this race off the back of last time out wins, but I’m going to side with Cappacurry Zak who is a course specialist and relishes testing ground.
Last season he won over fences here at Limerick over 2m 6f on heavy ground off a mark of 114 and also won at Navan over fences over 3m off 118. That was also on heavy ground, so the going will be right up his street.
He is clearly a better chaser than hurdler but he did finish second off a mark of 109 when he last ran over hurdles over 3m.
His three most recent starts have all been over an insufficient trip and much better can be expected now going up to 3m and returning to his favourite track. He could be a tempting price considering his recent form.
This is a speculative selection, but Willie Burke has had two runners for owner William MacDonald so far this season and both were quite impressive winners on their debuts.
Gordon Dai Dai and Teuchters Glory both won at Galway and Belle Lurette is certainly bred to make an impact here, being a half brother to the 152 rated Grand Sancy and to Saturday’s Fairyhouse winner Keskonrisk.
This doesn’t looks the strongest bumper ever and Belle Lurette might be worth siding with.
Glenamoy Lad has been woefully out of form recently and could just have fallen out of love with the game, but he has become to well handicapped to ignore, particularly with the Jennie Candlish yard firing in the winners recently.
Glenamoy Lad switched to Candlish earlier this year when rated 85 and since then he has barely beaten a rival in five runs but it was only February that he was second in Newcastle off a mark of 87. A little over 18 months ago he was rated in the mid 90’s and the handicapper has given him a big chance by dropping him 12lbs for the 3 runs since September.
He now runs off a mark of 70 and while the trip of five furlongs might be on the sharp side for him, the booking of Rossa Ryan is significant, as he has a 20 per cent strike rate when riding for Candlish.
Hopefully he can improve that strike rate at what is likely to be a very rewarding price.
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