This Sunday on ITV Racing we have Irish racing from Punchestown and Cork plus action from Kelso in Scotland. Let’s hope these four run well for a Lucky 15.
Min is the is the highest rated in the field and finally got his day in the limelight when winning the Ryanair at the Cheltenham Festival. He is a dual winner of this race but this is the toughest contest he has had to endure on his first run of the season – and it will be run on heavy ground.
Chris’s Dream was second to The Storyteller at Down Royal over 3 miles and he’ll be fine dropping back in trip now to 2m 4f. The Willie Mullins’ team think a lot of Allaho and he was third in the RSA Chase at Cheltenham behind Champ. That form has been boosted by Minella Indo winning this season too.
Battleoverdoyen beat Samcro at Down Royal but while Min is the best horse in the race, Battleoverdoyen could pick his pocket as he is race fit in the likely heavy ground,
Burlesque Queen was second in this contest last year. It was a competitive handicap then as it is now. I know she is a little higher in the ratings, but she has had a run and will be fit for this for trainer Liz Doyle and jockey James Sullivan.
Mahlervous’ form got a real boost when Severano won again at Exeter on Friday as he just chinned the selection by a neck at Sandown in November. If Mahlervous can repeat that level of form, he should win this.
Elf De Re was a beaten favourite at Carlisle last time and some of his form is quite strong. If he jumps these fences better he would have to be on the short-list as he has won on this sort of ground. The step up in a trip doesn’t look a negative and if he enjoys himself, he could be the interesting contender. Minella Encore was fourth at Market Rasen to Ballyhome and while that form is not as strong as Mahlervous, he should improve for that run.
Looking Well was running a belter in this race a couple of years ago before coming down late in the race. He enjoyed a comeback run at Kelso over hurdles and if he’s none the worse for that then he has to enter calculations off his current handicap mark.
Duc De Grissay is another of the young brigade. This lad finished fourth in a long-distance chase at Sedgefield, there’s a few positives with him as he’s had a run and his form is strong on heavy ground.
Warren Greatrex sends Bob Mahler up north, who has disappointed last twice. His recent form figures don’t tell the whole story as there was trouble with his ‘tack’ one day. He won a big race at Musselburgh ;ast February, so could appreciate a return to Scotland.
Bigirononhiship won this contest last year and has had a recent run to blow away the cobwebs. He is 10lbs higher this time, but Rose Dobbin’s horses are running well.
Mick Fitzerald’s tips for ITV Racing on Sunday
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