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We start the card at Fairyhouse on Saturday with a 2m juvenile hurdle where ILMIG for Jessica Harrington gets the verdict as my nap selection. The form of his flat victory at Navan in October was boosted last weekend when stablemate Autumn Evening won nicely on his hurling debut at Cork.
The experience of his second place finish over hurdles at Punchestown last month will be enough to see off these rivals under Paddy Kennedy today. Elsewhere, Charlie Bassett is a danger for Noel Meade with Damage Control having a first run for Gordon Elliott following a move from Andrew Balding’s stable.
TORYGRAPH should take this staying maiden hurdle here for Gordon Elliott and Jack Kennedy after a good second at Clonmel last month. The form of that race reads well after winner, Power Of Pause surprised some when following up in the opener at Punchestown last weekend for Willie Mullins.
Takarengo is the obvious danger for Tom Mullins in a weak looking contest after six starts over hurdles to date, while Buck’s Billionaire returns to the track for Willie Mullins after an absence of 730 days.
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The Gavin Cromwell team are in good form heading towards Christmas and can secure another victory this month with KEEP THE PEACE in this staying handicap hurdle. The lightly raced five-year-old drops down slightly in the ratings and takes his chance off a light weight on his second start in handicap company.
He wasn’t disgraced on his handicap debut when finishing seventh at Limerick last month, having been off the track since the previous December. He’s clearly open to further improvement, looks nicely handicapped and wears cheekpieces for the first time on Saturday. Elsewhere, Exciting Oscar and Castlehume Gold do battle again and will be popular with punters, while Ballymadum is another who should reach the frame.
The horse Pat Healy will never forget, ENTOUCAS can go very close to winning the feature handicap chase on the Fairyhouse card this Saturday for Joseph O’Brien and Mark Walsh. Many will recall this horse smashed through the rail and right into photographer Healy on the line at Navan when doing battle with Thatsy last year.
Since that nasty incident the horse has progressed by winning his maiden hurdle and finishing second in two recent starts over fences. The novice makes his handicap debut here under Walsh off a rating of 138 and looks a serious player. There are many others among the field with excellent chances in a cracking looking race, with Chosen Mate, Sizing Pottsie, Daly Tiger and Off You Go rightly in the mix – this should be a wonderful contest to watch.
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