Horse Racing tips: Frank Hickey and Paddy Power’s best bets for Punchestown

Frank and Paddy have picked out some potential winners at Punchestown



*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at time of publication but subject to change

Frank Hickey and Paddy Power have made their selections ahead of a packed card at Punchestown on Sunday.

Speaking on the latest episode of our From The Horse’s Mouth podcast, the dynamic duo discussed the rescheduled Grade 3 Sky Bet Killiney Novice Chase before turning attention to the Sky Bet Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle.

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Frank: 12.50pm – (Recommended Watch)

This is an intriguing race, in which Envoi Allen has to concede 11lbs to Asterion Forlonge. Asterion Forlonge was very impressive around Punchestown on his chase debut in the middle of November, winning easily from Conflated. Obviously, he fell at Limerick when a well-backed favourite for the Grade 1 there.

This isn’t a race that I would be mad keen to have a bet on, so I’d recommend just watching but if Envoi Allen can concede 11lbs to Asterion Forlonge – when Asterion Forlonge has his conditions of softish ground, right-handed over 2m4f – then he is an absolute superstar. Everyone thinks he’s a superstar anyway but this would just confirm it. It’s a race I’m really excited to watch, as you will be able to tell a lot from the result.

Paddy: 12.50pm – Fils Doudairies (Each-Way)

I was hoping there would be eight runners, but there is only six, and I was thinking that maybe one of the top two would underperform. With the form of the Gordon Elliott yard, you would be a bit worried for Envoi Allen. I wouldn’t say that I am surprised that they are running him, but the yard really isn’t firing at the moment judging by the stats and I think they’re vulnerable.

I don’t know what price FILS DOUDAIRIES will eventually be, but I think he could fill one of the top two spaces. It’s unusual with just six runners in the race, but I’ve tipped up an each-way bet with Fils Doudairies for Joseph O’Brien.




Frank: 1.20pm – Master McShee

Ganapathi came over from France to join Willie Mullins and had his first run at Cork in November. He was 2/5, very well-backed, but I’m not sure it was the strongest race in the world and he won relatively comfortable. Even though Gordon Elliott has won this race the last two years, Willie has won five of the six previous to that.

I definitely respect that Paul Townend has picked Ganapathi, but I would just maybe give MASTER MCSHEE a chance. He was second to Appreciate It at Cork, and because he was 50/1 people probably thought he was flattered by that because Appreciate It didn’t come off the bridle. But he came out at Cork the next time relatively well backed and absolutely bolted up.

He then went to Leopardstown for a competitive handicap – I thought Sea Ducor was very well handicapped, but he brushed him aside easily off a mark of 132. His official rating now is 143, and that might still underrate him a little bit because he is trained by a small trainer and that is unfashionable compared to the likes of Willie and Gordon. You might just get a good price about him, and he looks like a horse on the up. Knowing what we know now, getting within two-and-a-half lengths of Appreciate It was actually an unbelievable effort.

Also keep an eye on Dreal Deal. He’s very interesting, but he’s very hard to get a handle on in the race. He’s won five in a row between the Flat and over Jumps, and he landed a tough one on his first day over hurdles. Followed that up twice, at Punchestown off 106 and then again at Cork off 11. The handicapper wasn’t too impressed – just bumped him up 30lbs to 141! It’ll be interesting to see what he does up in Grade here.

Paddy: 1.20pm – Gua Du Large (Each-Way)

I’ve gone for GUA DU LARGE, looking for an each-way bet. He’s improved over his first two runs and Henry de Bromhead has a really good crop of young horses. I don’t know where this one ranks among them but it’s one that is going the right way and he’s probably pretty decent. I’m not sure what price he’ll be but you’ve got the eight runners for an each-way bet and he’ll probably be around 5/1 or 6/1 at least.

*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at time of publication but subject to change

Punchestown bet summary – Sunday, January 17

Frank Hickey
1.20pm – Master McShee

Paddy Power
12.50pm – Fils Doudairies (Each-Way)
1.20pm – Gua Du Large (Each-Way)

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