14:15 – Adare Manor Opportunity Handicap Hurdle
This tasty handicap over 17 furlongs is a brilliantly-competitive opener. 113-rated Kellyiscool leads the betting, but 9/2 seems very short given his exploits on Monday. Instead, my attention turns to Derby De Thaix (14/1) who has only gone up two pounds for a better-than-the-bare-result third behind Wild Desire back in June. He didn’t get into the desire raced on Monday as a reserve, but this could play into Joseph O’Brien’s hands.
Presuming Willie Mullins hasn’t lost his mind and runs Lareena again after her run just 24 hours previously, this is open-looking. You can take the argument that Lizzies Champ is improving, but he’s gone up five pounds for failing to win in either of his two runs. Freewhelin Dylan (20/1) is a good each-way play here. His defeat by a neck to Ravenhill is very solid form given the son of Winged Love’s run since and 114 could well underestimate him.
The money came for Champagne Marengo last time at Chepstow, but he failed to deliver. He’s got a progressive profile, but with the likely SP favourite Queen Mia (2/1) getting a filly’s allowance as well as a two-pound swing in the claimers from her jockey Sean Davis, she’s likely very hard to beat. Sunblessed missed the break last time out and that’s good enough reason to steer clear, while none of the newcomers hold any sort of eye-catching pedigree.
While Bond Street leads the betting, his rating of 95 might be falsely complimentary and there’s not any guarantee he comes out of Tuesday’s run in the finest of fettle. It would be a strange position to take at 4/1. The one that stands out is Texas Rock (12/1), who has run very creditably off 102 in a previous run of form. Billy Lee has had a good week and it could well continue with this son of Rock of Gibraltar running off a mark of 99.
Sub Lieutenant will always be an Irish favourite, but he was way off Clarcam in the Plate and isn’t getting any younger. Fatigue should ensure that 13/8 looks silly if he is to run, while Kalondra hasn’t been seen since April. Now, there’s nothing straightforward about Sandymount Duke’s (9/2) preparation for this race, but the other market principles are simply too short given their shortcomings, while, despite a poor obstacles campaign last year, at least Harrington’s charge has had a primer for this encounter two weeks ago.
This race is all about Show And Go (10/1). Henry De Bromhead has a couple of improving handicappers in his yard and this nine-year-old certainly fits the profile to be in that company. Despite frequently switching between hurdles and fences, it appeared that this son of Stowaway found a groove last time out and the 14-length win over Port Rashid was no fluke. Running of a featherweight, he can topple some of those higher in the ratings.
It might be a boring selection, but Newcross (7/1) has a progressive profile and the price is more than fair. It’s been suggested that a seven-pound hike for the win in Roscommon was unfair, but the gelding put the race to bed quite well and never looked back. Going up in trip seems the obvious trick to keep this one on an upward trajectory.
This race is really between two in the betting and is being billed as such – but the Evens favourite Dorrells Pierji is streets ahead of Joseph O’Brien’s sort Beautiful Citi. They say big trainers have a few hurdlers they don’t mind campaigning during the summer months and this looks every bit a smart horse after the way he put Court Maid to the sword in Wexford back in May.
* All odds correct at time of posting.