It will be interesting to see how Slige Dala fares in the market with his stablemate Battle of Actium who is making his debut for powerful owners, but experience can count for plenty in bumpers and Slige Dala was well backed to win a race that is working out well on his own debut at Killarney in August.
He shaped encouragingly, travelling well in the main but just taking a while to get going when entering the straight. He closed all the way to the line but was just outpointed by the winner.
Slige Dala will have derived plenty from that experience though, and it will take an above-average sort to topple him here.
14:40 Fontwell – The Two Amigos
The Two Amigos was very progressive when he sent chasing last season, winning three of his five starts. He also showed he stays strongly when winning over three and a half miles at Exeter in December.
He shaped as though in need of the run on his return from eight months off back over hurdles at Uttoxeter last month, but he went with plenty of zest, and that should have put him spot on for this return to fences.
He will be much more at home under this sort of test and should have much more to offer this season.
15:20 Punchestown – Deputy’s Pass
Deputy’s Pass lurks on an attractive mark and shaped better than the distance beaten when fifth in a handicap at Wexford last month. That left the impression he was still building up his fitness.
He had been off the track 16 months prior to his return in September, so he can be expected to come on again here and, granted a clear round of jumping, he should be in the mix.
14:40 Fontwell: The Two Amigos
15:20 Punchestown: Deputy’s Pass
15:50 Punchestown: Slige Dala
* All odds correct at time of posting.