Aspire Tower was a fairly useful handicapper on the Flat for Steve Gollings and he looked a good recruit to hurdling when bolting up on his first start for Henry de Bromhead at Punchestown last month.
He wasn’t fault-free on his hurdling debut but he still ran out an impressive winner, crossing the line 13 lengths clear, quickening well despite pulling hard in the early stages. He is clearly a huge player based on that form and is likely to do better yet as his hurdling improves with experience. A Wave of The Sea appeals as the chief danger, having run well in defeat at Fairyhouse last time.
Young Bull showed promise in bumpers last season, winning one of his three outings, and he has made a pleasing start over hurdles. He was third on his hurdling debut here in October and then benefited from a stiffer test of stamina when scoring on heavy ground at Ffos Las.
He ran to a similar level when successful over this course and distance this month, where he showed a tenacious attitude under pressure to prevail, with the pair pulling clear. He’ll come into his own when tackling an even stiffer test of stamina, but he is sent handicapping on a fair mark, is in form and looks sure to go well.
The Rowland Meyrick is a competitive contest and plenty can be given a chance, but Didero Vallis makes each-way appeal at the foot of the weights for in-form trainer Venetia Williams.
He showed little on his return at Ascot but shaped with a bit more promise at Aintree last time, without being able to recapture the pick of his form from last season. He has been eased 2lb, however, and a case can be made for him on his novice form, which included wins at Carlisle and Haydock.
He also ran well when fifth, against more experienced rivals, in the Plate at the Cheltenham Festival, and he promises to be well suited by stepping up in trip to three miles.
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