The seven-day Galway Festival sees its first jumps feature of the week, with the 2m 6f Galway Plate the big prize on offer on day three.
Gordon Elliott’s Galvin is near the head of the market unsurprisingly after his second-place finish at the Cheltenham Festival in the Novices’ Handicap behind Imperial Aura last March. He then tuned up for this with a bloodless victory at Killarney earlier this month, but the concern is that he fell at this track in a novice’s chase.
Snugsborough Benny was third to Borice last year in this contest, with Peregrine Run just behind in fourth. Joseph O’Brien’s Early Doors could be well handicapped based on his hurdles form and will have his supporters. Willie Mullins’ Easy Game won a hurdles race here in 2018 and could run a big race if his is jumping holds up.
Mullins’ stable jockey Paul Townend has opted to ride Royal Rendezvous and as a second-season chaser fits the profile of previous winners of this race. He won a Graded chase as a novice at Naas and is a leading player.
Another Mullins runner, Blazer, has always been highly thought of and was second in a Galway Hurdle to Sharjah in 2018 and has also run to a high level over fences.
With a bit of luck in running, he looks a solid each-way play in a tough-looking race where Paddy is paying the first 6 home.
We kick off the day with a novice hurdle. Originally I was tempted by the tried and tested combination of Willie Mullins and Paul Townend who have won this race for the past two seasons and combine with Getaway Gorgeous. However, with the ground a little on the slow side, Gordon Elliott’s The Very Man may have the advantage with three runs – and three wins – since March. Davy Russell rides and he gets the vote.
Two Shoe Tom won nicely at Ballinrobe far Peter Fahey and she will be on the premises again. I’m sticking with Mullins and Townend this time though, who team up with Jazzaway. She won at Fairyhouse when last seen in January and can follow up.
The bumper for mares that concludes the cards is not a great race on paper but another father and son team of Willie & Paddy Mullins team up with Shewearsitwell.
Keep an eye on the market for Tom Taafe’s filly Cottie ridden by his son. She is well related.
*The latest odds are bang up to date on our new bet widget
- All the top Goodwood, Galway & beyond racing previews are over here
- Horse Racing: How to watch racing for free with Paddy Power
- Placing bets is easier than ever with Paddy Power News’ live odds banners