This could prove a good chance for HYBERY to get off the mark on Irish soil, with his sixth behind Entoucas two starts ago making him a major player here, for all that he lacks consistency. Good Reception is most feared if able to improve for his first start for a year last time, while Arthur Fonzarelli should be bang there if bringing his very best.
CRIMSON CHIEF (nap) just got going a little late last time at Tramore but that was a cracking effort and he can open his hurdles account here off this attractive mark. Sean O’Keeffe’s 5lb claim is a handy bonus and the stable were among the winners at the weekend. Blanketontheground has threatened to pick up one of these without quite getting her head in front and is respected, while Comporta, who just seemed to bump into one last time, and Canadian Steel, who will enjoy the trip, are no back numbers either.
Though there are plenty of examples of horses higher-rated over fences failing to exploit lower hurdle marks, it is difficult to oppose IN YOUR SHADOW, who got off the mark over fences last time and is 18lb lower over hurdles. Lighthouse Rose represents an in-form yard so should go well, while Spanish Leather should have more to come. Walk Me Home is one to keep an eye on in the market.
It is difficult to look past ARTHUR’S BABY here after her impressive win at Cork three days ago and she is 8lb well in on her future mark. She won a point-to-point so should stay this trip, though she does prefer good ground. Scotsman’s Bay, Double Windsor and Miraculum are her biggest dangers.
Quite a tricky affair but preference is for the mare POPONG, who has the benefit of a run over fences already and holds a fitness edge over significant player Braid Blue. That rival sets the standard on hurdles ratings but lacks a recent run, while High Sparrow is surely capable of better than we’ve seen from him in this sphere so far. Monkshood shouldn’t be far away if handling the ground.
The fact that My Manekineko could finish runner-up in a Grade 3 race at Galway last time looks strong form in the context of this contest but conditions chase form can be misleading back in handicap company and preference is for the lightly raced Tramore winner WOODBROOK BOY. Inishbel might sneak third.
Though Bective Cave is still theoretically well-handicapped over fences compared to his hurdle form, it was disappointing that he couldn’t take advantage at Tramore last time so ALICE JOHNSTON, who finished runner-up that day, can confirm the form on 4lb worse terms, as she looks progressive over fences. Roachdale House is closely matched with them, while Arch Melody loves this place but lacks a recent run.
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