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ABBEY MAGIC ran right up to her useful best when third in a valuable mares handicap here last month, so is clearly the one to beat. Sapphire Lady and Felicidad can do battle for minor honours.
The all-conquering Henry de Bromhead can dominate this. There is more to come from LE MUSIGNY over fences and he’s hard to get away from on his handicap debut. Down Royal winner Benruben can go well again. Meanwhile of the rest, Kildorrery is unlikely to be stopping at the finish once more.
BAPUAME remains capable of smart form over hurdles and fences, and was nicely on top when adding to his tally in minor company at Tramore in April. This looks another sound piece of placing, with Snow Falcon and stablemate of the selection Bleu Berry expected to fight it out for minor honours.
This looks between PERSIA and Purdey’s Gift, both winners on the Flat who shaped well on their debuts in this sphere at Naas and Fairyhouse respectively. Persia boasts a significantly higher rating on the level than Denise Foster’s charge and, while the gulf in class between them is unlikely to be so wide in this sphere, he is preferred. Hgranca de Thaix could be in line for minor place money.
BANBRIDGE was most impressive when running out a ready winner of a bumper in a good time at Killarney and is very much the type to take to hurdling, so he’s an obvious choice ahead of Cacique Royale and Powerful Out, who are also debuting in this sphere.
Lots with chances. SANTANA PLESSIS hasn’t been seen out since opening his account in a Kilbeggan novice in October, but is in very good hands and taken to return in style on his first venture into handicap company. Arcadian Sunrise is feared most on the back of his recent course and distance sixth after a lay-off, with Winner Takes Itall another who figures on a good mark and respected.
It’s hard to see past GRANGECLARE WEST, who cost a packet after winning his sole point and has joined a stable which dominates these events. Those with experience don’t set the bar too high and the main threat may come from newcomers, with Lady Bodeen and Zeydabad likely types on paper.
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