Horse Racing tips: Our lively selections at Leopardstown on Monday

PPTV presenter James Shortt reckons Grangee will strike in the Champions Novice Hurdle at 13:45.



* All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.

12:05 Icare Allen

JP McManus has a good record in this juvenile hurdle having previously won this race with Plinth, Ivanowich Gorbatov and Sir Erec in the past eight years. Mark Walsh returns to the saddle and takes the ride on ICARE ALLEN, who should go close to making a winning Irish debut for leading owner McManus and new trainer Willie Mullins.

The son of Cokoriko recently changed hands having won his only start on the flat at Moulins in August, and any market support would be encouraging. Elsewhere, Prairie Dancer, Doctor Brown Bear, Gentleman Joe and Brazil all meet again having finished behind Ben Siegel at Punchestown, while Vera Verto is another with a place chance having finished second for Gavin Cromwell at Cork.


12:35 Thedevilscoachman

Mt Leinster managed to win his maiden hurdle here at the Christmas Festival in 2019 and is now hoping to break his duck over fences in this Beginners Chase. The Willie Mullins-trained seven-year-old has been placed twice in both chase starts, while classy stablemate Haut En Couleurs returns having finished third in two Grade 1’s at Cheltenham and Punchestown earlier this year.

However, I’m happy to take a chance with THEDEVILSCOACHMAN for Noel Meade following his third-place effort to Ferny Hollow at Punchestown earlier this month. The JP McManus-owned runner stayed on nicely and learned plenty on that occasion. He should represent value with the hope of progressing further on a second start over fences.

13:45 Grangee (NAP)

Willie Mullins has won five of the last six renewals of the Grade 1 Champions Novice Hurdle and hopefully the Closutton team can strike again this year with GRANGEE. She needs to reverse the form of the Champion Bumper at Cheltenham with Three Stripe Life, but should go close to victory thanks to previous course experience and her weight allowance.

The daughter of Great Pretender did well last season with victories here at Leopardstown in February and at the Punchestown Festival in April. Having named her in my 10 to follow pre-season, I’m more than confident she can progress further to win following her debut victory over hurdles at Fairyhouse last month.

Three Stripe Life is the main danger having finished just over 5 lengths ahead of Grangee at Cheltenham in March, before easily beaten the opposition on his hurdling debut also at Fairyhouse in early November. Elsewhere, stablemate Mighty Potter wasn’t beaten far when third in the Royal Bond Novice Hurdle, while Largy Debut is another interesting contender having seen off Kilcruit at Cork.


14:20 Get My Drift (Next Best)

I’m yet again tipping up another JP McManus runner at Leopardstown this Monday with GET MY DRIFT looking the most likely winner of this 2m handicap hurdle sponsored by our Paddy. The son of Spanish Moon has previous course experience having won his maiden hurdle over course and distance last Christmas.

The five-year-old looks nicely handicapped and has the benefit of a recent run following his fourth-place finish on return at Punchestown last month, so can reverse the form with Surprise Package. Elsewhere, Tony Martin has targeted this race in the past and any support for Tudor City should be noted, while the same can be said for Crowns Major from the Emmet Mullins stable.

14:55 Le Musigny (Each-Way)

The Paddy Power Handicap Chase is up next at Leopardstown with JP McManus having nine of the 28-declared runners. We all know the leading owner has a history with this race and went close again last year with subsequent Aintree National hero Minella Times. I’m happy to side with Henry de Bromhead and Rachael Blackmore again this year, with the returning LE MUSIGNY looking a serious each-way contender.

The seven-year-old has a nice profile for this race off an official rating of 134 having only had four career starts over fences. The son of Anzillero has not run since Killarney in July, but looks very interesting with the step-up in trip looking the key to bringing out further improvement. Elsewhere, Alfa Mix under Mark Walsh is hoping to reverse recent form with Fully Charged, while A Wave Of The Sea is another each-way hope in the green and gold colours for trainer Joseph O’Brien.



15:30 Percy Pi (Each-Way)

Ballycasey, Ballyward, Carefully Selected and Appreciate It are all previous winners of this closing bumper over the past 10 years for Willie Mullins, who runs Embassy Gardens this year. The son of Shantou runs in the colours of the Mulryan family, and the betting will provide a good guide to his chance on debut under Patrick Mullins. Elsewhere, Santonito is another leading contender and should improve for his debut second to The Nice Guy at Fairyhouse last month for Gordon Elliott.

However, I’m happy to side with PERCY PI as an alternative selection on his Irish debut for new trainer Brendan Duke, with Finian Maguire an excellent jockey booking too. The son of Sir Percy has the benefit of two runs in the UK for Mel Rowley with his second at Worcester in July reading well. The winner of that race, Leading Theatre returned recently to finish a decent second in a listed bumper at Cheltenham and Percy Pi should represent value against the two power houses in Irish racing.

Leopardstown tips:

12:05 Icare Allen
Get My Drift
Le Musigny (Each-Way)
Percy Pi (Each-Way)


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