Horse Racing tips: 6 slick picks for Naas and Limerick on Sunday

PPTV presenter James Shortt has been in top form and gives us the skinny on the last of the Irish action before Cheltenham begins on Tuesday.

Energumene wins at Naas 2021


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This looks a good opportunity for LIMERICK LACE to gain some black-type and improve further for Gavin Cromwell and JP McManus following her maiden hurdle success at Punchestown in January. She learned plenty behind Dysart Dynamo and Brandy Love at Cork and Naas last December before scoring nicely when stepping up in trip at Punchestown.

The extra few furlongs should bring out more here and I think she’ll give Brampton Belle a race thanks to the benefit of receiving 3Ibs from the Henry de Bromhead trained mare. Elsewhere, Mi Lighthouse steps back up in trip following an easy victory here last month and is also hoping to reverse the form with Brampton Belle from a race at Tramore back in December.




There was a lot to like about the winning performance of SLIP OF THE TONGUE at Punchestown last month and I think Padraig Roche’s runner can improve further to land this graded hurdle. The son of Flemensfirth did well to survive a late scare at the last hurdle before putting himself right under Mark Walsh to win a shade cosily from Deploy The Getaway.

This looks a good contest with Highland Charge hoping build on his maiden hurdle success here two-weeks ago, while Oliver McKiernan’s Gatsby Grey should be in the mix following a good run at Thurles last month. Gypsy Island returns after a break for Peter Fahey with Gordon Elliott’s unbeaten Vina Ardanza facing softer ground conditions for the first time. However, Slip Of The Tongue has more to offer and can record back-to-back wins under another hold-up ride from Mark Walsh.


Eye Van brings some solid form to this 3-mile maiden hurdle and should go very close to finally getting off the mark under rules on Sunday. The son of Yeats has been unlucky to come across some useful horses in recent months, finishing behind Eric Bloodaxe in graded company here over Christmas, Minella Crooner in a maiden hurdle at Punchestown and Shantreusse back in graded action at Clonmel.

However, ANGELS DAWN looks the one for me and races here under a very similar profile having just finished ahead of Eye Van at Christmas, while also running good races against Frontal Assault last season and Ginto more recently at Naas in early January. She was always holding Eye Van here at Christmas and once again receives weight, so I think she’ll represent some value with The Waltzer and Pat’s Pick the other two fighting for a place.



Lifetime Ambition has been outclassed in better company in recent starts behind Beacon Edge, Blue Lord and Bob Olinger but returns here with a chance for Jessica Harrington and Robbie Power. I was impressed by his jumping and victory at Down Royal last October and this level opposition should see him go close on return from a break. However, despite some nice words for the Harrington runner, I’m siding with the consistent JEREMYS FLAME yet again having tipped this horse to victory already at Naas this season.

Her effort behind Concertista at Cork last December stood out and she won her Beginners Chase here in good fashion in early January. She was just outbattled by Ballyshannon Rose in graded company at Thurles before bouncing back to victory at the same venue last month. She receives a little weight from Lifetime Ambition, has experience of this course and stands out as the best bet on the card with the ground and trip also looking ideal for the Gavin Cromwell trained mare.


Franco De Port gives away plenty of weight to his rivals in this Leinster National and returns here following his second-place finish to Longhouse Poet in the Thyestes Chase at Gowran Park in January. The former Grade 1 winner stands out on ratings with Byran Cooper now in the saddle on just his second handicap start for Willie Mullins. However, it’s another Closutton runner in STONES AND ROSES who I’m happy to stay faithful with having disappointed in the National Trial at Punchestown last month.

He was well backed into favouritism on that occasion but lost his rhythm and went backwards after the third last under Paul Townend to finish fifth behind Death Duty. He remains unchanged off 134 with regular jockey Brian Hayes now back in the saddle – Hayes guided him to victory when scoring previously at Punchestown and was also onboard when running well in the Porterstown at Fairyhouse. It’s a competitive race with Champagne Platinum and Diol Kier also in the mix, but Stones And Roses is the one for me with the drop in trip also looking a positive in this one.


HUNTERS YARN looks the most obvious winner of this closing bumper at Limerick as Willie Mullins’ runner returns to a National Hunt Flat race following a surprise defeat on hurling debut at Punchestown last November. The extended 2-mile 5-furlong trip looked a little beyond him on that occasion and he should be good enough here now moving down in trip on just his second start for the Closutton team after a break.

The form of his runaway bumper victory at Thurles last March isn’t the strongest form but he was a visually impressive 17-length winner which persuaded Simon Munir and Isaac Souede to purchase privately. He has a nice pedigree, related to several winners including Do Your Job and Highland Charge and can follow in the footsteps of Run Wild Fred, On Eagles Wings and Flame Bearer by winning this race and hopefully improving further down the line.


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