Horse Racing Tips: Frank Hickey’s Punchestown punts on Wednesday

Our top racing trader scoots through the card for day two of the Co. Kildare Festival.

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*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

15:40 – Edison Kent, Thanksforthehelp

Edison Kent is likely to go off at a fair price. Jessie Harrington has had a winner, a second and a fourth in this race in the last five years so there’s plenty of form there. Edison Kent won a Killarney maiden hurdle last May over 2m4f but has been far from consistent since. However, his recent Fairyhouse run should have him spot on for this.

Another one is Thanksforthehelp. David Pipe brings this one over for handicap debut with a first-time tongue tie fitted. Shane Fitzgerald is on board and he’s one of the best conditional jockeys in the race so that’s a positive booking as he tussling with Jack Foley for the Conditional Jockeys’ title.  Thanksforthehelp is progressing with every start and was second at Wincanton over just shy of 2m the last day. This step up in trip should bring improvement and Pipe’s 5-24 (21% strike rate) in the last two weeks is red-hot form.

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16:15 – Glengouly

Pater Fahey won this last year with Surprise Package and has decent claims here with Freedom To Dream off the back of a great run in the Martin Pipe when fourth beaten four lengths. But the one I’m looking at is Glengouly who is getting his act together and is learning to settle all the time. He has won his last two starts, at Gowran over 2m 4f and last time at Leopardstown over 2m. Willie Mullins said he was being prepared with this race in mind and, provided he settles okay, he could take a bit of beating.

16:45 – Fils D’oudairies

Willie Mullins and Jessie Harrington have shared the spoils in this race winning three each over the last six years. In this renewal Willie has Ganapathi, Classic Getaway and Gibraltar and Jessie has Crosshill but he has been disappointing in two starts over fences and again last time when reverting to hurdles. Fils D’oudairies ran a cracker in the 2m4f Handicap Hurdle at Aintree, being beaten under two lengths by the well handicapped Langer Dan off a mark of 140. They were eight lengths clear of the third, the unexposed Balco Coastal. He is 1lb clear of Ganapathi on ratings and looks the one to beat.

17:20 – Minella Cocooner

The first three from the Grade 1 Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle at Cheltenham re-oppose again. Journey With Me steps up to 3m which looks sure to suit and Minella Crooner was favourite for the Albert Bartlett before he missed the race through injury. Daily Present is stepping up in grade for Paul Nolan after winning two of his three starts over hurdles. He easily beat Bronn at Navan over 2m6f with Digby back in fourth. He might be a wild price and might be worth something small each-way on him if he is. But, for me, Minella Cocooner ran a huge race in the Albert Bartlett when a five length second to The Nice Guy. He ran so keen, but stuck to the task upped to 3m. This track is likely to suit even better.

17:55 – Allaho

This looks a really good renewal of the Punchestown Gold Cup but I can’t oppose Allaho even though he is going right-handed and steps up to 3m. He was an impressive winner of the 2m 5f Ryanair Chase for the last two years and I don’t think that the 3m trip will be any issue. He has the ability to win a King George VI Chase and possibly even a Cheltenham Gold Cup. Remember, he was only a length behind future Gold Cup winner Monalee in the RSA Chase when Champ nailed the two of them late on.

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18:30 – Facile Vega

Cheltenham Champion bumper winner Facile Vega faces American Mike again in a repeat of the Cotswolds showdown but it is very difficult to see how American Mike will reverse the placings. Facile Vega looks very exciting and if he runs to form I can’t see what beats him.

19:05 Foxy Jacks

Foxy Jacks won this last year of 128 and has shaped well on occasion this season. He ran better than the eight-length seventh would suggest in the Paddy Power Chase at Christmas and then was second to Birchdale at the Dublin Racing Festival over 2m 5f. He tanked into the race in the Ultima Chase but made a mistake three out and then his stamina gave way.

He then fell in the Topham at the ninth when in the front rank and is only 2lb higher than when second to Birchdale. A return to a right-handed track IS a massive positive for him.

19:45 Jetara

I really liked Jetara’s debut win at Punchestown a couple of weeks ago over 2m 4f. She travelled well and then battled well to get the better of Walk In The Brise who had the benefit of experience. She is a Walk In The Park filly out of bumper winner Jelan who is a sister to Jezki and half sister to Jett and Jered among others.

Wednesday Punchestown tips

15:40 – Edison Kent, Thanksforthehelp
16:15 – Glengouly
16:45 – Fils D’oudairies
17:20 – Minella Cocooner
17:55 – Allaho
18:30 – Facile Vega
19:05 – Foxy Jacks
19:45 – Jetara

*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

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