Horse racing tips: 8 Mick Fitzgerald rates for Punchestown on Thursday

Punchestown on Thursday is the turn of the speedy novice chasers and the staying hurdlers to take centre stage.

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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 – Luke Short

A smart performer on the level who still has scope off his National Hunt handicap mark to be really competitive. This is his first time in a handicap hurdle so LUKE SHORT has to be taken seriously for trainer Noel Meade and jockey Sean Flanagan. The other that could run well at an each-way price is Hisnameis MrDevitt for Peter Fahey after three solid enough runs in maiden hurdles.

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16:15 – Magic Daze

Henry de Bromhead thought enough of this mare  to run her in the Arkle Chase at Cheltenham. She wears a tongue-tie for the first time and must be of interest in this 2m handicap chase. MAGIC DAZE finished third in a good race at Cork before going to Cheltenham and won nicely at the same track just before that in a beginners chase.

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16:50- Singing Banjo

The La Touche Cup Cross Country race is a real specialist event. You need a horse with proven form over the ‘banks’ and SINGING BANJO won twice at this meeting last year. Including this contest.

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17:25 – Klassical Dream 

Willie Mullins’ charge won this race last year off a long layoff and there’s no such worries this time, but he has had a couple of very hard races at Gowran Park and Cheltenham after winning at the Dublin Racing Festival. KLASSICAL DREAM is two from two at Punchestown though and gets the nod over Sire Du Berlais who won very well at Aintree earlier this month.

18:00 – Panda Boy

Won a Pertemps Hurdle Final qualifier at Leopardstown over Christmas and is a big, raw horse who can only improve with racing. PANDA BOY has just had six runs in his career on the track and should be given another chance, having  failed to reproduce his Christmas run at the Dublin Racing Festival in February.

18:35 – Gentleman de Mee 

He beat the Cheltenham Champion chaser Edwardstone at Aintree earlier this month and that is the best form on offer here by some way. Barring a mishap GENTLEMAN DE MEE should score again now. Gabynako put in a career best run over fences at the Cheltenham Festival and rates the danger if in the same vein of form.

19:10 – Hurricane Georgie

The in demand 7lb claimer Rob James has been booked for HURRICANE GEORGIE  who has performed to a high level all season. She was second in a Listed race at Fairyhouse and this looks a really good opportunity to get her head in front. Gordon Elliott horses are flying.

19:45 – James’s Gate

He looked a horse with a bright future when winning a bumper at this venue on heavy ground in February. He proved that when third to two of the best bumper horses in Ireland (Facile Vega & American Mike) at the Cheltenham Festival. The drier ground should not be a problem for JAMES’S GATE and he will be a warm order to win the finale.

Mick Fitz’s Thursday Punchestown Tips

*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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