Horse Racing tips: Mick Fitzgerald’s best bets for Punchestown on Friday

Mick Fitzgerald marks your card for the eight races at Punchestown on Friday.

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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 – Alpha Male

Peter Maher has a superb record over the banks with his runners. He’s not quite as prolific as Enda Bolger, but it’s not bad. Alpha Male finished runner-up at the track last year and has run well in this type of race previously so has to be of interest again.

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16:15 – Busselton

Joseph O’Brian has done well with this son of Master Craftsman, Busselton. He was a winner at the track earlier this year he has run some good races. He is not badly handicapped either.

16:50 – Elimay

Willie Mullins’ filly Elimay has been a star turn this year. She has delivered the goods when needed and this looks another golden opportunity to record a win.

17:25 – Honeysuckle

Honeysuckle is rattling up the wins and for all the people saying she hasn’t beaten much, the form of her Champion Hurdle win was franked by Epatante winning impressively at Aintree. A succession of wins takes some doing at the very top level. Teahupoo is the likely second with the Cheltenham disappointment the only blip.

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18:00 – State Man

I was super impressed with how easily the winner State Man went through the County Hurdle. He was ridden like he had a lot in hand of his rivals and so it proved. However, this is a tougher test at Grade 1 level. Galopin Des Champs came here last year after winning a handicap at the Festival and won a Grade One in his next start – State Man can do the same.

18:35 – Vaucelet

Cheltenham winner Billaway is at the head of the market, but he makes it look like very hard work sometimes. He needed every inch of ground to get up to win at the Festival as he just got there in the shadow of the post. He could be vulnerable to a younger contender and Vaucelet fits the bill.

He won very nicely at Fairyhouse, then got beaten on soft ground at Down Royal. He was a very easy winner at Fairyhouse 13 days ago and will take a bit of stopping around this track.

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19:10 – El Fabiolo

I was surprised by the sustained support for El Fabiolo against Jonbon at Aintree, but it was justified! He very nearly pulled off a surprise and had he jumped the last hurdle better, he may well have won. He is a short price here, but is very-lightly raced and is still improving.

19:45 – OMoore Park

This race hard to get a handle on. O’Moore Park has every chance and this ground and track should suit. It would not be the first time that Willie Mullins’ second string beat a more fancied stablemate that Patrick Mullins has chosen to ride, in this case Don Chalant.

Mick Fitzgerald’s Friday 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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