James Shortt’s Selections
GOODNIGHTNGODBLESS (NAP) stands out for me in this Qualified Riders Handicap Chase over 2m 6f and is my best bet of three selections at Thurles on Thursday. The daughter of Yeats bounced back into form with a good second-place effort here at this venue just before Christmas, with the drop in trip and better ground looking positives towards his chances today.
She previously won off this 102 rating over hurdles at Roscommon and her other career victory at Tipperary in 2018 also came on better ground. King Ferdinand, Thedancingfarrier and Sean Says where all behind James Motherway’s mare the last day and with the in-form Harry Swan booked to ride, it’s hard to look beyond Goodnightngodbless in this contest.
SA FUREUR has progressed nicely for Gordon Elliott in recent starts and deserves to take his chance in the feature Grade 3 Michael Purcell Memorial Novice Hurdle over the extended 2m 4f trip. The son of Walk In The Park looks nicely treated here against the opposition, rated 132 and 7lbs superior to Rexem (125) but racing on level weights against John McConnell’s runner.
He races on better ground for the first time since finishing third in a Fairyhouse bumper and looks a horse on the up after back-to-back wins at Punchestown last month. The Elliott team has won the previous two renewals of this race and with Jordan Gainford riding for the first time, he’ll continue his good form by securing his biggest prize and three wins from four over hurdles.
Syndicates Racing have enjoyed good success with Willie Mullins in recent years with the likes of Cabaret Queen, Grangee and Nos Na Goithe and can do so again with WEST END VICTORY winning this closing bumper under Patrick Mullins. The daughter of Westerner has a nice pedigree and is related to several winners, including Tell Us More, who won on rules debut in a Gowran Park bumper for the Closutton team back in 2014.
Strangely enough both Willie Mullins and Gordon Elliot (who saddles debutante Silver Lark) haven’t won this bumper in recent years – Mullins last winning this race with Daisy’s Gift in 2013. Elsewhere, Jessica Harrington’s Baby Chou can improve from her latest start behind Nick Rockett with Mag Dillane, Milanaway and Final Decision others who should be fighting for the place.
James Shortt’s Selections
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