Handicap hurdle to start this Sundays racing over the minimum trip. An interesting event with a couple of horses with bigger targets in mind making there seasonal debuts.
Living Next Door is one of these for Tony Martin and Ruby Walsh. Last seen finishing fifth in the four mile event at the Cheltenham Festival, while he is interesting and has to be respected given connections, surely this trip will be too sharp and is overlooked.
Mind The Pennies pulled up at Naas last week, and never really travelled with much presence having looked well handicapped in his second to last run. Given how poor the most recent run, a watching brief is advised.
The favourite and selection will be Harvey Logan, one of four runners for JP McManus, he won off a lowly mark of 102 last time out and despite the minimal winning margin, a eight pound increase shouldn’t be enough to stop him winning again. While this is harder, Harvey Logan looks a natural JP improver and has some excellent novice and bumper form. He is one to keep onside over the next couple of weeks and a mark of 130+ may not be out of reach.
Harvey Logan (WIN)
Next we head to the south west of Ireland for a maiden hurdle event over just shy of two and a half miles. Willie Mullins and the fast growing Supreme Horse Racing Club syndicate have the favourite here in Uranna who returns from a mammoth two year absence, he makes his Irish debut belatedly since finishing third in his last race in France. While I will overlook on this occasion and he will need the run. But the fact connections have persevered with this horse suggests he is talented.
The selection comes from Elizabeth Doyle stabe and half brother to the all conquering Kauto Star in the form of Kauto Grand Mogol. His is the model of consistency and finished placed on all four of his bumper runs. This distance should be right up his street and his form behind Martello Tower (who franked form last week) looks very strong. While the only negative will be the fact he will need to give weight away to all but one he should prove too strong here.
Off the remainder point to point winner Our Benny needs to be respected. However bar these three its hard to fancy many others.
Kauto Grand Mogol (WIN)
The final selection of the day comes from Navan and a tasty beginners chase over the minimum which can add to the already exciting novice chase division in Ireland this year. Blood Cotil is likely to start favourite for that enviable partnership of Mullins/Walsh/Ricci.
This horse was very unlucky last year when falling at odds of 1/4 and the race at his mercy. However that race wasn’t the strongest and is taken on here.
Legal Exit is a horse to keep on side. Not seen for a year and a half, he has shown some excellent form and chasing was always going to be the name of the game. Today may just come to soon for a trainer who likes to take things slow. However I could see this horse challenging for major honours at the back end of the season.
The selection is Gilgamboa who was last seen finishing down the field in the Supreme novices. Chasing like Legal Exit was the plan all along and rated 140 over hurdles should see him hard to beat here. In connections of Mark Walsh who is in excellent form and Enda Bolger knows how to train a chaser. Still unexposed can take this on his way to bigger targets.