I’ve got my head deep in the formbook looking at these early priced handicaps. The Betfair Classic Chase at Warwick is just going to be an attritional slog, so no selection. Looking forward to the two Coral.ie handicaps at Leopardstown on Sunday, quite happy with Fine Rightly at 10/1 in the chase and I still have my fingers crossed for De Name Escapes Me! I will update that race as soon as I have the final declarations. The Thyestes on Thursday at Gowran Park is of definite interest and the entries are out for the Betfair Hurdle.
#startrackingrunners Fri. 15 Jan.
TIPPMANBOY 1:50 Huntingdon Talented but headstrong! Twelve runners but the market makes it a match between Tippmanboy and Alan Kings well thought of hurdling debutante, The Unit. They are currently 5/4 the pair, 14/1 bar!! Hopefully his hurdling experience will tip the balance and he’s a two star** selection at 5/4 with PP.
SCEAU ROYALE 2:50 Huntingdon At 2/7 he is no bet but hopefully his slick hurdling will see off these and his next run will be in the Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham.
#startrackingresults Weds. 13 Jan.
A PLEIN TEMPS 5th 9/4F (we got 7/2) Beaten turning for home! Fry’s horses definitely under a cloud.
An eventful Thursday at Thurles. Word was out that JP McManus had bought some useful hurdlers from France (allegedly sourced by Messrs Swan and McCoy). Well the first one we’ve seen, Indien Rouge, prepared by Willie Mullins was beaten turning for home at 8/11 and came home 9th.
The novice hurdle was won well by Westend Star for Gordon Elliott and the Rooneys. God knows what Donald McCain, the Rooneys and their racing manager Jason Maguire make of it all? That’s 21 winners from 71 runners since November 1st and 3 from their last 4 runners. Westend Star himself is a gangly, almost clumsy creature who will surely come into his own when he goes chasing next season.
Bitofapuzzle unseats Noel Fehily. How many ladders has Harry Fry walked under?
Don Cossack did not go through the race with the ease one would expect of a 1-8 favourite, though jumping was largely sound under Bryan Cooper and he was never stronger than at the finish, pulling nine-and-a-half lengths clear of Wounded Warrior having taken over only two fences from home.
Trainer Gordon Elliott, while happy with the win, believes his stable star could benefit from cheek pieces at Cheltenham. He said: “He’s going to have to sharpen up at Cheltenham but he’s better on better ground and over further. “I worked him in cheekpieces the other day and he absolutely flew. I didn’t want to put them on him today and we need to keep every ace we have until the big day. If we’ll have them, we’ll have them for the Gold Cup. I’d have to speak to Michael and Eddie [O’Leary]”. Keith Melrose Racing Post Thurs. 14th Jan.Don Cossack did not go through the race with the ease one would expect of a 1-8 favourite, though jumping was largely sound under Bryan Cooper and he was never stronger than at the finish, pulling nine-and-a-half lengths clear of Wounded Warrior having taken over only two fences from home.