Galway Festival 2017 Day 1 Selections

One of the biggest meetings of the Summer in Ireland gets underway on Monday. Thousands will be making the annual pilgrimage to Ballybrit in Galway for seven days of unmitigated mayhem. The racing is a mere sideshow for the vast majority of people, most of whom head West for a week of drinking, dancing and divilment.
I might try to get down there for a day or two myself but with Goodwood also on next week I will probably be too busy. I will be putting up selections for both meetings so keep an eye on my Twitter and Facebook page for updates. Below are my thoughts on Day 1 of the Galway festival.
Joseph O’Brien has been amongst the winners.
RACE 1
Summer maiden hurdles at this time of year are rarely deep contests, but this one goes against the grain. Three of the field are unbeaten over timber, but someone’s 0 is going to go on Monday. Joseph O’Brien has been firing in the winners at a relentless rate in the last few weeks and with Barry Geraghty on board for the first time Le Richebourg looks to be a worthy favourite.
Willie Mullins’ Nessun Dorma and Henry De Bromhead’s Twobeelucky also bring unbeaten records into this race. Both those geldings won impressively last time out but it was impossible not to be hugely impressed by Le Richebourg’s facile win at Killarney. The half brother to top class performer Grand Crus and Gevrey Chambertain should be fine on the ground and he barely came out of 3rd gear when winning last time.
At a bigger price, I was impressed with the manner of Father Mattie’s win last time out and he deserved to get his head in front after a string of fine efforts on the level and over timber. He should be suited by the stiff finish at Galway and if any of the leading lights underperform he could easily run into a place. If you are looking for an each way alternative at a tasty price you could do a lot worse than back Father Mattie at odds of 20/1.
STEVOS’ SELECTIONS: LE RICHEBOURG WIN @ 5/4 FATHER MATTIE E/W @ 20/1
RACE 2
I have already posted a selection for this race for Mybettingbonus and you can find out what it is by clicking here.
RACE 3
The Joseph O’Brien and Jim Bolger horses head the market in this contest and on all known form they will be hard to beat. However, at a much bigger price perhaps Quizical can hit the frame after showing promise in a hot maiden at the Curragh. He finished 9th, 11L behind the winner Gustav Klimt, but this is a much weaker race and his stablemate Burgundy Boy who was 7L in front of him ran a cracker in a Group 3 on Thursday at Leopardstown.
Quizical is a son of Roderic O’Connor and he is bred to win as a 2yo. His half sister Split Second was a 2yo winner in Italy and his dam also won as a 2yo. His sire, Roderic O’Connor, was also a classy 2yo and plenty of his progeny have been precocious. His handler Sheila Lavery does well at Galway, sending out 3 winners and 5 placed horses from just 15 runners in the past 5 seasons. The O’Brien horse has had plenty of chances, and rather than back him at odds on I think a small e/w bet on Quizical at 20/1 could be the answer.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: QUIZICAL E/W @ 20/1
RACE 4
I have already posted a selection for this race for Mybettingbonus and you can find out what it is by clicking here.
RACE 5
I fancy one at a monster price in this one and you can find out what it is by clicking here.
RACE 6
The one I like for each way purposes in this contest is the Jessica Harrington trained Make It Hurrah. Harrington also runs Hyperdrive who is the current market leader and he comes here on the back of a couple of wins at Limerick (11.5f gd/fm) and Leopardstown (10f soft). However, he is 11lb higher than for his last win and his new mark of 77 might be beyond him.
Make It Hurrah, on the other hand, has been dropped 3lb after being beaten 3L by Clongowes at the Curragh off a mark of 77 last time (10f gd). This son of Intikhab gained his first win on his seasonal comeback at Cork (8.5 hvy) off 63 and he again ran well on better ground over the same c&d on his next start off 71 when 3rd. He found his revised mark beyond him the next twice, but the step up in trip and return to a softer surface could eke out a bit more improvement.
Tom Madden claims 5lb so Make It Hurrah is effectively 2lb lower than for that 3rd at Cork and he has been handed a good draw in stall 3. His pedigree suggests there could be more to come upped in trip to 12f. Two of his half sisters have won at 12f and so has his dam. She also placed at 2 miles on the level so even though the betting and jockey bookings suggest that Make It Hurrah is the so called second string, I think the new trip and likely ground are reasons enough to back him e/w at 25/1.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: MAKE IT HURRAH E/W @ 25/1
RACE 7
I have no strong fancy for the bumper at the moment. I will see what the weather does overnight and maybe post a selection tomorrow. 

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