Tribal Path was the only selection to hit the frame for us at Galway on Day 4 and Damian English’s stable star ran a cracking race. Only for Cardiuil pestering him Foley might have been able to get a breather into him, but even though he got tired he kept on well for 3rd at 11/1. Don’t Touch it ran a bitterly disappointing race and died a death once they turned for home. Smoulder got no sort of run and was hampered a couple of times in the listed race won by her stablemate Music Box.
|Adrian Keatley is flying.
Project Bluebook wasn’t given the best of rides by Brian Hughes but he ran a nice enough race to finish 6th. He was trapped wide the whole way and was given far too much to do, but he stayed on well up the hill and there are nice races to be won with the promising 4yo in the future. The biggest disappointment was Bog War, who I advised at 22/1. He was heavily backed and sent off at just 6/1, but he went out like a light under an aggressive ride by Leigh Roche and he obviously wasn’t race fit. As the old song goes, things can only get better, and below are my thoughts on Day 5.
As the week progresses in Galway the quality of race declines and finding winners becomes very difficult. You often get horses reappearing that raced earlier in the week and knowing what sort of shape they are in adds to the difficulty of finding those elusive winners. Heavy showers on Thursday will likely have gotten into the ground and conditions could be testing on Friday.
I have tipped up a couple of Stephen Mahon horses this week with no joy, but I think his luck could change with Stormey in this 2 mile handicap hurdle. I am not usually one for tipping up horses that have won their last couple, especially handicappers, but this lad was very impressive last time when hacking up at Bellewstown. He is only a 7yo so he could be still on the improve and I think he can cope with a 10lb rise for that win. He won his maiden on soft, he has been targeted at this race and I think he looks overpriced at odds of 12/1.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: STORMEY E/W @ 12/1
No bet for me in this 2yo maiden.
At a nice price, I think The Gatechecker looks an interesting contender here for Michael Hourigan and Jody McGarvey in this 2m 6f handicap chase. The JP McManus owned 7yo son of Classic Cliché has hit the frame on 3 of his 9 starts since going chasing. He gained his sole win over fences off 109 at Naas (19.5f sft) and he has run well off higher marks since that win.
He ran a cracker behind the well handicapped Killaro Boy at Gowran back in February when beaten 2L off 117 (20f hvy) and he ran a lovely race behind Eiri Na Casca last time over 20f at Tipperary on good to yielding. He is a former p2p winner so he should have no issues up in trip and he was narrowly beaten over timber at today’s trip of 2m 6f. He won’t mind a drop of rain, his trainer does well at Galway (4 wins 13 top 4 finishes from 38 runners) and at odds of 16/1 he is the each way selection in a wide open race.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: THE GATECHECKER E/W @ 16/1
Tara Dylan is the one I like here for the in form Tom Mullins yard. This daughter of Dylan Thomas has risen a fair way in the handicap since winning here last season (12f soft) off a mark of 61 and she is now rated 20lb higher. However, she showed at Leopardstown two runs back that she is capable of getting involved off this mark, beaten just over a length on ground plenty quick enough for her (13f gd/fm).
She should appreciate the return to softer ground at Galway and as she showed last year she will relish the stiff uphill finish. She has had just the two outings so far this season and Mullins is likely to have trained her with this meeting firmly in mind. She wasn’t disgraced in Listed company last time, she has a decent enough draw in stall 6 and at odds of 12/1 she is the each way suggestion in an open looking race.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: TARA DYLAN E/W @ 12/1
No bet for me in this tricky looking maiden.
Delegating is the fav for this tricky looking handicap but Michael O’Callaghan’s daughter of Delegator is poorly drawn in stall 14 and she can’t afford to be tardy from the gate like she was here earlier in the week. Adrian Keatley is a trainer that has his string in superb form and I think Cosy Club can build on his excellent run at Ayr last time out.
This very well bred son of So You Think has been a deeply frustrating sort but Keatley seems to have found the key to him based on his battling win at Ayr on ground plenty quick enough for him. He should be suited by the easier surface at Ballybrit on Friday and the step up to a mile should be no problem. Danny Sheehy is on the way to becoming one of the best pilots around and his 7lb claim could prove to be invaluable. Cosy Club is only 4lb higher than for his Ayr win, he is drawn to attack in stall 4 and at odds of 10/1 he is the each way selection in an open looking race.
STEVOS’ SELECTION: COSY CLUB E/W @ 10/1
No bet for me in this race.