My first ride of the day is on Viscount Gort (14:20) in the Novice Handicap Hurdle for Henry. He was a good winner the last day over 2 miles at Thurles and steps up to 2 and a half here. It’s his first run in a handicap, and I don’t think Fairyhouse will be any trouble to him. Hopefully he can run a big race and get us off to a perfect start.
Desir Du Large
Next up, I’m on Desir Du Large (14:50) in the Grade 2 Paddy Kehoe Suspended Ceilings Novice Hurdle for Joseph and Gigginstown. He ran very well after a long lay off the last day at Naas. Finishing in behind Cheltenham Festival winner Belfast Banter, the form of that race has clearly worked out well, so we’re hoping if he keeps improving, he’ll run a big race.
My third ride is on Atlantic Fairy (15:20) in the Grade 1 EBF Mares Novice Hurdle Championship Final. This looks very competitive and you could make a case for many in the line-up. That said, we couldn’t be happier with Atlantic Fairy. She was a good winner on her last two starts, winning her maiden hurdle at Limerick, then following up with a win in the Apple’s Jade Mares’ Hurdle at Navan. Like I said, it’s a competitive race, but we’re more than happy with her and hopeful that she runs well.
I ride Gentlemansgame (15:50) in the Grade 2 Colm Quinn BMW Novice Hurdle. He’s done little wrong so far and looks like a horse with a big future. He was a very good second to Gaillard Du Mesnil at Leopardstown the last day, and although this looks competitive, if he’s at his best, he should run a big race.
Epson Du Houx
My penultimate ride of the day is on Epson Du Houx (16:25) in the Novice Handicap Chase. He fell on his last start at Navan where he tripped astride after the fence. It was really unfortunate, as I felt he was running a big race. If he can put in a clear round of jumping in this one, he shouldn’t be too far away.
And finally, I’m with January Jets (17:00) in the Grade 1 Underwriting Exchange Gold Cup Novice Chase. He seemed to really enjoy himself over Christmas where he got his head in front at Leopardstown. He’s still improving, and again if he shows his best, he should run well.