It’s day two of the Dublin Racing Festival and BetVictor Ambassador Rachael Blackmore has a cracking book of rides. She shares her thoughts on all six, including Grand National hero Minella Times; and the brilliant Honeysuckle.
Day two of the Dublin Racing Festival is a busy one for me with six rides on Sunday and Annie G is the first of them in the Paddy Mullins Mares Handicap Hurdle. She is a mare that did well running over the Summer, winning a listed race at the Galway Festival. She disappointed at Down Royal at the end of October but has been working and schooling well at home since and hopefully she can put in a much-improved performance here.
Next up is the Dublin Chase. I am on Captain Guinness who was last seen running a brilliant race to finish third in the Tingle Creek at Sandown. He finished behind Greaneteen who won that day whilst Chacun Pour Soi just didn’t seem to run any kind of race. I suspect we will see the real Chacun here today which will make for a fantastic race. We are happy with Captain Guinness at home since the Sandown run and I think he is going to put up a very big performance today.
I am delighted to be back on Grand National winner Minella Times, he took a heavy fall in the John Durkan last time out but is none the worse for it and has been in good form at home. He must carry a fair bit of weight here but hopefully he can get a nice clear round of jumping and run well.
After that it is all about Honeysuckle for me in the Irish Champion Hurdle, Colman who rides her out every day at home is happy with her. She felt great in the Hattons Grace at Fairyhouse back in November, there really isn’t much more you can say about her that hasn’t already been said! We just all feel so lucky to be a part of her story. I am really looking forward to riding her on Sunday, fingers crossed everything goes to plan.
Watch House Cross
We move onto the grade one novice hurdle where I ride Watch House Cross, who was a good winner here over Christmas when ridden by Sean Flanagan. He is a nice horse with a big future who does things very well at home, he isn’t one you would want to underestimate even in a race of this depth. Sir Gerhard, the Champion Bumper winner, sets the standard and is the one we all have to beat. He looked very impressive when winning on St Stephens day here at Leopardstown on his first start over hurdles.
My final ride of the weekend is on Champagne Gold in the handicap hurdle, he finished second in this race last year and he runs off four pounds higher this year. His recent runs over fences haven’t been too encouraging but I am hoping a return to hurdles will suit, he seems well at home so let’s hope he can go one better than last year.