There’s an exciting card from Naas on Sunday with 3 big races ahead. I’ve previewed them and picked out what I think are 3 good value horses to keep an eye on.

Lawlor’s Of Naas Novice Hurdle

This is a contest of some depth, but even so it is very hard to ignore the claims of Next Destination, who beat Cracking Smart in the Navan Novices’ Hurdle in November, and looked value for more than the winning margin, his only error coming at a crucial time and leaving him out of his ground. The way he recovered to get on terms with the leaders there was the mark of a top-class prospect, and he should confirm the form with the runner-up without difficulty. The biggest danger could be Joseph O’Brien’s Speak Easy, who made a very pleasing debut at the same venue, and who is out of the tough and highly capable For Bill. The worry for Speak Easy is whether his inexperience will find him out, and the probable answer is that it will, at least against one as talented as Next Destination.

Eastcoast Seafood & Gouldings Hardware Handicap Chase

This race provides the bet of the day in the shape of Sizing Titanium, who won at Navan on his first rules outing in over two years, but had the advantage of a point run prior to that and is unlikely to suffer the mysterious “bounce factor”. The remarkable thing about his Navan win is that he went around the inside under Robbie Power when such tactics looked a distinct disadvantage, and the only conclusion to be drawn is that he had plenty in hand – certainly more than the 7lb he’s been raised for that success. The son of Flemensfirth has only had three runs over regulation fences in his lifetime, and looks on a lenient mark with the strong possibility of further progress given his profile.

Adare Manor Opportunity Handicap Hurdle

Eric Roche, brother of flat-jockey Leigh, got a good tune out of Cubomania when the gelding made a succesful debut for Gordon Elliott at Down Royal, and the young rider can help his mount bring up a quick hat-trick by winning the opportunity hurdle on the card. Cubomania scored again at Tramore on New Year’s Day despite looking in need of a stiffer test, and he will get that here. The son of Halling simply looks in a different class to his rivals, and will surely win if his exertions haven’t caught up with him.


Next Destination 

Sizing Titanium 


Odds are correct at the time of posting

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