This looks a decent maiden hurdle and Kolumbus is probably the one we all to have to beat, but we have an each-way chance. He has been a little disappointing since winning his bumper at Cork in October and we haven’t seen him since finishing a distant fourth on his hurdling debut at Clonmel in December but hopefully he is a lot better than he showed there.
He makes a quick reappearance after finishing a good second at Gowran last weekend. His earlier fall aside he has been a model of consistency over fences, so whether we have any secrets from the handicapper off a mark of 142 I am not so sure. If he runs his best then hopefully he will go well, but there may be better treated horses in here.
As you would expect for a Grade 2, this looks a decent race, but Peace News would have a definite chance if coming back to his best. He was very impressive when winning his maiden hurdle earlier in the season, and was still in with every chance when falling 2 out in the Royal Bond in December. He has run respectably since but perhaps hasn’t progressed as much as we thought, so Henry runs him in cheek pieces for the first time here and we do get weight from all bar two of these. Any Second Now looks the obvious one to beat though.
He is another horse of ours who is turning around quickly after a good second to Ballycasey over 2m4f at Gowran last weekend, so hopefully that race hasn’t left its mark. The step back to the minimum trip is an obvious question mark and he carries a 7lb penalty for his Grade 3 victory last summer, but he is the class horse of the race and I wouldn’t have thought I’d be hanging around here. There should be plenty of pace on here, which will suit him.
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