A feast of graded races at Fairyhouse !

Published On December 3, 2011 | By dominic | Uncategorized
Two fabulous day’s racing to look forward at Fairyhouse who stage this weekend’s big Winter festival of National Hunt racing. I expect it to be standing room only on Sunday where a feast of grade one events are scheduled including the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle (named after the first triple winner of the Champion Hurdle,1949-1951),The Drinmore Chase and the Royal Bond Novices Hurdle.Cheltenham have their open weekend ,Fairyhouse have their Winter festival!
Eight races to negotiate on Saturday with a pretty early start of 11.50 .I’m looking forward to seeing how Mikael D’Haguenet gets on in the conditions hurdle at 12.50.On his best form he really should be winning this but you feel he has a few questions to answer after a slightly below par run at Navan a few weeks back. If he fails to fire again you imagine the Cork winner New Phase and Tom Cooper’s River Liane might be the ones to benefit.
The two mile handicap at 1.20 is a valuable affair with no doubt one or two of the field having received a military style preparation for the race over the last few months. I’m a little surprised that Eddie O’Grady has asked Staying Article to shoulder top weight in it but who am I to question his trainer’s methods. Suffice is it to say that he must think the horse is reasonably handicapped despite the steadier of 11 stone ten pounds.Quiscover Fontaine and Launchpad are other likely clients in what looks a competitive affair while that Swordfish could be one to keep a close eye on in the market.
Win Now ,once again trained by Eddie O’Grady, has his chance to follow up a recent Clonmel success in the two mile handicap chase at 2.25 ,while many people’s idea of a banker on day one could be Sir Des Champs in the beginners chase at 3.00.Racing on day one concludes with the winners bumper, a race where Kick For Touch,Expresso Lady and the unraced Ziff, are entries to note.
I just can’t wait for Sunday.It really is Christmas come early for racing fans as it offers the first real opportunity of the season to see how some of our 2012 Cheltenham horses are shaping up.It’s going to be a big day in the betting ring too. Punters love these graded cards and even the most cautious of the bookmaking fraternity give it a real spin on these big days, taking on liabilities they would’nt normally dream about.Take it from me, you can have what you want on at Fairyhouse on Sunday.
The first of the graded races takes place at 12.50 ,a race where no matter how many times I look at it comes down to a match between Sious Le Cieux and the recent Navan winner Il Feromino.The latter was a useful horse on the flat in his native Italy where he won a clatter of races around The Cappenelle and Florence and has settled nicely in to his new quarters at Noel Meade’s Tu Va establishment. Sious Le Cieux meanwhile absolutely sluiced in at Punchestown on his latest start and really does look a bit special.What a race!
Gigginstown have a strong hand in the Drinmore’s with both First Lieutenant and Bog Warrior holding reasonable claims while in the Hattons Grace I do like the chances of The Real Article. What a pudding he was in the Galway Hurdle with ten stone nothing. A bold plan that sadly didn’t quite come off. I remember a few sniggers were heard when a well known judge took the small 80-1 on the exchanges about this horse for the Champion Hurdle a few months back. He’ll be nowhere near that price for Cheltenham if he wins this and consider the big picture for a moment.Hard to have Overdrive at any price,Peddlers Cross and Menorah are gone chasing, Binocular was beaten at Newcastle last week and Hurricane’s on the easy list. Interesting !
All will be revealed at Fairyhouse this weekend and remember the Star Spreads team are available to discuss all the latest market positions available on this wonderful weekend of racing ………

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