Juvenile Derby winner bids for major prize
The entry for the Comerford Cakes Open 525 finally settled at 48 and eight very interesting heats will be run on Saturday's programme at Shelbourne.
Carrying a winner's prize of €15,000, the Comerford Cakes is the last and most prominent classic trial of the year and the big fancies for many will be the Dublin Coach Juvenile Derby winner Anopheles and the big-finishing third-placed Jaytee Dutch.
Anopheles followed up his Harold's Cross victory with a most impressive Shelbourne debut last weekend when he was an easy winner of the Dog Puppy 525. He will contest Heat 3 on Saturday where he will have very formidable opponents in Exactly, Laurens Champ, Fast Fit Alex and Philiblue.
Jaytee Dutch was changed from a wide seed in the Juvenile Derby to an inside seed for this event and, as luck would have it, he has landed trap six in the second heat in an all-inside race. Paul Hennessy's big finisher should overcome the draw by qualifying from a race where Swords Fern and Creamery Bale could be the main dangers.
Hennessy has been luckier in the trap draw with Jaytee Pharoah in the concluding Heat 8.
This fellow will go from the inside box but he has some red-hot opponents in Droopys Latina, Farloe Joey and Thinly Veiled.
Panther set to pounce
Shelbourne host an 11-race card tonight and one of the bets of the evening could well be Barnane Panther (7.58) in the opening A3/4 575.
He looked a useful sort in his early races at Longford with an obvious future over extended distances. He was unlucky last time here when baulked on the first bend when about to take the lead and he may make amends here from a perfect outside draw.
At the end of the card there are three pretty intriguing heats of the Vetsearch Recharge A3 Tri Distance. The Ian Reilly-trained Droopys Maid (9.58) made an impressive debut at Harold's Cross last month when motoring clear from halfway. She will likely be stronger in the later stages of this competition over longer distances but she can make a winning Shelbourne start at the expense of Global Chart.
Peter Cronin, who trains Global Chart, has that fellow's litter brother Global Benny (10.13) running in the second heat and he brings a two-from-two record from Waterford. The evidence of those runs is that he would prefer an inside berth but he will clearly take beating in this contest.
The Tony Fahy-trained Grangeview Kin was fastest in the heats of the Irish Grand National at Harold's Cross on Tuesday when leading from the first bend for a three-length victory in 29.43. The other heat saw the Pat Kiely-trained Comeout Russell take it up at the third hurdle from Champion Candy and he won by three lengths from Champion in 29.54.