Carrigmoorna to rock for Tyner
Robert Tyner's Gurteen was deeply impressive last weekend and Carrigmoorna Rock is napped to return to her similarly classy best for the stable at Thurles today.
The King's Theatre eight-year-old lost her form this time last year, having looked really exciting when twice winning in pattern company prior to the end of 2014. On her return at Gowran Park in the autumn, she again performed well below what she is capable of on her day.
However, on switching to fences at Clonmel on October 29, she looked far more like her old self. Travelling with a renewed fluency on that occasion, she was ultimately well held by Emcon, but she should be much better for the experience and Tyner will be expecting a big run with the yard's horses beginning to hit form.
As a result, Carrigmoorna Rock has nap appeal under Philip Enright in the mares' beginners' chase. Willie Mullins's Uranna is the obvious threat, and the champion trainer and Ruby Walsh are tipped to score with the returning Arbre De Vie in the other beginners' chase.
In the €26,000 four-runner Listed Chase, Mullins relies on Avant Tout and Tennis Cap, while Sandra Hughes' improving Nearly Nama'd is another contender. Preferred, though, is Henry de Bromhead's Smashing, which hasn't been seen since winning tidily on its comeback at Gowran Park in November.
Successful over this two-and-a-quarter-mile trip at Gowran a year ago, the flashy grey will be in its element in this deep ground. Third to Gilgamboa in last year's Grade One novices' chase at Fairyhouse, Smashing has plenty quality, so he is trusted to justify his billing as the highest-rated on duty.
John Joe Walsh, who was again among the winners here yesterday, could collect with Hard Bought in the handicap over the same trip. Brian O'Connell's mount has won four times over flights off marks of 87, 95, 99 and 103, the latter two victories coming only last spring.
Hard Bought returns to chasing here off a rating of just 88, having not shown much when previously tried over fences in 2013. He has matured a lot since then, so he has plenty appeal here under just 10st 5lb in what is a pretty moderate affair.