Exciting Pont fancied to score again at Naas
Pont Alexandre is the star turn on a Naas card that must survive an 8.0 inspection this morning due to the threat of frost.
Willie Mullins' classy eight-year-old defied a 998-day lay-off to cruise home by eight lengths on his fencing debut at Punchestown last month.
It was a breathtaking performance that suggested that he hadn't just returned as good as he left off, but possibly even better.
On his previous outing in the 2013 Neptune Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham, Pont Alexandre ran an excellent third to The New One on just his fourth outing. He is a hugely exciting prospect now that he is sound again, so he should claim this afternoon's three-mile Grade Two novices' chase at the chief expense of stablemate Roi Des Francs.
Mullins and Walsh should also take the Grade Three Limestone Lad Novices' Hurdle with another long odds-on shot in Sempre Medici.
The International Hurdle runner-up is 12lb or more superior to his four rivals on official ratings, so he ought to be making light work of them with an eye to more challenging assignments.
Haymount has a chance for the same firm in the maiden hurdle, but Edwulf gets the nap vote in that. The Aidan-O'Brien-trained seven-year-old was on the verge of a fine victory when crashing out at the final fence at Navan last month.
Edwulf clearly has an engine, so he will go close if he translates that level of display to the smaller obstacles for Barry Geraghty, who might also score in the JP McManus silks on Robert Tyner's Mount Brandon in the handicap chase.