Thursday 30 March 2017

Fine flat form gives Hired Hand edge for slight drop in class

Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

On a Tipperary programme with a strong point-to-point theme to it this evening, the JP McManus-owned Hired Hand is the nap selection to get proceedings under way in the opening maiden hurdle.

Prince Chaparral and Table Forty Six bring smart recent placed form to the table in the two-mile contest, but this represents a slight drop in class for Hired Hand.

The Charles O'Brien-trained gelding ran with plenty credit when fifth and fourth respectively on his previous hurdling outings back in the autumn.

While he is without a jumping start since then, he has performed well on the Flat lately -- so he ought to take all the beating now that he switches codes again.

In the first division of the following Glenview and Rathbarry Studs-sponsored handicap hurdle, Fairly Definite catches the eye. Edward O'Grady's Definite Article mare is lightly raced, having only begun her career in October.

In three completed starts on testing ground, Fairly Definite has not finished out of the first four. She hasn't run since the end of January, but it would be no surprise if she ups her game now under Andrew McNamara.

The top weight, Worldly Wise, is a danger, as is Dream Home at the other end of the scale. That one progressed to win over fences at Downpatrick a year ago, so is interesting off a 7lb lower mark here.

Ruby Walsh has two mounts on the card for Tony Martin. Their representative Tommy Turkle is passed over in favour of Hot Friend for Robert Tyner and Philip Enright in the handicap chase, but King Of The Refs can win the beginners chase.

Of the point-to-point events, Make It Better is the pick in the Kedrah House Stud Hunters' Chase. Mikey O'Conner's mare confirmed that she is in the form of her life by winning in a canter at Cork last month.

Irish Independent

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