Nolan hopes longer trip will do trick in National
See U Bob will bid to end the season on a rare high in the Ladbrokes Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse tomorrow.
The eight-year-old has been beset with bad luck in most of his races this season, but trainer Paul Nolan is hoping the extra distance will help the gelding in his quest for a first success since January 2010.
"He's in good form. We're going into different territory now with him by stepping him up to that (three-mile-five-furlong) trip," said Nolan. "He's been unlucky a couple of times this season when he fell (at Down Royal and Clonmel).
"The last day in the Grade Two at Navan he was a touch unlucky. He just got in a bit close early on and got a bit further back than we wanted him to be. Then we didn't run him at Gowran last weekend because the ground was just a little bit rough at the fences.
"Hopefully he'll give a good account of himself and jumps well. 'Squeaky' (Alain Cawley) has won on him three times before, so we're hoping he'll give him a good spin and he'll run well for JP (McManus)."
See U Bob is one of six horses carrying the McManus colours in the maximum field of 25. The others are top-weight Synchronised, Quantitativeeasing, Quiscover Fontaine, Sunnyhillboy, and Glenstal Abbey.
In the meantime, Nolan will have his fingers crossed Noble Prince shows no signs of his Cheltenham exertions when he returns to action in the Powers Gold Cup today. The seven-year-old has been freshened up since winning the Jewson Novices' Chase at Prestbury Park last month.
He had Loosen My Load back in third and Mr Cracker seventh that day, and both reoppose. Noble Prince also meets Realt Dubh for the third time, with Noel Meade's charge having beaten him on two occasions at Leopardstown.
Meanwhile, Poker De Sivola came from last to first to give trainer Ferdy Murphy a second success in the bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown yesterday. Ridden by Timmy Murphy for his main retainer David Johnson, the 11/1 shot still had plenty to do at the last fence. But he produced a late rattle to get up in the dying strides and beat Faasel by two and a quarter lengths, with Baby Run in third.
The winning rider said: "He's not the most straightforward of horses. He's one of those you have to sort of not try on and kid and the more you do that the more he enjoys it."
Delighted owner Johnson said: "If he had not unseated Graham Lee in the Scottish National last weekend we wouldn't be here. It was Graham's idea to run after that and Ferdy agreed, so we are here by default really."
Dick Turpin (8/13) made an impressive return at the same venue when running all over his rivals in the bet365 Mile.
Giving trainer Richard Hannon a sixth win in the last eight runnings of this Group Two contest, the four-year-old was barely asked a question to land the spoils for Richard Hughes.
Aidan O'Brien's Viscount Nelson later finished a disappointing fifth in the Group Three Gordon Richards Stakes behind Kings Gambit.
Sunday Indo Sport