Ram can hit form for Fahy at Tramore
Carlow handler Pat Fahy sends just a solitary runner to the second leg of Tramore's August festival this evening and Ram Them All is fancied to ensure it is a successful foray.
A six-year-old son of Kris Kin that has yet to win in 17 starts, Ram Them All tackles the card's Midge Nolan Memorial Handicap Hurdle for a second year in a row. In 2014, he ran well to be third to Swantykay off a mark of 95, before then finishing second in three subsequent maiden hurdles.
In two outings this term, Ram Them All has yet to hit form, but he has plenty appeal in here off the same mark that he ran off 12 months ago, having risen to 98 in the interim. Around a notoriously trappy venue on which course form is always a plus, that should give him a serious chance under the in-form former champion jockey Paul Townend.
Local Waterford trainer Henry de Bromhead might be responsible for the selection's chief danger in the shape of Idontdalaay. Andrew Lynch's mount recorded a career-best effort when keeping on for third at Wexford last month. He clearly has the scope to win a race, but whether he is quite quick enough for this track is another matter. In contrast, De Bromhead is expected to win the bumper with the Davy Roche-ridden Simiel. This doesn't appear to be a very strong contest, with Willie Mullins's Tt's Star having shown little to recommend him in two previous starts.
On its Limerick debut, Simiel set strong early fractions, before only giving best to Mullins's useful Escape Footwear in the straight. It was a fine turn from the front, and similarly aggressive tactics around here could see Simiel win by a wide margin, so he is napped to go one better.
Earlier on, Escape Footwear makes her hurdle bow at the seaside venue. Three times a point-to-point runner-up before winning between the flags in the spring, the Mahler five-year-old could have done no more than she did at Limerick.
Clearly, she will need to have her wits about her for a hurdling bow here, but the two-mile-five-furlong trip should be to her advantage. If Escape Footwear hurdles sufficiently fluently under Ruby Walsh, then, she should win.
Of the remainder, Gordon Elliott's Miss North Light could be her most potent rival. Placed in a bumper here in the autumn, she is one-paced, but she has run well to make the frame in both of her hurdle outings at Sligo.
Elliott has two live contenders for the €12,000 Flynn Hotel Group Novices' Hurdle in Cecil Corbett and Mr Steadfast. However, the one that might be worth a venture in the five-runner affair is Denis Hogan's Fiosrach.
A 76-rated Flat horse at his peak with Jim Bolger, Fiosrach improved for the bit of decent ground to scoot up at Kilbeggan in April. His only outing since then was a commendable turn in sixth on the Flat at Galway, which should have left him spot on for this.
If that proves to be the case, he ought to be as good as any of these.