Your Busy can prove just the job for Walsh and O'Gara
Two of this country's sporting heroes Ronan O'Gara and Ruby Walsh combine with the former's promising jumper Your Busy for what should be a successful foray this afternoon to Thurles -- where Tipperary's All-Ireland triumph is being celebrated once more.
That success for the county's hurlers last month over neighbours Kilkenny is the theme of this seasonal return to action in Thurles and Your Busy looks capable of opening his account over the larger obstacles in the Liams Legends Beginners Chase.
The champion jockey was also on board for Your Busy's most recent outing at Gowran Park earlier this month, when both the softer ground than obtains here and the two-miles-one-furlong distance hardly played to the Anshan gelding's strengths.
Nevertheless, James Nash's charge stayed on resolutely towards the finish to take the runner-up berth behind Noel Meade's Darceys Dancer, which did the form no harm last week at Punchestown when making a race of it with Loosen My Load.
The Tralee father and son alliance of Tom and Bryan Cooper, likewise rely on a runner with useful form in this grade, namely Not Before Eight, which only gave best at Fairyhouse on the run-in to Ahorsecalledmolly, but might be caught out again here for a finishing kick.
The Cooper stable is represented by Limerick casualty Total Excitement in the preceding Welcome Home Liam McCarthy Beginners Chase and a clear round should see the eight-year-old earn more place money, with preference though for Pat Flynn's versatile Bahrain Storm. A fine money-spinner over timber and decent too on the flat, particularly when competing around Galway, Bahrain Storm should have the pace to cope with today's opposition -- presuming David Casey's mount takes kindly to his new role over fences.
Casey could take the riding honours of the meeting, as he's booked in addition for Sarsfields Legend and Ballygologue on behalf of the local Charlie Swan and Tommy Stack yards, which would appear the form picks in successive maiden hurdles.
The Cat Busters Hurdle should be at the mercy of former champion trainer Noel Meade -- on official ratings at least -- as he brings dual Galway scorer Silverhand (133) and the more exposed Aitmatov (148) to a race from which last year's winner Oscar Dan Dan defected overnight.
While the unbeaten Askanna and January's course and distance victor Elysian Rock will have their admirers, this could turn into a tactical affair and Silverhand might be the one to prosper most, even if Aitmatov bustled up Donnas Palm at Tipperary.