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Gigginstown out in force

A number of high profile horses will grace Irish racecourses this weekend and a common factor with a lot of them is that they are owned by the Gigginstown House team who could be set for quite a memorable weekend.

Fresh from a Grade One double at Fairyhouse last weekend, the Gigginstown battalion will send nice horses to all three Irish meetings over this weekend in a hope to continue what has been a successful start to the season.

Another man that has an enviable team of horses to go to war with this season is Rich Ricci but as last week proved in horseracing you can never predict the inevitable.

That said, with the likes of Don Cossack, No More Heroes, Alpha Des Obeaux and Un Atout all lining out, Michael O'Leary can have every reason to hope for a good couple of days.

Gigginstown also unleash Argentino in the opening maiden hurdle at Navan today who is the mount of Bryan Cooper for Willie Mullins.

The four-year-old son of Sinndar is a French recruit who hasn't run since finishing on the flat almost a year and a half ago.

Given that he is suspended for four-days starting tomorrow, Cooper will be keen to make the most of his opportunities tomorrow and he'll also be reunited with Clarcam in the six-runner novice chase.

The four-year-old, who was the horse that Cooper took a crashing fall off at Cheltenham in the Fred Winter Hurdle, was second to none other than Vautour on his chasing bow at the same track last month and getting all the allowance for still being a maiden over fences and a four-year-old, he should prove extremely tough to beat.

Cooper has opted to ride Wounded Warrior in the beginners chase for Noel Meade and he too has a good second in the book having been runner-up to Cooper on Don Poli at Gowran Park last month and previously to Shanahan's Turn at Punchestown. But with Blood Cotil who was second to Gilgamboa and Western Boy who was a very good novice hurdler, this looks like a real good beginners chase.

In Cooper's absence tomorrow his weighroom colleagues Brian O'Connell and Kevin Sexton appear to come in for the pick of the spare rides.

O'Connell will ride Gordon Elliott's Don Cossack in the John Durkan at Punchestown where the up and coming seven-year-old will take on Cheltenham Gold Cup hero Lord Windemere and Punchestown Gold Cup winner Boston Bob.

Punchestown is also where Un Atout will make his eagerly anticipated debut over fences after missing last season. Ruby Walsh will ride this Grade One winning novice hurdler for Willie Mullins but Gordon Elliott's Mala Beach who was second to The Tullow Tank on his chasing debut, will make sure Un Atout won't get away with putting a foot wrong.

While down at Mallow tomorrow, Kevin Sexton will be onboard one of the most potentially exciting novice hurlders of the season No More Heroes who will take part in a fascinating tussle with Willie Mullins' Black Herclues who himself could prove to be a Grade One type this season.

Although the Grade Two Kerry Group Hilly Way is the feature race, that three-mile novice hurdle is likely to be a race that is often referred back to over the course of this coming season. In the Hilly Way, Willie Mullins is double handed as he attempts to further enhance his impressive record in the race.

The old favourite Golden Silver helped Mullins win the race six times in seven-years by winning three of them and last years winner Twinlight skipped a possible tilt at the Tingle Creek at Sandown today in favour of joining Felix Yonger in Cork.

Mullins has two of the 10-runners but it could well be the Tom Mullins trained Alderwood who takes all the beating with Tony McCoy over to ride him.

Vroum Vroum Mag won at Wextford first time and should do so again in the Grade Three Mares Novice Chase.


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