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Mullins' charge down and 'out

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Un Atout, with Davy Russell up. Picture credit: Barry Cregg / SPORTSFILE...ABC

Un Atout, with Davy Russell up. Picture credit: Barry Cregg / SPORTSFILE...ABC

Un Atout, with Davy Russell up. Picture credit: Barry Cregg / SPORTSFILE...ABC

UN ATOUT will "probably" miss this season, according to trainer Willie Mullins.

The five-year-old ended last term with victory in the Tattersalls Ireland Champion Novice Hurdle at Punchestown but Mullins is not satisfied with his charge at present and admits he may not make it to the track.

"One that is probably out is Un Atout. I'm not happy with him now and that's a fair blow unfortunately, but at the moment that's the way it is," the County Carlow handler said.

At Lingfield, Tree Of Grace played his part in helping trainer Richard Hannon surge towards his best total for a calendar year by making an eye-catching winning debut in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Maiden Stakes.

Yet another of Sheikh Joaan Al Thani's horses for the injured Frankie Dettori to be excited about next year, the French-bred son of Gold Away gave the title-leading Hannon a 218th victory, equalling his 2012 tally.

Tree Of Grace (9-2), had to be chased along by Richard Hughes to keep pace but led close home to win by a cosy half-length in an event where many caught the eye.

"He's a nice horse but very lazy," said Hughes. "They wanted to start him off over a mile but I said if he's good enough to win over a mile, he can win over seven. And he did."

Form from Black Schnapps' racecourse debut at Salisbury had started to take reasonable shape and he broke his duck in emphatic fashion in the Will You Marry Me Lisa Westworth Maiden Auction Stakes.

The 6-4 favourite, trained by Willie Muir, had finished second at the Wiltshire course a fortnight ago and kicked clear on the home bend under Martin Dwyer to finish four-and-a-half lengths in front.

Part-owner John O'Mulloy said: "Richard Hannon's horse (Magnus Maximus) that went off favourite at Salisbury won at Kempton last week and I read that David Probert believes the winner (Field Of Fame) is one to watch.

"I'm not sure this was much of a race but I'm very pleased. I imagine he'll have another run somewhere and Martin actually mentioned trying to get into the £1million meeting back here on Good Friday."


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