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Bright New Dawn can live up to name for Hughes

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Sandra Hughes recently confirmed that she intends to continue training on a full-time basis from her late father Dessie's Curragh stable.

Sandra Hughes recently confirmed that she intends to continue training on a full-time basis from her late father Dessie's Curragh stable.

SPORTSFILE

Sandra Hughes recently confirmed that she intends to continue training on a full-time basis from her late father Dessie's Curragh stable.

Last year's Cheltenham Festival victor Savello tops the weights in a cracking edition of the Dan Moore Memorial Handicap Chase at Fairyhouse tomorrow.

The €100,000 Underwriting Exchange-sponsored two-miler features 10 declarations, with Tony Martin's Grand Annual Chase hero one of three that could sport a variation of Gigginstown Stud's ubiquitous maroon and white silks.

Shane Shortall's mount will doubtless come on for what was a subdued re-appearance outing in the Dial-A-Bet Chase, and a similar comment applies to the Sandra Hughes-trained Bright New Dawn.

Successful in two decent graded novices' chases last year before going on to finish second in the Powers Gold Cup, Bright New Dawn emerged with far more credit when fourth behind Twinlight in the Grade One at the Foxrock venue a fortnight ago.

Despite being wrong at the weights with Tim Doyle's re-opposing Mallowney on that occasion, the Presenting eight-year-old emerged nearly six lengths to the good.

Tomorrow, Bright New Dawn receives 3lbs from Mallowney, and it's hard to ignore the general impression that he has the scope to exploit his rating of 145.

If that is the case, then he ought to collect under Bryan Cooper for Hughes, who has recently confirmed that she intends to continue training on a full-time basis from her late father Dessie's Curragh stable.

In the novices' chase, Ted Walsh's Barry Connell-owned Champagne James warrants the day's nap vote. Mouse Morris' Limerick scorer Dromnea is one of a handful with claims in this, but Champagne James' overall profile is the most appealing.

A winner of a bumper and maiden hurdle in deep ground, the Stowaway gelding had Dromnea behind when second to Valseur Lido at Punchestown in November. He then ran with similar credit when third to Lots Of Memories and Fine Rightly on dropping back to two miles at Navan last month, so he sets a fair standard.

Crucially, the return to two-and-a-half miles will suit Adrian Heskin's mount, as he seems to enjoy a decent test of stamina.

Morris is tipped to get among the winners with Baily Cloud in the maiden hurdle. Ostensibly, this is a 25-runner affair that looks pretty open, but Baily Cloud's best form stands out. On his hurdle bow at Cork, he got to within a length of the subsequent Royal Bond Novices' Hurdle winner Nichols Canyon, and he then found only the exciting Alvisio Ville too good at Leopardstown after cutting out much of the running under David Casey.

In between, he flopped at Thurles, so that is a slight concern now. Nonetheless, if Baily Cloud performs to the full extent of his capabilities, he really should be getting off the mark here.

AP McCoy flies in for five bookings at the Meath venue. Competitive Edge has a chance in the main event and Florishwells D'Ete is another of interest in the beginners' chase, but Pleased As Punch is the one that is fancied to ensure it isn't a fruitless journey for the Antrim-born sporting icon.

Twice a winner from 23 starts for Austin Leahy, the High Chaparral mare is generally very consistent.

She was a little disappointing when not finding as much as might be expected on coming off the bridle when third at Limerick on St Stephen's Day, but she remains capable of winning off her current rating of 100.

In Forishwells D'Ete's beginners' chase, Legal Exit could get off the mark over fences at the third attempt.

Jim Culloty's dual hurdle winner returned from a spell on the sidelines to run quite well behind Gilgamboa at Naas, before then finishing third to Un De Sceaux over course and distance three weeks ago.

Robbie McNamara's mount 'won' what amounted to a second race behind the two principals on that occasion, so he has the scope to do better in the absence of any similarly precocious rivals here.

In the opening juveniles' hurdle, Gordon Elliott and Barry Geraghty team up for Hostile Fire, which just held Charles Byrnes' Battle Hymn when second at Leopardstown last time. If Hostile Fire replicates that level of performance here, he should again see off Battle Hymn and his 11 other rivals.

Irish Independent