Thursday 18 January 2018

Bye Bye Baby has class to wave off stablemate and lay down marker

Runners clear a fence in The Wessex Handicap Steeplechase at Wincanton yesterday. Photo by Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images
Runners clear a fence in The Wessex Handicap Steeplechase at Wincanton yesterday. Photo by Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images

Wayne Bailey

Storm Brian will dictate whether Fairyhouse goes ahead today with an inspection due at 8am this morning.

If it gets the green light, consider backing FAIR GAME around 6/1 in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Handicap (3.05), rated 71. Third in a handicap at Cork off that mark last week, she's been knocking on the door lately without success but she's won before off a higher rating and has simply been a little unlucky. She loves some cut in the ground so conditions will be in her favour.

On the same card, I'm quite keen on ALAYKHA which was trading around 5/4 yesterday for the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden (4.15).

While Dermot Weld's charge is yet to win a race, she's finished ahead of four of today's rivals in various other contests and I'm guessing connections are still figuring out what her optimal conditions are.

In my view, this mile and-a-half trip is her minimum, maybe even a little short, but this looks straightforward enough and she should get off the mark.

My partner Filomena has never been racing before so the pressure will be on me to find a few winners up at Leopardstown tomorrow and, hopefully, the name of my selection in the Group Three Killavullan Stakes (3.30) BYE BYE BABY won't prove apt afterwards!

Aidan O'Brien's Galileo filly won a Listed race at Navan on heavy ground earlier on this month, and that came on the back of a maiden win at Newmarket. Stablemate Kenya will give her a run for her money but the selection has the form in the book and if she wins this handy enough, make sure you stick her in the notebook as one to follow over the middle distances next season.

Half an hour later in the Listed Trigo Stakes (4.0), Ger Lyons' CANNONBALL has very strong claims around 7/4 under jockey Colin Keane. He hit 1/3 in-running on Betfair in a similar race at Limerick before being edged out, but he has form on softer ground and also at the distance.

l All three of last Saturday's Irish selections won, each priced at 3/1: Drombeg Dream, RickRack and Brendan Brackan

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