Calm Bay can shine for Rogers in Bellewstown sprint
Harry Rogers' Bellewstown runners always deserve respect and Calm Bay appeals as the best betting proposition of his five runners there this evening.
None of the Co Louth-based trainer's runners could be discounted on the first leg of this two-day meeting at the renowned Hill of Crockafotha venue. Indeed, his recent Sligo winner La Canaada will trade at shorter odds for the five-furlong Lougher Stables Handicap that Calm Bay tackles.
Connor King's mount won well over seven furlongs last time, and, while he has winning 2012 form over five on soft ground and tends to run well here, he has struggled in the past off a mark as high as his revised rating of 55. CALM BAY is a contrasting option, as his best form is on fast ground, but he has tumbled in the ratings from a high of 80 down to 70.
When he last won off 62 at Down Royal in June, he was ridden by Robbie Downey, so it is good to see the five-pound claimer reunited with the eight-year-old for a first time since then tonight.
At Tipperary last time, Calm Bay ran a blinder on fast ground to be fourth, with the third, Tylery Wonder, franking the form courtesy of a Curragh win over the weekend.
As such, Rogers' top-weight is nap material now that he has been dropped two pounds for that. Granted, the ground is a concern, but it might be wet enough for him to slosh through. Rogers' evergreen Strandfield Lady contests the 12-furlong handicap off a potentially interesting effective mark when you factor in Conor Banahan's 10lb claim.
However, preferred in that is the Dermot Weld-trained RENOWN, a three-parts brother to the stable's former star Famous Name that won on its Wexford bow. The son of Champs Elysees got the hang of things late on at Wexford, where he eventually scored going away from a reasonable field.
A first-time mark of 92 may not be too prohibitive. BENALEX PARK is another of interest for Denis Hogan and Seamie Heffernan now that he reverts to the Flat, while the concluding amateur riders' race could go the way of ORGILGO BAY under the excellent Jane Mangan.