Tuesday 20 February 2018

Fire ready to burn up Dundalk

Trainer Mick Halford can deliver tonight’s nap at Dundalk courtesy of the progressive Chestnut Fire
Trainer Mick Halford can deliver tonight’s nap at Dundalk courtesy of the progressive Chestnut Fire
Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

Dundalk maestro Mick Halford can deliver tonight's nap courtesy of the progressive Chestnut Fire.

The Showcasing three-year-old contests the €24,000 handicap over seven furlongs, a decent contest that features recent winners Bishan Bedi, Reckless Lad and Split The Atom. All 10 of the runners are regulars at the all-weather facility, but Chestnut Fire is the least familiar with the place.

He has won and been second here on his last two starts, having won once in his previous six career outings on turf. There is no doubt that he has taken well to the surface, so he is fancied to turn the tables on Reckless Lad.

Off six-pound better terms with him for a length-and-a-half defeat three weeks ago, Conor Hoban's mount has the scope to improve past his vastly more exposed rival.

As ever, Halford has a potent-looking delegation on duty, and Shane Foley could also collect for him aboard Crazy Tornado in the first division of the seven-furlong juveniles' maiden.

After running on from the rear to be fifth here on its sole previous outing in October, Crazy Tornado can step forward to claim what is a pretty ordinary contest. His main danger could come from David Wachman's In Her Stride, which improved notably on her Galway bow when a close fourth here earlier in October.

Halford's Temasek Star ought to be thereabouts under Conor McGovern in the apprentices' handicap, though the stable's Hat Alnasar and Ebasani are opposed in the opener with Kodiac's Back.

David Marnane's stalwart has won twice and been placed four times on his last six starts at the Louth venue. He has ground to make up on Northern Surprise and Hat Alnasar on their latest encounter, but it isn't beyond him to do so.

Perhaps crucially, today's race is over a mile, a furlong further than last month's. Given the way that Kodiac's Back kept on that day, there is a chance that he will be happier back over this trip.

Irish Independent

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