Wednesday 11 December 2019

Flemingo can take off at Cork

Richard Forristal

Peter Casey can make this evening's journey south to Cork from his Dublin base pay with Flemingo Domingo.

Successful in his sole point-to-point two years ago, Casey's seven-year-old returned to action for a first time since then when fifth behind Beef To The Heels in a maiden hurdle at Navan in March. He followed that with a third-place finish over the same two-mile trip at Down Royal earlier this month, keeping on keenly all the way to the line.

Tonight, Flemingo Domingo steps up to a more suitable distance in the three-mile maiden hurdle, and appeals as the nap option under Andrew Lynch. Of his 23 rivals, Willie Mullins' Sin Palo and Jessica Harrington's Beachdale Lad are feared most.

The last-named has acquitted himself with real credit in finishing second to Mullins' Loch Ard and Terminal in his two hurdling starts, so he may be the one to trouble Flemingo Domingo most. However, the champion trainer is unlikely to depart empty-handed.

He and Ruby Walsh rely on Simenon in the €14,000 conditions hurdle, and the five-year-old, a runaway course and distance scorer in January, is expected to go in again. Either side of disappointing at Cheltenham, Simenon was placed in decent company at Punchestown, finishing second to Trifolium in February and third to Alderwood at the Festival.

Those efforts leave him with the highest rating of 140 in this nine-runner heat, so he can substantiate that assessment over more experienced rivals such as Won In The Dark, Savello and New Phase. In the opening maiden, Davy Russell will have a say on the Noel Meade-trained Maxim Gorky, but Walsh again gets the nod on Roman Flight.

A winner on the Flat at Limerick last year, Charlie Swan's four-year-old has run respectably on each of his two completed hurdling outings. At Clonmel earlier in the month, he finished a fair fifth on his first jumping start since August on unsuitably soft ground, so he should be a far more potent proposition now on the forecast good going at the Munster venue.

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