Patrick Mullins: 'Clondaw' can atone for Plate heartbreak
We had three heart-breaking near misses in the Plate yesterday with the second, third and fourth home but hopefully the classy Clondaw Warrior can make amends in the big one this afternoon.
David Casey won it 20 years ago on Mystical City and dad would dearly love to win it again but it's another ultra-competitive renewal in what looks like the race of the week.
We've two runners with Banako Morieviere facing a difficult task off top-weight. He's a horse that's improving rapidly but life will be difficult for him whereas Clondaw Warrior is better treated off 11st 5lbs.
He wants genuine good ground and has won at the Festival before, albeit on the Flat, so he handles on the track and we think he might have a few pounds up his sleeve to be honest.
This has been a long-term goal for Clondaw Warrior from a long way out but Banako has surprised us with how much he has improved on good ground so we decided to take our chance.
When the money is there you have to take your chance and fair play to Guinness for having a race like this with huge money at stake which anyone can win.
Pyromaniac's participation is bad for racing, however, and I'm not sure who should be held accountable but the whole situation has made racing look very bad.
I think the system needs to be changed somewhere but it's nothing new and nothing seems to have changed. The nature of the handicap system means that these type of incidents are liable to occur.
Superb Story is a nice horse for the Skeltons but it'd be nice to keep the spoils on home soil with veteran Hidden Cyclone looking hugely overpriced; he's well-in on his chase form and he felt as good as ever when I rode him on the Flat in Killarney. He's good each-way value with this the plan since finishing fourth last year.
Elsewhere, Ruby rides the mare Daisy's Gift in the opener, she fell on her chase debut which isn't ideal but it was an unlucky fall and she's schooled well since. Over this trip she should gain compensation.
Tiger Roll probably didn't stay the last day and drops to 2m 2f today (2.25) and the former Triumph Hurdle winner should have the ability to win this. He won two of his three chasing runs and maybe the drop in class will do the trick again.
The Novice Hurdle (4.05) is a very competitive race and I was disappointed that Bel Sas didn't take a winner's bumper but his jumping has improved no end since and he's going to be a much better hurdler than bumper horse.
The trip will be perfect and although it's very competitive race, he's up to winning it. He loves good ground and won't be seen in the winter but he's the type that could turn up at a lot of the spring festivals.
I tipped Camlann earlier in the week and he goes for a quick-fire double today but I like Tom's Mullins' horse, Tara Dylan. Tom is coming back into form and this mare won very well in Leopardstown on her last run and she might have a bit up her sleeve.
Camlaan looked to be too keen the other day and got a hard race as a result which makes it more difficult to follow up while Llancillo Lord has a good chance to open his account in the last.
He has some proper winter form from Navan and Fairyhouse and that's good form to bring to Galway in July. He's had problems and hasn't run in over a year but I rode him in his first race and liked him. I thought he'd have won by now but today could be his day.
1.50 Daisy's Gift (Nap)
2.25 Tiger Roll
3.00 Ruler Of France
4.05 Bel Sas
4.45 Clondaw Warrior
5.25 Tara Dylan
6.00 Llancillo Lord