Friday 19 January 2018

Go All The Way on a hat-trick

Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

A PARTICULARLY potent-looking Cheltenham delegation gets what promises to be two lucrative days' racing for Irish-trained horses in England under way this afternoon.

All the main Irish contenders stood their ground for tomorrow's Champions Day at Ascot, with the team comprising of Excelebration, Rite Of Passage, Saddler's Rock, Fame And Glory, Sapphire, Was, Maarek and Slade Power.

With Aidan O'Brien electing not to send Declaration Of War on a futile mission to take down Frankel, the Champion Stakes is without a representative from these parts, though the presence of Cirrus Des Aigles and Nathaniel in the six-runner Group One should ensure Henry Cecil's superstar will encounter some sort of test in his final racecourse outing.

Juxtaposed alongside Ascot's glamour card, Prestbury Park's opening meeting of the jumps season is slightly overshadowed.

Nonetheless, the Showcase fixture has plenty to offer, with a bundle of in-form horses crossing the water from this jurisdiction.

In all, there are 14 on duty today, the novice chase consortium of Go All The Way, Carlito Brigante, Sea Of Thunder and White Star Line the most intriguing bunch.

In the two-and-a-half-miler that Go All The Way and Carlito Brigante tackle, Paul Nicholls' Domtaline heads the home defence, but the Jim Dreaper-trained Go All The Way is fancied to complete a hat-trick over fences under Andrew Lynch.

Davy Russell, who will be aboard the 2011 Coral Cup hero Carlito Brigante, will also sport the Gigginstown Stud colours on Sea Of Thunder in the three-miler.

Having made a big impression when hosing up on his fencing debut at Clonmel last month, Charles Byrnes' seven-year-old should take plenty stopping on this decent ground.

Meanwhile, the Turf Club has confirmed Seamie Heffernan has lodged an appeal against the decision of the Curragh stewards to ban him for three days "for using his whip when out of contention" on Attorney Street at the Curragh on Tuesday.

Heffernan was perceived by many to have been particularly harshly treated, given that he struck Attorney Street only three times when just a few lengths off the leader at the two-furlong pole.

l Punchestown will stage an additional fixture on Tuesday, November 6.

Irish Independent

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