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Keane to make the most of O'Brien's absence

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'Laughifuwant has claims in the Knockaire Stakes, but it is Mean Fomhair (3.40) which is a more likely winner' (stock photo)

'Laughifuwant has claims in the Knockaire Stakes, but it is Mean Fomhair (3.40) which is a more likely winner' (stock photo)

'Laughifuwant has claims in the Knockaire Stakes, but it is Mean Fomhair (3.40) which is a more likely winner' (stock photo)

You would have to feel that if Colin Keane is going to bring this jockeys' championship right down to the wire, he'll have to make the most of Donnacha O'Brien not being in Leopardstown today.

It would be fitting if Keane's father, Gerry, could help Colin to close the gap on O'Brien, and the father and son combination team up for a couple of good chances.

Laughifuwant has claims in the Knockaire Stakes, but it is Mean Fomhair (3.40) which is a more likely winner.

The four-year-old filly is 16lbs higher than she was when winning at Roscommon three starts ago, but has run well since and importantly seems to handle a good ease in the ground.

In the Group Three Bet With The Tote At Leopardstown Eyrefield Stakes, Keane teams up with his boss Ger Lyons when he rides Justifier (4.15).

Aidan O'Brien supplies Mick Hussey and Killian Hennessy with nice rides in this race, but it is Justifier which can complement his Listed victory earlier in the season to land this nice prize.

A three-day fixture at Galway begins today with some nice types emerging for their seasonal debuts over the weekend.

Razoul sets the standard in the WB Gavin & Co Handicap Hurdle but Cloudy Morning (4.25, Galway) is in receipt of so much weight that Declan Queally's 11-year-old is just picked to shade this.

Latest Exhibition (3.50, Galway) is a hurdling newcomer to watch out for in the Corrib Oil Maiden Hurdle.

Tomorrow, Battleoverdoyen is arguably the biggest name on the Galway card, but it is his stable companion Galvin (1.40, Galway) that is preferred on this occasion.

Battleoverdoyen is a horse that will make many shortlists for novice chasing this season and he is sure to be involved in big races later on, so maybe it is foolish to overlook him on this occasion. However, Galvin is no mug. Sixth in the Ballymore at Cheltenham and then second to the talented Getaway Trump, he just might be more forward for this assignment.

Davy Russell has a couple of good rides for Gordon Elliott tomorrow, the first of which is Mount Ida (1.05, Galway) in the opening mares maiden hurdle.

The most valuable race of the day is the Marlin Hotel Dublin Handicap Chase in which Ask Heather (2.15, Galway) can make the most of her light weight.

The seven-year-old would be out of the handicap proper but for Darragh O'Keeffe's 3lbs claim and she might just be more progressive to going up the ranks compared to most rivals here.

The National Hunt card at Wexford tomorrow must survive a yellow rainfall warning and a 4pm inspection today.

If the track does get the green light to go ahead, Uisce Solas (1.25) and Dancing On My Own (2.0) make a good double.

Irish Independent