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Levanto can set up Murtagh to claim double at Dundalk

Johnny Murtagh is trusted to deliver the nap selection at Dundalk tonight when he takes the mount on Willie Mullins' once-raced Levanto in the juvenile maiden.

On her Leopardstown debut over seven furlongs, the Lawman filly kept on nicely for third behind the useful pair Rasmeyaa and Kerisa, with last week's winner Love And Cherish back in sixth.

Having raced handily against more experienced horses, it was a fine start to Levanto's racing career, and the step up to a mile now should be ideal.

On another well-populated card at the Co Louth facility, the Irish Stallion Farms EBF-sponsored heat boasts a full field of 14. Of the others to have run, Jim Bolger's Rapid Approach, fourth over six furlongs here a week ago, is probably the main danger.

Murtagh could also take the second division of the same race aboard John Oxx's Little White Cloud.

First time up at Leopardstown back in September, the Dalakhani colt performed with plenty of promise when fourth over seven furlongs in a decent race that has since produced four winners and a number of placed horses.

If he can progress from that, Oxx's charge can go close here against what is modest opposition.

In the card's other two-year-old race, the opening nursery, Ger Lyons and apprentice Gary Phillips are the partnership to keep on side with Queen Of The Sand, which finished a close third here in a maiden that has since thrown up a couple of winners.

Later on, Jim Bolger could secure a brace with Loreto and Edge Of Sanity.

With Kevin Manning on Paene Magnus, the Rory Cleary-ridden Loreto is the stable's second choice in what is a competitive but sub-standard edition of the Listed Carlingford Stakes.

However, on official ratings she certainly has as good a chance as most, and looked a progressive three-year-old when obliging for a second time at Listowel.

Edge Of Sanity tackles the 12-furlong maiden. Second here over seven furlongs last time in a race that has worked out well, the Invincible Spirit colt has plenty of appeal to take the honours here.

Irish Independent