Sport Horse Racing

Wednesday 13 December 2017

Longer trip can help Handsome cut a dash

Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

On a low-key card at Limerick today, Handsome Dan is napped to take division two of the Kelloggs Cul Camps Handicap Hurdle.

The Dromahane point-to-point winner caught the eye when a one-paced third to Doctor Henry over two and a half miles on its handicap bow at Cork last month. Sorted, seventh on that occasion, subsequently came out and beat Doctor Henry off revised terms.

That gives the form a solid look, and Handsome Dan's cause should be aided by this step up to three miles. With the excellent Tom Doyle up, he has plenty of scope to improve off just a 1lb higher rating on his sixth start over flights.

Recent winners See Double You and Mackey Boy are two obvious dangers, but both are competing off marks that look likely to stem their progress. Earlier, the promising 7lb claimer Brian Hayes can steer John 'Shark' Hanlon's three-time bumper scorer Clondaw Warrior to victory in the opener.

Moby Dick, second over course and distance a month ago, is the only one with any recent form to speak of.

However, Clondaw Warrior, successful at the Cheltenham October meeting on his most recent start, boasts a far more appealing profile, so he should win if he is anywhere near full-fitness following his winter lay-off.

In the following handicap, John Joe Walsh's Really Unique, twice successful at Limerick in two previous visits, is fancied to account for Lilywhitedancer, though that one's trainer Ross O'Sullivan may get on the scoresheet half an hour later courtesy of He's Our Man.

John Joe Walsh and Tom Doyle, both of whom have many chances on the eight-race spread, might double-up with dual hurdle scorer Persian Gayle in the beginners' chase.

Irish Independent

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