Friday 19 January 2018

'Room' and 'Blue' should make Lyons' Kerry venture pay dividends

Room To Roam will be a leading player in the opening juveniles’ maiden. Photo Credit: AFP/Getty
Room To Roam will be a leading player in the opening juveniles’ maiden. Photo Credit: AFP/Getty
Richard Forristal

Richard Forristal

Ger Lyons sends a decent quartet of runners to Listowel tomorrow for the first leg of its two-day spread and is expected to make the long journey pay with a brace.

The excellent Co Meath handler's Room To Roam will be a leading player in the opening juveniles' maiden, and Toccata Blue appeals as nap material in the mile handicap.

Of those that have run in the two-year-olds' race, Room To Roam boasts the best performance, having kept on to be third over five furlongs on his Dundalk debut in April.

He should be wiser now and more effective over seven furlongs, so he is the horse to beat. Toccata Blue may face a more thorough test later on.

Colin Keane's mount takes on a number of similarly streetwise rivals, but he comes here in good form and is drawn favourably in stall two.

That can be crucial at Listowel, so he is trusted to build on a consistent run of form to score for a first time since June 2015.

In the previous fillies' maiden, the Tommy Stack-trained Just Joan should be good enough to get off the mark at the third attempt. Mick Halford's Housemaid is a potential threat, but Just Joan improved considerably for her debut to be third to Planchart on dropping back to this trip at Naas.


If Wayne Lordan's partner makes similar progress now, she should take a bit of stopping. In the amateur riders' race, Karl Thornton's Wakea looks the clear pick on ratings. In two starts over flights since joining Thornton's Skerries stable, Wakea has been second and won, so he is clearly on fine terms with himself.

Tomorrow's jumps meeting takes place at Kilbeggan, where Jaime Sommers gets the nod to replicate her recent stylish course win under Rachael Blackmore. A daughter of the brilliant Solerina, Michael Bowe's mare relished jumping hurdles last time, beating a field full of geldings with real authority.

If she steps forward for the experience, she sets a fair standard in the Bloomfield House Mares' Hurdle. Blackmore has been a revelation this summer, and she is rewarded with a cracking book of rides tomorrow.

Right now, there aren't many jockeys who offer quite so much value for a seven-pound claim. She could well depart the Westmeath track with more than one win, and Supreme Vinnie might get her afternoon off on the right foot in the opening maiden hurdle.

Trained in Cloyne, Co Cork by Denise O'Shea, Supreme Vinnie landed a Clonmel bumper a year ago. He has run consistently well in defeat over flights since, but he might never have tackled such a weak affair as this.

Davy Russell also has a few decent spins, the pick of which might be Emmet Butterly's The Informer and All Hell Let Loose, which debuts for Henry de Bromhead in the beginners' chase.

Irish Independent

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