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Rummaging tipped to extend Halford's streak at Dundalk

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Trainer Mick Halford

Trainer Mick Halford

SPORTSFILE

Trainer Mick Halford

A second treble at Dundalk in the space of two weeks on Wednesday took Mick Halford's tally for the same period to nine, and the unstoppable Kildare handler is again trusted to deliver tonight's nap selection with Rummaging.

The all-weather venue's leading trainer has already stormed seven clear of his closest pursuers in the winter series championship, as has his stable jockey Shane Foley, who is sitting pretty at the top of the riders' pile with 10 winners.

In the card's opening juvenile maiden, the partnership should collect with the twice placed BELEZZA OSCURA, which is dropping back to five furlongs for a first time.

It is RUMMAGING, though, that appeals most. From 16 starts at the Co Louth venue, the Chineur six-year-old has won six times over six or seven furlongs, so he is breaking new ground tonight in the mile handicap.

However, in finishing second here on his two most recent outings over six and seven respectively, Rummaging has looked as though he now needs further. He gets that here, so he is fancied to defy joint top-weight off a mark of 95, which is four pounds lower than the rating that he last won off here in March.

Moreover, his form has been boosted by stable-mate Whaileyy, a dual winner since finishing fifth in Rummaging's last race, which was won by Captain Joy.

Among others, Halford also has live chances in the finale with Victor's Beach and Lord Kenmare, but preferred in that is Johnny Levins' HAVELOCK ELLIS.

A decisive winner here a week ago, the top-weight is 10lbs higher now, but that is negated in theory by the booking of Donagh O'Connor.

Good value for his 10-pound claim, O'Connor has a fine opportunity to bag the third win of his career, if he hasn't done so earlier on Levins' Dashwood, which competes against Rummaging.

In the mile juvenile maiden, Charles O'Brien saddles an interesting contender in Soloman Northup. Again, Halford's course runner-up Great Dancer is a danger, but the way that Soloman Northup has been campaigned implies that he is highly regarded.

Fifth in the hot Leopardstown maiden that John F Kennedy was beaten in on his debut, the Scat Daddy colt then ran respectably when last of six behind Ol' Man River in the Beresford Stakes at the Curragh.

If SOLOMAN NORTHUP runs to a similar level here under Fran Berry, he should be the one to beat.

Irish Independent