Shake The Bucket can strike again for Madden at Dundalk
Shake The Bucket is napped to continue his unlikely love affair with the all-weather facility at Dundalk tonight.
Bred and owned by Naas handler Niall 'Boots' Madden and his family, the Ashkalani six-year-old is a former point-to-point and maiden hurdle winner that was twice beaten in bumpers.
However, despite being for sale throughout his youth, he never attracted a bid large enough for the Maddens to accept.
In the meantime, Shake The Bucket developed into the family pet. From 11 starts at the Co Louth facility, he has won four times, been second three times and never been out of the money, usually with the trainer's son and namesake, 'Slippers', aboard.
This evening, the useful apprentice Luke Dempsey takes over in the penultimate handicap, and that booking could be crucial.
Placed on its last two starts here in December, Shake The Bucket will effectively compete off the 72 rating that he won off in November when you factor in Dempsey's 7lb claim.
If he reproduces that standard of performance, he is going to take plenty stopping, though this nine-runner affair will certainly be no stroll.
Alghanem, Prince Of Fashion and Shukov are other recent course winners, but don't appeal as being so well in.
Ross Coakley is another 7lb claimer worth keeping on side, with Mick Halford's Lord Kenmare the first of his rides to note in the mile handicap.
Thomas Cleary's Curl Cat, whose 12lb penalty for winning here last month is largely negated by the presence of 10lb claimer Dylan Robinson, is another to consider in this.
Still, Coakley got a fine tune out of Lord Kenmare when second to Rummaging on the seven-year-old's second-last outing.
That was a decent race, so a fifth win at Dundalk might be on the cards for Lord Kenmare now that the apprentice is back in the saddle.
Later on, Coakley has serious claims on the hat-trick-seeking Asian Wing for Curragh-based Takashi Kodama, while Halford could also take the seven-furlong handicap with the Shane 'Dusty' Foley-ridden Alvar.
Runner-up here last time having won before that, the progressive five-year-old might still be well handicapped.