Simiel to deliver nap vote for in-form De Bromhead team
Henry de Bromhead fell one shy of the 50-winner mark on home soil last term but he can hit the halfway point in his quest to breach that landmark for a first time with Simiel at Clonmel.
The Galway Plate-winning handler has already saddled 24 domestic winners, a total that leaves him five ahead of the same point a year ago. Simiel is his only runner at the Tipperary venue today and he has nap appeal under Davy Roche in the bumper.
Rivals Bobarlee and Bowenscourt have shown form, but Simiel's Limerick debut was full of promise. On that occasion, he cut out most of the running before losing out to Escape Footwear, which has since hacked up in a maiden hurdle.
Given the tactics deployed, it was an especially mature turn for a debutant. If Simiel comes on for the experience, then he ought to take plenty stopping in this.
Denis Hogan is another handler whose team has made a fine start to the campaign. Ocean Glandore should go close for him in the conditional jockeys' race, but Beautiful Ben might be the stable's best chance of a winner in the two-mile handicap hurdle. Successful for a second time over flights off a mark of 91 at Killarney in July, Beautiful Ben ran well to be second to Effernock Lad at Bellewstown last week off 97, when a slow early gallop didn't suit his running style.
With Brian Cawley taking five pounds off now, he should have serious claims off the same mark provided that there is a more even pace from the get-go. In the conditionals' hurdle, Ocean Glandore is passed over in favour of TJ Nagle's Best Value.
A versatile performer that has won once and been placed three times in its last six outings, Best Value was last seen finishing second to A Decent Excuse over fences at Tramore. He reverts to the smaller obstacles now off a three-pound lower rating, so he is likely to be thereabouts again for Shane Crimin.