Wednesday 23 October 2019

'Sizing' pleases Harrington but she warns he has 'long way to go'

Trainer Jessica Harrington. Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Trainer Jessica Harrington. Photo: Matt Browne/Sportsfile

Thomas Kelly

Jessica Harrington was satisfied with Sizing John's performance in a gallop at the Curragh on Tuesday.

The 2017 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner has not raced since disappointing at Leopardstown last Christmas, having won the John Durkan Chase on his previous appearance.

Harrington was forced to rule out a Cheltenham defence due to a fractured pelvis, but reports the eight-year-old to have performed well in his racecourse spin.

She said: "I was happy enough with him. He's got to do a lot. We've a long way to go, but I was happy with him. Robbie (Power) was riding him. He'll do more in the next 10 days."

Sizing John is entered in both the Paddy's Rewards Club Sugar Paddy Chase over two miles and a furlong or the three-mile Savills Chase at Leopardstown later this month.

Meanwhile, Getaway Katie Mai appears to have been found an excellent opportunity to open her account over hurdles at Tramore today.

John Queally's point-to-point graduate made a successful debut under rules in a Ballinrobe bumper in August of last year before finding only subsequent Champion Bumper winner Relegate too strong in a Grade Two at Leopardstown.

Getaway Katie Mai enjoyed her day in the sun with victory at Aintree's National meeting and it was no surprise to see JP McManus snap her up during the summer.

The five-year-old was a warm order for her hurdling bow at Galway in October and while favourite backers had their fingers burnt, she ran well enough to finish second behind Western Victory. Fitted with a hood for the first time, she should be hard to beat in the Early Bird New Year's Day Tickets Mares Maiden Hurdle.

Western Sea landed a gamble on his first start for Ross O'Sullivan at Thurles a fortnight ago and bids to follow up under top-weight in the Handicap Hurdle. The five-year-old showed little in six starts for John Joe Walsh and as a result made his handicap debut off a mark of just 86.

After being heavily backed, Western Sea emerged triumphant by a head and it will be interesting to see how he fares after being raised 9lb.

Willie Mullins saddles four of the 15 runners in the 2019 Tramore Annual Badge Maiden Hurdle and the trainer's son Patrick takes the ride on Buck's Billionaire in the colours of his mother Jackie. The half-brother to the mighty Big Buck's makes his hurdling debut after finishing third in three bumpers.

Irish Independent

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