Up Ou That can lay foundations for Walsh brace
Ruby Walsh could be the man to follow on this evening's mixed card at Ballinrobe.
The former champion jockey has three spins at the Co Mayo venue, two of which, Up Ou That and Uncle Taffy, will take all the beating. Up Ou That, a bumper winner for Willie Mullins on his racecourse debut last year, faces stiff opposition in the Mulholland Bookmakers Maiden Hurdle, but may have conditions to suit.
A big-framed chasing sort, he has gradually progressed over flights. On the most recent of five attempts, he kept on to be second to Whats On The Menu over three miles at Punchestown, when Friday's easy Cork winner Jakros was back in third.
Up Ou That drops a half a mile in trip now, but the official going is good to yielding, and that bit of give underfoot is probably what he needs. Loch Long and Glenstar may give him the most trouble.
Back in April, Glenstar had the selection 11 lengths behind when second to Rattan, though whether he has quite as much scope for improvement remains to be seen.
Walsh partners Uncle Taffy in the Supermacs Handicap Hurdle. Tony Martin's seven-year-old is one of two with winning form here, having scored at Cork on Friday night.
While he only got up by half a length then, Uncle Taffy won with more in hand than the margin suggests, and the suspicion is that he is still well handicapped despite a 6lb penalty. Benefitthewest was a surprise winner at Sligo earlier in the month; he is also 6lbs higher now, but the form of his triumph looks fairly suspect.
The other hurdle race on the seven-race programme is the Tipperary Water Hurdle. Magical Memoir is interesting in this conditions event, having caught the eye when second on her first jumping start in over sixth months at the Punchestown Festival.
Scottish Boogie and City Line, first and second at Killarney two weeks ago, are others to consider, but slight preference is for the errant Priors Gold.
On his last two outings at Kilbeggan, Gordon Elliott's Sakhee gelding has tried to run out late on, yet still won with plenty in hand last time. He is a horse of some potential for the summer.
On the Flat, the Andy Oliver-trained Jouster appeals in the nine-furlong maiden on the back of an encouraging debut third at Killarney.