Carlingford Lough chasing Irish Gold Cup treble
Frank Monkhouse | 12 February 2017
A look at the action from Leopardstown
Sunday’s card at Leopardstown is a simply spectacular affair, with no less than four Grade One contests on the schedule, including the Irish Gold Cup, due at 4.00pm. You can bet on all the day’s horse racing here.
We flick through the major talking points, in an attempt to help you uncover a winner or two, and have gone with a selection in each of the big races to aid your multiples bets…..
Spring Juvenile Hurdle – 2.30
Unsurprisingly, Willie Mullins has dominated this race in recent years and arrives having won each of the last two renewals, with Petite Parisienne in 2015 and Footpad last year. The star trainer did, in fact, get the 1-2-3 last time, with Allblak Des Places and Let’s Dance adding the place money.
This year his representatives are sure to be popular in the betting ring again, with Bapaume and Meri Devie to choose from. Of the pair, Ruby Walsh has settled on the former, and that’s the difference to us. The four-year-old’s career win came over course and distance last time, claiming a Juvenile Hurdle on Boxing Day, and will go close again.
Deloitte Novice Hurdle – 3.00
Mullins must be trusted here too, as the numbers are very much in his favour, sending six runners to post. He has also won this race in each of the last four outings, with Bleu Et Rouge coming home in front at a big price 12-months ago.
This time Saturnas should keep that winning run going. Ruby is again in the saddle, as he has been for two of the last three wins in this race. Six-year-old Saturnas won around here during the festive period, taking the Grade One Future Champions Novice Hurdle. Going in against that level of opponent already sets him apart.
Flogas Novice Chase – 3.30pm
At the risk of banging on, we won’t tell you which trainer won last year’s race, but there’s no prizes for guessing, with Outlander doing as was expected, and the market supports Bellshill on Sunday. Punters will back the seven-year-old with one eye on Cheltenham too.
Bellshill has been chalked up as ante-post fav for the RSA Chase at the festival in March and will do his chances no harm whatsoever with a strong Sunday showing. He arrives at track having won each of his last three starts, including a Grade One novice hurdle at Punchestown. He’s a perfect two races two wins over fences, and we’re not in the habit of taking on form horses.
Irish Gold Cup- 4.00pm
The race of the day as eight runners battle it out over three-miles on soft ground, and this has all the ingredients of a thrilling renewal. Carlingford Lough is sure to be on the betting slips of many punters, lining up as defending champion and chasing a hat-trick of Irish Gold Cup wins.
John Kiely’s charge has Barry Geraghty in the saddle and that will speak volumes to backers. Racing manager Frank Berry boosted confidence when speaking to the press recently, telling of the selection’s consistency over the years, and love for this track. Connections are said to be very happy with him and excited about the chance of nailing three wins on the bounce.