Boxing Day tips for Leopardstown: Landofhopeandglory to call the tune again
Coral horse racing experts give their Leopardstown tips for Boxing Day, with Landofhopeandglory odds fancied on the first day of the Christmas Festival.
Landofhopeandglory odds appeal in Knight Frank
Landofhopeandglory odds make him looks a worthy favourite to land the Grade 2 Knight Frank Juvenile Hurdle on the opening day of Leopardstown’s Christmas Festival (13:15) and further enhance his Triumph Hurdle claims.
The gelding was a smart stayer on the level for Aidan O’Brien and has looked an exciting recruit to the jumping ranks in winning all three starts over hurdles since joining his son Joseph.
After showing a smart turn of foot to score at Fairyhouse and Punchestown, the four-year-old took the step up into Grade 3 company in his stride when landing the Bar One Juvenile Hurdle at the former.
Strong traveller with smart turn of foot
In what was a slow-run tactical, Landofhopeandglory tracked the leaders throughout before being produced at the last by jockey Barry Geraghty where he put in a tremendous leap to draw alongside the enterprisingly ridden Bapaume.
He then quickened nicely to assert close home and win going away by 3/4 of a length and was value for more than the winning margin.
Landofhopeandglory now meets Bapaume on 1lb better terms so there is no real reason why he should not confirm the placings with the runner-up.
The JP McManus owned son of High Chaparral is currently 8/1 joint-favourite with Coral for the Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival in March and I fully expect him to come through this test and cement his position at the head of the betting for that 2m juvenile contest.
Concordin weighted to collect
Concordin was a big eye-catcher last time out and looks worth a punt in the 2m 2f handicap hurdle (13:50).
The Robert Tyner trained eight-year-old made good late headway to be nearest at the finish when beaten just 2 1/4 lengths into third behind Bull Ride in a 17-runner affair at Navan.
It was a terrific effort following a 233-day break and Concordin shaped as if he would improve for the outing.
The runner-up Dawerann and fourth home Orchard Road have also come out and won since to give the form a solid look, suggesting that a 4lb rise in the weights for Concordin may well be on the lenient side.
Identity Thief to steal the show in Racing Post Novice Chase
The big race of the day is the Grade 1 Racing Post Novice Chas (14.20) and Identity Thief looks worth siding with at the odds on offer to get the better of red-hot favourite Min.
Henry De Bromhead’s charge was an above average hurdler who has looked the real deal in winning both his starts over fences this season.
To find out why he has all the right credentials to come out on top in a mouthwatering clash with the highly-touted Min, check out our individual preview for this key Cheltenham Festival trial.
Leopardstown tips for Boxing Day
12.15: Imperial Way
12.45: Castello Sforza
13.15: Landofhopeandglory (NAP)
13.50: Concordin (NB)
14.20: Indentity Thief
14.55: Coolaghknock Glebe