It was a fairytale day for everyone in attendance as two very rightful champions where crowned. One rising to the thrown and the other leaving it for pastures new. Constitution Hill looks the closest thing to a machine over hurdle as we have seen for quite some time while Honeysuckle showed us never to doubt her as she capped off the most remarkable career to score when the chips where down. We also had a fantastic day at the races with some of our horses running huge races such as Queens Brook, Zanahiyr and Chemical Energy. However, Jazzy Matty and golden boy Michael O’Sullivan were able to land a winning blow in the Boodles to give Caldwell Construction a first winner at the festival. Lets see what Day 2 has in store.
For the Ballymore we have AMERICAN MIKE who to some may have lost his way recently and he hasn’t had the most ideal preparation but that is no fault of his own. He has done everything right at home and is fitted with a first time tongue tie and Davy Russell is booked to ride. It would be great to see him finish in the frame.
A huge weight rests upon young Jordan Gainford’s shoulders as he will be carrying the expectations of a stadium when he rides GERRI COLOMBE. Still unbeaten he goes to the Brown Advisory in great nick and it would be fantastic to see the dream partnership make it happen. It looks a wide open race.
The Coral Cup is hard to call as with all these big handicaps but it looks like FIL DOR might be blossoming back to his old self. He won the Red Mills Trial hurdle last time out and he loves this track. Ben Harvey rides and claims 5lbs. SA FUREUR runs for the same team and he didn’t have the hardest race last time our despite the close finish he will be the mount of Davy Russell. RIAAN could sneak in here but this will be a very big ask and he may lack the big field experience some of the others have and Jordan Gainford is booked to ride. GRAND ROI is a difficult character who doesn’t always give it his all. We have Corey McGivern riding and claiming 7lbs. Final Sam Ewing is on OFF YOUR ROCCO. This will be a very big ask for him but hopefully he can defi his odds.
DELTA WORK has gone from villain to hero in the space of a season. He snatched the crown from Tiger Roll on his final run in the pouring rain last year but returns to defend this time around. He has long been touted for this and he will have king of the cross country Keith Donoghue on his back. Davy Russell seeks revenge on Delta for last year and he rides GALVIN. once a Gold Cup hope this horse has a huge engine and has been schooling very well over the banks. Jody McGarvey is on MORTAL who loves this game and usually runs a huge race here despite being an outsider. Lastly we have Shane Fitzgerald on old boy HARDLINE. This is another horse who has taken extremely well to the banks at home and put that into good practice at Punchestown last time out. He won’t like the rain that has come down but the Cross Country will probably be better ground than the track as they are unable to water it.
ANDY DUFRESNE was so close to winning this race last year but he returns in pretty much the exact same conditions. A tongue tie is fitted for the first time and Mark Walsh will be hoping it’s second time lucky. CALL ME LYREEN is great at springing a surprise, he has a history for it. He will be ridden by Sam Ewing. BATTLEOVERDOYEN has been here plenty of times before and has come down a little bit in the weights. He will need to return to his career best to win here.
Finally, the bumper. This looks the most wide open contest of all this week. Many of these horses still remain unexposed or have had excuses for bad runs. BETTER DAYS AHEAD retuned to the winners enclosure last time out having learnt the importance of race craft the time before. He is the pick of Jamie Codd. NO TIME TO WAIT looks a beautiful horse for the future and will probably have a bright career over fences in time. He has plenty of gears and will be ridden by Davy Russell. One time favourite for this race KING OF KINGSFIELD had excuses the last day and has overcome that. This horse is exceptionally fast and will probably have a run or two on the flat. He still possess those gears and will be the mount of Jordan Gainford. Lastly we have SAMUI who was a last time out winner and another bred for the flat. He two is well able to quicken and could spring a massive surprise with Sam in the saddle, a man who knows a thing or two about flat races!