Mark Howard Publications Ltd

Phenomenal run continue into 2023

01-January-2023 16:08
in General
by Admin

Happy New Year to all subscribers and contributors and wish you a healthy and prosperous 2023. Declan Phelan's Irish Pointers section in One Jump Ahead had been in blistering form at the end of 2022 with six individual winners since Christmas. That trend has continued into the New Year with 3 more successes on Sunday, namely Weveallbeencaught (5/4), Stellar Story (13/2) and Wrappedupinmay (8/15).

Elsewhere, it was a slightly frustrating start to 2023 for OJA and the Christmas Special summed by Meatloaf's narrow defeat in the Listed bumper at Cheltenham. Paul Nicholls' four year old enjoyed the run of the race and looked set to make it two out of two turning for home. Reeled in late on by Ben Pauling's new recruit Fiercely Proud, he was beaten half a length. 

It was disappointing stablemate Monmiral couldn't go one better in the Grade 2 Dipper Novices' Chase. The Grade 1 winning hurdler jumped well enough but couldn't land a blow on the front running The Real Whacker. Beaten over three lengths, he kept on without changing gear and is crying out for a further step up in trip. It remains to be seen who soon he tackles three miles for the first time though. Despite those reversals, the champion trainer had 4 winners from 11 runners on the day.

Willie Mullins sent out 3 winners from 11 runners on Sunday, including Top 40 entry Quais De Paris in the two miles maiden hurdle at Tramore. The head of Closutton has won the same contest with Saint Roi (2020) and El Fabiolo (2022) in recent years and, while the French recruit wasn't as impressive as hoped, he always looked in control and will hopefully progress. The Masked Marvel gelding hadn't seen a racecourse for 428 days and is expected to come on for the outing. 

Compatriot Indiana Dream (9/4) was highlighted as a horse to follow in the November Update and the five year old didn't disappoint on his Irish debut at Fairyhouse. Contesting the two and a half miles maiden hurdle, the Cokoriko gelding was handy throughout before being pushed clear in the straight. A fifteen lengths scorer, he looks a stayer and ought to be competitive in Graded events during the second half of the season. It will be a surprise if he doesn't get an entry in the Grade 1 two miles six novice hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival next month. 


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