Punchestown Festival 2017 – Day 5
What a week it has been. Personally i’ve loved every minute of it. I hope i’ve managed to find you all a few winners however the last day is upon us, so here we go….
3.50 Grade 1 Mares Champion Hurdle, i’ll start things of with this cracking renewal of the mares race. Headed by Apple’s Jade for Gordon Elliot and Gigginstown. Apples Jade went on to win the Mares at the Cheltenham Festival beating the likes of Vroum Vroum Mag and Limini in the process which gives her the obvious form of the race and making her the one to beat. However i’m going to try and take her on here with the other market principal Karalee (9/4) for Willie Mullins and Ruby Walsh. She comes into this a lot fresher than Apple’s Jade with just the one run on the back of a lay off which she won convincingly and we don’t quite know how good she is, i’ll certainly be taking a chance on her though to topple the favourite.
4.25 The Grade 1 Champion Four Year Old hurdle and it’s headed by a horse that i’ve become a fan of this season for Willie Mullins in Bapaume. I backed him each way for the Triumph at Cheltenham when he came third and he’s also put in good performances in top level contests throughout this campaign. He has however been beaten by Mega Fortune before and the latter finished above him at the festival so its obvious that the Gordon Elliot looks to be his main danger. Meri Devie comes here fresh for Mullins also and can’t be ruled out but i’ll be backing Bapaume (5/2) to reverse the form with Mega Fortune here and get his nose in front.
5.00 Grade B Handicap chase headed by a horse I backed at Aintree at the start of the month for the all conquering Tizzard/Power combination in Sizing Codelco, he won well that day and a repeat of that performance would certainly see him challenging at the business end. However a horse that I like here is another Willie Mullins charge in The Crafty Butcher (7/1). He’s been really unlucky not to get his nose in front in his few runs for the Champion Trainer with some great runs including a second in the Paddy Power Chase over Christmas. I certainly think he’s a backable price to get in the frame once again here if not maybe put his nose in front.
5.35 Grade B Handicap Hurdle, I’ve got a couple of selections for this one and i’ll start off with a horse that is trained by Harry Fry who’s already fired in a couple of winners this week that have been tipped up on here in Unowhatimeanharry and Minella Awards and the one I fancy of his to go close here is Air Horse One (8/1) he’s been in good form this season and put in a great run at the Cheltenham Festival when finishing fourth in the County Hurdle despite taking a really wide route, I certainly think he has it in him to get in the frame. The other one I like here is Bonbon Au Meil (14/1) for Mullins and Walsh again. He only just won at prohibited odds last time out however Ruby has had a few to choose from here which suggests the good surface might make a world of difference to him and is a more than backable price to sneak in to the frame.