Punchestown Festival winner Jamie Codd makes his choice on the second day of the end-of-season meeting and announces his second bumper champion, American Mike.
3.40 – Adare Manor Opportunity Series Final Handicap Obstacle
This is a very competitive hurdle to start with, a handicap of 25 riders for notional jockeys. The one I like is called Gavin Cromwell. Stumptown. He won the first hurdle last October in Limerick.
He then had two fast runs in December and January where he ran well. He has a good weight and I think a better ground will help him. For the price, it can work well.
4.15 – Irish EBF Connolly’s RED MILLS Obstacle Final
In the hurdle auction series, I will choose Gordon Elliott. Sam’s Choice.
He just lost to Glengooley at Leopardstown in March but now weighs 5 pounds. I think traveling and a better venue will suit him, so I think he can make a difference.
4.45 – Louis Fitzgerald Hurdle Hotel
Crosshill had a few runs on the fences, but now he’s back on the hurdles. He had a race at Turles in March when he was third behind Gentlemansgame and Unexpected Depth.
I think he will recover from this. Jessica Harrington’s horses are generally in good shape for Punchestown. This horse has a lot of experience and I expect a big race.
5.20 – Beginner’s hurdle in the Irish mirror
It’s very competitive with the first three houses of Albert Bartlett, Nice Guy, Minella Kruner and Bardenstown Lad convalescent.
I want Minella Kokuner to beat the Nice Guy this time. I think this track suits him. An interesting contender is Journey With Me, which fell in Ballymore behind Sir Gerhard.
Now he is moving forward and may be the one who gives them the most work.
5.55 – Ladbrokes Punchestown Gold Cup
It’s a hell of a race, very competitive. Clan Des Obeaux has two Aintree winners who won last year and Fakir D’oudairies, King George Tornado Flyer winner and two former Gold Cup winners Cheltenham Minella Indo and Al Boum Photo.
I just think back to three miles around Punchestown, to Allah can have the kick of those old horses.
The winner Ryanair rounded the course, landing on John Durkan. He is a more experienced horse than he was when he rode three miles earlier. I think he could take a lot of hits.
Galvin did very well in the Cheltenham Gold Cup. He never really disappointed and I see him in the top three or four again.
6:30 AM – Race & Stay At Punchestown Champion INH Flat Race
I’m going mike american here. We had a very good race at Cheltenham where we ran into Facile Vega. I still have a lot of faith in American Mike and I think he can give the Punchestown favorite something to think about.
A little more pleasant terrain wouldn’t hurt. Punchestown is right-handed, and we earned a bumper at Down Royal by being right-handed, and Easy Vega never took that route.
Easy Vega will be hard to beat, but if there is a horse that can beat him, it will be American Mike.
7.05 – OMC Handicap Pursuit
I’ll go to Jessica Harrington out of tune. He won at Leopardstown in March but was last knocked out at Topham in Aintree.
If he doesn’t have any side effects from this experience, I think he might well go here. Fancy Foundation has a good bottom weight and may be right for the floor.
7.45 – Weatherbys General Studbook Irish Ebf Mares Flat Race
I ride Jetara, Jessica Harrington’s filly, who has a very good pedigree and won well at the Fairyhouse at the Easter meeting, where she defeated two Willie Mullins. I can’t wait to ride it.
I think Noel Meade model kingdom perhaps this is something to remember. She won the bumper list very well in Navan by defeating Harmonya Maker and Battle Bessie.
It’s not on display and I’ll try my luck with it.