At long last we wave goodbye to what has been a wild ride of a year! In a fitting way we sign out 2020 in yet another lockdown but have thankfully once again been allowed to continue racing throughout level 5 restrictions. There was a hard frost last night and an early inspection was called at Punchestown and the track has been deemed raceable as the ground remains heavy with the chance of sleet.
We open the day with RUN WILD FRED in the Beginners Chase over 3m1f. This horse has not proved the easiest this season and blinkers have been fitted for the first time to try light him up. He is very capable and if the headgear works he should be well able here with Jack Kennedy in the saddle.
We don’t have anything for the next race and move onto the Juvenile Maiden Hurdle where we have 3 runners to go to war with. First up is RAAMEZ who will be having his first run over hurdles. This son of Sea The Stars was a winner on heavy ground over in France which is a big positive going into this and he will be ridden by Keith Donoghue who has a great strike rate in these races. SAEER is a beautifully bred horse by Australia and looks like he should enjoy the trip, it is his first race over hurdles and should learn plenty from it, Denis O’Regan has been booked to ride. Finally we have the filly RIVIERE D’ETEL who shaped very well on hurdle debut in France when stretching 20L clear of third place to be beaten by just over a length. She looks a smart filly anf Jack Kennedy has been booked to ride.
It’s a small but rather talented field for the Punchestown Hurdle over 2m3f. DALLAS DES PICTONS comes up against some Graded winners here but on ratings is by no means out of this. He will be ridden by Jack Kennedy.
CAMPEADOR goes for the Handicap hurdle over 2m3f and is a race that, if he is back to his best could be very dangerous in. It looks a very open competition for him to try and take advantage of and Jody McGarvey has been booked to ride.
Then finally we have HUMBLE GLORY in the mares bumper. This filly was very good over hurdles the last day and will hopefully have the measure of them here on the level with Jamie Codd in the saddle.