Navan racecourse enjoys its moment in the spotlight with its seasonal feature the Ladbrokes Troytown Chase on Sunday, and it certainly looks a competitive renewal this year.
The contest holds an unusual stance in that it’s not a race that Willie Mullins holds a monopoly over, as he does many races in Ireland, with the champion trainer triumphing just once in the last 20 years.
The County Carlow man holds three entries this time round, but we are using the trends to pick us out a winner elsewhere.
There are three key statistics that stand out when looking at this contest:
- – 19 of the last 20 victors finished in the first five on their last completed start
- – All 20 had previously won over at least 2m4f
- – Only four winners in the last two decades had won more than one handicap chase
So it is pretty obvious that we are looking for a horse in form, but unexposed, that we are pretty confident will stay the 3m trip.
We can say goodbye to 12 of the current entrants who finished down the field previously, including the JP McManus-owned trio of Cause of Causes (14/1), Colbert Station (16/1) and Like Your Style (20/1).
Gordon Elliot’s Bless the Wings (16/1) and Tony Martin’s Wrong Turn (16/1) are among the six more exposed runners that we discard using the trends, while Back off Mate (14/1) and Plan A (25/1) have yet to taste victory at nearly far enough.
With around half the field left, it could be tricky to pick one out, but one that stands out for us is MY MURPHY (16/1).
He probably found the distance and good ground in the Irish Grand National on his last start too much to overcome, but is a two-time winner over 3m, and loves softer ground, so conditions here will be fine.
It’s worth noting that only four winners in the last 20 years have carried over 11st to victory (My Murphy will carry at least 11st4lbs), however of those quartet one was a Grade 1 winner, another had placed at the top level, while a third was a Grade 2 runner-up.
So quality horses can carry the weight to win this, and Liam Burke’s charge could be just that. He was only beaten 1/2l by Foxrock over course and distance in a Grade 2 last February and had previously won a Grade 3 over hurdles.
His love of Navan also shines through – his form at the track reads 31F21, with the fall when going well. And with just a 6lb higher mark than his win in identical conditions here in March, could go well under Robbie Power when they line up at the County Meath track.
All odds and markets correct as of the date of publishing
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