Paul Townend looks ahead to the Galway races

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I had a fall the other week at Limerick so I played it safe ahead of Galway and took the week off. I was sore enough but I’m fine now and I was back at Ballinrobe during the week.

There isn’t the same amount of pressure that you have at Cheltenham, Aintree, or Punchestown at the Galway races but it is the highlight of the summer.

There is so much money up for grabs in the Galway Hurdle and Galway Plate so you must take it seriously. It is a fun festival as well I suppose; the atmosphere is great!

Obviously it is broken up between flat and jumps so you’re only ever going there for one or two rides so you can enjoy it a bit more.

I never stay in Galway. I ride out in the mornings so I have to travel up and down each day. Probably safest so we don’t get led astray by everyone else!

We have two nice novice hurdlers for the first day; Foveros and Authorized Art. The two of them might line up. Authorized Art won well at Punchestown and Foveros won at Cork although he was beaten by JP’s horse at Ballinrobe since. They are two nice horses and they can only improve for their experience.

We have a select few in the Galway Plate. With Yorkhill you don’t really know what you’re going to get with him but he is the class horse in the race.

Pylonthepressure has a nice weight and he gave Peregrine Run a fright at Ballinrobe in May on his last run. He sneaks in there at the bottom. He could be a live one of ours. Some Neck is in there too and has listed form over fences. There’s a couple of nice ones in there without a real standout horse.

In the Galway Hurdle, Quick Grabim has top weight which will be hard but he’s got a bit of room for improvement. Sayo is coming off a bit of a break so it will be very hard for him with all the weight but his form with Mr Adjudicator is very good going back two years.

Shanning won very well at Killarney the other night and Exchange Rate has only had a couple of runs over hurdles so his mark my not be as exposed either.

I will have more news at the end of the week once we have a clearer picture of plans.

Enjoy the week,

Paul.

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Paul Townend

Paul is an Irish jockey who competes in National Hunt racing and is an integral part of the famous and vastly successful Willie Mullins team. Paul was Irish jump racing Champion Jockey for the 2010-11 season and will be discussing his rides in a weekly blog with Ladbrokes News throughout the jumps season.