There may be a racing lockdown in the UK, but over in County Tipperary, Ireland there’s a seven race card going off at Thurles from 13:40.
And with five races due to be aired on ITV4, our trader takes us inside the stables at what to look out for.
Trainer to watch
As is the case at most Irish jumps venues, it’s W P Mullins who has the best record at Thurles this season with twelve winners from thirty-seven runners, a strike rate of 32%.
The champion trainer has three runners on the card, all of which hold some sort of chance. We haven’t seen Karl Der Grosse (2.10) for over 400 days after he was pulled up at this venue but he had previously looked a promising novice.
Cut The Mustard (3.10) has won twice over fences although she’ll have to find some improvement to reverse form with the favourite Sizing Pottsie. Possibly Willie’s best chance of a winner comes in the 4.10, where former top class Flat horse Max Dynamite attempts to break his duck over fences.
Horse to watch
The Pierce Molony Memorial Novice Chase at 3.10 looks a really strong contest for the grade with all nine runners holding claims. Likely favourite Sizing Pottsie unseated his rider on his first chase start over the Christmas period, but he has thrived over the big obstacles in two starts since. A fifteen-length victory at Fairyhouse was followed by a win in the Grade Three Flyingbolt Novice Chase at Navan earlier this month. He has to shoulder a six-pound penalty for that win but he is on an upward curve and looks an exciting horse for the future.
Jockey to watch
As stable jockey to the Willie Mullins yard it’s no surprise that Paul Townend leads the way at Thurles with six winners from nineteen runners this term. He rides all three from the Mullins yard mentioned above. While it’s true that he doesn’t have the ammunition that Townend has, Philip Enright has had a successful time of things and has already chalked up thirty-seven winners this season, five of them coming here at Thurles. Three of those winners have returned an SP of 10/1 or bigger so there could be some big rewards on offer for following his mounts on the card.
Philip Enright rides: Ministerforsport (3.10), Wrong Direction (3.40), Monty’s Mission (4.10)
All odds and markets correct as of date of publication