The Galway Festival is upon us and I will be here to preview all seven days of this feast of racing. It will be slightly different this year as it is behind closed doors but you will see it all live in your local Bar One Racing shop so call in and check out the specials that will be available throughout the week.
4.10 CLAREGALWAYHOTEL.IE IRISH EBF C & G MAIDEN
Ger Lyons and Colin Keane are having an excellent season and LUST could give them another winner here as he looks to break his maiden tag.
He was very eye catching first time out where he looked as if he would improve for the run. He was slow away and took him a while to get into stride but he stayed on well under hands and heels riding towards the finish.
His second run was much more like it, when he finished third over a mile at Navan. The second that day, Fernando Vichi has franked the form by winning earlier this week and looks a smart performer.
The drop back to seven furlongs here will surely suit this Glenburnie inmate and he will be hard to keep out of the frame.
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4.40 CLAYTONHOTELGALWAY.IE HANDICAP
GLOW WORM looks a very interesting runner for the combination of Jack Davison and Ronan Whelan.
This filly went into my notebook after her last run when ridden by Vanessa Maye who was one of the jockeys that was involved in the Q and As with me over lockdown. She got in terms inside the final furlong but the stiff finish looked to catch her out.
Galway will be that bit sharper and Ronan should be able to get a handy position and I can see her finishing her race better. The handicapper has left her on 68, the mark which she ran off at Navan and that gives her a solid chance.
She is consistent and will be hard to keep out of the frame with luck in running.
5.15 GALMONT.COM & GALWAYBAYHOTEL HANDICAP
While RATTLING JEWEL looks to be getting prepared for a return to Listowel where he was last successful I think he is massively overpriced here as he is back on his last winning mark.
He has caught may eye twice since racing resumed, running on well from the back of the field but never actually getting in contention. This race doesn’t look to be the strongest in the world and with Wayne Lordan booked he could be primed for a big run. I could see connections adopting a change of tactics and maybe be close to the pace and try and kick clear like he did when winning at Listowel last season.
This horse was rated in the 80s a couple of seasons backed so he looks ready to strike and could be solid each way value.
5.45 GALMONT.COM & GALWAYBAYHOTEL HANDICAP
Contesting his first handicap last time out THE MPEX KID readily dominated a field of good horses at Fairyhouse under Mikey Sheehy and looks to have a fair chance of following up here.
His prominent style of racing will suit this track and he should be up close from the off. The handicapper was similarly impressed by the run and raised him eleven pounds. I think there is plenty more to come even off the revised mark and he could rated much higher. I have watched the race back on a couple of occasions and I just loved the manner of victory as he quickened away up the straight at Fairyhouse.
He won a bit snug in the end for me and should take all the beating here if he turns up in similar form.
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6.15 EASYFIX HANDICAP
PENNY OUT is a mare that is too consistent for her own good and she caught the eye again last time out when running on late to snatch third close home.
She drops back to a mile and a half here and if she is ridden closer to the pace I could see her going very close. Trevor Whelan switched her off at the back of the field last time and tried to come with one run and for me she was just too far out of her ground. She made all the running when successful at Limerick over hurdles and while there is plenty of pace in here, it wouldnt surprise me if she is prominent enough.
John Kiely is a very shrewd trainer who will love nothing more than a winner at Ballybrit and I expect a massive run from this mare.
She will be hard to keep out of the frame but I see her going very close indeed.
6.45 CONNACHT HOTEL (Q.R) HANDICAP
The feature of Day One and it looks a very competitive renewal. PRINCESS ZOE absolutely bolted up in the Ladies Derby at the Curragh last time out under Jody Townend and now has Finny Maguire on board this time around.
She travelled really well into the race and Jody was sitting pretty inside the final furlong as she quickened away to win impressively. She will have improve again for the step up in trip but I think the way she travels will really help her. Finny should be able to slot her in and let her travel away and hopefully arrive there with plenty in the tank to come with a winning run.
She is very unexposed and the thirteen pound rise that she got from the handicapper shouldn’t be enough to stop her running extremely well here.
7.15 EVENTUS HANDICAP
My nap of Day One runs here and she is turning into a very progressive filly since getting her head in front lately – UNFORTUNATELY, THIS HORSE IS NOW A NON-RUNNER TODAY
ELIZABETHOFARAGON wouldn’t be one of the stable stars in Ballydoyle but she has proved her ability by bolting up at Leopardstown under Wayne Lordan and then landing the Ulster Oaks on Friday last under the same jockey. Killian Hennessy will be on board this time around claiming seven pound and that leaves her thrown in if the race doesn’t come too soon for her.
She has a nice draw and Killian should have no worries, let her travel away and come wide and she should win going away.
She looks very progressive and could be one to land a bigger pot later in the season.
7.45 MONAMI CONSTRUCTION (Q.R) MAIDEN
MY SISTER SARAH looks a very interesting runner here for Willie Mullins and Jody Townend. She hasn’t been seen since the Cheltenham Festival and will more than likely strip fitter for the run here.
She is the type that will be well suited by a strong pace as she travels well and if she is fit enough she could be closing nicely on them as they turn for home. The last time we seen her without obstacles in the way was when she was successful on her debut in a bumper at Roscommon.
One of the main assets she had that night was the way she travelled and quickened when asked by Patrick Mullins to go and win her race.
She is a Punchestown Festival winner from last season over hurdles and if Willie has her primed and ready to go, I can see her running a very big race.