Dundalk Preview 23/10/20

A good card of racing lies in store at Dundalk

Alan Marron is back to preview the first meeting at Dundalk since we entered lockdown and hopefully has a few winners for us.

As I say each week we are looking to get a few winners on the board and it is no different this week as we enter lockdown for the second time this year. While it has been an uncertain time for many we are delighted to have racing still go ahead and Dundalk Stadium will have many a good card over the next few weeks. 

With our shops closed ye can still avail of all the same offers and specials through our online and telebetting section so make sure to check it out folks.


Our markets for Dundalk can be found here



Colin Keane and Shane Foley will continue the battle for the jockeys title here and it looks like this race could be first blood to Colin Keane.

LILANDRA has shown some smart form in maiden and handicap company and the drop in grade should see her collect here.

Her last run at Dundalk has been well advertised since as the winner, the third, sixth and tenth horses from that that race have gone on won since.

Last time out we seen Lilandra just got collared close home at Fairyhouse behind Theophile where she was unlucky to get headed close home.

She is still relatively lightly raced and should take all the beating here and get Colin Keane and Ger Lyons off to a flyer.


NEVER BACK DOWN links in nicely with the form of Lilandra from race one on the card so if she is successful that will only increase the chances of this horse.

Never Back Down finished fourth in the race where all the form has worked out well as mentioned above and the handicapper has given him a chance by leaving him on the same mark of 69 for his last two runs.

Last time out we seen him finish fourth behind Helen De Pourtales and that form got a boost last week when Shawaf franked the form under Shane Foley.

The owners had a nice winner with Politicise earlier in the week and will be looking for a solid run from Never Back Down.

He will be hard to keep out of the frame.


Mikey Sheehy is a name to keep a close eye on in the seasons to come and he could get another winner on the board with the Michael O’Callaghan trained I AM MAGNETIC.

This horse will be making his handicap debut and while he has plenty of weight, Mikeys claim could help massively. This horse has one piece of form that if he can reproduce anything close to it then the others have plenty of work to do to get close to him.

On his debut he finished third behind Coill Avon and St Mark’s Basilica, that form has been franked in no uncertain terms as the Aidan O’Brien trained inmate went and won the Group One Dewhurst at Newmarket under Frankie Dettori.

The last time we seen I Am Magnetic he did absolutely nothing wrong in giving two fillies five pounds at Tipperary and finishing third beaten a neck and a head.

He has the perfect pitch here in stall one and simply must be the one to pay all the attention two.

Will be very disappointing if he can’t get his head in front here.


Willie Mc Creery and Seamie Heffernan team up here with ALWAYS WAITIN and this colt caught the eye on debut at Cork where he finished third under Billy Lee.

He was slowly away and pushed along in rear, he was still ninth entering the straight and was then switched out and ran on under hands and heels riding to finish third. It looked a lovely introduction for a horse who had a nice price tag as he cost $140,000 dollars as a foal.

He looks the type to improve plenty for the experience and it will be no surprise to see him stay on late here and get up close home.

The horse that finished seventh Benaud has come out and won since and two others have finished second so the form has a little substance to it.

Keep an eye on the market as with improvement to come he should run a nice race.


Monaghan trainer Anthony Mc Cann is no stranger to success at Dundalk Stadium and will be looking to get one on the board here with the Rita Shah owned RED CYMBAL.

This horse came back to form on the turf at Cork on his penultimate run and then backed it up last time over five furlongs on the all weather where he stayed on and never had the pace to challenge.

He steps back up in trip here and his mark 65 and with Luke Mc Ateers claim of 5lb it should bring this horse right into the equation as he was placed off a mark of 69 over course and distance back in January.

He was a well beaten second behind the ill fated Sceptical back in March and even that form should be more than enough to get his head back in front here.

The colours of Rita Shah will always be associated with Oliver Brady who was a character in many a  parade ring around the country.

If this horse can get his head in front the memories of the dulcet tones of “Up Monaghan” will come flooding back.


Likely favourite here VERMILLION CLIFFS should take all the beating for the potent combination of Seamie Heffernan and Aidan O’Brien.

Running in the Niarchos family colours this colt was unlucky not to have broken his duck on debut when he led inside the final furlong at Leopardstown and got run down close home by Lobo Rojo trained by Jessica Harrington.

Even though it will only be a week turnaround since his debut the master of Ballydoyle is looking to get this colt to break his maiden tag before the end of the season and looks to be the main contender here.

He will no doubt improve off the back of his debut like most of the Ballydoyle runners and for me any quotes of odds against must be snapped up.

He could be well backed and win impressively. One to keep a very close eye on.


It could be a quick double for Seamie Heffernan and Aidan O’Brien with PARTY SEASON who cost one million dollars as a yearling.

He is by American Pharaoh so the artificial surface should be right up his street and in his previous two runs he may have been bogged down by the heavy ground.

Both his runs so far in his career have left plenty to improve on as he has looked one paced on both occasions but I think a sound surface could see this colt in a much better light.

He looks to be learning all the time and if he will have time to settle into the race here over a slightly longer distance than he has ran over so far and he should finish his race better.

With normal improvement he should be extremely hard to beat and while it is a long away off repaying the price tag it will be a maiden victory that will mean plenty to Coolmore in breeding terms.


The final race of the night will see a very unexposed Joseph O’Brien trained runner make his handicap debut and could attract plenty of market attention.

Unsold for 300k as a yearling GALILEO DANCE has looked a similar type to Party Season from the previous race as he has been a little lethargic in his races and very one paced.

His best run was when he finished fourth to Chosen Mate in a qualified riders race in Killarney where Peregrine Run finished just ahead of him. That was on good ground and the most noticeable thing that day was that he took quite a keen hold and failed to finish his race out as he had nothing left to give.

A handicap mark of 66 may not be beyond him but if he can’t get his head in front soon he may have a hurdle in front of him when we see him again.

He should improve for the surface and if he can settle in behind the leaders he could finish his race out stronger.

A father and son treble to finish the card looks to be the way to go so best of luck folks and hopefully we can get a winner or two on the board.

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*Odds were correct at time of publishing the article