The Punchestown festival is five fantastic days of racing and it is a great place to ride! I rode Bog War to win there the season before last and following a few placed efforts last year I am looking forward to getting stuck in again this week. Tomorrow’s declarations are up and I have four reasonable rides:
4.20 - Cilaos Emery
Cilaos Emery ran a cracker in the Supreme Novices at Cheltenham when making only his fourth career start. The hustle and Bustle of a top class race like that should have brought him on a lot in terms of experience and he’s got to have a big chance tomorrow. Realistically we have a lot of ground to make up with Labaik and Melon but he felt in good form when I rode work on him at the Curragh recently and I would be optimistic about reducing the gap if nothing else.
4.55 – Adreamstillalive
We are undefeated together so far with four consecutive wins on the board. I mentioned in this blog that there could be more to come from her after winning at Limerick last time and I think she could be the pick of my rides tomorrow. It’s unusual to see only 11 runners contesting a €60,000 race so it might not be as competitive as you would expect. Adreamstillalive only just does enough to win but I think Punchestown will suit her and I’m hoping that she has a bit more tucked up her sleeve for tomorrow.
5.30 – Rock The World
I’ve ridden this lad once before in the Galway Hurdle last year and I am delighted to pick up the ride with Robbie Power committed to the Ann and Alan Potts. It is always exhilarating to ride at two miles over fences, especially at that level. It’s a very hot race but he could be placed if he gives a good account of himself.
6.40 – Alpha Des Obeaux
He ran well in the Irish National last week and I think he would have been placed but for losing 10 lengths when we were nearly brought down on the first circuit. Mouse Morris says he is in good form so he should have a reasonable chance back in novice company.
Looking ahead to the rest of the week it will be very interesting to see how the Champion Hurdles pans out as it looks like a very exciting field at the moment. I will ride Brain Power and we will be looking to improve on his Cheltenham performance. He ran his race before we turned in last time and we will have to adjust our plans slightly to keep a lid on him for as long as possible on Friday.
Of my other rides, Monalee is a very exciting horse and I am looking forward to getting back on him in the Grade One three mile novice hurdle. Punchestown should suit him well and if I can put a bit of pressure on Penhill he is capable of reversing the Cheltenham form.
It’s tough to say exactly what I will be riding the rest of the week as it is largely dependent on what runs where. I have some solid chances lined up but as is the case with Rock The World you never know what might come your way.
It’s a massive week and I am dreaming of another winner!!