THERE is a tasty rollover of €45,440 into today’s Tote Pick 6 pool at Punchestown and, with three bullet-proof bankers, it is not beyond the bounds of possibility that we could be sipping champagne and tucking into some surf and turf tonight.
The biggest banker of the trio is undoubtedly Douvan in the Ryanair Novice Chase (6.40). He has been flawless since joining Willie Mullins from France and the manner of his wins at Cheltenham and Aintree suggest he will have few problems disposing of both Sizing John and The Game Change who must be sick of the sight of the Walk In The Park gelding.
It is hard to pick holes in Josies Orders in the La Touche (4.40) as well. Things did not go to script for Nina Carberry at Cheltenham and the fall of Balthazar King forced her further back than she wanted to be. He still rattled home and would have caught Any Currency in another few strides. That form has been franked by the winner since.
Ballyboker Bridge did not get home at Cheltenham but he was going smoothly when exited in today’s race 12 months ago and Peter Maher’s charge could be the one to give Josies Orders most to think about. The Tote Exacta is worth doing with those two.
The third banker in your Tote Pick 6 coupon simply has to be Alpha Des Obeaux. With no Thistlecrack in opposition today in the Ladbrokes Champion Stayers Hurdle (5.30), he looks head and shoulders above the opposition. You have to remember he was 22 lengths clear of the third in the World Hurdle at Cheltenham and a repeat of that performance, when he travelled and jumped sweetly, will probably be good enough today.
Those three bankers are all work banking on in all Tote Jackpot coupons and that just leave one more leg to solve in that bet. The third leg, the Murray Spelman Handicap Hurdle (6.05), is terribly tricky however and you will need to fire plenty of bullets. Jury Duty remains quite unexposed and is certainly worth including, while the others who appeal are Childrens List, Burgas, Just Cause, Road To Respect and Cassells Rock.
The opening JLT Handicap Hurdle (3.40) looks tailormade for British raider Proofreader who is rated 91 on the Flat and just 122 over hurdles. Denis O’Regan ought to suit him too and expect him to be held up right at the back of the pack before hopefully coming with a late burst up the home straight to land the spoils. He is a more talented horse than his mark suggests.
The Tote Trifecta is guaranteed for €10,000 in the Murray Spelman Handicap Hurdle (6.05) and, as mentioned already, it is not straightfoward.
The advice is to do an all-way Tote Trifecta with Road To Respect, Cassells Rock and Jury Duty, then say a prayer and hope for the best.