Our tastiest dish of the day could be served up last tonight as Zulu Alpha looks to be our best chance of a winner.
I was thrilled with him at Leopardstown where I thought he ran a lovely race to finish a close-up third to Siamsiocht. That was only his second ever start so I would like to think that there is more to come. He is a big horse, who should appreciate the trip and the ground so I am expecting a huge run. I’m hoping that his best will be good enough and we will be heading home with a winner.
It is a long wait until half eight tonight so I’m hoping we can pay a visit to the winner’s enclosure before then. Muaanid was our last winner of the 7f maiden (5.40) and I would have been more confident of Lost In Silence had she not been drawn in stall ten of 12. She is a nice filly and I was looking forward to her this week but being drawn so wide at Galway is a real dampener. Given where she is drawn, the strongest thing I can say is that she has an each-way chance. It might have been a bit different had she been closer to the rail.
Waaheb is back at Ballybrit, the track where he chased home Lord Scoundrel in October and that form does not look so bad now after the Galway Plate. The Galway Blazers (6.15) is always a competitive affair and it will be a cavalry charge to the first fence. The one thing about Waaheb is that he loves good ground so the more rain that falls, the more his chance will evaporate. He’s been a good servant to us over the years and I have a feeling he will run well if Mark [Walsh] can get him into a nice early rhythm.
Alveena is our sole runner in the feature, the Guinness Handicap (6.50), but once again the draw has not been kind. She has been a consistent filly for us, winning three of her nine starts and being placed in five others. Indeed, she has only once finished out of the frame. She is now rated 99, though, and has been punished for her consistency. She has to carry 9st 7lb and I think she has got it all to do to get involved.
We run two in the Guinness Race (7.25), a race we won in 2013 and 2014 with Unaccompanied and Forgotten Rules. Zafayan had a big weight to carry under Dean Sinnott in the big amateur handicap on the opening night and will enjoy himself more in this with much less weight. He has come out of the race really well so we have decided to let him take his chance.
Good Tradition was second to Dark Crusader in this race last year and we are back to try and go one better. He’s a horse that goes well fresh so we have kept him fresh for this. He has not run since Navan in February but he seems in good order at home and on his day he is pretty useful. He would have to be the pick of my pair.
Dalton Highway has been a huge disappointment so we are putting a pair of blinkers on him in an attempt to wake him up for the 1m handicap (8.00). There are three things in his favour – he will love the ground, the longer trip will suit and blinkers will help him concentrate better – but as I’ve said, he has been very disappointing so I don’t really know what to expect.
Originally Published in the Racing Post