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Classy Cradle all set to rock for confident O'Brien

By Nick Robson

Published 29/10/2016

Mountain top: Joseph O’Brien rates Cradle Mountain highly
Mountain top: Joseph O’Brien rates Cradle Mountain highly

Joseph O'Brien is hoping for another big show from Irish Cesarewitch runner-up Cradle Mountain in the valuable Tote November Handicap at Leopardstown today. The JP McManus-owned gelding chased home Laws Of Spin at the Curragh on his most recent start and tackles another €100,000 contest now, as the curtain comes down on the Flat turf season in Ireland.

O'Brien admits the four-year-old is a bit of a "character" but the Pilltown handler has done well with the gelding since he switched to his care, winning twice over hurdles and finishing placed on three other occasions over timber.

"He's in good form and he ran well in the Cesarewitch. He doesn't have a great draw, but it could be worse and hopefully he runs a good race," said O'Brien.

"He takes a bit of riding and he's a character, but in fairness to him he's a consistent enough sort at the same time.

"When you get stuck into him he keeps pulling it out, so you'd have to hand that to him. He just appears lazy."

Six others who finished in behind Cradle Mountain reoppose and the most notable may be Swamp Fox, who was just half a length away in third.

Joe Murphy's charge travelled into contention in the two-miler and may appreciate the slightly shorter trip now on an easier track.

Murphy has given his charge an entry in the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham next month and said: "It will depend on the going and how he is, but we have entered Swamp Fox to give us the option.

"He has won on different types of ground but I would say at this stage he is better with some cut.

"We will see how he gets on there (Leopardstown) and then decide where we will go next.

"He is a very promising horse. He has done well to win four competitive races as a four-year-old. It was a good run to come third in the Cesarewitch."

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