Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Toner chasing super four-in-a-row

Toner D'Oudairies can win the principal supporting race on today's Down Royal card, the €50,000 Powers Irish Whiskey Novice Chase.

D'Oudairies is seeking to complete a four-timer and having beaten First Lieutenant and Roi Du Mee last time, boasts the best form in the contest.

Owner Michael O'Leary also has the Tony Martin-trained Dedigout entered.

Ruby Walsh gets the mount on the Ulster-owned Texas Jack in the absence of trainer Noel Meade's regular jockeys. Rolling Aces bids to maintain Paul Nicholls dominance in the race he has won for the last five years and will be fit and ready for battle on his seasonal debut.

Former top hurdler Oscar Wells, trained by Jessica Harrington, has yet to achieve the same level over fences as he did over hurdles including finishing sixth in the 2012 Champion Hurdle behind Rock On Ruby.

The same remark applies to Buckers Bridge and Argocat while Tofino Bay loves the mud and was just beaten by half a length in the four mile marathon at the Cheltenham Festival earlier this year and is the mount of Champion jockey Davy Russell.

Toner D'Oudairies is taken to score for Gordon Elliott who is the leading trainer at Down Royal with Rolling Aces and Texas Jack the dangers.

Guitar Pete, owned by the Sloan family from Templepatrick and trained by Dessie Hughes, could supply a local winner in the opening 3-year-old hurdle, however, Gitante Du Berlais representing Willie Mullins and Ruby Walsh on her Irish debut, appears the likely favourite and one to beat.

The highly regarded Gilt Shadow, trained at Larne by Stuart Crawford, makes his debut in the Tayto Hurdle having won his bumper at last year's Festival.

Enchanted Forest, My Aya, Rock The World and Shanhan's Turn all have solid claims while No More Heroes is a very talented recruit from point to points representing the Ryanair team and trainer, Gordon Elliott. False Economy is taken the claim the Festival feature hurdle for Michael Hourigan and Ruby Walsh.

Prosperity Square, Drumlister, Emperor Concerto along with Twin Plan, trained at Loughgall by James Lambe with Ruby Walsh booked, make most appeal in the handicap chase. Adamstown gets the vote in the bumper were the majority are newcomers. Trained at Cullybackey by Ian Ferguson, the horse is a recent above average points winner and should do well.

SELECTIONS: 12.50 Guitar Pete, 1.20 Gilt Shadow, 1.55 False Economy, 2.30 First Lieutenant, 3.05 Toner D'Oudairies, 3.40 Twin Plan, 4.10 Adamstown.