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Massini's Trap set for Tiger in Ulster clash

By Ron McKnight

Down Royal focuses on the flat this evening with the feature – the Ulster Cesarewitch sponsored by Attheraces – an ultra-competitive long distance contest.

Massini's Trap, with Fran Berry aboard, is the selection in the hope the fast ground conditions and distance will favour trainer James Nash's runner which won over two miles on the flat at Killarney in July.

The Dermot Weld-trained Noble Graduate has filled second on his last two efforts while Carpet Elegance and top weight Cullentry Royal hold form claims with the latter aided by the apprentice rider's 10lbs claim.

The race holds considerable Ulster interest with Time To Work and Protaras both locally owned and Tyrone trainer James Lambe is doubly represented by Sang Tiger and Action Master.

Champion jockey Joseph O'Brien, ahead of the new Champions weekend, partners Sang Tiger, a dual winner on the flat in France prior to his purchase.

Kasbah looks impossible to oppose in the opening two-year-old maiden having finished runner-up to the high-class Ainippe at Naas a couple of runs previously. The Naas winner was Belfast owned before her sale to Qatar Racing.

Ger Lyons, who trains Ainippe, has newcomer Ningxai in the race and, along with Ostatnia, could offer each way alternatives.

The Weld-trained Baroque Poet looks the likely favourite in the Mourne Seafood Bar two-year-old claiming race and carries top weight to match the €20,000 claim price, while Jessica Harrington's newcomer Boris Bike has a price of €8,000 and thus receives 15lbs under the conditions and could offer better value. The same applies to Wee Monster.

Intenser, trained by Brendan Duke, can claim the Charles Hurst Nursery and follow up Gowran success last week by accounting for Royal County and Three Cheers.

The vote goes to Chief Suspect in the next, based on his effort at the Galway Festival.

The Michael Halford-trained Red Laser is a consistent sort and, despite top weight, gets the selection in the Charles Hurst Handicap in which Danseur De Feu and the locally-trained Al Fahidi appear the pair to beat.

Trainer Pat Flynn is doubly represented in the Charles Hurst Apprentice Handicap with Right Up My Street and Hangar Five with Donnacha O'Brien, younger brother of the champion jockey, partnering the former. Papaya, though, gets the nod.

TODAY'S DOWN ROYAL TOP TIPS: 4.05 Kasbah 4.35 Boris Bike 5.05 Intenser 5.35 Chief Suspect 6.05 Red Laser 6.35 Papaya 7.05 Massini's Trap

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