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Nina Carberry to reign as first lady at Downpatrick

By Ron McKnight

Nina Carberry can again prove the punters' darling on Ladies Day at Downpatrick this afternoon. The top amateur rider partners Angus Milan in the finale and following a runner-up finish on his debut at the venue a fortnight ago, the selection can go one better for Draperstown trainer Noel Kelly who has his team in excellent form and recorded another winner at Perth last month.

The Mags Mullins trained, Young Dillon, with Katie Walsh aboard, is the obvious danger in the bumper having filled third on his Cork debut earlier this month.

Despite a small field the Al Aasta Stables Dubai Maiden hurdle can prove competitive but Lord Of Isemay, owned by Draperstown based Pat Conway and trained by Jim Dreaper, gets the vote. The locally owned horse has several placed efforts to his credit and the trainer and jockey Johnny Burke are in good form with winners in the past week.

Some Pride showed promise in a Galway bumper but makes his debut over hurdles while Tight Times, trained by Brian Hamilton, was a good fourth over hurdles at Roscommon and Sabrina Harty, who registered success at the Curragh on Saturday, runs The Cub which if repeating his effort when second in a Limerick Novice chase has claims.

Landau gets a confident vote in the opening Botanica International Maiden Hurdle following finishing a solid second to the talented Gutsy Rocky at Tramore.

Captain Carleton is the obvious danger having finished runner-up at Cork and Down Royal in recent efforts while Burnt Sienna has possibilities of supplying County Derry handler Noel Kelly a double on the day.

Mosman Park was the selection at the last Downpatrick meeting when just failing to catch Cerca Trova close home and can gain compensation in the Handicap Hurdle although rain would diminish his claims.

Trainer/rider, Denis Hogan's team has been in scintillating form recently and registered two winners last week and Hogan's Dedoctorsdaughter can supply the danger while the Sabrina Harty trained Mossy Island and Milano Express – the latter having Shane Shortall in the saddle – warrant each way consideration.

Noel Meade has booked Shortall, a rising star over jumps, for Tulsa jack in the Best Dressed Lady Hurdle – the course offering a trip to the Dubai World Cup for today's winner of that accolade.

Meade's runner opened his hurdles account at Limerick on his penultimate start. However the vote goes to Coldstonesober, twice runner-up at Tramore last week and a previous course winner and having beaten Hero de Villeneuve in a chase at the course in June.

Better Back Bob ran extremely well when runner-up to Big Kern at the last fixture and could collect today for Loughbrickland trainer Neil McKnight in the Murrin Memorial Hurdle.

The Gordon Elliott trained Tom's Article pulled up in that race when favourite having previously won a bumper at the track but still appears the danger while News From Pascal, placed at the venue, made his debut over hurdles at Galway and has place prospects at today's level.

Duroob, winner of the Ulster National in 20 12, ran very well on Friday night at Kilbeggan over fences and reverting to hurdles in the Murphy Jewellers Hurdle would be a popular winner, being trained by Oliver Brady. Lucky Pigeon won a similar contest at Kilbeggan on Friday and looks the one to beat while Fast Exit a winner over fences at the track in June holds each way prospects.

TELEGRAPH TOP TIPS 2.30 Landau 3.05 Mosman Park 3.40 Lord Of Isemay 4.15 Coldstonesober 4.50 Better Back Bob 5.25 Duroob 6.00 Angus Milan

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