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One Ell of an evening lies in store for trainer Gordon

By Ron McKnight

Gordon Elliott currently tops the trainers league at Downpatrick and can consolidate his position this evening by landing the opening maiden hurdle with Ultimate Horseman.

Ultimate Horseman won a bumper on his debut at the track and can prevail again, while Haddington Road and Enumerator pose the chief threats.

The Meath handler - top trainer at Downpatrick last season - has Be Seeing You with Paul Carberry booked to ride in the long distance handicap hurdle and has some scope for improvement.

However Halls Bridge has been running consistently, being denied in a photo finish over fences at the course last month having previously recorded success at a similar track, Tramore.

Desert Roe is another entering calculations but the locally-trained pair News For Pascal and Personal Shopper hold solid claims.

The latter was beaten a head on his penultimate effort at Sligo while the former - trained near the course - filled second at the track in March but has disappointed in his two most recent starts.

Sand Artist could supply another winner for Elliott and jockey Bryan Cooper in the handicap chase and appears nicely handicapped after finishing second at Perth last time.

Waltz Legend, trained in Newry by Liam Lennon, holds Fiery Oscar and The Last Hour on form a fortnight ago at the track when finishing third but Finea - trained near Armagh by Keith Watson - could prove the main danger having won the hunter chase on the same evening.

Broughtons Bandit - also trained by Elliott - looks the likely favourite in the handicap hurdle.

Santo Prince had the form of his third at Kilbeggan endorsed with the winner Lucky Pat scoring again at Punchestown.

Edeymi, winner of the Galway Festival amateur riders feature in 2013, is engaged in the beginners chase and the Tony Martin runner is a class act and can win this one.

El Grande is the one to be on in the hunter chase.

In the concluding bumper, Elliott combines with Nina Carberry with Spicy Fruity which filled fourth at Tramore last Friday evening and appears the likely favourite.

Waterville Rock and Rightback Atya look to hold superior form claims and the former gets the vote.

DOWNPATRICK TOP TIPS: 5.45 Ultimate Horseman 6.15 Halls Bridge 6.45 Santo Prince 7.20 Edeymi 7.55 Sand Artist 8.25 El Grande 8.55 Waterville Rock

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