NAGS NOW: Five horses to keep an eye on for St Stephen’s Day Racing
St Stephen’s Day! One of the most anticipated days of the year for followers of horse racing.
Behind the excitement attached to the March vigil to the Cheltenham, today’s day racing is hard to beat – the races come thick and fast with some of the sports top performers on display.
It’s really the first time in the season we see some of the big head-to-heads that might pitch up again in Cheltenham’s Prestbury Park later in the year and gives a good gauge to progress of our stars..
NAGS NOW has gone through today’s cards in depth and picked out a few horses we hope can put a few notes back into your pockets.
This is a very strong field for a maiden hurdle with a few here unlucky not to have picked up a win so something has to give today.
Fusain and Arthurian Flame rightly head the betting looking at their last runs but in such a big field anything can happen and NAGS NOW prefers the look of Willie Mullins only runner in the field FILS SPIRITUEL – Mullins is the master of two-mile hurdles and has been bang on form saddling up a number of 2-mile hurdle winners this month.
An interesting outsider who could improve on their last couple of outings, only beaten by what the form has proved to be top notch, is Mouse Morris’s WHATSNOTOKNOW(EW).
12.30pm Down Royal
Emmet Mullins’s Russian Diamond is the market leader here having won over the distance quite easily at Galway over the summer but the ground was much different to now.
RHYTHM DEVINE is certainly the one to watch in this having six places out of seven runs and this field looks a good one to break the duck. This mare from Aidan O’Brien’s St Leger winner Milan is bred for this kind of challenge.
This could turn out to be a shootout between a pair of half-brothers, Aspire Tower under Rachael Blackmore and NAGS NOW’s fancy A WAVE OF THE SEA from Joseph O’Brien’s Owning Hill Stable.
O’Brien’s horse was on for a hattrick when coming a underwhelming second in Fairyhouse earlier this month. JJ Slevin is back in the saddle today, so we could say this pair is looking to complete their hattrick and probably will.
This is an interesting warm-up to the main event across the water and always seems to unearth some truly great horses. This field could be as strong as it has every seen. Master Tommytucker has a lot of questions to answer on just his second run in over a year – back from a fractured knee and running a extra ¾ mile doesn’t fill NAGS NOW with confidence.
Peaky Blinders fan might take an interest in DANNY WHIZZBANG who is unbeaten in three runs and could be a nice enough price too.
This could be the clash of the day between Willie Mullin’s Laurina and Joseph O’Brien’s Fakir D’oudaires. Huge things were expected of both going to Cheltenham last March but only served to create many a busted docket. Both have been trying to regain the confidence of the punter since and Laurina has done a better job.
Fakir D’oudaires has failed to fill the winner’s enclosure when the pressure to perform has been on, and this field although small – is as good as anything he has faced.
You will be lucky to get much more than evens on either horse, so maybe one to watch and enjoy.
CYRNAME – the first horse to beat Altior in over four years – and beat him well. Lostintranslation could make it a very interesting race. It’s hard to overlook Cyrname and may be the last time you will ever see him at anything other than odds on. Take it now.