FOOTY FACTS can win a fascinating little seven-runner Kathleen Clarke 80th Birthday Hurdle at Punchestown this afternoon.
Robert Tyner’s gelding came back to something approaching his best form when scoring over fences at Clonmel last month and, hopefully, can go on from there. He seemed to have plenty to do in that particular handicap, but gave 18lbs and a five and a half lengths beating to subsequent winner, Glenquest.
Hardy Eustace has 5lbs in hand of the selection at the weights, but it will be disappointing should Footy Facts fail to cope with Dessie Hughes’ veteran at this stage.
Glencove Marina was touted as a possible Cheltenham Gold Cup winner two years ago, but has to overcome an absence of 718 days and a watching brief is surely the right policy for the moment.
Willie Mullins’ Beroni should prove hard to beat in the Buy Your Tickets On Line Handicap Hurdle. He had his first outing for Mullins at Galway in October, over flights, scoring by two lengths and went up 12lbs.
Beroni then indicated subsequently he was improving at a rate of knots when running away with the Troytown Chase at Navan.
The seven-year-old runs here off a mark 26lbs below his current rating over fences and should have the legs on Farringdon, who was most impressive when winning at Fairyhouse last time.
If Tramore passes a 7.30am inspection then Diophas can land the nap in the Metal Man Novice Hurdle.
He strolled to victory in a maiden at Cork sixteen days ago and can prove too strong for Thurles winner, Kilmurry.
Crannaghmore Mist, no match for John Joe Walsh’s well-touted newcomer Silver Friend at Cork, faces an easier task in the Bumper for lady riders.
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