In-form Garrai looks the part

GARRAI ARD, fresh from her best effort to date at Listowel, can provide the answer to the Ballybeggan Racegoers’ Club EBF Novice Hurdle at Tralee today.

Dusty Sheehy’s mare ran twice at that Festival, probably going to the front too soon for Sean Flanagan when beaten ten lengths into second by Vale Of Avocia.

The five-year-old turned out again the following day, this time with Ruby Walsh aboard, and showed what a tough customer she is with a fine performance.

Ridden with a lot more restraint, Garrai Ard came sweeping through late to power clear going to the final flight to slam the useful Oscar Time by ten lengths.

The DNG W.H. Giles Auctioneers’ Maiden Hurdle is best left to Arthur Moore’s Port La Chaine. He went under by a length and a half to King Ralph at Wexford, in a contest which has been working out reasonably well.

Tom Hogan’s Sonnyanjoe is fancied to lead his rivals a merry dance in the Joseph J Grace Memorial Beginners Chase.

Sonnyanjoe tried to make all at Downpatrick six days ago and it was only after the final fence that he gave best to Window Of Hope.

Feature event is the Brandon Hotel Handicap Hurdle and this presents a real puzzle. Perhaps Tango Jim, who finished a promising third to Mudslinger at Bellewstown, following a long absence, will go close.

At the Curragh this afternoon, John Oxx’s Ebashan rates a good bet to win the concluding Auction Maiden.

It took a while for the penny to drop on his debut at Leopardstown, but the son of King’s Best was doing all his best work at the end of seven furlongs when a length runner-up behind Jim Bolger’s heavily-backed Vocalised.

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