The Tommy Cooper-trained nine-year-old has not been seen in public since being pulled up in the ‘King George’ at Kempton last Christmas and has not triumphed since proving too strong for Kalahari King up the Cheltenham hill in the ‘Arkle’ of 2009.
Injuries sustained at Kempton kept Forpadydeplasterer off the track for the remainder of last season. And his record of seven consecutive second placings since his ‘Arkle’ success doesn’t inspire too much confidence.
But, he’ll face only two rivals today, Roi Du Mee (rated 23lb inferior) and Jadanli (27lb inferior) in the quest for a handsome ‘pot’ of €19,500.
Receiving weight from his two rivals, Forpadydeplasterer, the mount of Barry Geraghty, cannot be opposed.
The Grade 3 Buck House Novice Chase looks a competitive affair but affords Shinrock Paddy, rated 150 over hurdles, a good opportunity to make a winning start over the bigger obstacles.
Paul Nolan’s charge raced only twice last season, beating Donnas Palm in a conditions event at Naas in January before filling fifth spot behind Voler La Vedette in the Boyne Hurdle at Navan the following month.
Shinrock Paddy has always looked a chaser-in-the-making and, although his fitness must be taken on trust, it’s significant that he has triumphed on his seasonal bow in every season of his career. He should prove tough to beat.
The Charles Byrnes-trained Jack Cool, a progressive handicapper last season, reaching a mark of 145 after victory in a competitive Fairyhouse handicap at Easter, sets the standard in the Ryan’s Cleaning Events Specialists Hurdle, although he has been off the track since finishing fifth behind Captain Cee Bee in a controversial event at Tipperary in July.