Ceol Rua can call the tune for Mullins in feature

Willie Mullins’ Ceol Rua gets the nap to win a fiercely competitive Ladbrokes Handicap Hurdle, the feature on the sixth day of the Galway Festival this afternoon.

The mare was last seen in action over jumps at the Punchestown Festival in April, when desperately unlucky.

Partnered on that occasion by the equally unlucky Ruby Walsh – Paul Townend now takes over – she was full of running and tracking the leaders when slipping up before the straight in a contest won by Philip Hobbs’ Snap Tie.

The selection wasn’t seen again until reappearing on the flat at Ballinrobe towards the end of June.

She was less than impressive in scrambling to a half a length defeat of the modest Cnoc Na Sioga, but that should have left her spot-on for this test.

Dermot Weld’s Rock Critic can make a winning debut over flights in the Ladbrokes Maiden Hurdle.

He scored twice at the meeting a year ago and was in back in action at Ballybrit last Monday night.

The seven-year-old humped top weight, the steadier of 9-12, into a creditable fourth place behind Vastonea in the Topaz Mile and is sure to have been extensively schooled.

Aidan O’Brien’s The Vatican gets the nod in the Ladbrokes.com EBF Maiden. The Galileo colt looked particularly green on his debut when third behind stable companion, Flying The Flag, and Einsteins Folly at Leopardstown and can only improve.

Cork tomorrow houses a decent all-flat programme, with Dermot Weld’s Sapphire the choice in the Group 3 Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Give Thanks Stakes.

A mile and a half and soft ground are the ideal conditions for her and both of those requirements are going to be met.

The daughter of Medicean proved no match for John Gosden’s Izzi Top in the Group 1 Pretty Polly Stakes at the Curragh last time, over ten furlongs, but this is an easier assignment.

Akeed Mofeed, taking a dramatic drop in trip, has to be the selection for the Listed Platinum Stakes

He’s had his problems, having been one of our best juveniles last season. The son of Dubawi only made his seasonal debut in the Irish Derby at the Curragh, finishing a remote fourth of five to Camelot, but running really well for most of the 12 furlongs.

At Galway tomorrow, Sure Reef can land the nap in the Trappers Inn Handicap. He was impressive when scoring on the track on Monday night and is fancied to defy an 11lbs rise in the weights.

Tasitiocht, an easy winner at Kilbeggan and Cork, is very much the one to beat in the Fr Breen Memorial Bumper.

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