Flare has right profile in Hurdle

Gordon Elliott’s Flaxen Flare gets the vote in the Guinness Galway Hurdle at Ballybrit this afternoon.

He appears to have a strong profile, being a rapidly improving four-year-old with just 10-3 to carry.

The selection revealed his true colours at the Cheltenham festival in March, when landing the 24-runner Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle.

He stormed to the front after the second last and powered up the hill to score by four and a half lengths.

Flaxen Flare returned after a break at Killarney recently to finish fourth on the flat behind Digeanta and that should have left him spot on.

Ted Veale showed his liking as well for this type of contest at Cheltenham when landing the County Hurdle and has to be on the short list.

You can, of course, make a case for far too many for comfort, but Flaxen Flare, with in-form Davy Condon in the plate, looks very much the one to beat.

Rebel Fitz is difficult to oppose in the Guinness Mid-Strength Novice Chase. Following a blip at Killarney, he’s very much at the peak of his powers again, winning at Ballinrobe and back at the Kerry track.

The Arthur Guinness Projects Novice Hurdle is one of the more interesting contests on the card and can fall to Willie Mullins’ Bally Longford.

He was looking a trifle frustrating, notwithstanding his success in a bumper at Downpatrick, until winning a maiden hurdle in a canter at Clonmel and may be much improved.

Yellow Rosebud gets a hopeful nod in the Guinness EBF Corrib Fillies Stakes. She’s not to be entirely trusted, but the rain-softened surface will certainly play to her strengths.

The relatively experienced Spring Heeled is the choice in the opening Perfect Pint Beginners Chase.

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