Boston Bob heading for Galmoy test

Boston Bob is all set to take in the John Mulhern Galmoy Hurdle at Gowran on Thursday as he builds-up to challenge for the Ladbrokes World Hurdle at Cheltenham.

The nine-year-old looks like continuing over the smaller obstacles following his smooth victory at Punchestown last month after two consecutive falls over fences.

The World Hurdle is his more likely Festival target, although he also holds entries in the Ryanair Chase and the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup.

His owners Graham and Andrea Wylie won the World Hurdle with Inglis Drever in 2005, 2007 and 2008, and trainer Willie Mullins reports they are keen on another tilt at that prize.

“I imagine he’ll go for the Galmoy Hurdle in Gowran on Thursday,” said Mullins, who had mentioned the Cleeve Hurdle as a possible next step following the Punchestown win.

“The owners are keen to go for the World Hurdle and it looks like we’ll stick to hurdles for the moment.

“I was pleased with him at Punchestown and he’s been in good form since.”

Mullins reports Hurricane Fly to be in fine shape ahead of the BHP Insurance Irish Champion Hurdle at Leopardstown on Sunday.

The nine-year-old took his tally of Grade One victories to 18 when lifting the Ryanair Hurdle at the Dublin venue at Christmas.

He showed his well-being ahead of his bid to claim the Irish Champion for the fourth year running with a pleasing spin under his regular work rider Paul Townend on Thursday.

“All’s well with him at the moment and he’s on target for Leopardstown on Sunday,” said Mullins.

Victory at the weekend, where he is again expected to clash with Jezki and Our Conor, would see Hurricane Fly emulate the feat of Istabraq in the Leopardstown showpiece.

Trainer Philip Fenton refused to look too far ahead with Dunguib following the 11-year-old’s return to action at Naas on Saturday.

The 2009 Cheltenham champion bumper hero had been sidelined for 1040 days but still finished an honourable third behind Rule The World in the Limestone Lad Hurdle.

Next up for Dunguib is a trip to Gowran for the Red Mills Hurdle on February 15. Fenton said: “He’s 100% sound, thankfully. I was very pleased with the performance and was surprised that he was still on their tails turning in.

“There’s not a great deal for him, but I think going to Gowran makes sense.

“After everything he’s gone through, though, it’s very important to take things one step at a time.”

Jennies Jewel could run in next month’s Ladbrokes Boyne Hurdle before a likely assault at the OLBG Mares’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.

The consistent seven-year-old, trained in County Kildare by Jarlath Fahey, was a good second to Rule The World in the Limestone Lad Hurdle at Naas on Saturday.

Jennies Jewel might now step back up in class at Navan on February 16 before travelling to England in March.

Fahey said: “That was the first time this year she has come up against older horses so it was a very, very good effort.

“Her form is very solid – she’s not been outside the first three since last April – and the plan is now to go to Cheltenham.

“She’ll have an entry in the Coral Hurdle but the idea is to go for the mares’ race.”

“We are also debating whether to go for the Boyne Hurdle before Cheltenham.

“She stays well and has plenty of pace. The only question mark has to be whether it will be soft enough for her at Cheltenham.”

Somersby will have a week’s break before connections decide on the next move after Mick Channon’s charge failed to land an emotional victory in the Sodexo Clarence House Chase at Ascot on Saturday.

The 10-year-old unshipped Dominic Elsworth at the fifth fence in the Grade One he won in 2012 to shatter any dreams of retaking the prize just a day after the funeral of his former trainer Henrietta Knight’s husband, Terry Biddlecombe.

The West Ilsley trainer said: “It just wasn’t to be, was it? He seems fine enough but will have an easy time this week and let him settle down before we make a decision as to our next move.”

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