In-form Burke set to work his magic on Bally Longford

Jonathan Burke is fancied to continue his rise up the ladder by guiding Bally Longford to success in the John F McGuire Novice Chase at Listowel this afternoon.

Henry de Bromhead’s charge was no match for Willie Mullins’ Indevan at Killarney last time, but that winner is a smart horse and this looks an easier assignment.

In the end Indevan beat his rival by 12 lengths and there is no disguising it was a mildly disappointing performance on the part of the selection.

Prior to that, however, he was bang in contention when falling two out in a race eventually won by another smart Mullins inmate, Alelchi Inois, also at Killarney.

Mullins now relies on Devils Bride, hugely impressive winner of both his races so far over fences. But they were modest heats and, with Burke’s valuable claim, Bally Longford will be in receipt of 10lbs from Devils Bride.

Burke could also land the featured Listowel Races Supporters’ Club Lartigue Hurdle aboard Mullins’ McKinley.

He has shown a lot of improvement of late, culminating in a game effort when beating Ridestan in a maiden at the Galway festival.

Aidan O’Brien’s Smuggler’s Song is the hopeful choice in the Jet O’Carroll Memorial EBF Maiden.

He will need to improve plenty on his debut effort when fifth to Vocaliser at Roscommon, but that is hardly beyond the bounds of possibility.

Dermot Weld’s newcomer, Summaya, a half sister to the smart Silwana, gets the nod in the Irish Stallion Farms’ EBF Median Auction Fillies Maiden.

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