Paul Nolan is keeping his fingers crossed Alpha Ridge and Shinrock Paddy can make their presence felt in the Bar One Racing Drinmore Novice Chase at Fairyhouse.
Alpha Ridge remains winless in 10 starts over fences, but did chase home Pandorama in this Grade One prize two years ago.
Shinrock Paddy was a little disappointing on his fencing debut at Punchestown in October but built on that when second to Lambro at Naas, and Nolan is hoping for further progression on Sunday.
“It’s a very competitive race and my two are still maidens over fences,” Nolan told At The Races.
“If anyone was to tell you that Alpha Ridge would still be a maiden over fences you wouldn’t believe it, considering he was a 150-odd hurdler. That is just the way it’s worked out.
“He was second in the Drinmore to Pandorama two years ago and they were a distance clear of everything else.
“He has loads of experience, his jumping has let him down on occasions, but heavy ground seems essential for him. Hopefully they’ll get plenty of rain in Fairyhouse.
“Shinrock Paddy was good last time out and they were a long way clear of the third horse. He was beaten by a very decent horse.
“Again he’s a horse who loves testing conditions and I’m just hoping both horses run respectably and get some prize-money if they can.”