The feature on Tuesday afternoon’s card in Clonmel is the Suir Blueway Chase and the race revolves around the wellbeing of Bachasson.
Willie Mullins’ runner hasn’t been seen in more than two years, but the very fact connections have felt it worth persevering with the 12-year-old is noteworthy.
When last seen, he was 162 rated over fences and while it is unrealistic to expect him to run to that level of form, he has some 30lbs in hand of most of his rivals. Most of those also have plenty to prove and with Mullins having farmed this race — he is bidding for a sixth consecutive win — it is difficult to look beyond the grey.
Last week, John McConnell became a Cheltenham Festival-winning trainer and while the fare is of a much more mundane type, he has decent claims in the opening race, the Nire Valley Claiming Hurdle, with Nevendon.
These claimers are usually replete with modest, unreliable types and given this fellow is zero from 17, he probably fits into that category. However, there were positives to take from his most recent effort, in a similar race at Limerick, and a repeat may be good enough.
On that occasion, he and Youralwaysdreamin, who reopposes, went clear from an early stage and by the time they left the back for the final time, it looked to be long odds-on that Nevendon would prevail. However, once under pressure, going to the second-last, the response wasn’t as good as expected, and his chance disappeared when he made mistakes at each of the last two flights.
That, which was his first run in almost four months, was over two miles and five furlongs, and left the impression a drop back in trip, which he gets here, could be ideal. At quite big odds, he has decent each-way claims. Course winner Emir De Rots and Knocknagappagh are both capable of playing a part.
Trust Me Nate really ought to make the most of his opportunity in the Fourmilewater Maiden Hurdle. Gordon Elliott’s five-year-old finished a fine fifth behind the useful No Looking Back on his hurdling debut and followed that with a runner-up finish to Paul Marvel.
Third time up, at this venue, he again found one too good, but it was a solid effort and one which reads particularly well in the context of this race. Quite uncomplicated, he is making a little progress with each outing and anything bar a victory will be a disappointment.
1:55 Nevendon (NB)
3:05 Trust Me Nate (nap)
3:40 Kate Ill Know
4:15 Rolly Bowley Boy
5:25 He’s My Hero
1:55 Emir De Rots
2:30 Mister Twist
3:40 Shean Glory
4:15 Lord Gillygooley
4:50 Bois De Clamart
5:25 Find A Fortune