Clonmel Preview – 11th January
Clonmel returns this week
Racing returns to Clonmel on Thursday for another year of action at the South Tipperary venue. Seven races in all go to post with the going set to be heavy for an interesting card with the Munster Hurdle the feature.
Willie Mullins saddles four in total with Draconien leading the charge for the featured €9000 event. A C&D winner in December when scoring by over 12 lengths makes him look a decent prospect. This is a good opportunity for him to step up in class but one who catches the eye is Noel O’Neills Ministerforsport. The 7-year-old won his last three point-to-point starts before following his bumper win at Gowran Park with success at Limerick’s Christmas festival. He might need a bit better jmping but he’s on the upgrade and a big run wouldn’t be surprising at 12/1.
Gordon Elliot’s Graineyhill heads the field for the Lisronagh Handicap Hurdle with Davy Russell booked in the plate. Third on his first run for Elliot at Down Royal on St Stephen’s Day shows there could be more to come and he’s clearly on the right track and deserves his place. The Denis Hogan trained & ridden Barna Venture makes for a bit of interest after the handicapper may well have given him a chance. His first run for Hogan at the Limerick Christmas Festival saw him fade off up the run in but he needed the run that day after being off the track since September. Two miles around Clonmel should suit and is worth a look at 16/1.
Stacks Mountain is beginning to find some form for Henry De Bromhead and his run behind the smart Real Steel, who fell with the race at his mercy in the Grade 1 Future Champions Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown’s Christmas Festival, and Noel Meade’s Daly Tiger. He’ll appreciate the ground and 11/2 is a good price.
The Jossesstown Handicap sees a small field of 7 go to post and Head Turner could provide the value. A four time winner over hurdles and Conor Fahy claiming a valuable 7lb, she seems to be well treated on her handicap chase debut at 7/1.
Loads of racing to look forward to, with the first off at 12.35.