Murphy The Man To Beat At Chester
The Curragh are back racing this weekend ahead of the mouth watering renewal of the Irish Derby later in the month but while there’s some trappy maiden races on the card today, there is a wide open two-mile handicap which will pay nicely if you can uncover the winner.
Keane To Keep Them At Bay
Most of the runners in the Brady Burns Insurance Brokers Handicap have a bit of age to them, with just one four-year-old in the 15-runner field and two five-year-olds. The majority have mixed it across both codes of late and it will be great to see Bayan return to action after 610 days off the track for Gordon Elliott – maybe he could be one to watch if making it back to Galway later in the year.
One horse who the bookmakers have opted to keep on the right side of is Peter Fahey’s…
Alton Bay and he is probably best backed as soon as possible in case his price gets any shorter.
The nine-year-old is near the head of the betting under Colin Keane but he is a consistent type who is due to get back to winning ways having racked up a four-timer back in 2014 but went all that time since without scoring.
The fact that Alton Bay has yet to oblige in a handicap is a concern but he is a bumper winner and rated 121 over hurdles and his flat rating has dropped for his last few outings so hopefully he can give a good account of himself.
Murphy Can Run Riot On The Roodee
Oisin Murphy goes to Chester tomorrow afternoon and he can continue his good run of form lately by teaming up with Andrew Balding.
The trainer/jockey combo look to have a couple of solid chances…
with Leontes at 3.45 and St Mary’s at 4.20 and the fact that both are previous course winners is always a help around Chester.
Leontes was thought good enough to run in the Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot as a maiden and although he has never won over five-furlongs, he was sharp enough to win at Chester over six as a two-year-old so hopefully he won’t be too inconvenienced by the drop in trip.
The selection is actually the runner in the field yet to win over the minimum trip so it may be a leap of faith for some, but he just looks like he could be overpriced and ready to run a big race on his second start of the campaign.
Shortly afterwards Murphy will again get the leg from Balding this time on a much shorter priced runner in St Mary’s, herself a course and distance winner.
Again, on paper this could look a big ask as she has gone up 5lbs for her win at the May Meeting last month and that day 7lbs William Cox was onboard so the filly is running off 12lbs higher but some of her rivals would look much more exposed and the hope is that she is on an upward curve for a trainer who has his team in decent nick at the moment.
Alton Bay (8/1) – 4.45 Curragh
Leontes (10/1) – 3.45 Chester
St Mary’s (9/4) – 4.20 Chester
*Prices correct at time of publication.