Monalee Ready For Group One Glory
Henry de Bromhead has already had a fine week but his best chance of all runs is on the final day at Leopardstown with Monalee picked to bag Grade 1 honours for the first time.
Cheltenham stepping stone
Monalee has made a very smooth transition between hurdles and fences judging by his Punchestown beginners chase victory and although he steps straight into the top level after that one run over larger obstacles, the leading RSA hopeful can make his mark on Grade One level for the first time.
Monalee brings a high level of hurdling form to the table here and although the likes of Jury Duty and Rathvinden warrant plenty of respect,
Monalee is a horse with a big future and should be able to strengthen his RSA credentials now.
The step up to three miles from two and a half on his chase debut should be another positive for the six-year-old who has Davy Russell on his back again.
Veteran to take the first
There’s a tricky start to the concluding day of the Leopardstown Christmas Festival with the handicap chase for conditional jockeys but the 10-year-old Lasoscar looked to run a nice enough race last time to suggest he could run well here.
Trainer Liam Cusack has enjoyed some notable success at Leopardstown in recent seasons and has done a good job with this veteran whose last win came at the expense of Mine Now, the horse that bolted up in the Pertemps Qualifier. That was over hurdles and off a rating of 112, the same mark as which he runs off in this chase and he’ll hopefully get us off to a good start to the day.
O’Brien can Twist once again
Racking up a hat-trick in Ireland is no easy feat, especially in handicap company but despite being overlooked by Barry Geraghty, the faith is kept with Let’s Twist Again to win a third on the bounce and fourth in five starts for Joseph O’Brien and JP McManus.
Running off 121 is a long way from the mark of 96 which he won off in September but the son of Galileo should appreciate the bit of nicer ground and hopefully that can help him someway to overcoming the big hike in the ratings.
Let’s Twist Again is still only a five-year-old and hopefully isn’t finished on his winning sequence just yet.
Lasoscar – 12.20
Monalee (5/6) – 1.55
Let’s Twist Again – 3.05
*Prices correct at time of publication