PP Chase – Leopardstown Preview & Tips
Always one of the best handicaps of the festive period, Sunday’s PP Chase at Leopardstown (2.55pm) has a habit of throwing up tasty winners at good odds, and this year’s renewal promises to be no different.
The big yards have also had a say in landing this big pot down the years, with Tony Martin, Willie Mullins, Ted Walsh, Noel Meade and Dermot Weld all supplying the last five winners, and it is the former who holds a real chance with Heathfield (14/1) on Sunday.
Martin To Strike Again?
Tony Martin’s 8yo has already won a couple of nice handicaps last spring, including over 3m (heavy), and was given a pipe-opener for the season when down the field over hurdles last month. Heathfield should have improved for that outing, and it will be interesting to see if money arrives.
Martin also has the 9yo, Gallant Oscar (14/1), winner of Punchestown’s valuable Pat Taaffe Handicap Chase when last seen in May (3m1f, soft). That impressive 9l victory means Gallant Oscar will be 13lb higher on Sunday, but he does go well fresh.
Gold For Sizing?
Also among the leading fancies is Henry De Bromhead’s 8yo, Sizing Gold (10/1), who is still unexposed over fences after just five outings, and warmed up for this with a good third at Punchestown several weeks ago (2m6f, heavy). Considering that was his first outing for over 500 days, he did well in keeping on to beaten only 5l, and should improve for the outing.
Sizing Gold has yet to win a handicap chase either, which has been a good omen for this race…
Of the last 10 winners…
10 won a maximum of one handicap chase
9 raced at Leopardstown previously
9 arrived via a handicap last time
9 were non-winners last time
8 were 7-9yo’s
6 arrived via Navan
T Martin won it twice
Course Form An Asset
Previous experience at Leopardstown has also helped, which reads well for Enda Bolger’s top-weight, Gilgamboa (10/1), who took a Grade 1 novice at Fairyhouse last spring (2m4f, heavy). The trip will be the big question mark for Gilgamboa, unlike Minella Foru (10/1), who won a point over that distance. Edward Harty’s 6yo reappeared with a close second in a valuable handicap at Fairyhouse last month (kept on over 2m1f), and should be spot-on for Sunday.
Sumos Novios (12/1) is another unexposed sort to look out for if getting into the bottom of the handicap, as there was a lot to like about his 2m6f handicap win at Punchestown three weeks ago (heavy).
Gordon Elliott’s 7yo, Cause Of Causes (16/1), also goes well fresh, and is 3lb lower than when winning a Listed event at the Cheltenham festival, prior to a creditable eighth in the Grand National. He’ll have each-way claims if the ground dries out.
Although unproven over 3m, Sizing Gold has got into this with a nice weight and shaped encouragingly on his reappearance several weeks ago.