Grade One Alanna Homes Champion Novice Hurdle Guide 2021

Punchestown - April 29 2021
Punchestown 17:00
2

Bob Olinger

J:
 
T:
 
Henry De Bromhead
Age: 6
Weight: 11-12
OR: 159
Days: 44

Bob Olinger is a superstar off the back of his starts during his career to date and since stepping over hurdles this term he has looked a complete natural.

Back in November 2019 the five year old won an Irish maiden at Turtulla by 15 lengths and was bought and given to De Bromhead off the back of it.

At Gowran Park in March he made his rules debut in a bumper and again showed clear talent to take the 2m2f event by 10 lengths, seeing off nice types for Willie Mullins and Gordon Elliott.

He was sent back to Gowran Park for his hurdles debut when him and Champion Bumper winner Ferny Hollow breezed away from the rest of the pack and he narrowly finished runner up behind the Cheveley Park horse.

He was then stepped up in trip at Navan in a maiden hurdle over 2m4f and he was an emphatic winner of the race beating a minor field by 14 lengths.

Next time out he was sent into the Grade One Lawlor Of Naas Novices' Hurdle and he breezed away from a good field to land the event by close to seven lengths.

The gelding took on his toughest test to date in the Grade One Ballymore Novices' Hurdle and he came out victorious giving a hiding to a good field.

Throughout the season he has shown speed and stamina which is perfect for this event and looks a superb prospect for the coming seasons.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
16/01/22PUN20Sft11-31
20/11/21GOW20Sft12-01
17/03/21CHL21GS11-71
13/01/21NAA20Hy11-121
18/12/20NAV20Sft/Hy12-01
Punchestown - April 29 2021
Punchestown 17:00
4
Paul Townend

Gaillard Du Mesnil

J:
 
Paul Townend
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 5
Weight: 11-12
OR: 150
Days: 44

Hailing from Willie Mullins’ yard, Gaillard Du Mesnil is a recruit from France for Closutton and the Donnelly family. 

Slightly disappointing when sent off favourite for hurdle debut, he was out gunned by Holymacapony. The two pulling well clear but the De Bromhead gelding having in the tank from the last hurdle. 

It wasn’t long before he tasted victory and bolted up in his next start beating Mr Incredible handily, the form being franked since. 

Tested for quality at the Dublin Racing Festival, Gaillard Du Mesnil was a well backed favourite for the 22 furlong Grade One.

An impressive performance by the five year old saw him forge clear of Gentlemansgame and ease down at the finish. 

This set him up perfectly for a crack at the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle and although fairly well fancied, he was no match for Bob Olinger, finishing close to eight lengths behind him.

It looks tough for him to reverse that form, but still looks to be a very nice form and his trainer is in superb form this week,

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
16/01/22PUN20Sft11-33
16/12/21NAA19Y12-03
30/04/21PUN20Y11-121
17/03/21CHL21GS11-72
06/02/21LEO22Sft/Hy11-101
Punchestown - April 29 2021
Punchestown 17:00
1
Robbie Power

Ashdale Bob

J:
 
Robbie Power
T:
 
Mrs John Harrington
Age: 6
Weight: 11-12
OR: 146
Days: 26

The Harrington team are represented by this six year old gelding who’s acquitted himself well as a novice hurdler this season and the trainer has been in good form over the last few weeks

Things weren’t clicking as a five year old and he remained a maiden after three runs over hurdles, but another summer under his belt he returned to the track in fine form and immediately shed his maiden tag scalping odds on favourite Wide Receiver.

He established himself as a novice to follow on the other side of the Irish Sea when cutting through the mud at Navan to a dominant Grade Two victory, despite pulling hard throughout the race.

He was next seen in the Lawlor’s Of Naas but falling at the second obstacle meant we didn’t truly get to see him play his hand at Grade One level.

The gelding then returned in another Grade One at the Dublin Racing festival and was a tame ninth of 13, with Gaillard Du Mesnil landing the event.

Given over a month off he came back to form in fine style last time out in a Grade Two over 2m4f at Fairyhouse to land the event, seeing off Decimation who he takes on again.

With most of his form coming with plenty of cut in the ground connections will be praying for further rain to make this a gritty stamina test.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
04/12/21NAV20Y12-03
20/11/21GOW20Sft12-0UR
30/04/21PUN20Y11-122
04/04/21FAI20Y11-121
06/02/21LEO22Sft/Hy11-129
Punchestown - April 29 2021
Punchestown 17:00
6
Danny Mullins

N'golo

J:
 
Danny Mullins
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 6
Weight: 11-12
OR: 136
Days: 42

A very busy six year old for Willie Mullins, N’golo has already had eight runs over hurdles this season. 

Starting his campaign in mid summer he made a winning start to life over timber at Galway in a maiden hurdle. 

He’s since followed up winning a novice under a penalty and a Grade Three, all over two miles. Tapped for Toe by Ballyadam in the Royal Bond at Fairyhouse, it was hinted that his future might lie over further. 

He’s since been handily dispatched by Appreciate It twice coming last in both Grade One races won by his stablemate. 

Shaping like a step up in trip was needed Mullins sent him over three miles for the first time in the Grade One Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle at the Cheltenham festival and it looked slightly to far.

2m4f should be his trip, but he still looks hugely outclassed against the horses at the top of the market.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
18/12/21HAY19Sft11-74
10/10/21CUR16Y8-120
11/09/21LEO13Gd8-110
11/05/21KLN14Sft9-95
30/04/21PUN20Y11-123
Punchestown - April 29 2021
Punchestown 17:00
5
B J Cooper

Ganapathi

J:
 
B J Cooper
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 5
Weight: 11-12
OR: 137
Days: 42

A winner of his debut over hurdles at Cork, he was a solid second to rapid improver Dreal Deal recently in the Grade Two Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle at Punchestown, next time out.

Since then he was stepped up in trip for the Grade One Nathaniel Lacy Novice Hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival and ran on well to finish a good fifth behind some smart horses.

He was last seen finishing a weak 14th of 25 runners at the Cheltenham festival in the County Handicap Hurdle and the step back up in trip today is a positive.

He is a big price at 33/1, but could run a big race into a place.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
30/04/21PUN20Y11-12F
19/03/21CHL17GS10-110
06/02/21LEO22Sft/Hy11-105
17/01/21PUN16Hy11-22
22/11/20COR16Hy11-91
Punchestown - April 29 2021
Punchestown 17:00
3

Decimation

J:
 
T:
 
Henry De Bromhead
Age: 6
Weight: 11-12
OR: 139
Days: 2

The final runner of the event is the Henry De Bromhead trained Decimation, who is being turned around quickly having finished third on Wednesday in a handicap event at the meeting.

The six year old made his hurdles debut in October at Fairyhouse finishing a good second behind Champion Bumper third Queen's Brook.

He then backed that up with another second at Clonmel behind Irascible for the same yard and made it a hat-trick of seconds at Leopardstown when runner up behind the smart Wide Receiver.

Having been beaten by decent horses he finally got off the mark at Down Royal in February, when running out a wide margin winner of a maiden.

On his penultimate start he gave one of his best runs to date when a narrow second behind Ashdale Bob in a Grade Two at Fairyhouse over 2m4f.

Third on Wednesday in a weaker event, he will need to be better than that to go close in this.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
28/04/21PUN20.5Y12-03
04/04/21FAI20Y11-72
04/02/21DRO16.5Hy11-61
26/12/20LEO16Sft12-02
29/10/20CLO16.5Y/Sft12-02

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