Grade One Spring Juvenile Hurdle Guide

Leopardstown - February 07 2021
Leopardstown 13:40
3
Jack Kennedy

Quilixios

J:
 
Jack Kennedy
T:
 
Gordon Elliott
Age: 4
Weight: 11-2
OR: N/A
Days: 99

The gelding has only been seen three times in his career, winning in March at Compiegne in France in a conditions hurdle race and from there was bought by the owners and sent over to Ireland.

He made his debut for the yard at Punchestown earlier in the month and hosed up by 13 lengths, showing signs that Elliott could have another Envoi Allen.

He then went to Down Royal last time out in October and was another impressive winner of a 3-Y-O Hurdle, seeing off the field by 20 lengths.

This youngster could turn out to be anything but off the back of his last three starts to date, he looks a seriously sharp prospect and it will be interesting to see him stepped up to this class.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
01/05/21PUN16Gd/Y11-27
19/03/21CHL17GS11-01
07/02/21LEO16Sft/Hy11-21
31/10/20DRO16.5Sft11-101
13/10/20PUN16Y11-41
Leopardstown - February 07 2021
Leopardstown 13:40
6
Paul Townend

Youmdor

J:
 
Paul Townend
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 4
Weight: 11-2
OR: N/A
Days: 22

Willie Mullins holds a strong team of runners in this division and Youmdor is another star for the yard having showed bundles of ability on both his starts to date.

The four year old for the McNeil family was a 78 rated horse on the flat that was given to Mullins and now sent over hurdles and has took them very well.

He made his debut at Gowran Park on heavy ground back in November and went on to bolt up by 16 lengths, learning on the job.

He then stepped up to a better event at Fairyhouse in January and coming to last when looking to go clear in the final stages, unfortunately fell and came crashing down.

However, he was about to beat a decent field of runners and if learning from that mistake has a serious engine and is not worth ruling out.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
16/03/21CHL16.5GS11-100
07/02/21LEO16Sft/Hy11-24
16/01/21FAI16Hy11-7F
20/11/20GOW16Hy11-21
31/05/20DEA10Gd8-91
Leopardstown - February 07 2021
Leopardstown 13:40
1
J J Slevin

Busselton

J:
 
J J Slevin
T:
 
Joseph Patrick O'Brien
Age: 4
Weight: 11-2
OR: N/A
Days: 43

Joseph O'Brien has also held a strong hand in this division, ever since having the 2019 season with Sir Erec and he will be hoping this gelding can reach the heights of his old stablemate.

The four year old raced once on the flat in France and was then sent over hurdles in May 2020 at Auteuil and won a nice event over 1m7f.

He was then moved from David Cottin and given to O'Brien and made his debut in Ireland at Leopardstown on Boxing Day in a good Grade Two event.

He finished a superb second behind the leading horse in the division Zanahiyr for Gordon Elliott and if coming on for that run with that horse not involved in this event, then he cant be dismissed.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
03/10/21TIP20Y10-83
22/09/21LIS22Gd11-31
20/08/21KLN23Y11-22
30/07/21GAL18.5Gd11-22
05/04/21FAI16Y11-24
Leopardstown - February 07 2021
Leopardstown 13:40
4
Danny Mullins

Saint Sam

J:
 
Danny Mullins
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 4
Weight: 11-2
OR: N/A
Days: 43

Saint Sam is a horse who looks to have more ability left in the tank than the form of his runs actually suggest, finishing in behind some nice horses.

Having ran over hurdles three times in France between June and July, he was then bought and given to Mullins to race in Ireland.

He made his debut at Fairyhouse when going off favourite for the Grade Three event and was outclassed by Zanahiyr, with the Elliott horse winning by 14 lengths.

He took him on again at Leopardstown over Christmas in the Grade Two event and was underwhelming again when fourth of seven, finishing behind Zanahiyr, Busselton and stablemate Ha D'or.

He looks perfect for the Boodles Juvenile Hurdle at the Cheltenham festival, but up against some of these could be vulnerable on Sunday.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
01/05/21PUN16Gd/Y11-25
16/03/21CHL16.5GS11-82
07/02/21LEO16Sft/Hy11-22
26/12/20LEO16Sft11-04
29/11/20FAI16Sft11-12
Leopardstown - February 07 2021
Leopardstown 13:40
2
Rachael Blackmore

Ha D'or

J:
 
Rachael Blackmore
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 4
Weight: 11-2
OR: N/A
Days: 43

Ha D'or is another nice type for Willie Mullins and goes for top connections Rich Ricci and he has shown clear signs that he could be useful at the top level.

Having won a bumper in France over 1m4f he was bought and moved over to Ireland and made his debut in the race we keep coming back to at Leopardstown on Boxing Day.

He finished well in behind Zanahiyr and Busselton, but will have to reverse the form with the latter, but with that being his first run for the yard he should improve for the experience.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
07/02/21LEO16Sft/Hy11-25
26/12/20LEO16Sft11-03
01/07/20SNP11.5Sft9-111
Leopardstown - February 07 2021
Leopardstown 13:40
5
Jack Gilligan

Varna Gold

J:
 
Jack Gilligan
T:
 
Paul John Gilligan
Age: 4
Weight: 11-2
OR: N/A
Days: 99

The penultimate runner in the event is the Paul Gilligan trained Varna Gold and although this four year old is not trained or owned by the big stars in Irish national hunt racing, he is not without an each way chance if improving.

The gelding has been raced more frequently that all of the horses in the field having ran over hurdles six times and before that had been seen plenty of times on the flat.

He won his first race over hurdles back in October at Killarney and last time out chased home Quilixios at Down Royal and he will need to reverse that form to have a chance here.

That defeat was by 20 lengths and hopefully for his connections the small break off the track can see him fresh for a big run.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
23/08/21BAL18Gd10-62
01/08/21GAL14Gd9-10
30/07/21GAL16.5Gd11-03
02/07/21BEL12Gd9-102
14/06/21GOW13.5Gd9-119

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