Day Two Leopardstown Christmas Festival Preview

Leopardstown - December 27 2021
Leopardstown 12:05
20
L P Dempsey

Vera Verto

J:
 
L P Dempsey
T:
 
Gavin Cromwell
Age: 3
Weight: 10-9
OR: N/A
Days: 22

The first race of the day at Leopardstown on day two of the Christmas meeting sees a competitive Maiden Hurdle for three year olds and we are siding with the Gavin Cromwell trained Vera Verto.

The filly was a fair horse on the flat for Jack Davison and at the back end of this year was given to Mr Cromwell to go over hurdles.

Making his debut over flights at Cork at the start of December he finished a superb second of 18, behind a nice type for Gordon Elliott and the two horses in behind them that day also look to be smart.

He will be sure to come on for that run and getting weight off most the field is only a positive.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
27/03/22ASC15.5Gd11-109
05/03/22NAV16Y11-01
17/01/22PUN16Sft11-25
27/12/21LEO16Y/Sft10-93
05/12/21COR16Sft10-92
Leopardstown - December 27 2021
Leopardstown 12:35
4

Thedevilscoachman

J:
 
T:
 
Noel Meade
Age: 5
Weight: 12-0
OR: N/A
Days: 22

Next up is the 2m1f Beginners Chase and it sees some very familiar faces from last year over hurdles, but the one that makes the most appeal is Thedevilscoachman.

The JP McManus owned gelding was a very smart hurdler for Noel Meade last term, winning on his seasonal debut at Cork and then being put into Grade One company at this meeting last year and just not having enough experience.

Sent back into a Novice Hurdle at Navan he got back to winning ways with the minimal of fuss and made it back to back successes at Punchestown in Listed company.

Looking to round off the season with a Grade Two victory he was again outclassed at Fairyhouse behind the smart Echoes In Rain.

Always bought to be a chaser and given a fairly light campaign last term, Meade gave him his chase debut at Punchestown at the start of the month and he was a good third behind Ferny Hollow and Coeur Sublime.

He will be sure to learn from that experience and looks the value player.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
22/02/22NAV21Hy11-61
09/01/22FAI17Sft12-02
05/12/21PUN17Y/Sft12-03
04/04/21FAI16Y11-97
14/02/21PUN16.5Sft11-131
Leopardstown - December 27 2021
Leopardstown 13:10
2

Chacun Pour Soi

J:
 
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 9
Weight: 12-0
OR: 176
Days: 23

The first big race of the day is the Grade One Paddy's Rewards Club Chase over 2m1f and we are siding with last years winner Chacun Pour Soi.

Having not raced since March 2016 he went to Naas for his first run in nearly three years in a Beginners Chase and showed a perfect temperament to take the spoils by 31 lengths back in 2019.

He was then sent to the Punchestown festival with many punters still unaware of the ability of this horse and he gave one of the stand out performances of the meeting, beating the Arkle Novices Chase winner Duc Des Genievres and JLT Novices Chase victor Defi Du Seuil to land the Grade One Ryanair Novices Chase.

He made his seasonal debut the next season over Christmas at Leopardstown in this Grade One Chase against some superb horses and although looking like he had the race wrapped up he found nothing when coming off the bridle and was pipped close home by A Plus Tard.

He came on a huge amount for that run and got back to winning ways in the Grade One Dublin Chase at the Dublin Racing Festival, beating stablemate Min.

The gelding made his seasonal return last term at Cork at the start of December and although not impressive he still landed the Grade Two Hilly Way Chase in workman like fashion.

He then backed that up at Leopardstown Christmas meeting by landing this race for the first time, cruising to victory.

He came on massively for that run to emphatically take back to back renewals of the Grade One Dublin Chase at the Dublin Racing Festival and from there it was all systems go to the Champion Chase at Cheltenham.

Highly punter for the Wednesday feature he found little up the hill and had to settle for third behind the smart mare Put The Kettle On and Nube Negra.

Looking to bounce back he put things right at the Punchestown festival when romping to victory in the Grade One Champion Chase, seeing off stablemate Allaho by close to sixth lengths.

Back for another season, Mullins started him off at the Tingle Creek at Sandown and the run was too bad to be true not beating a horse home.

We are putting that down to a blip and back on home soil we fancy him to bounce back to form like he has in the past.

Leopardstown - December 27 2021
Leopardstown 13:45
3
Rachael Blackmore

Largy Debut

J:
 
Rachael Blackmore
T:
 
Henry De Bromhead
Age: 6
Weight: 11-12
OR: N/A
Days: 22

The second Grade One on the card is the Future Champions Novice Hurdle over two miles and in a field full of smart potential hurdlers, we think the value lies with Largy Debut.

The Henry De Bromhead trained gelding won a P2P in February 2020 beating a nice horse now with Fergal O'Brien by 13 lengths.

He was given to Stuart Crawford and made his bumper debut in March this year and he finished finished a decent third, learning a lot for that experience.

Given to De Bromhead and sent hurdling this term he made his debut at Cork against Punchestown Champion bumper winner Kilcruit and he went on to bolt up by 10 lengths.

That was a seriously smart performance that took the eye and if improving once more could be one of the star novice hurdlers in the sport.

Leopardstown - December 27 2021
Leopardstown 14:20
3
Ricky Doyle

Sea Ducor

J:
 
Ricky Doyle
T:
 
A L T Moore
Age: 5
Weight: 11-4
OR: 134
Days: 365

Next up is the two mile handicap hurdle and Sea Ducor for Anthony Moore looks a very typical type that normally lands this style of race.

The five year old gelding was a fair runner on the flat, signing off from that code in October 2019 by winning a 23 runner Handicap at Navan.

Moved over to hurdles in the November of that year he finished second in a Maiden hurdle behind the smart Aspire Tower and then backed that up next time out by landing a novice hurdle at Gowran Park, beating the Grade One winner Galopin Des Champs.

Staying in good form, two starts ago he finished a good second to the smart Master McShee in a Handicap Hurdle in this race last year.

He has only been seen once since then back on the flat and it looked a massive prep run for this event and only 2lb higher than his mark for this event last term, he should go close.

Leopardstown - December 27 2021
Leopardstown 14:55
17
Mark Walsh

Alfa Mix

J:
 
Mark Walsh
T:
 
Gavin Cromwell
Age: 6
Weight: 10-12
OR: 137
Days: 43

The final selection from us at Leopardstown on day two of the their Christmas meeting comes in the prestigious Paddy Power Handicap Chase and the horse that stands out to us is Alfa Mix for Gavin Cromwell.

The six year old is weighted to go really well in the event off a mark of 137 and overall looks to have been primed for the race.

A very smart hurdler winning two decent events and also placing in a competitive handicap, he was last seen over flights at the Cheltenham festival finishing a good seventh in the big fielded Coral Cup.

Sent chasing last season he has been seen five times and although breaking his duck has put up some superb performances, not finishing outside the top four.

Finishing behind Entoucas and Blackbow on chase debut, he then finished fourth again behind the smart Captain Guinness and backed that up with a third behind Aramax at Fairyhouse.

Upped in trip at Galway for his first run this term he slightly needed the run but was behind some nice types, but last time out put up a career best over fences to finish a neck second to Fully Charge on handicap debut.

He is 4lb higher for this run now on a mark of 137 and he looks to have been primed for this event.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
13/03/22NAA24.5Hy10-2PU
13/02/22PUN28Hy11-27
27/12/21LEO24Gd/Y10-1211
14/11/21PUN22.5Y11-122
24/10/21GAL22.5Sft12-04

James Mackie

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