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Leopardstown Preview – 17th July 2014

A typically competitive card at Leopardstown tonight, with the penultimate race the “Nasrullah” Handicap the feature race over 1m and 2f with the going described as good to firm. With a big pot on offer it’s no surprise to see Richard Fahey bringing over Spirit of the Law having won a York handicap last month.


Jim Bolger’s rapidly improving Chance to Dance heads the weights and only 11 runners go to post which is disappointing considering the big prize money on offer. Tony Martin’s Woodsophiesmile, although 2lbs out of the handicap, could go well under excellent apprentice Sean Corby whose 7lb claim is invaluable. Eighteen Summers and Long journey home should make it a stamina test.


The final race on the card, the Listed Challenge Stakes, has been a lucky race for Dermot Weld. He has won five of the last six runnings of the race and his filly Pale Mimosa should prove hard to beat. Mick Halford’s Certerach sets a very high standard here having won a Group 2 in Meydan in March but carries a 5lb penalty for that success.


The opening maiden looks between Dermot Weld’s Initial who drops back to 6 furlongs and Aidan O’Briens’ Rule the Waves who put in a disappointing when favourite at Tipperary. Newcomers Fields of May and Hunt are both well bred and should be watched closely.


In the following 7f Maiden Mick Halford’s Raydara should be hard to beat after a promising second at the Curragh behind the highly regarded Words. It’s worth noting that she was drawn widest of all in stall 16 and the form has been boosted with the 5th and 6th (Bobbi Grace and Colour Rhapsody) winning since.


Jim Bolger’s Flight Risk will be tough to pass in the Discover Ireland Dublin Horse Show Maiden. He was thrown in at the deep end on debut in a Listed contest at the Curragh but ran a race full of promise, finishing a good fourth behind the smart looking Shining Emerald. First Sitting, a newcomer of Dermot Weld, could be more of a Galway type, so the main dangers could be John Oxx’s duo Rightway and Tithonus or Ger Lyons’ Some Spirit.


By Sean Jackson / Photo: Niall Carson/PA Wire


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