6.00 Tipperary: Handicap (3yo), 5f
This is a competitive sprint Handicap where cases can be made aplenty. Top weight My Good Brother may struggle of a mark off 96 on ground which is much softer than ideal. 93 rated Zalty could well have a big say, though, if he is race fit and can handle the drop to the minimum trip. His close runner-up effort in a tough Premier Handicap over 6f at the Curragh when last seen almost seven month ago gives him a prime chance.
Ger Lyons’ Joe Eile took advantage off a slipping mark last month when landing a sprint Handicap at Navan. Seven pounds up for this success makes life tougher now. In Salutem was an eye-catching second that day and followed up with another strong performance at the Curragh when not having the run of the race. He probably need things to fall right for him to win off his current mark but is an obvious contender nonetheless.
Prince Connoisseur was progressive last season and may have still more to offer. Improvement has to come if he wants to compete in this race. Back from a seasonal break, fitness is a question mark. Lady Mega only got a run late at Navan last month and has form in her book suggesting she has a prime chance today with additional five pound claim from her jockey. Probably not quite ideal is the softish ground, though.
I’m most interested in Kimbay – again. I was already intrigued by her when she kicked off her new campaign last month. Then in a competitive 6f Handicap, she was up with the pace, travelled strongly and just got tired in the closing stages. She is expected to come on for the run and the drop to 5f should definitely suit – she is still unbeaten over this trip.
Still not too many miles on the clock for a five year old, Kimbay can race off a featherweight here once again and judged on her steady progress last year, she may be well handicapped, as she was dropped a pound since her last run. She won four races and been only beaten by a head in the other two starts in 2014 – so there is every chance for more to come. A career best is required today, though, as she is up by 6lb for last success at Dundalk in December when she won a very competitive 5f sprint – this form worked out very well.
Kimbay @ 10/1 Coral – 5pts Win