Jezki likely to take in Deloitte Hurdle
RACING:Jezki is likely to take in the Deloitte Novice Hurdle back at Leopardstown on February 9th following his impressive victory there over Christmas.
The Jessica Harrington-trained five-year-old cemented his claims as a leading contender for honours at the Cheltenham Festival when he defeated Waaheb by five lengths in the Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle for his second consecutive Grade One triumph.
“To say we are all delighted with Jezki’s performance in the Grade One Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle would be an understatement,” the Co Kildare handler told her official website, www.jessicaharringtonracing.com.
“I was absolutely thrilled. He won more impressively here than he did in Fairyhouse and he never even came off the bridle. Probably the slightly better ground helped him and he just loves going left-handed, he’s definitely better left-handed. The better the ground, the better for him. Robbie (Power) was also delighted and believed that that’s the best ground he’s had all year and that’s the best performance he’s put up all year.
“Cheltenham is the plan and we need to get him there in one piece. He will probably take in the Deloitte Novice Hurdle on his way there. His future definitely looks bright.”
John Ryan is hoping for better luck than he managed over Christmas as Foildubh tackles the Beamish Stout Phil Sweeney Memorial Chase at Thurles today. The nine-year-old was supposed to run in the Dial-A-Bet Chase at Leopardstown but was unable to make the journey after the jeep towing his trailer caught fire.
While Ryan is thrilled with the condition of his stable star, he feels giving 7lb to Willie Mullins’ Call The Police could be a stiff ask. “We had no luck over Christmas with him, our jeep gave us some trouble, but he’s in great form,” said Ryan.
“I think he’ll run very well but giving Call The Police weight is going to be very tough. I’m not happy about it and on the figures we shouldn’t be winning. We’ve got Paul Carberry back on board though, he gets on very well with him so he’s worth 7lb.
“Davy Condon thought two miles at Cork was just a bit sharp for him the last day, so two miles and two furlongs should be right for him.”
Ryan also has a second string to his bow in Glenstar, who was last successful at Tramore in August. “I think Glenstar will run very well. His jumping went to pieces in handicaps so I entered him in this because I knew it would be a small field.”
Sprinter Sacre for Victor Chandler Chase
Sprinter Sacre is the standout name among just 13 entries for the Victor Chandler Chase at Ascot on January 19th.
Nicky Henderson’s superstar appears to have scared off plenty of rivals, which is hardly surprising given the way he strolled to victory on his seasonal return in the Tingle Creek Chase.
Sizing Europe has not been entered by Henry De Bromhead but his stablemate, Days Hotel, has been given the option.
A smart novice, he returned from a lengthy absence to win the Hilly Way Chase on his return. Another smart entry is Robbie Hennessy’s Rubi Light, who gave Sizing Europe a fright over Christmas.
Last year’s winner Somersby could have his first start for Mick Channon while Sanctuaire could lock horses with Sprinter Sacre again.
William’s Wishes, Wishfull Thinking, Dan Breen and Kumbeshwar are also in the mix.