Karl Thornton's St Patrick's Day focus isn't on Cheltenham but whether the transformed Colms Dream transfers his winning form over fences back to hurdles at Down Royal.
In the seven months since Colms Dream last run over flights he has won the four chases he has completed, falling on two other occasions.
Fences look to have been the making of
but his Skerries-based trainer has elected to run him in the three-mile handicap hurdle off a mark of 94, a massive 45lbs lower than his current chase mark. Thornton’s star performer doesn’t appear to be anywhere near as good over hurdles. He mightn’t have to be.
The biggest threat to the Irish Gold Cup third Fine Rightly in the three-runner conditions chase looks to be his stable companion, and 2014 winner, Yes Tom while Ard Cregg is another trying to exploit a favourable looking handicap mark over hurdles at the North of Ireland track.
Pat Fahy described Head Turner as "proper stuff" after she broke her duck at Clonmel last month and the mare can prove the point in Wexford's novice handicap hurdle.