Flaxen Flare and Plinth to renew rivalry at Galway

Flaxen Flare may relish famous hill here more than Ballydoyle contender

Barry Geraghty: takes over in the plate today on Flaxen Flare. Photograph: James Crombie

Barry Geraghty: takes over in the plate today on Flaxen Flare. Photograph: James Crombie

 

Aidan O’Brien’s focus is on the upcoming Champions Weekend but he won’t be alone in examining with interest how his runner Plinth fares in a rematch with Flaxen Flare at Galway this evening.

Just four line up for the two-and-a-half mile conditions hurdle. But it’s an intriguing little contest that hardly sees Rawnaq and Courtncatcher as back numbers even though both look to have a tough task on ratings.

Most focus though will be on Flaxen Flare and Plinth who met at Cork recently when the O’Brien horse won but only after his rival took a horrible fall that left jockey Davy Condon with serious back injuries.

Barry Geraghty takes over today and while on ratings it’s easy to make a case for Plinth, Flaxen Flare looked to be travelling fractionally the better at Cork and may relish the famous hill here more.

Eighteen-year-old Jonny Burke has a first ride as the new retained jockey to Ann and Alan Potts when Loosen My Load lines up for a conditions chase over the Plate course. The 5lb claimer will also partner Cavite Beta for his new employers in the handicap chase.

Mark Walsh though could be the rider to follow in both races as the ratings look to favour the 2013 Plate runner-up Quantitativeeasiing while Elegant Statesman could appreciate a drop in trip for the handicap. Walsh can also score in the other chase as Please Talk will hardly have a better chance to break his duck over fences than in his 13th attempt.

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