The Clonmel race meeting that traditionally takes place after the Powerstown Park venue’s three-day coursing fixture is pencilled in for this Thursday with proceedings scheduled to kick off at 1.35 pm.
The featured event is the Kilcash Chase, a winner of two events over two and a half miles, and it should pay to row in behind Freds Benefit.
This Willie Mullins-trained son of Beneficial created a hugely favourable impression by making all the running to win a two mile one furlong beginners chase with Kevin Coleman at this same course on December 2nd. Freds Benefit then fell when travelling well at the second last in a Grade 2 novice chase at Limerick over the festive period and it must be said that he was a shade disappointing when soundly beaten into fourth spot by subsequent Grade 1 Baileys Irish Arkle Chase winner Thyne Again in a two mile novice chase at Naas on January 6th.
Naas is a left-handed track whereas Clonmel is right-handed and Freds Benefit looks set to regain the winning thread here at the expense of Thomas O’Leary’s recent Thyestes Chase winner Preists Leap.
Trainer Mullins has excellent prospects of a two-timer with Themoonandsixpence in the Clogheen INH Flat Race.
Themoonandsixpence, a winning point-to-pointer last season, was well-fancied when contesting a Fairyhouse bumper on his track debut in mid-December. Ultimately beaten three lengths into second spot on that occasion by Rock Steady, Themoonandsixpence can attain consolation by dispensing with the once-raced Pay The Ferryman.
Your Sum Man looks the part in the Jim Strang & Sons Peugeot Novice Hurdle, a Listed race over two miles six furlongs. This son of Pistolet Bleu led in the shadow of the post when gamely eclipsing Quintana by a length and a half in a Listed novice hurdle over two miles at Punchestown in early December. The step up in trip of six furlongs is unlikely to inconvenience Your Sum Man and Tony Mullins’ charge is preferred to the hat-trick seeking Cooldine.
Paul Kristian, a hugely-impressive Dromahane maiden point-to-point winner on December 30th, can make a triumphant start to his park career for trainer Liam Burke by excelling from Dixie Storm in the Fethard Maiden Hurdle and the four-year-old Eastern Path can continue the good run of south Co Tipperary handler Noel Brett by showing a clean pair of heels to Cailin Vic Mo Chroi in the Jim Strang & Sons Peugeot Mares Novice Hurdle.
George Travis has already won three point-to-points this season and Enda Bolger’s improving six-year-old, who traces back to Galmoy and Youlneverwalkalone, looks set to dispose of Top Twig in the Fergie Sutherland Maiden Hunters Chase whilst the Martinstown Opportunity Handicap Hurdle will in all probability be dominated by veteran Golden Domer and the mare Hamelsmead Lady.