Kahala ready to test Cheltenham credentials

Peter Fahey hopes Royal Kahala can book her ticket to Cheltenham in the rearranged Race Displays Solerina Mares Novice Hurdle at Fairyhouse.

Saved over from last weekend, Monday’s Grade Three event must survive another wintry outlook – with the ground currently described as heavy.

But if going ahead, it is sure to be an informative affair – with Willie Mullins’ unbeaten Gauloise also set to run.

Currently, the same pair head the betting for the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle in March.

Fahey said of Royal Kahala: “She’s in good form – it looks a competitive race, the same kind of field it was supposed to be (initially).

“It will kind of let us know where we stand.

“We took on a good bunch of fillies the last day and were lucky enough to win it.”

Fahey can be confident testing conditions will suit his six-year-old, who has completed a hat-trick since early November on soft and heavy ground.

“If she wins or runs a very good race we’re thinking about going to Cheltenham with her for the mares’ novice,” he added.

“Her last three runs, her strongest furlong has been the last one on heavy ground. She seems to cope with it very well and shows a good turn of foot at the end of her race – which is another big plus.

“Her action at home, you wouldn’t say she needs it soft. (But) you wouldn’t run her on very quick ground, because she’s been so effective with it on the soft side.”

Speaking about Gauloise earlier this week, Mullins said: “I’ll probably let her go there (Fairyhouse).

“She’s done everything right so far, but it looks like she’s got Peter Fahey’s mare to beat.

“She’s looked very good – she’ll be hard to beat. It’s a hell of a race.”

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