Real chance that Article will run in Galway hurdle

The Real Article set for Galway?

The shenanigans around The Real Article's run in the Grimes Hurdle took another turn yesterday, as the Irish Turf Club abandoned its review of the race before it had started. As a result, The Real Article is now cleared to take part in the Guinness Galway Hurdle on Thursday.

The Real Article had finished a short head second to Captain Cee Bee in the Kevin McManus Bookmaker Grimes Hurdle at Tipperary on 17 July. He was partnered for the first time that day by Paddy Mangan, and there were suggestions that the young jockey had not ridden the horse out as he had only used hands and heels to encourage his mount. Victory in the Grimes for The Real Article would have brought a weight penalty for the Galway Hurdle. The Tipperary Stewards held an enquiry into Mangan's riding of the horse, and accepted the explanations offered by trainer Edward O'Grady and the jockey that the horse was not to be hit with the whip. Consequently, they did not impose any punishment on either horse or jockey.

Denis Egan, Chief Executive of the Irish Turf Club, instigated a review of both the race and the Tipperary stewards' decision under Rule 27, which allows for a review of a sanction if it is too lenient, or if one has not been imposed. However, legal submissions on behalf of the trainer suggested that this could only be done if the sanction decision followed a finding of guilt in the original enquiry. As the Tipperary steward had not found any breach of the rules, the Turf Club committee accepted that it had no power to carry out any review.

O'Grady said afterwards, "I feel sorry for Paddy Mangan, who is such a promising young talent and who has had to endure such adverse comment from certain areas of the media. I believe the stewards on the day...considered the matter fully and came to the correct decision."

As to the immediate future for The Real Article, O'Grady's comments left room for interpretation. "At the moment, the intention is that The Real Article will probably be allowed to take his chance in the Galway Hurdle on Thursday." So is that a yes or a no?

Bookmakers took that to mean the horse will run, and he is now 100/30 favourite for the race.

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