Tag Archive for: Easy Game

French Dynamite hunting Grade Two honours for Morris

French Dynamite bids to cap a fine season with victory in Monday’s McInerney Properties Fairyhouse Chase at Fairyhouse.

Mouse Morris’ eight-year-old started the campaign with a win over hurdles at Thurles, but has since proven a consistent performer over the larger obstacles.

Runner-up in the Paddy Power Gold Cup in November, he ran well for a long way when fifth in the Savills Chase over the Christmas period before finishing second to Fakir D’oudairies when returned to an intermediate trip in Thurles’ Horse & Jockey Hotel Chase.

He was last seen again running with real credit to finish fourth in the Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival and his handler would love to see conditions dry out ahead of his Easter Monday assignment.

Mouse Morris with Mark Walsh
Mouse Morris with Mark Walsh (PA)

“He will need the ground to dry up because it is very tacky up there at the minute,” said Morris.

“I’m hoping it will and he seems none the worse for Cheltenham. He ran a good race in the Ryanair, the ground was a bit tight and it will depend on the ground again. If it dries up he will have a chance, but it’s a bit testing there at the minute, which wouldn’t be up his street.

“He’s run some great races and is very consistent and long may it last. It will be nice to win a graded race.”

Willie Mullins is responsible for three of the six runners that go to post in the Grade Two event and Easy Game appears the Closutton first string following victories over Kemboy at both Listowel and Gowran in the autumn.

The mount of Paul Townend has won 11 times over the larger obstacles and as well as looking to extend his current winning streak, is searching for a third-straight victory in this two-and-a-half-mile contest.

Easy Game looks for his third straight Easter victory at Fairyhouse
Easy Game looks for his third straight Easter victory at Fairyhouse (Niall Carson/PA)

Royal Rendezvous and Janidil are the others lining up for the Irish champion trainer, with the latter looking to return to the form that saw him score at Gowran in February following a below-par showing at the Cheltenham Festival.

“He didn’t jump great at Cheltenham,” said Frank Berry, racing manager for Janidil’s owner JP McManus.

“He was a bit disappointing there and his jumping let him down, but Willie thinks he has him back in good form and we’re hoping for the best.”

The green and gold of McManus appears to have solid representation in the Donohue Marquees Juvenile Hurdle, where again Mullins holds all the aces at the top of the market.

Blood Destiny was underwhelming when sent off 3-1 for the Triumph Hurdle, but returns to the scene of his prior 18-length romp attempting to get back on track, while stablemate Gust Of Wind ran with real credit in that Festival contest to finish fourth and is an improving juvenile.

Blood Destiny ridden by jockey Patrick Mullins (second right, red silks) in action as they compete in the JCB Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival
Blood Destiny ridden by jockey Patrick Mullins (second right, red silks) in action as they compete in the JCB Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival (David Davies for The Jockey Club)

McManus’ hopes, however, are pinned to Tekao – who was sent off the 3-1 favourite for the Fred Winter at Prestbury Park and before that finished third in a Dublin Racing Festival Grade One behind stablemates Gala Marceau and Lossiemouth.

“He didn’t behave himself particularly well before the race at Cheltenham and got lit up down at the start,” added Berry.

“He only jumped OK and was a bit disappointing, so we’re on a recovery mission and we’ll see how we go. You would hope he will run well, but he has to come back from a disappointing run.”

The leading owner is also represented by Padraig Roach’s Cougar – a Deep Impact colt who is two from three over obstacles.

Jockey Mark Walsh in the winners enclosure with trainer Padraig Roche and Frank Berry after winning the Value Cabs 3-Y-O Hurdle on Cougar during day two of the Ladbrokes Festival of Racing at Down Royal Racecourse (PA)
Jockey Mark Walsh in the winners enclosure with trainer Padraig Roche and Frank Berry after winning the Value Cabs 3-Y-O Hurdle on Cougar during day two of the Ladbrokes Festival of Racing at Down Royal Racecourse (PA)

“He jumped very well early on and probably got a few soft touches, but for whatever reason he didn’t perform very well at Leopardstown,” said Berry. “He’s after having a nice break, so we’re hoping he will run well.”

Dual Cheltenham Festival winner Monkfish looks to defy a 713-day absence when he makes his eagerly-awaited return in the Rathbarry & Glenview Studs Hurdle.

He forms one half of a formidable hand for Mullins in the Grade Two contest, with the master of Closutton also saddling Asterion Forlonge, who will bid to go one better than his Thurles second on reappearance.

Fil Dor (Gordon Elliott), Beacon Edge (Noel Meade) and HMS Seahorse (Paul Nolan) all disappointed in the Coral Cup when last sighted but attempt to bounce back here, while Paddy Corkery’s Master McShee completes the sextet taking part.



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