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Belfast Banter to open hurdles account


Peter Fahey. Photo: Patrick McCann/Racing Post

Peter Fahey. Photo: Patrick McCann/Racing Post

Racing Post

Peter Fahey. Photo: Patrick McCann/Racing Post

Down Royal will need to beat a cold snap overnight for this fixture to get the go ahead, but confidence is high that will be the case with the first race not until 1.20.

That first race and the concluding bumper are the two contests that are likely to throw up the most notable winners on the card with BELFAST BANTER (1.20, Down Royal) finally expected to open his account over hurdles today.

Peter Fahey's charge won a bumper for Dan Skelton before joining Fahey and finishing second to the seemingly very capable Captain Guinness at Navan.

Belfast Banter looked to be all over the winner on his next start at Cork but fell at the second last hurdle when holding a commanding lead and this looks very much a winnable opportunity today.

The concluding bumper looks an interesting affair that will throw up many future winners.

There can only be one this afternoon though and the choice goes to HAMUNDARSON (4.20, Down Royal).

Plenty of the big yards are represented here but Hamundarson finished second to a decent looking type of Joseph O'Brien's at Leopardstown and may go one better here although any market move for newcomer Delvino would be interesting.

Castle Oliver will be hard to beat in the rated novice chase but GREAT KHAN (2.50, Down Royal) might be able to post a rare victory here in a small field with conditions to suit.

The father and son team of Philip and Luke Dempsey can land another winner with AN DROICHEAD GORM (3.20, Down Royal).