Sunday 16 December 2018

Heaney could be poetry in motion

Listowel will stage the first big jump race of the season tomorrow afternoon when the much sought after Kerry National is the feature event of the afternoon on day three of their Harvest Festival.

A bumper crowd is expected for the biggest day of their seven-day meeting and a competitive field, including two-time Cheltenham Festival winner Alderwood, is set to line-up in the €160,000 Guinness sponsored three-mile chase.


Alderwood's owner, JP McManus, is launching a big attack on the race with a number of representatives and the final line up also includes Irish Grand National runner-up Golden Wonder, who is trained by Dessie Hughes.

Both the sponsors and all involved in the Listowel Harvest Festival could hardly be happier with the turn out for their feature race as it looks set to be a real intriguing renewal but a horse who appears to be on the right side of the handicapper is Tom Taaffe's Heaney and he could be worth keeping an eye on at a bit of a price.

At the top of the weights, Tom Mullins' Klepht wouldn't be a surprise winner as he has always looked a horse who could have a big pot in him, but Heaney may just be a progressive sort in handicap company.


The seven-year-old hasn't been seen since the Punchestown Festival and his lengthy lay-off would be the biggest concern, but he was far from disgraced when beaten by 10 lengths in the Irish National and something along the same lines as that run should leave him right in the mix.

Tomorrow's card also features the listed Edmund & Josie Whelan Memorial Listowel Stakes and a chance is taken here with Tom Hogan's Altruistic who is due to make his first start since being bought out of Johnny Murtagh's care and at his best form he may be able to hold the likes of Dermot Weld's Emerita.

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