herald

Saturday 16 December 2017

McInerney looks to have claims for double in Mayo

Call It Magic will be seeking success with Ruby Walsh. Pic: racingpost.com
Call It Magic will be seeking success with Ruby Walsh. Pic: racingpost.com

Yesterday was a very good day for Jessie Harrington and the team, landing two Listed races, and it's great to see that the horses are healthy and well.

We can now look forward to the National Hunt horses coming out shortly.

A chap that I think is going to get a lot of chances this winter is Donie McInerney, he rides out for Jessie a couple of mornings a week, and has been riding loads of winners lately.

I think he'll have a good day at Ballinrobe.

When a valuable 7lb claimer comes along, like Donie, trainers are always keen to use them and while I doubt he'll be claiming 7lbs for much longer at the current rate he is riding winners, he'll still be in big demand for those valuable handicaps with horses that have a big weight.

It's a bit more low key at Ballinrobe today but I think that he could ride the winner of the big race aboard Just Janice and then follow that up on Granny Biddy, who he won on last week at Listowel.

Just Janice is probably high enough in the ratings for what she has done but a horse like her is a typical example of where a good 7lb claimer can make a difference. The claim is there to counter inexperience but some lads just adapt to racing a lot quicker and they are the lads that trainers consider as a free 7lbs or 5lbs off their horse and they are the lads that will be popular.

Granny Biddy got through the heavy ground at Listowel and if she could do that down there, you would have to think she'll have no bother getting through it at Ballinrobe.

She runs off a 6lb penalty for that win but should defy that for Mick Winters.

Call It Magic is a horse I've ridden in the past for Ross O'Sullivan and he is a horse that has always promised to win a big pot. Ross' brother-in-law, Ruby Walsh, will ride him today in the conditions race and I'd say he is good enough to win something of this calibre, especially as he'll handle the ground.

Azua Emery looks like one of the more promising horses to start off in a three-year-old hurdle so far this summer. The French import is a filly with a light weight on her back for her Irish debut and she represents strong connections who can be trusted to have her well primed for this occasion.

Paul Stafford had a winner earlier in the week and can add another here today with Gibbstown in the penultimate race, while in the 80-95 rated handicap hurdle top weight Athloman Cottage could be hard to oppose now that she's hit a bit of form.

It's great to see Nina Carberry return to the saddle today after the birth of her first child and hopefully it won't be too long before she makes it back into the winner's enclosure but I'd be surprised if that is today.

She rides a horse for Noel Meade called Cask Mate who does have the benefit of having a couple of runs under his belt but it will be tough work for these four-year-olds on that ground and I'd just be going with Augustine Leahy's Thereisnodoubt.

Johnny Barry claims 5lbs off and this a horse that has had plenty of match practice and can put all that to good use by winning the lucky last.

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