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Formscan By Donal Murphy - The consistent STAYING ARTICLE looks the one to side with here. The Edward O'Grady trained gelding has been talked about as a dark horse for the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham. If he is even going to go there he would want to be winning a contest of this standard. Paddy Brennan takes the ride on the 150 rated 7yo and the course and distance winner should prove hard to beat. Despite disappointing last time out, Simenon looks the biggest danger to the selection. The son of Marju had an excellent campaign on the level during the summer and was said to have not been suited by the 'really testing winter ground' at Punchestown last time out. The ground at Fairyhouse is currently being described as soft, heavy in places and that should suit him better. Midnight Game was ultimately disappointing last season and it will be interesting to see if he has progressed after the summer break. Rigour Back Bob is a tough cookie but he will probably need this run, returing to action from over a year off.
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A hurdle race for four yrs old and upwards that since 1st January, 2011 have not a Grade 1 or Grade 2 hurdle race
Weights - A hurdle race for four yrs old and upwards that since 1st January, 2011 have not a Grade 1 or Grade 2 hurdle race
Allowances - 4-y-o 10st 13lb; 5-y-o and up 11st 2lb; Mares allowed 7lb
Riders - (to count from 1st January, 2011) Winner of a hurdle race value E15,000 5lb extra; Of two such hurdle races or a hurdle race value E25,000 10lb extra;
Probable SP 13/8 Staying Article, 2/1 Simenon, 7/2 Midnight Game, 6/1 Rigour Back Bob, 16/1 One Cool Shabra, 33/1 Whosaidso.
2011 Mikael D'Haguenet 7 11-2 P Townend 1/1Fav (W P Mullins)