Mullins Has First Runner At Taunton

Wed 30th Dec 2015, 08:35

Myska (nearest)
©Healy Racing Photos
Willie Mullins will saddle his first ever runner at Taunton when Myska puts her unbeaten record on the line in today's Happy New Year From totepool Mares' Novices' Hurdle.

A runaway winner on her bumper debut at Clonmel last spring, the Supreme Horse Racing Club-owned five-year-old comfortably followed up on her first start over jumps at Thurles last month.

She crosses the Irish Sea to step up to Listed level and Ruby Walsh takes the ride.

Steve Massey, manager for the owning syndicate, said: " It's good to get her going again. She travelled over on Monday morning and arrived there about lunchtime.

"She was impressive in her bumper and we were delighted with her first run over hurdles at Thurles.

"She's a smart mare and it will be interesting to see how she goes in what looks a strong race."

Myska faces six rivals in an interesting heat.

The Dan Skelton-trained Girly Girl has won a bumper and a novice hurdle on her last two starts, while Oliver Sherwood's Surtee Du Berlais and Jessber's Girl from Harry Fry's yard are both two from two over hurdles.

Lucy Wadham's Ruby Rambler, Nicky Henderson's Clemency and Paul Nicholls' Lifeboat Mona complete the field.

Clemency and Lifeboat Mona are owned by the Elite Racing Club and Axom respectively and Dan Downie manages both syndicates.

He said: "This has been the plan for Lifeboat Mona for some time and she goes there in good form.

"It's probably a more competitive race than we thought it would be and the drop in trip would be a little bit of a worry - I think she's definitely more of a two-and-a-half-mile horse than a two-miler.

"Having said that, she has plenty of pace, so I'm not too concerned.

"Hopefully she can step up on what she's done so far. She'll obviously need to.

"We put Clemency in when the race was reopened as there aren't that many options for her.

"She's been ready to run for a few weeks and is in good form, so we'll see how she goes.

"She probably has a bit to find, but we'll give it a go and see what happens."

Joseph O'Brien reiterates training plans

Joseph O'Brien reiterated his intention to scale back his riding commitments in the likelihood of gaining a trainer's licence in the spring.

THE IRISH TIMES