O'Brien hoping Articulum can bounce back at Thurles

Mon 12th Feb 2018, 16:52

photoArticulum
©Healy Racing Photos
Terence O'Brien is hoping to see Articulum show more of his real self when he returns to the track at Thurles next week.

The smart bumper performer made an impressive winning debut over hurdles at Cork in November, but was pulled up at Thurles last month when favourite to make it two from two.

O'Brien said: "He will head to Thurles now for the Michael Purcell Memorial on Thursday week. Nothing came to light after his last run, he seems in good form and it's just a total mystery.

"We checked everything with him, wind, bloods, a scope, and nothing showed up, so I have no idea what happened. He seems to be fine and has been working well since.

"It was his second run back after an absence, but it was nearly two and a half months since his first run. You could say it was the bounce factor if he was beaten 10 or 15 lengths, but he was beaten after a mile so it's hard to figure it out.

"I was going to run him (on Sunday) in Punchestown over two miles in the race that Hardline won, but I just backed off him a bit after his last run so I just didn't think he might be fit enough.

"We decided to give him another while, and we'll see how he gets on at Thurles before making any further plans with him. I have no reason to think he won't run well at Thurles on his home work, but you don't know until you get to the track."

Might Bite To Prove His Worth Next Season

There is not much attention given to national hunt racing in the summer months, by punters or by the media. It is, of course, understandable given that our attention is focused on the flat season: the action at Royal Ascot, the Classics and the rest of the elements that define the summer racing season. Some punters might have a dabble at an ante post bet for Cheltenham next year, but by and large we forget about it until the autumn.

THE IRISH TIMES