gowran park 16th Feb
The decision to stage a hurdles and bumper card at Gowran Park due to the chase course being unfit has resulted in a six-race fixture which kicks off at 2.35.
The Red Mills Trial Hurdle is the undoubted hightlight and sees last year's winner Zaidpour locking horns with So Young for the third time this season.
Willie Mullins' seven-year-old had his stablemate back in fourth when landing the Hatton's Grace and he was a place ahead of him when chasing home Monksland in the Christmas Hurdle.
That three miles stretches him - a fact underlined by his subsequent defeat by Bog Warrior in the Galmoy Hurdle - and he will appreciate the bigger emphasis on speed here.
Hisaabaat is yet to recapture his top-class juvenile form, so it may be left to Charles Byrnes' Arnaud to give the Mullins pair most to think about.
Djakadam should have made a winning start to his career with the champion trainer at Thurles and gets the opportunity to atone for that last-flight tumble in the opening Shantou At Burgage Stud Maiden Hurdle.
He is still in the Triumph Hurdle, as is Ibsen, who chased home another Mullins inmate in the shape of Fatcatinthehat at Leopardstown.
Lookoutnow has been well placed by Eoin Doyle to win three of his last four and he reverts to timber on a mark 6lb lower than his recent successful chasing figure in the Holden Plant Rentals Handicap Hurdle (Div 2).
The first division carries the sponsorship of Man v's Beast turn2me.org Challenge On Saturday 9th March, and top-weight Rogue Angel has his sights lowered after struggling in a Cork Grade Three.
Kymin's Way attempts to better a Fairyhouse second in the Ronan Lawlor Memorial Mares (Pro/Am) Flat Race, while recent point-to-point scorer Lemmond Lady tries to reproduce that in the Join Us On Saturday 23rd March For Kilkenny GAA Day Mares (Pro/Am) Flat Race.
It is crunch time for Cue Card at Ascot on Saturday as the 2010 Cheltenham Champion Bumper winner warms up for a fourth successive appearance at the Festival.