punchestown 17th Nov

Fri 16th Nov 2012, 13:30

The two-day Morgiana Hurdle fixture at Punchestown begins with a bang as Mount Benbulben and Mikael D'Haguenet cross swords in the Gift Vouchers For Christmas Beginners Chase at 11.55.

Gordon Elliott thinks a lot of Mount Benbulben and he will relish this extra half-mile after a pleasing third over two miles on his Naas reappearance.

Mikael D'Haguenet has never got the hang of fences, but Willie Mullins' top-class hurdler is still only an eight-year-old and has more than enough talent for the penny to drop.

Mullins switches Simenon's attention back to jumping in the Punchestown Annual Membership From 95 Euro Hurdle.

A dual Royal Ascot winner this year, he was only beaten just over two lengths in the Irish St Leger when last seen and the champion trainer is looking towards the World Hurdle with him.

Fellow classy Flat recruit Minsk tackles obstacles again in the www.punchestown.com Maiden Hurdle.

A Triumph Hurdle campaign was shelved when he only managed second in a Fairyhouse Grade Two on his NH debut, but he returned as well on the level this autumn and remains an exciting prospect.

A couple of old favourites do battle in the Crystal Cup Trial Risk Of Thunder Chase over the banks course, with Bostons Angel aiming to halt his alarming regression against Mullins' Shakervilz and Bundle Of Fun.

Arabella Boy represents Enda Bolger, whose success in this sphere is well documented, and he could be the biggest threat, having finished second over course and distance at the Festival here.

Gates Of Rome was a place ahead of Arabella Boy at Clonmel at the beginning of the month and he heads the weights for the 10 Euro Admission Handicap Chase.

Mullins takes the wraps off an interesting type in the shape of Clondaw Court, who fetched & pound;130,000 after an impressive win between the flags, and he goes to post for the Racing At Punchestown Tomorrow (Pro-Am) INH Flat Race.

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