Preview Clonmel 7th Dec

Wed 6th Dec 2017, 11:40

Coquin Mans steps back up to three miles for the Jim Strang & Sons Kilsheelan (Peugeot) Hurdle at Clonmel on Thursday.

Having struck a couple of times over the distance during the summer, as well as registering a Flat success, Willie Mullins' charge has acquitted himself with great credit back over the minimum trip.

He got closest to Jezki in the Istabraq Hurdle before chasing home exciting stable companion Melon in the Grade Two WKD Hurdle at Down Royal.

He now has four rivals to beat, headed by Andrew McNamara's grand campaigner Val De Ferbet, who reverts from the fences, with the field completed by Taglietelle, Admiral Brian and Carrigeen Acebo.

Monbeg Worldwide attempts to get off the mark at the second time of asking over obstacles in the Clonmel Maiden Hurdle, which gets proceedings under way at 12.25.

A winner between the flags before rattling off a hat-trick in bumpers, the Gordon Elliott-trained five-year-old had to settle for second to the more experienced Jetz at Fairyhouse, with the winner going on to take second in the "Monksfield" Novice Hurdle behind budding superstar Samcro.

Robin Des Mana is the pick of the Elliott pair in the Clonmel Racecourse Supporters Club Only 90 Beginners Chase.

A solid second at Fairyhouse most recently, he may have most to fear from the Henry de Bromhead-trained Monbeg Chit Chat.

In an interesting Next Meeting Thursday January 11th (Q.R.) (C & G) Maiden Hurdle, De Bromhead takes the wraps off Pallaskenry, who was a facile winner of a point-to-point in the spring and has since been snapped up for 50,000 pounds.

Mullins' French import Draconien also catches the eye.

Alices Man and Loch Luatha are in fine fettle right now and could have the Adare Manor Opportunity Handicap Hurdle between them, while Bay Hill may be the answer to the Powerstown Handicap Hurdle.

Patiently sidesteps Durkan test

Waiting Patiently could tackle the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup at Cheltenham after connections decided against a trip to Ireland for this weekend's John Durkan Memorial Punchestown Chase.

THE IRISH TIMES