Gordon Elliott: The verdict on my Sunday runners at Leopardstown
Betfair Ambassador Gordon Elliott discusses his nine runners at Leopardstown on Sunday afternoon and selects his best chance on the card...
14:10 - Tombstone
"Tombstone is very well treated by the race conditions and he looks the one to beat but I would prefer if the ground was a bit slower for him."
Gordon's Best Chance on Sunday: Tombstone (14:10)
14:10 - Count Simon
Count Simon is a grand, reliable type who comes here off a number of solid efforts in defeat. He's not that well suited by the race conditions, and he has work to do at the weights, but it's a small field and he's in excellent shape at home so I've decided to let him take his chance. He's a capable and consistent type and hopefully he'll run his usual solid race.
The one to beat
14:10 - Tombstone
Tombstone is very well treated by the race conditions and he looks the one to beat but I would prefer if the ground was a bit slower for him. He was beaten a long way last time out but possibly found that run coming too soon after his previous third to Espoir D'allen at Naas. The Naas run is probably a better indicator of his chances than either his most recent run or his excellent third to Sharjah here at Christmas. He is definitely the one to beat but the ground would be a slight concern.
Longer trip will suit
14:40 - Timber House
He ran a solid race at Punchestown last week when he finished fifth in a maiden hurdle over two miles and this longer trip will definitely suit him. His Punchestown run was his first since he won a point-to-point almost two years ago, so I'd be expecting him to improve a nice bit from that. The ground will be fine for him, so hopefully we will see him progress off that first run.
Refreshed after good break
15:10 - Kuiper Belt
Kuiper Belt is just ready to start back as he had a good break after running below par at Punchestown in mid-October. Prior to that he had been in superb form on the flat and over hurdles and I'm hoping he will maintain that progress to get involved in some good handicaps at the major spring festivals. He will like the ground and he's very well in himself but I do think he will need this run.
Ready to run again
15:10 - Silver Star
Silver Star was in a similar position to Kuiper Belt when he made his return at Navan last month and I thought that he was in the process of running a really nice race when he came down at the second last flight. That fall took nothing out of him and he looks ready to run again so this looked an obvious race to aim towards with him. I'd hope to see him give a good account of himself here.
Keep up the good form
15:45 - Carter McKay
He will have his fourth run over fences in a four runner beginner's chase and this is by far the weakest race that he has contested since he went chasing so hopefully he will show up well. Aint Dunne Yet was very unlucky not to win last week and he is the one to beat but hopefully our horse can give him a race and he should run well if he can repeat the form that saw him finish a respectable fifth behind Real Steel at Fairyhouse in January.
16:15 - Woods Well
A bit like the Flyingbolt Chase at Navan on Saturday this is a good pot and I'm very keen to have representation in it as races of this value deserve good support.
Woods Well has had a very disappointing season since he won a rated chase at Galway in the autumn. He is a horse with plenty of ability and I've always thought of him as one that could win a good handicap but I'm really scratching my head with him. Maybe he will be suited by coming back to this trip. He wasn't totally disgraced over hurdles at Navan a couple of months ago, so I'm hoping that he might still fulfil his potential.
Could go close
16:15 - Monatomic
Monatomic has only won once so far this season but he has developed into a better chaser than a hurdler and he is one that has enjoyed the good ground over the last few months. I thought that he ran his best race to date when he was second in a valuable novice handicap chase at Naas last Sunday. If he can match that form he will surely go close. He might well be the pick of ours.
Should run well
16:15 - Dakota Moirette
Dakota Moirette fell at the last in a beginner's chase last week and you couldn't say that he would or wouldn't have won. He didn't jump well but I don't think the race suited him as he is much better with a lead than making the running. His second in a valuable handicap at the Dublin Racing Festival is a good piece of form and if he can produce that form over this longer trip he will run well.