An eight-race card at Thurles gets underway at 16:10 and we have picked out three more SmartPlays...
"Conditions will suit Toner d’Oudairies and he is taken to account for Cadspeed and Lord Ben, both of whom have had plenty of chances in similar events."
Gordon Elliott's team are in sparkling order at the moment and Toner d'Oudairies can give the county Meath handler another winner in the opening race at Thurles. The son of Polish Summer has improved with every run over fences this term, finishing second to Rupert Lamb at Leopardstown on his latest start over the larger obstacles in January, and wasn't given a hard time when his chance had gone back over hurdles at Cheltenham last time. Conditions will suit Toner d'Oudairies and he is taken to account for Cadspeed and Lord Ben, both of whom have had plenty of chances in similar events.
Forty Foot Tom took an age to get off the mark over hurdles, but should be able to break his duck over fences at just the third time of asking in the 16:40. He didn't do a lot wrong when second to Seriatim at Down Royal last time, and while the winner failed to frank the form at Downpatrick yesterday, that still looks to be just about the best piece of form on offer here. The drop back in trip will suit Forty Foot Tom and it is worth pointing out that his only win over hurdles came on good to soft ground.
All five runners in the Easter Time Hurdle at 18:10 have questions to answer at present, but it looks like a good opportunity for Stonemaster to end a losing streak that stretches back to March 2011. He finished behind Berties Dream in the Pertemps final at Cheltenham last time, but Dessie Hughes' gelding would have finished much closer but for a serious mistake 2 out and he is well treated by the conditions of this race.
Timeform Irish SmartPlays:
Back Toner d'Oudairies in the 16:10
Back Forty Foot Tom in the 16:40
Back Stonemaster in the 18:10