Thursday, February 25, 2010

Premier County set for Premier Victory

In what is a very competitive €40,000 Grade 2 Michael Purcell Novice Hurdle over 2 miles 4 furlongs today at Thurles, the 140-rated mare Premier Victory looks to follow up an 11 length success at Cork against a useful field of 7. With a tongue tie installed today, she has won 5 races thus far and is a current 20/1 chance for Cheltenham in the Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle on Gold Cup day.

The versatile mare (pictured above), trained by Tom Hogan and ridden by John Cullen will start around the 5/2 mark for todays race and although she steps up in class the ground and trip are sure to suit and she looks well weighted. A winner over 3 miles in Cork and 2 miles in Down Royal in a Mares Novice Hurdle, she is improving and should account for the challenges of Western Leader andQuadrillon.

Shark Hanlons Western Leader, a stylish bumper performer last season won a maiden hurdle by a short head in December when strongly pressed by Acapulco (an odds-on winner since, beating The Book Thief). The distance will suit and the 6 year old Gelding by Stowaway will make it a race of it for Premier Victory.

Quadrillon commenced the season with a facile maiden hurdle win over 2 miles 4 furlongs at odds of 1/3 in Cork last November. This success was at the same meeting that Premier Victory scored by 11 lengths over 3 miles. He has raced twice since, finishing well down the field at Limerick over 2 miles 3 furlong when 7/4 favourite and beaten third of five in Clonmel over 2 miles 6 furlongs two weeks ago.

Nenagh-based Tom Hogan, trainer of former stars Kalderon and Silver Jaro will have Premier Victory primed today and it would come as no surprise of she was to run out an easy winner on the soft turf of Thurles at around 2pm this afternoon.

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