Progressive Sutton Place takes next step at Navan

    Sutton Place bids to continue his winning spree in the Ladbrokes Ireland Boyne Hurdle at Navan on Sunday.
  • Friday 17 February 2017
  • News

Sutton Place bids to continue his winning spree in the Ladbrokes Ireland Boyne Hurdle at Navan on Sunday.

Third on his racecourse debut at this venue in December 2015, the Mahler gelding went on to win a Fairyhouse bumper, a Listed novice hurdle at Naas and a Grade Two at Fairyhouse before the end of the campaign.

He belatedly made his seasonal reappearance in Grade Three company at Naas three weeks ago and looked every inch a top-class prospect in picking up where he left off with an impressive victory.

The JP McManus-owned six-year-old returns to Grade Two level for his latest assignment and steps up to two miles and five furlongs for the first time in the hands of Barry Geraghty.

Sutton Place is one of four runners for Gordon Elliott in a nine-strong field. The title -chasing trainer also saddles De Plotting Shed, Dedigout and Taglietelle.

Elliott's big rival Willie Mullins is doubly represented, with Ruby Walsh siding with Renneti over Thomas Hobson, the mount of Paul Townend.

Jessica Harrington's pair of Supasundae and Ttebbob and the Mouse Morris-trained Milsean complete the line-up.

Grade Two honours are also up for grabs in the Ten Up Novice Chase, with the McManus silks carried by both Anibale Fly and Edwulf.

Tony Martin's Anibale Fly bounced back from a listless performance at Kempton on Boxing Day when winning at Naas three weeks ago and is the chosen mount of Geraghty.

Edwulf, trained by Joseph O'Brien, steps up in distance after last month's victory at Punchestown, with leading amateur Derek O'Connor an intriguing jockey booking.

Mullins runs Haymount (Walsh) and Bellow Mome (Townend), while course scorer Acapella Bourgeois is not without a chance for Sandra Hughes and Roger Loughran.

Identity Thief is the star name on show in the Flyingbolt Novice Chase.

The Grade One-winning hurdler looked destined for the top of the chasing ranks after winning his first two starts over fences.

However, Henry de Bromhead's charge was pulled up lame during a much anticipated clash with Min over Christmas and only made it as far as the first fence in last month's Irish Arkle.

The seven-year-old bids to reignite his season in this Grade Three affair, and jockey Bryan Cooper said: "Things didn't go right for him at Christmas. He pulled up lame and made one bad mistake, maybe he got a fright after that.

"Hopefully it hasn't knocked his confidence. I schooled him the other day and he seemed to school well at home, but it's a different kettle of fish when you go to the racetrack as you're going quicker and there's more fences to jump.

"He'd want to win and win very impressively if he's to book his ticket for Cheltenham. We'll know a lot more about where we're going after Sunday."

The same colours of Gigginstown House Stud are also carried by Elliott's Ball D'Arc.

Enda Bolger's Ballyoisin and Tully East from Alan Fleming's yard make up the field.

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