A Plus Tard and Chacun Pour Soi will renew rivalry at Leopardstown on Saturday after featuring among eight runners declared for the Ladbrokes Dublin Chase.
Henry de Bromhead’s A Plus Tard inflicted a surprise defeat on the Willie Mullins-trained Chacun Pour Soi in a Grade One over the course and distance last month, but the latter is a hot favourite to gain his revenge on the opening day of the Dublin Racing Festival.
Mullins also saddles Min – winner of this event in each of the past two seasons – as well as the progressive Cilaos Emery and last year’s Arkle Trophy winner Duc Des Genievres.
A Plus Tard is also joined by a couple of stablemates in Ordinary World and Ornua, while Pat Fahy’s stable star Castlegrace Paddy completes the line-up.
The first of four Grade Ones is the Nathaniel Lacy And Partners Solicitors “50,000 Cheltenham Bonus For Stable Staff” Novice Hurdle.
With the brilliant Envoi Allen not declared, his trainer Gordon Elliott relies on unbeaten hurdler Fury Road.
De Bromhead runs Cobbler’s Way, Mullins saddles Elixir D’Ainay and Latest Exhibition is a leading contender for Paul Nolan.
Mullins is responsible for four of the seven runners in the ERSG Arkle Novice Chase, with Bapaume, Cash Back, Melon and Royal Rendezvous all declared.
The chief threat to the Closutton quartet is De Bromhead’s Notebook, who completed a hat-trick over fences with a Grade One success over the course and distance last month.
Oliver McKiernan’s Gallant John Joe and Joseph O’Brien’s Fakir D’Oudairies – runner-up to Notebook last time – are the other hopefuls.
Duca De Thaix heads a field of 16 runners for the Matheson Handicap Chase, while 23 are set to go to post for the similarly competitive Ladbrokes Hurdle.
The concluding Goffs Future Stars INH Flat Race throws up a fascinating clash between O’Brien’s Eric Bloodaxe and the Mullins-trained Appreciate It.