Strong field for fiercely competitive Leopardstown handicap

Wednesday, Jul 11 2018

Joe Tuite returns to his homeland to try and plunder some of the many euros on offer when Surrey Hope runs in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF “Nasrullah” Handicap at Leopardstown on Thursday.

The four-year-old has won three of his 10 races to date and was last seen finishing in mid-division behind David Marnane’s Settle For Bay in the Royal Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot.

Tuite, based in Lambourn, will be having just his second runner in Ireland in the last five years.

He is taking on the might of Aidan O’Brien who runs the three-year-old Lucius Tiberius.

The Camelot colt is not one of the stars of Ballydoyle but was a clear-cut winner of a handicap last time out which forced his rating up enough to enable him to run in this 100,000 euro contest.

Ger Lyons runs the veteran Tennessee Wildcat, but Colin Keane has chosen stablemate Mawaany.

In a wide-open race, as you would expect for the money on offer, several others have chances including Jessica Harrington’s The King, John Oxx’s Agent Zigzag and Mick Halford’s top-weight Massif Central.

Jim Bolger has significantly lowered Theobald’s sights for the Claydon Hotel Leopardstown Handicap.

Having run in both the Guineas and the Derby this season, he should find this level more to his liking.

Joseph O’Brien’s Medal Of Honour may be the one to beat.

The younger O’Brien might also be celebrating after Tremendous Leap, in first-time blinkers, runs in the “Booka Brass Band” Handicap.

Pursuit Of Magic looks an interesting newcomer for Jessica Harrington in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Fillies Maiden.

By Kingman out of a French listed winner, she is likely to be popular in the market, but Henry de Bromhead also fields a likely type in Sea Of Joy, by Galileo.

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