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PREVIEW | Ballymacad (F) at Oldcastle - Saturday

Oldcastle kickstarts the new point-to-point season and it could well be reigning champions Colin Bowe and Barry O'Neill that pick off where they left off as they have a strong hand in the opening two races.

Race 1 - Triermore Stud 4YO Mares Maiden
 
Colin Bowe could be set to pick up where he left off last season, as the reigning Champion Handler looks to have the answer to this race in DIME STORE COWGIRL.

She is already proven in the conditions having been finished a fine second at Ballingarry back in May and should follow in the footsteps of her brother Giants Table who also won a four-year-old maiden for connections.

Tintern Abbey has not been seen since finishing third in a small-field point-to-point bumper at Punchestown in March, whilst Lady Cato is another to consider.

 
Race 2 - Tattersalls Ireland 4YO Geldings Maiden

MUSIC DRIVE is from a family full of winners and his connections will be out seeking compensation here after he came down at the final fence in Tipperary last April when still holding every chance. He could prove tough to oppose on his return.

Stable companion Dont Walk Away showed promise for a long way at Kirkistown and is sure to have improved whilst Ballycamus will be appearing for a third time and has the benefit of experience.

 
Race 3 - Rea McGee Auctioneers 5YO Mares Maiden

CARLOTALIN finished a very fine third in the opening race on this card 12 months ago before finishing placed again at Toomebridge a fortnight later. She was unable to build on that in nine subsequent starts under rules, but has the advantage of recent race fitness having run three times last month.

Diana Prince is another horse looking to recapture her early form, which may leave Psalmninetyone as the main danger. She offered promise for Kieran Roche before coming down at the last in Stradbally in May.

 
Race 4 - Bective Stud 5YO Geldings Maiden
 
Placed at Ballingarry at the end of last season, COASTGUARD STATION returns to the pointing fields following a summer track campaign which culminated in his best effort when second in a maiden hurdle at Ballinrobe in August. Cheekpieces were applied on that occasion and the 102-rated hurdler could be another to make his recent race fitness count here.

Bronaghs First could be his biggest threat alongside the newcomer Calvic who hails from a stable to be respected.

 
Race 5 - Drummonds Ltd Winner of One - Novice Riders
 
A number of these have been in action on the track since last seen in pointing action, however it could still be worth siding with MORTLACH here on what would be his first run since Kirkistown in May. He may well have been no match for the above average William Tyndale on that occasion, but he won well at Dromahane earlier that month and can double up in this.

Stablemates Pegase Amour and School Lane are both experienced campaigners who both return pointing since finishing second and third respectively at Tattersalls in 2019, whilst Diegos Way, a winner at this fixture last year, Ihavent A Clue, Subset and Beyond Redemption all have place claims.

 
Race 6 - McCabes Bar & Lounge 6YO+ Maiden
 
Unusually for an older maiden, Declan Queally could run a 129-rated Grade 1-placed chaser in LORD SCHNITZEL. The eight-year-old has contested the Thyestes and races at the Cheltenham and Punchestown Festivals in the not too distant past to suggest that he would be the one to beat on just his second start for current connections.

Getaway Lodge was not beaten too far on this weekend last year when running on Good ground at Monksgrange and is the obvious danger.

 

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