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Leaders Questions with Stuart Lancaster
John Duggan's Galway Races Mon...
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John Duggan's Galway Races Monday preview, tips

It's the 150th year of the Galway Races, and it's going to be a great seven days at Ballybrit.

The weather is set to be fair, the action will be competitive, the craic will be had and there will be plenty of story lines.

The only piece of advice I would give is; have fun, but stay in control, whether in the betting jungle or experiencing the nightlife. Keep your head even if others are losing theirs!

Day one is a mixed card where the going is on the good side and it's a day to ease yourself in and tread with caution if you are punting.

Willie Mullins has taken over as the king of the Galway Races in recent years and he saddles 'Authorized Art' in the opening novice hurdle at 5.20.

There has been plenty of market support for the favourite, while there has also been money for 'Rasiym' and 'Rip Rocks Paddy Ok'. The two JP McManus owned horses are friendless so far in the market. I'll be sitting the first one out.

The 5.55 is a handicap hurdle and I am selecting 'Convara' as my each way NAP this evening at a price of 10/1.

This horse, trained by Andrew Slattery, may be on an upward curve after winning a maiden hurdle at Down Royal last month before running well on the flat.

The 6.25 is a flat maiden which looks to be a battle between odds on favourite 'Inisfree' and' Shekhem', but it's not a race in which to have a bet in my book.

The 7.05 is a handicap on the flat. I put up 'Improving' on Off the Ball AM this morning and the horse has come in from 9/1 to 6/1. Drawn low, he has claims of making the frame under jockey Billy Lee and he's the each way pick.

I like two in the feature, the Connacht Hotel Q.R. Handicap, at 7.40. Yvonne Connolly was on Friday Night Racing last week on Off the Ball and she had ridden 'Neverushacon' to victory in a charity race at the Curragh the previous weekend. I watched back the highlights and the horse won very easily. A versatile campaigner, the Jessica Harrington trained horse has attracted money and is a best price of 14/1.

The other horse I like is a course and distance winner, 'Great Trango', who will have the assistance of crack jockey Jamie Codd in this amateur derby. He can also be supported at 14/1. Favourite Mr Adjudicator is a class horse, but he is too short for me at the head of the betting.

The 8.10 is a trappy handicap in which I will be keeping my powder dry, but there has been significant market support for 'Building Bridges', another Harrington inmate. This horse has moved from 15/2 into favouritism at 9/2.

A bumper concludes the card at 8.40, and while the Joseph O'Brien trained 'Risk Factor' may be the most likely winner and is a 5/4 jolly, there is also confidence behind the Willie Mullins runner, 'Think Positive'.

So I recommend a virtual €10 on the following:

5.55 - €2 each way on Convara at 10/1 (advertised at 12/1 on Off the Ball AM)

7.05 - €1 each way on Improving at 6/1 (advertised at 9/1 on Off the Ball AM)

7.40 - €1 each way on Neverushacon at 14/1 and €1 each way on Great Trango at 14/1

Please gamble responsibly at the Galway Races and good luck!

 

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