Steamboat powers Elliott's twin assault on feature
Orchard Thieves Handicap Hurdle | 2m3f | 4yo+ | ATR
The Gordon Elliott-trained Steamboat Quay may have a 244-day absence to overcome, but the JP McManus-owned gelding shaped with real promise when he was second at Fairyhouse back in October and looks to have leading claims as he bids to get off the mark under Mark Walsh.
Elliott also runs Swordfight, who has been disappointing to date, and the Gigginstown House Stud-owned gelding will be partnered by Bryan Cooper.
John Nicholson will be hoping that Swift will be able to live up to her name. The Beneficial mare landed a competitive handicap hurdle at Listowel just four days ago and will be attempting to back up that performance by recording her second win in less than a week.
What they say
Gordon Elliott, trainer of Swordfight and Steamboat Quay
Steamboat Quay ran well on his latest run at Fairyhouse back in October and we hope he can run a nice race for us again. Swordfight has been a little bit disappointing on his last couple of starts so we're putting the blinkers on him for this.
Ray Hackett, trainer of Tidy Zag
He won very well at Limerick two starts back but he was in the mood that day and the ground came up right for him. It was just too quick for him at Tipperary when he didn't perform last time. He’s crying out for rain and it’s looking like he will get his favoured conditions. He’s not one you could put a whole pile of faith in but if he's enjoying himself early in the race, I could see him running very well.
Colin Bowe, trainer of Sweet Home Chicago
He had a lovely run the last day and with normal improvement he should be thereabouts. He won't mind the ground and I don't see any reason why he shouldn't have a very good each-way chance.
Tom Foley, trainer of Talsara
I would say the ground is gone against us at this stage. She's in great form but, especially over this trip, I think the ground would just stretch her out a bit. We will see closer to the race but I have to say it's a big worry. I'm just hoping it doesn't keep raining.
John Nicholson, trainer of Swift
I rode her out on Thursday morning and she felt great so we said we'd take a chance by running her back quickly after her Listowel win. She's funny in that some days she can switch off lovely and other days she doesn’t. If she switches off early, I think she'll have a right chance of following up. She won on this kind of ground before so I don’t see that being any trouble to her.