Sutton Place bids for Boyne
Sutton Place bids to enhance a growing reputation when he lines up in the Grade Two Ladbrokes Ireland Boyne Hurdle at Navan on Sunday.
Gordon Elliott, trainer of Sutton Place
The JP McManus-owned runner is unbeaten in four starts since his maiden hurdle debut in December 2015 and returned to action with a thoroughly impressive Grade Three win at Naas last month.
That success prompted the handicapper to raise his rating to 158 and with trainer Gordon Elliott admitting he was eyeing a long-term chase strategy, it may not be too long before he embarks on what could be a lucrative fencing career.
Frank Berry, racing manager to McManus, said: "He won very nicely the last day at Naas. He's come out of the race well. Gordon is very happy with him, so we're hoping for another good run.
"He looks a nice chasing type down the road and hopefully he'll be good enough to get by on Sunday.
"He won't be going to Cheltenham. We haven't looked further than Sunday really. There's nothing much to suit him until Easter."
In opposition to Sutton Place are eight rivals whose ratings are all between 140 and 150, three of which, De Plotting Shed, Dedigout and Taglietelle, are stablemates.
Thomas Hobson shares Sutton Place's big weight burden of 11st 8lb and his trainer Willie Mullins also sends out the Ruby Walsh-partnered Renneti, beaten last time out by returning Champion Hurdler Jezki.
Trainer Jessica Harrington, fresh from her Irish Gold Cup win last weekend with Sizing John, runs Supasundae and Ttebbob, who both gave vain chase to Sutton Place at Navan.
The line-up is completed by the Mouse Morris-trained Milsean, who is bidding to recapture his old sparkle for Gigginstown.