Timeform Irish SmartPlays: Wednesday, May 17
Townshend confirmed the promise of his chasing debut when landing the odds in great style at Naas in March, winning as he liked, and he was yet to be asked for an effort when falling in the Grade 1 Ryanair Novice Chase over C&D last month, too far out to suggest the outcome. He remains with plenty of potential in this sphere and this looks a good opening for him. Gordon Elliott's Potters Point was asked a big question pitched into a competitive handicap chase on just his second start last time, but will find this task much easier, and looks a big danger to the favourite.
Stonehall Jack went like the best horse at the weights when only narrowly denied at Roscommon earlier this month, and probably should have won, paying late on for putting his rivals to the sword some way out (a couple of late errors not helping, either). There's no doubt that he's in top form at present and a subsequent 2 lb rise shouldn't pose a problem, so with the majority of this field having something to prove, he looks a solid proposition. Mtada Supreme arrives in better form than most of the others and Prosperity Square looks well treated if the refitting of headgear works.
Knockraha King was first past the post at Tipperary last week but was subsequently demoted for causing interference to the runner-up. He proved better than ever back up in trip, making all the running, but jumping none too fluently at times, hanging right on the run-in which caused him to lose the race in the stewards room. Adrian Maguire's gelding is able to race off the same mark here and is fancied to gain quick compensation in what looks a competitive handicap. Nobody Home continues to progress gradually and is entitled to be thereabouts, while Billy Flight is another to consider now making his handicap debut up in trip.
Timeform Irish SmartPlays:
(All from Punchestown)
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