It’s nice to be back and the jump action returns on day three of the Galway Festival. They normally have mixed cards on the week but, quite rightly, they wanted to limit the number of jockeys at the track through the week so it’s just jumping for the next three days.
It will be strange riding at a meeting like this behind closed doors as there is normally an electric atmosphere. I guess we jockeys will really notice it if we ride a winner as returning in silence will be weird. Anyway, it is what it is and it’s great that a prestigious meeting like this is going ahead.
I guess the best place to start this blog before I discuss my chances is with the news that Presenting Percy has left Pat Kelly’s yard to join Gordon Elliott.
It’s always difficult when horses change stables and Pat did a terrific job with this fella over the years. We had some wonderful days including a couple of memorable wins at the Cheltenham Festival.
Sometimes when you switch a horse it can spark some improvement and I guess that must be behind Philip’s (Reynolds) thinking. Anyway, he has gone on record this week saying that he and Pat remain friends and that’s great news. Fingers crossed we can have some more great days with Presenting Percy.
THE VERY MAN (4.45pm)
Only the six runners for the opening novice hurdle where I ride The Very Man for Gordon (Elliott). I finished a neck behind him the last day at Roscommon and he continues in decent form – that’s three wins on the bounce now. He has to shoulder a fair penalty though for those successes and that makes life a bit tougher against some nice sorts. Willie Mullins’ Getaway Gorgeous looks a solid threat.
TALK OF THE TOWN (5.45pm)
Next up I ride Talk Of The Town, again for Gordon, on his hurdling debut. He won his bumper in good fashion last time and is always a horse we’ve thought a bit of. This is a tough place to make your hurdling bow though, but hopefully he will go nicely.
YOUNG TURK (6.15pm)
Young Turk has his first run for us here having come from Joseph’s (O’Brien) so we are still learning a bit about him. He hasn’t shown much since winning at Tipperary a couple of years ago, so hopefully a change of scenery will spark him back into life.
GALVIN (6.45pm – Galway Plate)
The big race of the day, if not the meeting, is the Galway Plate and this year’s race looks as good as ever. I’m delighted to have been asked to ride Galvin (pictured below) who was impressive when warming up for this at Killarney a few weeks back. That was obviously only a small field affair, and this represents a real different test. However, he has that big field experience having finished second in the big novice handicap at the Cheltenham Festival this year so that will stand him in good stead. There are plenty of horses I’d fear as this always attracts some classy types. Royal Rendezvous looks on a fair mark for the Mullins team, while Spyglass Hill and Rachael Blackmore look leading contenders too.
AVENIR D’UNE VIE (7.15pm)
My final ride of the evening is Avenir D’Une Vie who is on the comeback trail having burst a blood vessel last time. If you can forgive him that run and he returns to the form he was in earlier in the year he would be a leading player here.
If you have a question for Davy drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll try and include in the next blog…