Irish Horse Racing Tips – Punchestown Best Bets On Friday, December 31
Irish Horse Racing Tips – Friday, December 31
Friday’s Irish horse racing action comes from Punchestown, which plays host to a competitive meeting that curtails the year. Our Irish horse racing expert has identified his top bets on the cards which you can check out below.
Wingin A Prayer (12.15 Punchestown)
The best bet on the Punchestown card comes in the Tote Jackpot Is Back Handicap Chase courtesy of Jessica Harrington’s WINGIN A PRAYER.
This 6yo was an impressive winner on the card last year and looked in the process of running his best race over fences to date before taking a heavy fall two-out here last month.
He returns to handicaps here running off the same mark as last year’s winning rating of 123, and the bang in-form Jack Foley claims an invaluable 5lb off his back. Lightly raced over staying distances, if that recent tumble hasn’t left its mark he should prove a class above these rivals.
Cilaos Emery (1.20 Punchestown)
Willie Mullins has completely farmed this Tote+ Pays You More On Tote.ie Hurdle down the years, taking six of the last ten renewals, more often than not with a horse reverting to hurdles from fences. One runner who fits that bill is his CILAOS EMERY, who was a Listed winner at Thurles just last month.
The last time this 9yo was seen over timber was in the 2020 Champion Hurdle, when beaten less than 10l into fourth behind the high-class Epatante.
A repeat of anywhere near that showing should make him impossible to stop at this level, particularly at a track where he gained his sole Grade 1 victory to date.
Hide Out (2.30 Punchestown)
No obviously chucked in runner for this Adare Manor Opportunity Handicap Hurdle and that makes HIDE OUT look particularly interesting at the prices.
Philip Rothwell’s runner improved for the addition of this headgear combination when third at Wexford in May. The winner there, Trixie Mc, is now rated a stone higher, whilst the runner-up is 18lb higher in the handicap.
That run in isolation makes Hide Out look a well-handicapped horse here running off the same mark of 80, and a subsequent pulled-up effort at Tipperary looks best forgiven as it came on chase debut.
Hide Out’s only previous run here at Punchestown produced a joint career-best RPR, and therefore the return here could unlock some improvement.