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Down Royal

  • 14:35 WKD Hurdle 2m

  • (Grade 2) €50,000 added 4yo+ 5 ran
  • Winner €32,500 2nd €9,501 3rd €4,501 4th €1,501
  • Going: Good to Yielding
  • Surface: Turf
    Weighed In
  • Winning time: 4m 18.90s
  • Off time: 14:35:44

Down Royal engagement for Jessica Harrington's Jezki

Last Updated: 31/10/13 2:08pm

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Jezki: Returns to action at Down Royal

Jezki: Returns to action at Down Royal

Trainer Jessica Harrington has warned punters not to expect a fully tuned-up Jezki as the triple Grade One winner looks to give weight and a beating to five opponents in the WKD Hurdle at Down Royal on Friday.

The five-year-old was hugely impressive in winning top-level prizes at Fairyhouse and Leopardstown in the first half of last season, prompting leading owner JP McManus to snap him up prior to the Cheltenham Festival.

He acquitted himself well at Prestbury Park, finishing third behind Champagne Fever and My Tent Or Yours in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle, and signed off his season with a runway victory at Punchestown a month later.

Tony McCoy will partner Jezki for the first time in Northern Ireland on Friday and although he has to concede upwards of 8lb to each of his rivals, his rating of 161 suggests he should be capable of doing so.

Harrington said: "I've been happy with his preparation and he seems to have come back a bit strong stronger this season.

"He has to give weight away and AP is coming over to have a sit on him, which is great.

"He wouldn't be 110% wound up, but then you wouldn't expect him to be at this stage of the season.

"We're looking forward to getting him started."

Gordon Elliott saddles Flaxen Flare, winner of the Fred Winter Juvenile Hurdle at Cheltenham in March and second behind Missunited in the Galway Hurdle in August.

Elliott said: "Obviously Jezki is running, so it will be a tough ask, but it is good prize-money and we would be delighted if he could finish second or third.

"He ran a very good race to finish second in the Galway Hurdle and we have freshened him up since his last run at Leopardstown.

"He might not be as fit as we would like him to be, but he should run a good race."

Ruby Walsh teams up with old boss Paul Nicholls as Caid Du Berlais makes his first appearance since beating all bar Flaxen Flare at Cheltenham.

Courtly Conduct and Massini's Trap complete the line-up.

The other Pattern event on the seven-race card is the Grade Three EBF Lough Construction Ltd Mares Novice Hurdle.

David Kelly's Que Pasa heads the 10-strong field, with John Kiely's Kilbarry Beauty, Ken Condon's Roja Dove and the Harrington-trained Gambling Girl her biggest threats.

Harrington said: "She likes nice ground. She won her bumper, ran well in a maiden at the Curragh, and then couldn't have done any more than she did in Gowran.

"The great thing about her is I took a bit of a chance with her on the ground the last day, as really she likes nice ground.

"This is a better race, so we'll see how she goes."

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