A tight looking handicap but Pat Smullen's presence on board HAWA BALI was decisive for his victory here last month and could prove so again. The improving son of Royal Applause was given a superb ride by the champion jockey-elect to beat Night Glimmer with today's rival Dan Noir back in third and an 8lb rise doesn't look a problem. Leaves You Baby makes her handicap debut and is probably destined to go hurdling. She hasn't had much racing and is progressing well enough to give the selection plenty to think about but King Of Aran keeps finding one too good on Polytrack and may be a few pounds high. Dart Queen has produced two very good efforts over the C&D but she's another in the handicapper's grip at present.
King Of Aran (IRE) 7-1 (9-6) Held up towards rear, 13th into straight, headway into 4th 1f out, ran on well closing stages, just failed, 2nd of 14, hd behind Dazzle Dancer (9-8) at Dundalk 1m 4f app hcp 50-75 pol in Nov.
Dart Queen (GER) 7-1 (8-7) Chased leaders, 5th halfway, ridden in 4th 2f out, stayed on to challenge 1f out, no extra close home, 2nd of 14, nk behind Dance At Dawn (9-5) at Dundalk 1m 3f 3yo mdn stks pol in Oct.
Leaves You Baby (IRE) 2-1fav (8-11) Rear of mid-division, niggled along in 6th approaching straight, switched right and driven along early straight, 4th 1f out, kept on well and edged left under pressure inside final furlong, just failed, 2nd of 8, hd behind Zulu Principle (9-5) at Dundalk 1m 3f 3yo mdn stks pol.
Hawa Bali (IRE) 5-1 (9-7) Mid-division, some headway into 5th approaching straight, challenged and led under 2f out, soon ridden, kept on well under pressure inside final furlong, won at Dundalk 1m 3f 3yo hcp 47-65 pol in Nov beating Night Glimmer (9-11) by 1 1/2l, 14 ran.
Dan Noir (IRE) 7-1 (9-12) Tracked leaders, 5th halfway, went 3rd under 2f out, no impression on leaders from over 1f out, kept on one pace, 3rd of 14, 4 1/2l behind Hawa Bali (9-7) at Dundalk 1m 3f 3yo hcp 47-65 pol in Nov.
Viennese Whirl 16-1 (9-3) Prominent, 5th halfway, no extra entering straight, weakened, tailed off, 19th of 20, well behind Silver Shuffle (8-13) at Curragh 1m 2f app hcp 50-70 in Oct.
My Point Exactly 33-1 (8-5) Chased leaders early, lost place before halfway, no extra before straight, 19th of 22, 18l behind Leah Claire (9-10) at Leopardstown 1m 4f hcp 55-80 gf in Oct.
French Express (IRE) 14-1 (9-9) Always behind, 12th of 13, 13l behind Atlas Peak (8-12) at Dundalk 7f hcp 47-65 pol.
Ebony Cat (IRE) 10-1 (9-6) Dwelt, soon mid-division, no impression from 2f out, 10th of 16, 12l behind Golden Nugget (9-10) at Ballinrobe 1m 1f 3yo hcp 47-65 gd in Aug.
Capacity (IRE) 14-1 (9-2) Never better than mid-division, kept on one pace in straight, 7th of 14, 9l behind Hawa Bali (9-7) at Dundalk 1m 3f 3yo hcp 47-65 pol in Nov.
Endless Debate (IRE) 25-1 (8-4) Tracked leaders on inner, 3rd halfway, 2nd approaching straight, ridden and no extra 1 1/2f out, weakened final furlong, 8th of 14, 11l behind Mr Pianist (9-6) at Dundalk 1m 4f app hcp 47-65 pol in Nov.
Daybreak Skies (IRE) 25-1 (8-6) Always towards rear, last of 10, 11l behind Kenton Street (9-7) at Dundalk 7f hcp 47-65 pol.
Itamaria (IRE) 20-1 (8-5) Towards rear, kept on without threatening straight, 6th of 12, 5l behind Haveahaarth (8-12) at Dundalk 1m 3yo hcp 47-65 pol.
King Chaparral (IRE) 25-1 (8-4) Towards rear, headway in 8th over 1f out, ridden and kept on same pace final furlong, 4th of 13, 3 1/2l behind Blue Eyed Miss (8-11) at Dundalk 1m hcp 47-65 pol in Oct.