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Lopes Gold

Lopes Gold was very unlucky not to make a winning start to her career at Naas where she came home in second place, less then a length behind a smart filly from Jim Bolger's yard. Jessica Harrington's runner was short of room in the closing stages which denied her a clear run. Connections will be very pleased with the way their horse fared and if she steps up from that outing, she has a great chance of going once place better in the opener at Navan.

Albion Square

Admiraloftheblue represents the strong Ballydoyle team in this maiden contest and you always have to respect any runner from Aidan O'Brien's yard. However, preference should be given to Albion Square who is having the third run of his career. This two-year-old showed a big improvement from his debut outing when he finished second over this C&D earlier this month. The horse which beat him that day is now in Group company so it was a really good performance. A repeat of that run should be enough for him to break his maiden.


This maiden is a big step up in trip for Aidan O'Brien's colt Malawi but it may be exactly what the son of Galileo needs. The Ballydoyle horse was idle at times on his debut at Dundalk over 1m2f where he finished second. Much more can be expected from the well-bred horse this time, and with cheekpieces on for the first time, Seamie Heffernan can switch his horse off until the closing stages, where hopefully he will have too much class for his rivals.

Belmont Avenue

Belmont Avenue showed very little in his two starts last year as a two-year-old. However, he has made the perfect start to his three-year-old campaign, prevailing on his opening outing of the season at Dundalk (1m). Joseph O'Brien's runner kept on well in the closing stages of that contest so there is likely to be much more to come. He is switching back to turf again, but that should not be a problem for him. The danger is obviously Charterhouse but his form has been below his best recently so he is worth opposing.

About Navan Racecourse

Navan Novice Hurdle Day

The last Irish Graded race before Christmas, the Navan Novice Hurdle, known as BetVictor Make Your Best Bet Novice Hurdle for sponsorship reasons this year has returned to Closutton more times than not in the past decade.

Willie Mullins has taken the Grade 2 prize six times since 2011, with horses such as Boston Bob, Briar Hill, and most recently, with Easy Game in 2018.

The spoils last year went to Paul Nolan's Latest Exhibition who went on to just be beaten in the Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.

As well as the feature race over 2m4f, there is a decent supporting card at the County Meath venue.

The Races

11:30 - Rated Novice Chase (4YO plus) 2m 4f

12:00 - Happy Christmas And New Year To All Our Members Handicap Chase (0-109) (4YO plus) 2m 4f

12:30 - Irish Stallion Owners EBF Maiden Hurdle (4YO plus) 2m

13:00 - Mervyn Gray Construction Maiden Hurdle (4YO plus) 2m 4f

13:35 - BetVictor Make Your Best Bet Novice Hurdle (Grade 2) (Class 1) (4YO plus) 2m 4f

14:10 - Betvictor Gamble Responsibly Tara Handicap Hurdle (grade B) (4YO plus) 2m 4f

14:45 - Simonstown Handicap Hurdle (80-95) (4YO plus) 2m 4f

15:20 - Betvictor Flash Cashback 'future Champions' Flat Race (listed) (Class 1) (4YO to 7YO) 2m

About Navan Racecourse

Widely considered to be one of the fairest national hunt tracks in Ireland, Navan is home to a plethora of Grade 2 contests, with many acting as ideal stepping stones to the very top echelons of the sport.

It’s a similar picture on the flat, with the Group 3 Vintage Crop Stakes often seeing potential Ascot Gold Cup horses test their staying power, with the likes of four-time Gold Cup winner Yeats and Fame and Glory both landing the race on more than one occasion.

Proudstown RoadCounty MeathIreland
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