Irish hope Crosshue Boy and Sean Flanagan can land the Scottish Grand National at Ayr
The Irish cleaned up in last Saturday’s Grand National at Aintree and it looks like the Scottish version of the race will also be heading across the Irish Sea with CROSSHUE BOY (Ayr, nap, 3.35).
Course winning form is always a bonus when seeking out a potential winner but this afternoon a proven record of going well on relatively quick ground will arguably be even more significant with the sun shining in the west of Scotland.
Crosshue Boy, trained by Sean Doyle in County Wexford, ticks both boxes courtesy of a useful win in the J & D Pierce Novices’ Handicap Chase on this day, 12 months ago. He beat Scottish National ante-post favourite Dingo Dollar on that occasion by a length. The selection is 7lb worse off with his conquered rival but the suspicion is he has a lot more to give.
Sean Doyle trained Crosshue Boy a proven record of going well on relatively quick ground
Crosshue Boy, the only Irish representative in the pack, certainly arrives at Ayr a relatively fresh horse. He has only run four times this season and three of those outings have been over hurdles, including a staying on third over an inadequate two and a half miles at Wexford just over a week ago.
His only race over fences came when 10th of 17 to Walk In The Mill in the Becher Chase at Aintree in December.
It adds up to a campaign geared around having Crosshue Boy cherry ripe for today’s challenge. The fact that leading Irish jockey Sean Flanagan has been booked for the ride is also bonus, as is the positive market move for Crosshue Boy this week.
Dingo Dollar probably deserves to be favourite. His third place to Sizing Tennessee in the Ladbrokes Trophy Chase at Newbury in December was a good effort and this has been his target for a while as well. Vintage Clouds, a first-fence faller in last Saturday’s Grand National, is back for a third run in the race having finished seventh two years ago behind Vicente and third to Joe Farrell last year. He should again play a part.
Crosspark, winner of the four-mile Eider Chase at Newcastle in February, can hit the places and best of the horses at the foot of the handicap can be Acdc.