Killarney preview: Samcro seeks to get back on track

Sun 9 May 2021
 Samcro has been pulled up hin his past two races
Samcro has been pulled up hin his past two races

Samcro headlines a classy field in the An Riocht Chase at Killarney on Monday.

A dual Cheltenham Festival winner in his pomp, the nine-year-old arrives on a retrieval mission – having pulled up on his two most recent outings, including in the Ryanair Chase last time.

If connections were hoping for a relatively straightforward confidence booster before the Galway Plate, they may have been surprised by the quality they are set to come up against in this two-and-a-half-mile Grade Three.

Willie Mullins has declared Cilaos Emery, Easy Game, Robin Des Foret and Unexcepted – while Peter Fahey’s summer specialist Peregrine Run, winner of the race for the last two years, is also in opposition.

“For a so-called ‘summer race’, it is very good,” said Eddie O’Leary, racing manager for Gigginstown House Stud who own Samcro.

“We’re hoping he’s over the sinus problem he had at Cheltenham – he had very bad sinuses there, which might explain how he ran. That was a very bad run there, but he was suffering.

“We’re hoping he’ll be a different proposition, but he has got a bit to prove now. What happens next I suppose depends on how he runs, but the Galway Plate would be something we’d look at.

“He’s in during the summer because it’s been very hard to get a clear run with him through the winter. Hopefully he’s in better shape during the summer.”

Also sporting the Gigginstown colours is Noel Meade’s Daly Tiger, who will be in receipt of 10lb from Samcro.

“Daly Tiger, on the official ratings, should finish in front of him with the weight he’s getting,” added O’Leary.

“He won’t be running in the summer, he’ll go on his holidays after this.”

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