The card at Fairyhouse promised a lot, and on the best Sunday yet this season – which also included the G2 Peterborough at Huntingdon – the action lived up to its billing as a host of stars descended on Fairyhouse. Vroum Vroum Mag was perhaps the biggest name to return at Fairyhouse and despite Rich Ricci acting cautiously pre-race she was sent off the warm odds-on favourite. In a cracking battle she was overturned by the 4YO filly Apple’s Jade, the ex-Mullins horse – who bounced back tremendously after just missing out in the Fighting Fifth last Saturday. As one of Mullins’ stars lost her unbeaten record, Airlie Beach continued hers in style making all, as the well fancied Peace News fell two out when moving up ominously. Coney Island upset the apple cart somewhat when landing the G1 Drinmore Novice Chase, as many of the major fancies disappointed. At Huntingdon, Josses Hill justified favouritism landing the feature race with some dominance.
12 40 LANDOFHOPEANDGLORY (J O’Brien) EVS, G3 Juvenile Hurdle, 2M, Good to Yielding
There were still plenty of questions to be answered by this ex-Ballydoyle recruit, and in some style during the 3YOs biggest test yet – he battled bravely and hurdled well to win the opener at Fairyhouse. The road to Cheltenham looks slightly clearer now, yet a host of other Ballydoyle 3YOs are yet to show out on the track. It was by far his biggest test yet, and in time Bapuame and Mega Fortune will undoubtedly boost this form, but JOB is still taking things slowly for now. Much of the chat surrounding the race is that he will be a better animal amongst better company. A hot pace will suit him down to the ground and a big race over Christmas will truly show us where he is at in terms of a shot at the Triumph. He is yet to set a foot wrong though and has done everything asked of him thus far. We have quietly followed this horse from his debut win, again at Fairyhouse, and have a feeling he could prove to be the real deal heading to Cheltenham. Sword Fighter and Housesofparliament are still to bow their heads in this form, but there must be a reason Landofhopeandglory is being campaigned the way he is, whilst they remain at home.