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Dublin: 12 °C Friday 20 September, 2019

Willie Mullins hoping for seventh win on home territory

In addition, Djakadam gave Ruby Walsh his only win in the race and the multiple champion jockey rides Invitation Only.

Willie Mullins (file pic).
Willie Mullins (file pic).
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

TRADITIONALLY THE FIRST big handicap chase of the year in Ireland, Thursday’s renewal of Gowran Park’s flagship Goffs Thyestes Chase has a familiar look to it with Willie Mullins and Gordon Elliott accounting for 14 of the 18 declared runners.

Gowran Park is home territory for Mullins, who has eight in the line-up for an event he has won six times, most recently with Djakadam in 2015.

Djakadam gave Ruby Walsh his only win in the race and the multiple champion jockey rides Invitation Only for owners Andrea and Graham Wylie, whose colours were carried to victory by On His Own in 2012 and 2014.

On his only previous attempt over the distance, Invitation Only was vying for the lead in a Grade 1 novice event at last year’s Punchestown festival when he was badly hampered and unseated his rider two out.

Also on the Mullins team are last year’s Grand National runner-up Pleasant Company, Irish Grand National second Isleofhopendreams, course winner Some Neck, Polidam, Pairofbrowneyes, Up For Review and Bellow Mome.

Monbeg Notorious provided Elliott with his first winner in the race a year ago when scoring by 11 lengths and returns off a 15lb higher mark as one of six runners for his trainer.

Only two horses have won back-to-back runnings of the event, which was first run in 1954, with Davy Russell’s mount attempting to emulate Wylde Hide (1995 and 1996) and Preists Leap (2008 and 2009).

There is a fine supporting card at Gowran, with Gold Cup favourite Presenting Percy making his eagerly anticipated return in the Red Mills Hurdle for Pat Kelly and Davy Russell.

With racing underway at 12.45, the ground is soft on the chase and hurdle track.

For more visit the Racing Post 

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