5-1 NAP MAKES IT SIX OUT OF SEVEN: Shamrock took his naps sequence to six out of seven with Railway Dillon (WON 5-1), the 16-lengths winner at Wetherby yesteday.

SECOND FEBRUARY SEQUENCE: The only blip was a hot favourite that ran below par and was third on Monday, so his last seven naps finished 1111131. At the start of the month he had a sequence of 11P1110131 (see Archive for 10 February).

Follow me up to Carlow. That horse at the top of the handicap hurdle (4.10) at Punchestown today could be aptly named.

Though an each-way bet in itself, despite the top weight – he won so well at Down Royal – it’s the Carlow magician I had in mind.

I’m talking, of course, about Co Carlow trainer Willie Mullins, who has totally vanquished the rest of our stables in a memorable season.

There are two months to go, with the big prizes of Cheltenham and Aintree ahead, but Mullins has already amassed 2,000,000 euros with a huge 113 winners at an eye-opening 31% strike rate.

I don’t think there’s any stopping him today with Cousin Vinny (2.00) and Maggie Connolly (2.30) likely to land a double for Ruby Walsh.

It’s nearly four years now since Cousin Vinny won the Cheltenham bumper and followed up at Punchestown but he’s likely to be a hot favourite here, despite a long absence and the presence of Grade-1 winner Won In The Dark, who took this race in 2010.

Noel Meade, second in the trainers’ table, should pull something back with Ange Blanc (4.45) if the vibes are to be believed.

Another each-way in the handicap hurdle is Up The Girls (4.10) at around 10.0 on Betdaq, stepping up in trip under the jockey with the best form in the 14 days.

NAP: Cousin Vinny (2.00 Punchestown)
NEXT BEST: Maggie Connolly (2.30 Punchestown)
EACH WAY: Followmeuptocarlow and Up The Girls (4.10 Punchestown)
DAQ TRIO: Cousin Vinny (2.00 Punchestown), Maggie Connolly (2.30 Punchestown), Ange Blanc (4.45 Punchestown)

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