The once hugely exciting prospect Malone Road makes his first competitive start in close to two years at Ballinrobe on Monday evening.
Bought for £325,000 and running in the famous Cheveley Park Stud colours, he was purchased after landing an Irish point-to-point in the spring of 2018 where he looked an absolute monster.
Bets down the pan
The well bred Kalanisi gelding was a short price in all of the Cheltenham Festival ante-post markets and looked a horse destined to go right to the very top of the pecking order after successive bumper wins for Gordon Elliott at Down Royal and Punchestown.
In his Punchestown win, he defeated Mt Leinster (2nd) by more than eight lengths, a horse who has since been placed in Grade 1 company.
The news that an injury ruled Malone Road out for the remainder of the campaign was a bitter blow to many a punter and he also missed the whole of last season.
Brilliant news for the Mayo track
However, he returns from an absence of 631 days at Ballinrobe on Monday, running in the Broderick’s Electrical Maiden Hurdle.
Will he win? It is a weak enough race but both fitness and current ability have to be placed on trust given the length of time he has been off the track.
Cheveley Park’s managing director, Chris Richardson, said: “He’s had a few issues, but he has already shown he has the ability.
“We’ve given him the time and it will be good to see him back on the racecourse.”
Leading amateur Jamie Codd is Malone Road’s usual partner but he will be ridden by Keith Donoghue on this occasion.