Irish trainer Tony Martin isn’t having the most prolific of seasons on record with just five winners on the board. His recent best prior to this year was 16 winners last season but he is a very shrewd handler, and when the handbrake is off on one of his runners, it is well and truly off.
It must be hugely interesting that he sends two horses all the way to Ludlow Racecourse on Monday. It is an unusual destination for the handler who is based in Summerhill, County Meath. It is a 500-mile round trip from his yard to Ludlow Racecourse.
The first of the Martin runners is Alphonse Le Grande, who arrives here off the back of a massive run at Sligo in June when last seen, the best run he has had in a long time when finishing third over 2m2f over hurdles when well backed. He has a 5lb higher British mark to contend with here so it won’t be easy, but he’s well treated on the pick of his form.
The second and final Martin runner at Ludlow is Movie King, who shoulders top weight with amateur rider Billy Coonan doing the steering. This horse won at Down Royal in June over 2m4f and has largely been in good form since. Again, the handicapper has taken no chances whatsoever giving him a British mark of 104, but at the same time it would be no surprise if he was good enough to win off it. Coonan will take 7lb off with his valuable claim and that will be a great help.
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