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Lucky Max

Lucky Max is another horse who ran better than his finishing position in fourth place suggests in the Navan Handicap Hurdle on Saturday. Settled in mid-division early on by Rob James, he made good ground across the top of the track, and he moved easily into the front rank at the top of the home straight, jumping into the lead over the third last flight. But it is a long way home from there at Navan, and that factor appeared to be more in evidence than usual on the soft ground on Sunday, as a few leaders tired on the run up the hill. Lucky Max led over the second last flight, and he led over the last and until half way up the run-in, where he was caught by the winner HMS Seahorse, before losing two more places between there and the winning line.

It was still another fine run by Sean Doyle’s horse. A three-time winner for his current trainer in the early part of last season, he ran twice for Dan Skelton last spring, but he returned to the Wexford handler for the start of this season. He was impressive in winning a handicap hurdle at Cork in early January off a mark of 129, and he proved with this run that he was more than capable of his new mark in the high 130s. He stays this two-and-a-half-mile trip and, out of a half-sister to Lamool, a dual winner over two miles and five furlongs, he could get three miles. It is interesting that he holds an entry in the three-mile handicap hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival next weekend.
Navan, 21st January 2023