Punchestown Festival News: Bob Olinger looking to sparkle at three miles

Bob Olinger was a fortunate winner of the Turners' at Cheltenham but clearly has real ability and trainer Henry De Bromhead is hoping the step up to three miles at Punchestown will freshen him up.

Bob Olinger sounds similar to a famous Champagne brand and his trainer Henry De Bromhead is hoping to find the pop as he steps his charge up to three miles at Punchestown on Tuesday, April 26.

The seven-year-old is chasing a seven-timer but was a fortunate winner of the Turners' at Cheltenham with Galopin Des Champs falling and handing Bob Olinger the race.

Now De Bromhead is pushing Bob Olinger on to three miles in a bid to put some pep in his step in the Dooley Insurance Group Champion Novice Chase.

Jockey Rachael Blackmore and handler De Bromhead both thought something was amiss at Cheltenham with Bob Olinger sent for a raft of tests which showed up a muscle issue.

"I think it's a logical progression to go to three miles with Bob," De Bromhead said. "He seems really well again. Obviously, it was great to win but he was disappointing in Cheltenham in terms of the level of his performance, but it seems good now and we're happy with him. We'll see where we go after learning more on Tuesday.

"He definitely wasn't right in Cheltenham. Definitely. He had this torn muscle. It wasn't bad but it was definitely torn and it probably ties in. Rachael said he made a terrible noise after he jumped the sixth-last, where he twisted in the air. So it definitely didn't look like him.

"We were always going to go for the three-mile race at Punchestown and as we're happy with him now that the muscle tear has cleared up, it's all systems go."

Meanwhile, Bob Ollinger is faced up by Willie Mullins' Capodanno, who finished fourth in the Brown Advisory Novices' Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.

Alex Hales British raider Millers Bank is an interesting entry, having hosed up in the Manifesto Novices' Chase over two and a half miles at Aintree and with potential to step up with purpose.

"Aintree went brilliantly and we felt we didn't have a lot to lose coming over here," said Hales.

"I've always envisaged three miles would be his best trip, he switches off well so I don't see that being a problem. The only slight concern in the back of my mind is his best form has been on flat tracks, but to be fair that's all he's ever run on.

"It's taken 20 years to find a horse like him, so we're going to make the most of it and enjoy having our first runner over here (Punchestown). The horse has settled in fine, is eating up all OK and we're happy with where we are."

Latest news