2:55 QTS Scottish Champion Hurdle (Grade 2)
Brelade 1.5 pts each way 16/1 (Sky Bet, William Hill)
Last week’s set of Grand National heroes Gordon Elliott and Davy Russell team up with an extremely significant runner at Ayr. The reason this runner is so significant is the fact that Gordon Elliott is throwing the proverbial kitchen sink at the Irish Trainers Championship. As a result, many of his stars of refrained from crossing the Irish Channel since Cheltenham. Brelade does make the trip however and this spring ground will be the making of him. Both his wins in Ireland have come on decent ground in bumper and maiden hurdle company. Last season, Brelade was just shy of Grade 1 class over hurdles, with many excellent efforts in the Future Champions Novice Hurdle and Deloitte Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown and also the Neptune (now Ballymore) Novice Hurdle at Cheltenham. Brelade then bumped into the likes of Footpad and Petit Mouchair over fences before that venture was shelved in December. Brelade’s County Hurdle effort on his first hurdles start since last season was most encouraging, finished a respectable seventh, only beaten twelve lengths. The desperate conditions at Cork offered Brelade no favours last time out but a return to a decent sized field and good ground could be the key to significant improvement, taking the early price here is strongly advised. Connections fancy this to run a big race.