Shannon Soul is well suited to Dundalk track

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There is a good card at Dundalk under the lights in Ireland this evening beginning with a competitive 17-runner handicap over a mile.

Recent course winner Dance Alone is sure to have his supporters having won on his first start over 7f here last week. The grey was campaigned exclusively over sprint distances when trained by Kevin Ryan in Britain and he is not certain to appreciate the step up to a mile for the first time tonight.

I am going to take a chance on the well-being of Shannon Soul who won his maiden over tonight’s C&D and invariably runs his race at Dundalk. The selection has been off the track since July but is trained by a shred operator in Mick Halford and regular pilot Shane Foley takes the mount.

In the Nursery Eagle Spirit (5.0) is fitted with cheek-pieces for the first having been off the track since finishing down the field in the Group 2 Beresford Stakes back in September on heavy ground.

Trained by Joseph O’Brien the hope is that the colt will have been freshened up since his break. Joseph’s brother Donnacha takes off a valuable 3lbs and he is well drawn in one for someone who made all when winning his maiden at Leopardstown over a mile back in June.

A market move for Johnny Murtagh’s newcomer Maximus Daia would be worth noting in the 7f Maiden but November Tale (5.30) was well-backed when fourth over C&D earlier in the month and if she can get out of the stalls on terms tonight she must go close. Jockey Colin Keane is likely to want to get her out and racing prominently and she certainly came home well last time.

In the second division of the Maiden Sir Danilo nearly caused a 66/1 shock when just touched off in a similar contest last time and won’t be anything like those odds this evening. Marginal preference, however, is for the more experienced Thomas O’Malley who has been running on over 7f in recent starts suggesting a step back up in trip will suit on tonight’s polytrack surface.

Chestnut Fire is in cracking form of late but the handicapper has had his say and tonight’s 7f trip might just be on the sharp side. Marginal preference is for Ishebayorgrey (6.30) who run a cracker from a wide draw last time and gets the vote in an ultra-competitive heat.

Winning hurdler Zanjabeel is fitted with blinkers for the first time in the 12f maiden and must go close and it is worth noting what the market makes of the chances of River Run who has left Willie Mullins since disappointing over timber back in September.

The vote goes to Train Time (7.00) who has hinted that a return to tonight’s mile-and-a-half trip will suit the daughter of Rail Link. Wayne Lordan takes over in the plate and the filly was doing all her best work late when runner up on her penultimate start.

Aurellia (7.30) was a little keen and might not have got home over 12f here last time and this drop back in trip should suit this lightly-raced filly on her handicap debut.

In the finale the 10lbs claim of Rossa Ryan will come in very handy for Hes Our Music (8.00) who can race off a mark 3lbs lower than when third over a mile here last time. The selection is an eight-time course winner (six times over tonight’s extended 10f trip) and has a good draw in stall two for a confirmed front-runner.

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