FOOTPAD will face a most of six rivals in Saturday’s Frank Ward Dolicitors Arkle Novice Chase at Leopardstown.
Willie Mullins’ six-year-old has been good up to now over fences and was final seen claiming Grade 1 glory over this course and distance in December.
He’s as quick as 5-Four for the Arkle Chase on the Cheltenham Pageant in March.
He faces an aesthetic subject with Mullins additionally working Bon Papa and Demi Sang.
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While Michael O’Leary’s Gigginstown House Stud is triple-handed.
Henry de Bromhead’s Petit Mouchoir, who beat Footpad when landing the Irish Champion Hurdle here 12 months ago, has been sidelined by injury since winning on his chasing debut at Punchestown in October.
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Gordon Elliott’s duo, Tombstone and Tycoon Prince, are the other contenders for Gigginstown with Ted Walsh’s Any Second Now completing the field.
Mullins and Elliott dominate the entries for the Flogas Novices’ Chase as they are responsible for nine of the 11 five-day confirmations for the contest at Leopardstown on Sunday.
Invitation Only, successful at Navan and Punchestown on his last two starts, heads Mullins’ five with the Closutton handler also responsible for Rathvinden, Al Boum Photo, Bon Papa and Koshari.
Sutton Place tops the Elliott four backed up by Dounikos, The Storyteller and Tombstone.
Henry De Bromhead’s Monalee, a faller at the 10th fence in the Grade 1 Neville Hotels Novice Chase at Leopardstown over Christmas when sent off the evens favourite, could attempt to make amends.
The Noel Meade-trained Snow Falcon, a winner over this two miles and five furlongs last month, makes up the entry.