Combine Gordon Elliott’s fiery performance with his penchant for winners at Navan, and he just might prove to be the man to follow on Sunday.
An impressive lineup of 34 winners this month, including 22 in the last two weeks, indicates how Elliott’s team is currently doing.
With 109 winners and over €1.5m in prize money already in the bag this Irish National Hunt season, Elliott is almost throwing down the kitchen sink at this weekend’s event.
There are eight hopefuls in Juran’s Saturday programme, while Rivière Dietl is one of Elliott’s doubles runners in Carlisle on Sunday.
However, 25 giant horses will go to Navan from Culentra including eight in the €100,000 premium Bar One Troytown Chase.
Elliott won four straight seasons at Troytown between 2014-2017 and last year with Run Wild Fred.
Shortly thereafter, he also stirred 37204-1 for a rare seven-timer on another Navan program, just missing out on the card.
Jack Kennedy’s Frontal Assault goes to Troytown as a pre-favourite, though Elliott’s horse will be more focused this Sunday if he lines up an hour early.
American Mike faces four opponents in the Grade III Carpet and Floor Lynch Monksfield Hurdle, a race his trainer has landed in five of the past six years.
After a busy career that was spent mostly in the shadow of Facile Vega, American Mike made his tough run to a predictably successful start at Down Royal earlier this month.
A new opponent such as the two-time Galway winner Affordale Fury is a step up again, but one American Mike seems well capable of making his move.
Sunday’s other black competition is the taped closing bumper which contains a pair of Elliott competitors.
Molly’s Mango won her last Cork start, although it is Miss Agosta who looks interesting in her first starts for Elliott and Gigginstown.
Although she was a freestyler, she found only Absolute Ideas to be very good on her only start so far in Punchestown when in the care of Mags Mullins.
Elliott applies cover for an assignment in which Miss Agusta takes 7 pounds from 40-1 Dublin Festival winner Lily du Perlais.
Last season’s Ville d’Or group had been chasing Vauban, including in the Triumph Hurdle, and he was again forced to finish second after his recent return to action in Naas behind Brazil.
No time was wasted in sending the four-year-old over the fences although with such an age allowance he makes plenty of appeal in a beginner’s chase.
Folcano is Elliot’s Representative Juran’s opening rookie chase which contains three contenders from Willie Mullins.
Paul Townend chose to join top class hurdler Minella Coconnor whose free running style can be challenging on the very test ground.
Journey With Me was behind Minella Coconnor at the Punchestown Festival but always looked like a high class stalker in waiting. He will try to emulate the success of Bob Olinger for the stable in this race a year ago.