Identity Thief bids for Flyingbolt redemption following disappointing spell

Sat 18 Feb 2017

Identity Thief bids to get his career back on track in the Flyingbolt Novice Chase at Navan on Sunday.

The Grade One-winning hurdler looked destined for the top of the chasing ranks after winning his first two starts over fences at Punchestown.

However, Henry de Bromhead's charge was pulled up lame during a much-anticipated clash with Min over Christmas and only made it as far as the first fence in last month's Irish Arkle.

The seven-year-old bids to reignite his season in this Grade Three affair, with the same colours of Gigginstown House Stud also carried by Gordon Elliott's Ball D'Arc.

De Bromhead said in his Paddy Power blog: "Identity Thief lost his confidence at Leopardstown over Christmas - when he was pulled up behind Min - and his jumping was very disappointing. Confidence is a very important factor, particularly when it comes to jumping fences.

"He's on a recovery mission on Sunday, but has been schooling well at home so we're hopeful to get him back on track.

"He pulled up in the race at Christmas and unseated at the first obstacle last month at Leopardstown, so the main thing we want is a clear round.

"He jumped very well in his two chase wins at Punchestown in the early part of the season, so we need to see that again on Sunday."

Alan Fleming saddles Tully East and Enda Bolger's Ballyoisin completes the field.

The JP McManus-owned Ballyoisin missed all of 2016 through injury, but won last time out at nearby Fairyhouse.

The task facing Ballyoisin against the likes of Identity Thief is not lost on Bolger, who said: "He jumped well at Fairyhouse and came out of it well. We're looking forward to it and we think he's a shade better going left-handed as well, which is a nice thing to know.

"He's stepping up again now from his beginners chase, so he'll have to up his game again, but I think the two miles and one furlong will be up his alley, as will going left-handed - he won over hurdles at Navan - so that's two things in his favour and we're very happy with him."

Frank Berry, racing manager to McManus, added:"He won nicely the last time, but he'll do well to beat the two good horses in it (Identity Thief and Ball D'Arc).

"He's up against it. Let's hope he jumps good all the way round and comes back safe and sound."

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