• Racing/
  • Jezki Faces Champions Test

Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m

  • (4yo+, 2m, Class 1, 9 runners)
  • Winner €52,000 2nd €15,200 3rd €7,200 4th €2,400
  • Going: Soft, Yielding to Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 3m 57.70s
  • Off time: 14:00:22
Full result
Result 14:00 Leopardstown
Pos Horse Distance/th> Odds
1st 7 Jezki 11/8f
2nd 4 Waaheb 6 3/1
3rd 1 Bright New Dawn 2 9/1
  • Last Updated: December 26 2012, 16:44 GMT

Jessica Harrington's Jezki aims to make it four wins from as many starts over hurdles in a thrilling Paddy Power Future Champions Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown on Thursday.

Jessica Harrington: Big test for her rising star
Jessica Harrington: Big test for her rising star

A smart horse in the bumper sphere, the four-year-old has enjoyed an excellent start to his career over obstacles with a couple of victories at Navan followed up with his first Grade One haul in the Royal Bond Novice Hurdle at Fairyhouse.

He faces some new challengers on his next start at the highest level, but Harrington is hoping for the same result.

"He's all set and has done all his work nicely since Fairyhouse," said the trainer.

"He goes there in good form and hopefully he has a good chance.

"He's got to go and do it again and we'll see what takes him on.

"The ground should be better than it was in Fairyhouse and I'm sure he'll handle it fine."

The betting suggests Jezki's biggest threat could be the Dermot Weld-trained Waaheb.

He missed the whole of last season with injury but could not have been more impressive on his hurdling bow at Fairyhouse in October.

Frank Berry, racing manager for Waaheb's owner JP McManus, said: "Dermot is very happy with him at home. He's in good form and did well on his first run over hurdles.

"This is a step up for him, so we'll see what happens. Hopefully they don't get too much more rain as ideally he wouldn't want the ground any softer than it is."

Henry de Bromhead's Sizing Rio is another horse defending an unbeaten record over hurdles having won at Fairyhouse and Navan already this season.

"He's in good form and I was very happy with his last run, so we'll step him up (in class) and see how he handles it," said the trainer.

"He'll handle the ground. I think he'll be a better horse on better ground, but he does handle the softer ground."

Leading owners Gigginstown House Stud have two runners in the Dessie Hughes-trained Bright New Dawn and Ally Cascade from Noel Meade's yard.

Retained rider Davy Russell has opted to ride Bright New Dawn, but Meade is keen on the chances of his Thurles scorer.

"We think he's a nice horse. He goes well at home and won well the last day.

"Davy (Russell) has obviously decided to ride the other horse, but I don't think there is a whole lot between them looking at the form.

"Our horse will handle the ground I think, so we're hopeful of a big run."

A nine-runner field is completed by Rory O'Moore, Run With The Wind, Blacklough and Wingtips.