Ablaze entered for two Sandown jumps races

Grand Annual Steeplechase winner Ablaze (NZ) (Raise The Flag) may attempt to extend his unbeaten run over jumps having been nominated for two races at Sandown.

Trained by Ciaron Maher and David Eustace, Ablaze is entered in both the Australian Hurdle and Australian Steeplechase on Sunday – feature races on the jumps calendar.

The Grand Annual (5500m) at Warrnambool is the longest race on the Australian calendar and Ablaze defeated Gold Medals (NZ) (Elvstroem) and Zed Em (NZ) (Zed), the previous two winners of that race, on May 5.

Gold Medals has previously returned from competing in the Grand Annual to run at Sandown in the Australian Steeplechase, finishing second in both 2018 and 2019.

Ablaze is unbeaten in four starts over jumps, winning twice over hurdles last year shortly after joining Mahar and Eustace with his last two victories being over the bigger jumps.

The Australian Hurdle has attracted 14 nominations and the steeplechase 11 and with Ablaze being the highest-rated jumper entered for both races will be allocated topweight when weights are declared on Wednesday.

With jumps racing primarily conducted on country tracks, Sunday’s meeting which has three races programmed, is one of only two meetings to hold jumps races in the city area.

The other is the Grand National Hurdle meeting, also at Sandown, in August.

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