sport

Mallowney team eye graded glory

Tim Doyle is keen to test Mallowney at a higher level after an impressive performance at Naas on Sunday.

The Oscar gelding proved too strong for the well-regarded Ned Buntline in the two-mile novice chase at the Kildare venue and impressed many with his jumping.

Doyle's charge was a big improver over hurdles last season, but the Thurles handler has always felt his future lay over fences.

The Grade One Frank Ward Solicitors Arkle Novice Chase at Leopardstown on January 26 or the Grade Two Flyingbolt at Navan on February 16 are the two races in contention for the eight-year-old.

"I was delighted with him. He jumped well and travelled well. He's come out of the race A1," said Doyle

"He's in the Arkle at Leopardstown and nearer the time we'll look at that. He'll step up in grade now and the Flyingbolt at Navan is another possibility.

"The way he jumps, I'd say we'll stay at two miles with him. He does stay two and a half miles, but even over hurdles I should probably have stuck to two miles with him.

"He seems to go on any ground. It's just a question of finding his level now and seeing how good he is."