14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Amnesty back at LeopardstownHeadlines
Weapon's Amnesty

Connections of Weapon's Amnesty have warned the 2010 RSA chase winner will "need the race badly" on his return to action from over 1000 days off the track in the Christmas Hurdle on Friday.

Trainer Charles Byrnes has had his patience tested by the now nine-year-old, who when he was last seen had the chasing world at his feet.

He also held an entry in the Lexus Chase but in testing ground it is not surprising that he reappears over timber at Leopardstown.

Weapon's Amnesty was no mug in that sphere, either, winning the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle back in 2009.

"It's a nice race to start him back in. We didn't want to run him in the Lexus and this is a better starting point for him. It will be nice to get him back on the track, but he will need the race badly," said Eddie O'Leary, racing manager for owners Gigginstown House stud.

Peter Fahey admits Owega Star will be up against it, but he earned his place in the line-up by winning the Tara Hurdle at Navan.

"On his last run he deserves a crack at them, but this looks a lot stronger race. I think the extra half a mile will be in his favour but he's up against the likes of Zaidpour, Voler La Vedette, Monksland and So Young. We might be dreaming a little with him but he might pick up some prize-money," said Fahey.

Noel Meade has high hopes for Monksland, who was second to Zaidpour last time out.

"He's in good form and we're meeting the same horses we met in the Hatton's Grace. We're hoping the step up to three miles will bring about a bit more improvement. He was coming home well at Fairyhouse the last day. We're hopeful," said Meade.

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