Horse Racing tips: Ruby Walsh’s 10 to follow from Willie Mullins’ yard for 2020/21

Ruby gazes into his crystal ball for the new jumps season.

Ruby-Walsh-Billaway

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*Odds quoted on the widget are Future Racing / Antepost prices which means that if your selection does not run in the race for whatever reason – you will lose your stake under traditional Antepost rules.

1. CHACUN POUR SOI

Everything went right for him last season apart from the stone bruise he got on the morning of the Queen Mother Champion Chase & then the season finished. It was very disappointing for him. Chacun Pour Soi was beaten by A Plus Tard in the Paddy’s Rewards Club Chase at Leopardstown’s Christmas meeting but that was his first run of the season and he made up for that by beating Min at the Dublin Racing festival. He’s been a two miler but that’s not to say that he wouldn’t step up to 2m 4f. I’m not sure where he’ll start off but he still has all the ability and all the potential in the world and we’re really looking forward to him.

2. AL BOUM PHOTO

He’s an obvious one as he’s a dual Cheltenham Gold Cup winner and to me, he sets the standard. All roads will lead to bidding for a third win at Cheltenham next March and it’s probably safe to say that he’ll stick to the same plan as the last two years and start off in Tramore on New Years’ Day. Al Boum Photo’s win in last season’s Cheltenham Gold Cup was different to the year before as it was a slow pace and Paul Townend took it up a long way from home, which ended up being the winning of the race. The year before, he had to come off a strong gallop set by Native River and Might Bite so he has done it both ways. He’s very versatile, he’s the reigning champion, he’s rock solid and I haven’t seen one who is going to de-thrown him.

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Al Boum Photo Gold Cup 2021 (Antepost)

3. MONKFISH

He won a really good Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle as Latest Exhibition, Fury Road & Thyme Hill were all there with him jumping the last, but Monkfish came out on top. He’d gone to Cheltenham having won at Thurles but Paul had no doubt about how good he was heading into the Albert Bartlett. He’s a massive horse, who’s a great jumper, and he now goes chasing. He looks to have the RSA Chase written all over him and he’s matured physically. He looks a lot stronger now so he could be anything.

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Monkfish RSA Chase 2021 (Antepost)

4. THE BIG GETAWAY

He’s another for the staying novice chase division but he probably has a bit more speed than Monkfish. He was no match for Envoi Allen in the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle but no horse was. Yet, he ran a fine race to finish third. He’s got a huge cruising speed and fences are going to suit him.

Yes, The Big Getaway has ground to make up on Envoi Allen but somebody has to try and make ground up on him and Willie won’t be afraid of taking him on. Plenty of things can change from last March and who knows, maybe Envoi Allen isn’t going to be the horse that we all think he is or maybe he’s improved again and he’ll be unbeatable this season.

Like Monkish, we think this lad is a Grade 1 horse.

WillieMullinsMar18c

5. APPRECIATE IT

I thought he’d win the Champion Bumper last season but he ran into a faster horse in Ferny Hollow. He won the 2m 4f bumper at Leopardstown’s Christmas meeting but he dropped back to 2m to win the bumper at the Dublin Racing Festival. Heading into that, Patrick was in no doubt that Appreciate It had the speed for 2m and how right he was. He has pace and stamina and he’s a great jumper. To me, he’d look an ideal candidate for the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle.

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Appreciate It Ballymore Novices Hurdle 2021 (Antepost)

6. FERNY HOLLOW

He’s one horse who has matured a lot since last season and he’s another who we’re excited about heading into the novice hurdle division. Last season, he was a very free-going sort and he probably beat himself in the bumper at Fairyhouse on Hatton’s Grace day. He made up for that the next time and he had matured enough to win the Champion Bumper after that.

Ferny Hollow looks to have matured even more and going to Cheltenham last year has helped him do that. You need to stay to win a Supreme Novices’ Hurdle and this lad does that, as well as having plenty of speed. He’s a much more manageable horse now and to me, he’s a real two-mile hurdler.

7. SAINT ROI

He’s one horse we’ve already seen this season and he’s already done what we were hoping he’d do at Tipperary a couple of weeks ago. I know the conditions of the race favoured him, but it was very early for Willie to be running one of his big guns so it was good to see him do what he did.

He got beaten at Clonmel on his first run for Willie, when we couldn’t see him getting beaten, but he bounced back at Tramore and he then won the County Hurdle in really good fashion. We’re hoping that Saint Roi develops into a Champion Hurdle contender but he’ll need to improve considerably to do so. There’s a hurdle for second season novices at Down Royal at the end of the month, which might suit him, and if he goes there, he might take on Abracababras. That’ll be a big step up but whether he goes there or not, we’ll wait and see.

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Saint Roi Champion Hurdle 2021 (Antepost)

8. KLASSICAL DREAM

It’s easy to become a forgotten horse in National Hunt racing and Klassical Dream is very much that. Last season was a complete write-off for him and it’s just best to put a line through those two runs.

He now goes chasing and it might have been a case last season that he just wasn’t quick enough for those hurdle races. Fences will suit him better as he’s a strong galloper and he was good enough to win a Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. I’d say there’s plenty of improvement in him when he goes over fences.

He could be up there with the best of our two mile novice chasers.

9. BURNING VICTORY

There’s little doubt that she would have finished a good second to Goshen in the Triumph Hurdle if he hadn’t have fallen at the last, and there would have been no shame in that. She’d won on her first start for us at Fairyhouse and whatever way you look at it – even if she was a fortunate winner of the Triumph Hurdle – it was some performance as it was just her second start over hurdles.

Physically, Burning Victory looks to have improved a lot and the potential for more improvement in her racing is  huge. At this stage, the Mares Hurdle at Cheltenham would be her ultimate target. Concertista is another who will have the Mares Hurdle as her main target.

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Burning Victory Mares Hurdle 2021 (Antepost)

10. BENIE DES DIEUX

She is back in training and looking great. With the new Mrs Paddy Power Mares Chase now part of the Cheltenham festival, the door is back open for her to go over fences. She was very good over fences a few seasons back but she’s also won a French Champion Hurdle so we’ll have to wait and see what route Willie decides to go with her. We also have Salsaretta and Elimay, who’s unbeaten in two starts over fences, so we have plenty of firepower in the mares chase division.

If Willie was to go chasing with ‘Benie’, she would undoubtedly set the standard but we’ll have to wait and see.

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Benie Des Dieux Mares Chase 2021 (Antepost)

 

*Odds quoted on the widget are Future Racing / Antepost prices which means that if your selection does not run in the race for whatever reason – you will lose your stake under traditional Antepost rules.

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