Cheltenham Tips: Ruby Walsh’s Arkle Chase picks include a 7/1 shout

Ruby likes El Fabiolo to follow up at Cheltenham next month but wouldn't discount Dysart Dynamo.


Ruby’s Arkle Chase tips:

El Fabiolo
Dysart Dynamo (each-way)

The Cheltenham Festival 2023 is edging ever closer and, with the off slowly looming in to view, we’ve got jump jockey icon turned tactical guru Ruby Walsh and top pundit Rory Delargy with us every week to hopefully get you more bang for your buck.

The second race on day one of the 2023 Festival is the Arkle Chase and the lads have been looking at the markets to hopefully send you off into the night with a winner. Jonbon and El Fabiolo are very close in the ante-post betting at the of writing but can anyone cause an upset and who’s looking good each-way value? Here’s Ruby’s verdict.

Ruby Walsh: Arkle Chase

I was really impressed by El Fabiolo at the Dublin Racing Festival last weekend, obviously Dysart Dynamo went a strong gallop from the start but when you look back at that race and the strength of the gallop, you realise how many horses were struggling so early in that contest.

The one horse who always looked comfortable was El Fabiolo. As fast as Dysart Dynamo was going, El Fabiolo was travelling behind him really, really strongly and Daryl Jacob at times was even pulling back a little to try and get his horse to settle.

His jumping can be a bit suspect. He missed a couple again at Leopardstown, but is that a negative or a positive versus Jonbon? We know that if El Fabiolo misses a fence, he knows how to get a leg out, he knows how to recover and go and jump the next. That’s probably one thing we haven’t seen with Jonbon, him making a mistake.

It was always a worry with Footpad going to the Arkle as he’d never made a mistake but then makes one at the first down the back and nearly fell. He got himself back into it though. You know now with El Fabiolo that he’s going to miss one fence but he’ll recover. We don’t know what Jonbon’s going to do if he misses one.


Of Willie Mullin’s other horses, Saint Roi unseated very early and I thought he was starting to sneak on to the back of Banbridge. We put him up as an each-way closer, he may well have been the way won the race was developing.

I was slightly disappointed with Appreciate It, but at no stage did I think he was going to win the race. I can’t have that he doesn’t have the speed or the pace.

I just wonder if he just completely underperformed. Even at the second last, he got in really deep because he didn’t have the energy to stand back and spring at it. That really surprised me.

He looked to be beaten too early for it to be his ‘true’ form. Maybe I’m just blinkered. If El Fabiolo beat him from the last or half way up to the last that’s been fair enough. The facts show he was cooked too far out.

Banbridge definitely looked like he was a Turners Chase contender the way he came home. He didn’t jump the last fence well and would have been a really good second apart from a bad mistake there. Obviously, Willie will have to let the dust settle on the weekend and regroup – in quite a few departments. Even though he had plenty of winners, ultimately all of these owners bought these horses to run at the Dublin Racing Festival, at Cheltenham and at the Punchestown Festival.

The owners are there for the big days so some of the cards will have to be reshuffled in the deck. I just wouldn’t be writing Appreciate It off on the back of one run.

Dysart Dynamo is worth a mention. The 1m 7f trip of the Arkle Chase at Cheltenham will suit him better. The undulations would help him also, as he freewheels along. El Fabiolo has Arkle candidate written all over him – he was  cruising at all stages in the race.

That’s where Appreciate It fell down maybe. If they went a little bit slower, would he have had more of a final kick and finish left in him. When you watch Banbridge and the way he came home, you’d think stepping up in trip would help. That was just my general reading of it, but again we’re doing this quickly afterwards and a;; the cards may have to be reshuffled.

Ruby’s Arkle Chase Verdict:

I would take Simon Munir’s El Fabiolo right this minute.

Ruby’s Arkle Chase tips:

El Fabiolo
Dysart Dynamo (each-way)



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