Douvan Darts For Supreme – Weekend Review
Supreme Novices' Hurdle
There will be a number of punters already looking at Willie Mullins’ Douvan, as their Cheltenham Festival “banker” come two months’ time.
Mullins’ 5yo went into last weekend as a potential star, and his performance in landing a Grade 2 novice hurdle at Punchestown on Saturday went a long way to confirming that promise. Effortless over his hurdles, Douvan hardly broke sweat in making the winner’s enclosure, and his tendency to jump left will put him on good stead for what could be shaping up as one of the big battles of Cheltenham if crossing swords with L’Ami Serge in the Supreme.
Investors looking to steam in now for the opening race at Cheltenham can get a juicy 5/2 – remember, Mullins won this race for the last two years – though he may also go for the Neptune (2m4f), in which he could go off a 5/1 chance.
At present, the Supreme looks Douvan’s race, and he is a runner backers will need to give serious consideration with the countdown to Cheltenham underway.
Meanwhile at Punchestown on Sunday, Mallowney won the Dan Moore Handicap Chase, but is more of a Punchestown type, though there is a small chance he may be given a chance in Cheltenham’s Champion Chase.
In Britain, Tea For Two won Kempton’s competitive Lanzarote Hurdle, and is now on course for a crack at the Albert Bartlett, which looks to be the right race for this novice, whose connections were at first tempted by the World Hurdle. The former should be within this 6yo’s compass, who was highly impressive in winning this handicap by a monster 16l. He has more to come.
On the same Kempton card, Alan King’s Balder Success, achieved Listed success in a 2m4f chase, and is now being thought of as Ryanair Chase type. Connections seemed to have found his trip now, as he is 3-8 in 2m chases, but 3-3 over 2m4f. At odds of 10/1, he looks value for the Ryanair, which is of course run over 2m5f.
Alan King also enjoyed Listed success at Warwick on Saturday via his 7yo novice chaser, Sego Success, who is 2-3 over fences. Considering he was keen here, he did well in finding more to win by almost 3l, and it will be interesting to see if King lines him up for the National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham which the trainer won last year. He should be around the 10/1 mark betting opens.
Warwick also saw wins for Dan Skelton’s, Three Musketeers, who won a Grade 2 novices’ hurdle and looks a star chaser in the making, while Hawkes Point won the Grade 3 Classic Chase over 3m5f. Soft ground is important to the latter, and he would need the heavens to open over Aintree in April if doing better than when eighteenth in last season’s Grand National. Hawkes Point is around 25/1 this time around.