Un De Sceaux Will Soar To Ryanair Glory
Ryanair Novice Chase
Willie Mullins holds a strong hand in Thursday’ Grade 1 Ryanair Novice Chase over 2m (6.40), where he lets loose his potential superstar, Un De Sceaux (1/5).
Un De Sceaux
Un De Sceaux comes here having won the Arkle at Cheltenham (2m, good to soft), where an exemplary display of jumping saw him come 6l clear of God’s Own. This 7yo novice will be amongst the elite 2m chasers next term, and no doubt targeted for the Queen Mother Champion Chase, where he is already around the 6/4 mark.
On official ratings, Un De Sceaux is a whopping 18lb clear of his closest rival in Thursday’s race in Melodic Rendezvous (20/1), and the fact he arrives having ran in a Grade 1 last time is a good sign based on past history.
Of the last 10 Ryanair Novice winners…
9 returned 6/1 or shorter
9 were Irish-bred
8 arrived via a Grade 1 race
W Mullins won it twice
Smashing Needs To Improve
Respect still has to be given to the remainder of the field, including Henry De Bromhead’s 6yo, Smashing (6/1), who has yet to win in Graded company, and was 30l adrift in the Arkle.
However, Smashing did bounce back with a better performance at Fairyhouse last time when under 3l behind Gilgamboa in the Grade 1 Ryanair Gold Cup Novice Chase (2m4f, good to soft), and while he has a bit to find if winning this, he is improving.
But, with the Brits landing two of the last four renewals of this event, Micky Hammond’s, Just Cameron (20/1) has to be given a chance despite his big odds. An improving 8yo who won his last three outings, he makes his first foray into Graded class.
Another that needs to step up if figuring is Jeremy Scott’s, Melodic Rendezvous (20/1), who was beaten 18l in a Grade 2 at Kempton in February (2m4f, soft). He has yet to match the form he showed over hurdles where he was a Grade 1 winner.
The remainder of the field is made up of Real Steel (33/1) and Ted Veale (50/1). The former appears to have gone backwards since a 12l third in a Grade 1 in November, while the latter has also lost some sparkle since the winter. It would be the shock of the festival if either was even placed.
Willie Mullins has won this twice before and holds a solid chance of making it three wins with Un De Sceaux, who looks destined for the top next year, and whose odds for the 2016 Champion Chase could contract if putting in another impressive round here.