Peerless Ruby has the World at his feet
Published 17/03/2011 | 10:05
An incredible day for the Irish contingent on this side of the water yesterday and I hope you had an each-way nibble on my ride Orsippus which was placed at 33/1.
Overall though, it was a good day for the bookmakers, who didn't see one favourite winning, but that can change with Big Buck's in today's World Hurdle.
He hasn't put a foot wrong in the build-up to this one, winning twice in Newbury while he has won his last 10 outings over hurdles.
Ruby is a man in form and it's hard to build any sort of a case against him getting beaten.
The rest of them seem to be running for second place, with David Pipe's Grands Crus expected to go closest. He won his last race here impressively and don't be surprised if Willie Mullins and David Casey team up for a place on Fiveforthree.
Ruby could have another big day if he can steer the impressive Poquelin home in the Ryanair Chase. He's a course and distance winner and while it's a strong field, I don't think Albertas Run is quite at the level he was for last year's win.
Kalahari King should like the trip after solid runs in the Queen Mother and Irish Independent Arkle in the last couple of years.
While J'y Vole, which I partnered to third in this race last year, has a chance. He actually might have got second behind Albertas Run but was hampered a little bit on the run-in, so don't be surprised if he gets into the money again.
The day opens with the Jewson Novices' Chase and Noble Prince is my pick here. Willie Mullins' mare Blazing Tempo, might represent some each-way value as she is a sound jumper and she stays well, but Noble Prince was beaten by a short-head by Realt Dubh which was third in the Arkle on Tuesday.
The Pertemps Final is another open race, but Son Amix was impressive in his qualifier at Leopardstown and is a tempting proposition at the weights.
Sivota should also go well for Mullins. Elsewhere, David Pipe has a decent chance with Chartreux which was third on his last run -- his only outing since last year's Festival -- and with natural improvement, he'll be there or thereabouts.
The Byrne Group Plate is a tricky one to call with plenty of decent chances. You'd imagine that the JP McManus/AP McCoy combination will pick up a win over the course of the Festival and Aigle D'Or looks laid out for this race. I won the Future Champions Novice Grade One Hurdle at Leopardstown on Hollo Ladies a couple of years back and he seems to have taken to chasing quite well and could also be in with a chance.
In the Kim Muir, I know David Pipe is quite sweet on Junior.
He's a front runner and will take a lot of catching. Saddlers Storm is worth respect and was going well in the Irish National last year until he fell but Junior won at Royal Ascot last year and has the class.
In the Charity Race, the presence of a Henry Cecil entry catches my eye so Plato is in with a good shout while Dormouse and Niamh Flynn could have a big run.
1.30 Noble Prince
2.05 Son Amix
3.20 Big Buck's
4.0 Aigle D'Or