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Can it be that easy to beat the bookies? Willie Mullins four-timer on the opening day of Cheltenham





Surely it is too good to be true. Go in to Boylesports today with €50, scribble four Willie Mullins hot-pots on a piece of paper and go back in after the first day at Cheltenham and take home €720.

Mullins could well be bringing his strongest team yet to the Cotswolds and many people think that he could clean up on the opening afternoon, which is just over a week away.

The Irish champion trainer has teamed up with Rich Ricci to win the Supreme Novices' Hurdle for the last two years but last year Vautour was the first favourite to win the race since Brave Inca in 2004 so it hasn't been the happiest of hunting grounds for market leaders.


Despite having just two runs since joining Mullins, this year's representative carries the same colours as the last two winners and Douvan does look the real deal on what we have seen so far and 7/4 does look a reasonable price for his chances.

Next up, there will be a real buzz of anticipation around Cheltenham as Un De Sceaux makes his way to the start for the Arkle Chase.

Unbeaten in every race he has run for Mullins with the exception of his chasing debut when a novicey mistake saw him fall and part company with Ruby Walsh, the general consensus is that Un De Sceaux will win with a clear round.

Should he jump like he did at Fairyhouse and Leopardstown since that Thurles mishap, Un De Sceaux should safely find his way around although you could imagine the layers trying to get him when the day arrives.

If those two manage to get the week off to a good start, you'd imagine Faugheen could well go off odds-on favourite for the Champion Hurdle despite having many questions to answer.

He won the Herald Champion Novice Hurdle in such style at Punchestown over two miles to give every indication that he'll have no problem in a Champion Hurdle, but he still hasn't met anything of real quality so far this season, although connections opted against a third run which shows their confidence. Currently the evens favourite but it would be priceless to witness his stable companion Hurricane Fly upset the odds and create history.

The final leg of the four-timer is Annie Power in the Mares Hurdle unless you want to take a stab on Don Poli in the four-mile, who is 3/1 although only 50-50 to run here with his owners seemingly favouring the RSA.

Annie Power isn't likely to be confirmed for this race for another little while but it would be a major shock if she didn't attempt to follow Quevega into the Mares Hurdle roll of honour and even without a run this season she's worthy of her place as the odds-on favourite.

Maybe it's too hopeful to think all four will win but punters will spend €50 on worse bets.