Wednesday 21 February 2018

Vautour excites Mullins in workout


Willie Mullins singled out JLT Novices' Chase hopeful Vautour for special praise after a post-racing workout at Leopardstown.

Vautour was one of a trio of Cheltenham Festival-bound runners to strut their stuff for Mullins, with Betfred Gold Cup hopeful Djakadam and Un De Sceaux, who is viewed by many as a banker in the Racing Post Arkle Trophy, also in action.

Mullins said: "They worked over more or less a mile and a half and jumped a few fences. I was very pleased with them and they put in a good round of jumping. Vautour was very good."

Meanwhile, Shark Hanlon admits Hidden Cyclone's Cheltenham engagement is likely to be dictated by the ground after he too worked following the meeting.

The 10-year-old bounced back to winning form with a comfortable success in the Tied Cottage Chase at Punchestown last time and retains entries in the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase and the Ryanair Chase.

Hidden Cyclone finished second to Dynaste in the two-mile-five-furlong Ryanair last term but having won over two miles last time, soft ground would tempt Hanlon to take the shorter option of the Queen Mother.

He said: "We won't make a decision yet on him. If it's soft ground it'll be more than likely the Queen Mother, but if it's good I'm thinking strongly about the Ryanair.

"Patrick (Mullins) rode him to have someone different on him. I did the same thing last year and he ran well."

Press Association

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