Monday 11 December 2017

Walsh has confidence in Pont

Ruby Walsh 'loves everything; about Pont Alexandre
Ruby Walsh 'loves everything; about Pont Alexandre

Ruby Walsh believes Pont Alexandre "ticks all the boxes" ahead of the Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham next week.

The strapping five-year-old has had just two starts for Willie Mullins, landing the Grade One Navan Novice Hurdle first time out and following up in a Grade Two at Leopardstown, winning by an aggregate of 24 lengths.

Speaking in a Cheltenham preview for a Paddy Power broadcast in the firm's betting shops, Walsh said: "Pont Alexandre is a gorgeous big horse.

"He jumps and he stays and he has a huge future. What he does over hurdles is a bonus and there is nothing not to like about him.

"I love everything about him and I can't wait to ride him. He ticks all the right boxes."

Walsh does not appear quite so hopeful about Arvika Ligeonniere, his mount in the Arkle Trophy.

Conceding he has a stiff task against Simonsig, as well as Overturn, Walsh said: "It's hard to say that he is even an each-way price given the small field.

"I just love Simonsig and I think Overturn will just set the race up for him.

"It'll be a catch me if you can type of race and, to me, Simonsig is possibly the only horse in training that would give Sprinter Sacre a race."

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