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2017 Ryanair Chase Betting Tips PT 1

The Ryanair, also known as the Festival Trophy, is one of the toughest races to wager on from an ante post perspective simply because it seems to be a race – much like the Neptune Novices – where the majority of the field is co-entered in other very similar races and there often isn't a lot between one heading in one direction and one heading in another.


The Rich Ricci era of National Hunt racing has certainly complicated this since we now have a number of extremely talented horses coming out of Willy Mullins yard who would easily be considered solid Gold Cup contenders who now appear to be aimed at the Ryanair. While many will lament that this brings about a different era of jumps racing more focused on trophy winnig and purse money accumulation as opposed to racing the best against the best and giving the fans what they want, it's Ricci's money and he will do what he damn well pleases with it.

One who certainly does seem destined to run in the Ryanair this year is Un De Sceaux who was also cross entered for the Queen Mother. Currently trading as the 3/1 betting favourite in the ante post market, he put in a solid shift to conquer the Clarence House Stakes – a Grade 1 event – just a couple of weeks ago at Cheltenham.

Most will remember that he as beaten by Sprinter Sacre last year in one of the most spectacular races you are likely to see. He was sent off at a 4/6 margin on the day and looked second best to the old superstar.

It is unlikely that Un De Sceaux goes anywhere else since his Queen Mother price tag hovers around a 10/1 margin and Mullins will be keen to keep him away from Douvan.

A rather interesting contender in the mix here is a Gigginstown House jumper named Empire of Dirt who has established himself as a high quality handicap chaser who put in some extremely good shifts in the past – notably conquering the Grade 3 Stable Plate at the festival last year in very good order. He looked absolutely in control of the situation as they pushed on and he was able to hold them off by a four length margin to deliver at a hefty 16/1 price tag.


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