All eyes on 'special' Chacun Pour Soi as Mullins star is set for Dublin Chase
Ladbrokes Dublin Chase (Grade 1) | 2m1½f | 5yo+ | ITV4/RTV
Willie Mullins believes Chacun Pour Soi is the horse to end his Champion Chase hoodoo and it is hard to argue with him judging by what we have have seen from him this season.
Victory here would simply provide reassurance that he is still top of the pops when it comes to two-mile chasers in Ireland. The fact of the matter is that Chacun Pour Soi does not need to do anything he has not done before.
Rewind 12 months and he dominated Min by three and three-quarter lengths. It was emphatic and came on the back of a shock defeat by A Plus Tard over Christmas too. This time he is coming here on the back of two decisive wins which earned him RPRs of 171 and 176.
Paul Townend summed it up better than anyone when he said: "He was workmanlike at Cork but he had his swagger back over Christmas. When things are happening for him it's such a special feeling."
Chacun Pour Soi's current mark of 174 is officially 5lb superior to Min and this is his trip. His stablemate appears far more effective over further, so everything points to a comfortable victory for the odds-on favourite.
Indeed, you could argue that his superiority over his stablemate could be enhanced here given the uninterrupted preparation he has had this season.
Notebook was put firmly in his place by Chacun Pour Soi over Christmas when the pair went at it toe to toe. He didn't have any excuses there, so it is hard to see how he can turn around that form here.
Fakir D'Oudairies and Tornado Flyer are both coming into the race on the back of disappointing attempts over three miles, while Sizing Pottsie does not look good enough for this level.
This should be another chance for Chacun Pour Soi to show his swagger. Enjoy it.
Saturday's tipping and analysis:
Patrick Mullins already looking forward to replay
Patrick Mullins can look forward to watching the replay of the Ladbrokes Dublin Chase safe in the knowledge that fog cannot spoil his viewing like it did when he teamed up with Min to win the John Durkan Chase at Punchestown in December.
That was the champion amateur's first ever time to sit on Min in public and his beaming smile afterwards told us more than any replay ever could.
Patrick is a realist though and knows that lowering the colours of Chacun Pour Soi will not be easy.
The jockey said: "I'm delighted to be able to get back on Min and I'm looking forward to being able to watch it back this time.
"It's going to be very difficult to beat Chacun Pour Soi all things being equal, but hopefully we can give him a run for his money and it will set Min up for a repeat win in the Ryanair like last year."
What they say
Willie Mullins, trainer of Chacun Pour Soi, Min and Tornado Flyer
Chacun Pour Soi won over this course and distance at Christmas and has come out of that race well. He won this race last year and has a lot going for him this time around. We have been very happy with his homework and he looks the one to beat. Min has a little bit to find on ratings but he loves this track and will handle the ground. Tornado Flyer was disappointing over three miles here last time and Bryan suggested he might be better over a shorter trip. Hopefully he will get a decent share of the big prize-money on offer.
Joseph O'Brien, trainer of Fakir D'oudairies
He was slightly disappointing last time over three miles so we're coming back in trip. That will suit. It looks a very good race, but we're hoping he can pick up a share of the prize-money.
Henry de Bromhead, trainer of Notebook
He seems in mighty form at home. All ground seems to come alike to him but he can handle heavy, which is a big plus. I have him in top form ahead of this weekend and I’m looking forward to seeing how he gets on.
Jessica Harrington, trainer of Sizing Pottsie
It's a big step up in grade. He seems to be in great form and, look, there is nowhere else for him to run. He didn't get into the big two-mile handicap so our hand was forced. He's the outsider of them all but he needs running.
Saturday's race previews and analysis:
Get clued up with the latest Cheltenham Festival tips and odds with our free microsite. The best Cheltenham betting advice and exclusive free betting offers all in one place