Walsh: we're all hoping Yorkhill will do very well as a chaser
Irish Stallion Farms EBF Beginners Chase | 2m, 4yo + | ATR
Yorkhill, one of the star novice hurdlers of last season, embarks on the next phase of his career at Fairyhouse on Saturday when he makes his debut over fences against eight rivals and Ruby Walsh is eagerly looking forward to partnering the Willie Mullins-trained six-year-old in the 2m event.
Walsh said on Friday: "Yorkhill was very good over hurdles last season, winning three Grade 1s - the Tolworth at Sandown, the Neptune at Cheltenhan and the Mersey Novices at Aintree and we're all hoping he will go on and do very well as a chaser.
"His schooling has gone well and David (Casey), who rides him in all his work, tells me he's very happy with him - and that's usually good enough for me."
Mullins's novice chasers have been performing well in recent weeks with Bellshill, Min and American Tom all scoring at the first time of asking over fences and Listen Dear making it three from three fences at Cork on Sunday.
The Graham and Andrea Wylie-owned son of Presenting will be making his first appearance since the Punchestown festival in April when he lost his unbeaten racecourse record by finishing fourth in a Grade 1 novice hurdle at the end of what was a busy campaign.
Mullins will be seeking a fourth consecutive win in the Fairyhouse event which he won with Killultagh Vic a year ago and previously with Un De Sceaux in 2014 and Mozoltov in 2013 while Walsh will be bidding for a third consecutive win in the race.
Those taking on Yorkhill, who won a point-to-point before joining Mullins, include the Denis Cullen-trained A Great View, a dual winner over hurdles and who finished fifth behind Min at Navan on his chasing debut last month, and the Noel Meade-trained Burgas, a maiden hurdle winner last season and who ran once over fences as a four-year-old in France last year.
The Henry de Bromhead-trained Hurry Henry, winner of a bumper and a maiden hurdle, will be having his first run over fences.