Festival record 2018-2022: 2 winners/ 12 runners
Festival winners 2018-2022: Constitution Hill, Le Prezien
Best chance: Constitution Hill
Others to note: Blue Lord, Good Land, Pembroke
Blue Bresil hasn’t had many Festival runners, but as the sire of Constitution Hill he’s responsible for the best hurdler to perform there in recent seasons. The unbeaten Constitution Hill - the short-priced Champion Hurdle favourite - stands out in Blue Bresil’s Festival team this year, though he’s by no means his sire’s only chance of a winner, with the likes of Blue Lord in the Ryanair Chase, Good Land in the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle and Pembroke in the County Hurdle also among his leading runners.
FAME AND GLORY
Festival record 2018-2022: 2/26
Festival winners 2018-2022: Commander of Fleet, The Nice Guy
Best chance: Filey Bay
Others to note: Home By The Lee, Hunters Yarn, Might I, Stage Star
Fame And Glory was only one of only two sires to register more than one winner at last year’s Festival, though neither Commander of Fleet in the Coral Cup (50/1) nor The Nice Guy in the Albert Bartlett (18/1) were easy to find. They were the first Festival winners for a sire who is second in the current season’s standings. He won’t necessarily be relying on long-shots this time because in addition to the County Hurdle favourite Filey Bay and Hunters Yarn who is another prominent in the betting for the same race, he has Home By The Lee bidding to improve on his sixth place in last year’s Stayers’ Hurdle, Martin Pipe or Coral Cup contender Might I and impressive Trials Day winner Stage Star in the Turners Novices’ Chase.
Festival record 2018-2022: 6/40
Festival winners 2018-2022: Appreciate It, Belfast Banter, Black Tears, Corach Rambler, Sir Gerhard (2)
Best chance: Corach Rambler
Others to note: Appreciate It, Jeremys Flame, Sir Gerhard
Jeremy was the other sire to notch two winners at last year’s Festival, making him one of the most successful sires there of late with a total of six winners in the last five years. Ballymore winner Sir Gerhard added to his Champion Bumper success the year before and has either the Brown Advisory or the Turners Novices’ Chase in his sights this time, while Jeremy’s other winner last year, Corach Rambler, has been kept fresh for a repeat bid in the Ultima. Jeremy’s leading hopes also include another of his past Festival winners Appreciate It, winner of the 2021 Supreme Novices’ and on course for the Turners, while Jeremys Flame goes for the Mares’ Chase.
Festival record 2018-2022: 1/42
Festival winner 2018-2022: Vanillier
Best chance: Mighty Potter
Others to note: Fun Fun Fun, So Scottish, Thanksforthehelp, Unexpected Party
Martaline’s Festival record isn’t quite as bad as his figures in recent years suggest, as he had a double in 2014 with Dynaste and Very Wood before Vanillier’s more recent win in the 2021 Albert Bartlett which was also the race Very Wood won. However, Martaline could be set for a more successful Festival this year with top novice chaser Mighty Potter a short price for the Turners and So Scottish heading the betting for the Plate. The Thursday could be a big day for Martaline because he also has leading Pertemps Final candidate Thanksforthehelp. Fun Fun Fun in the Champion Bumper and Unexpected Party in the Grand Annual - which both take place on the Wednesday - are others to note.
NO RISK AT ALL
Festival record 2018-2022: 3/20
Festival winners 2018-2022: Allaho (2), Epatante
Best chance: Allegorie de Vassy
Others to note: Aucunrisque, Blood Destiny, Epatante, Risk Belle
No Risk At All might be without his dual Ryanair Chase winner Allaho this year but even in the absence of his highest-rated jumper, it could well be another successful Festival for the French-based sire. His other Festival winner, former Champion Hurdle winner Epatante, has been supplemented for the Mares’ Hurdle but Allegorie de Vassy, unbeaten since joining Willie Mullins, could be his best chance of a winner in the Mares’ Chase. Other French imports for the same yard are the exciting Blood Destiny in the Triumph Hurdle and Boodles contender Risk Belle, while recent Betfair Hurdle winner Aucunrisque is due to revert to fences in the Grand Annual.
WALK IN THE PARK
Festival record 2018-2022: 2/15
Festival winners 2018-2022: Facile Vega, Min
Best chance: Jonbon
Others to note: Ashroe Diamond, Facile Vega, Walking On Air
Walk In The Park is understandably another well-patronised sire by Mullins given past Festival successes with the likes of Douvan and Min, and he was also chosen as a mate for the stable’s six-time Mares’ Hurdle winner Quevega. The resulting offspring Facile Vega was Walk In The Park’s latest Festival winner in last year’s Champion Bumper and now bids to emulate Douvan by winning the Supreme. Douvan’s own brother Jonbon could help get the Festival off to a flying start for their sire in the Sporting Life Arkle, which was the other Festival race won by Douvan. Ashroe Diamond (Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle) and Walking On Air (Pertemps Final) are Walk In The Park’s other runners to mention.
Festival record 2018-2022: 2/53
Festival winners 2018-2022: Ferny Hollow, Love Envoi
Best chance: Shoot First
Others to note: Cool Survivor, Dysart Dynamo, Love Envoi, Maxxum, Mr Incredible
Westerner has had plenty of runners at the Festival over the years, and while his fragile 2020 Champion Bumper winner Ferny Hollow and last year’s Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle winner Love Envoi are his only winners in recent seasons, he can also boast the likes of Stayers’ Hurdle winner Cole Harden and Arkle winner Western Warhorse from further back. Unbeaten on her home turf, Harry Fry’s Love Envoi finds herself in quite a hot Mares’ Hurdle this time but Westerner has several others with chances, headed by Pertemps Final favourite Shoot First, but also including Maxxum in the same race, Dysart Dynamo in the Arkle and Mr Incredible in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir.
Festival record 2018-2022: 6/51
Festival winners 2018-2022: Chantry House, Flooring Porter (2), Heaven Help Us, Mount Ida, Shattered Love
Best chance: Flooring Porter
Others to note: Angels Dawn, Conflated, Dunboyne, Noble Yeats, The Goffer
Yeats became champion sire of jumpers for the first time last season and he’s leading the standings again going into this year’s Festival. He has also been one of the most successful sires at the Festival in recent years, with two of his six wins there coming from Flooring Porter in the Stayers’ Hurdle. Flooring Porter is potentially Yeats’ best chance of a winner again despite an interrupted preparation, while his other high-profile runner is Grand National winner Noble Yeats in the Gold Cup where he’ll be joined by another of his sire’s big winners, Savills Chase victor Conflated. The Goffer has claims in the Ultima while Angels Dawn and Dunboyne give him two shots at the Kim Muir.