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Ruby Walsh: First preference for Vautour today at Navan is a clear round

After a magnificent win on Faugheen in the UK on Saturday, Ruby Walsh is back on home soil (and home motorways) as he heads for Navan. Here, he takes blog readers through his rides for the day...

by Ruby Walsh | November 23, 2014

13.25 – Inesperate (Handicap Hurdle, 2m)

There’s far worse places to be going on a Sunday than to Navan. It’s a great, honest track.

I don’t know much about Inesperate, to be honest. On his form, it’s impossible to judge. He pulled up on his only start in Ireland. This is a competitive-looking handicap. He’ll have to be a real Tony Martin special to win.

13.55 – Vautour (Beginners Chase, 2m)

Vautour beat the Tullow Tank at Leopardstown in February. Won the Supreme Novices at the Cheltenham Festival in 2014. Won over two and a half miles at Punchestown in May. He’s rock solid. He jumps. He stays. But this is hardly the weakest novice chase ever run – Clarcam and Minella Foru are very decent horses. Either one could be entitled to be a favourite in a beginners chase without running into Vautour. Navan is a good track to start at for us. Hopefully he continues on his unbeaten way. First preference here is a clear round.

Horse Racing Fallers MBS

14.25 – Dogora (Troytown Handicap Chase, 3m)

A reproduction of his second behind Bright New Dawn in the beginners chance at Punchestown last December would give him a chance. He has pedigree but has to prove he stays. He fell first time up, was disappointing on his second start, and pulled up on his last run. As a juvenile he had form, but needs to produce his very best to be in with a chance here. The dangers are everywhere. It won’t be an easy race to ride. Massive field. Not much room. Guaranteed to have pace with that big a field. You’ll need luck. It’ll be easy to get brought down in. Living Next Door (under Barry Geraghty today) ran a nice race in a handicap hurdle a fortnight ago, when I rode him over two miles. Two miles is too sharp for him. He has had adequate prep. He’ll be hard to beat.

Troytown Chase Extra Place

14.55 – Gallant Oscar (Handicap Hurdle, 2m 7f)

He won a bit cosier than the margin suggested the last day at Navan. He needed that run. He’s up 11lbs – but don’t mind 11lbs. He’s up about three grades as well. This is a much, much better race than he won the last day. There’s some very good horses here. Foxrock looks well handicapped over hurdles compared to his chase mark. Give Me A Break has a right chance. This is a really competitive race.

3.25 at Navan – Lyrical Theatre

She’s a good mare. We didn’t think she could get beaten in Galway but she was too keen. She settled much better in Naas. She’ll take a bit of beating here (under Patrick Mullins).

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