The race to Cheltenham is on, and the excitement for the blockbuster four days of National Hunt Racing is starting to build across the United Kingdom and Ireland. There’s no doubt that by this stage, the hardcore punters would have already had one eye studying the form guides and the other scouring the internet for the best Cheltenham betting offers. Who can blame them? When there’s a huge 14 Grade 1 races jam-packed into just four days, it’s best to be prepared and have your selections at the ready!
One race that will certainly gain the attention of the punters, pundits and tipsters is day three’s Ryanair Chase, and with just a quick glance at the racecard, you’d be quick to notice that seven-time Festival Leading Trainer Willie Mullins holds all the aces. So, without further ado, let’s take a look at the Irish trainer’s trio who are leading the way in the Ryanair Chase betting market.
Allaho – 4/1
It’s fair to say Allaho’s performances throughout much of last year left much to be desired, and we’re sure that that feeling is shared by Mullins. After a massive 21-length victory over Milan Native in the Beginners Chase at Fairyhouse last January, it looked as though the seven-year-old was heading to the Cheltenham Festival in good stead, and he set off in the RSA Novices’ Chase as the market leader. However, he could do no better than third after being narrowly edged over the line by Champ and Minella Indo. Two more races without landing a victory followed in December, but Allaho looks to have gotten back in track with a three-length victory over Elimay in the Horse & Jockey Hotel Chase, and as a result he has leapfrogged Min in the Ryanair Chase betting market.
Min – 5/1
There was a sense of relief around the Prestbury Park concourses last year when Min finally broke loose of Altior’s shackles and landed his first victory at the Cheltenham Festival. For years, Min was hapless against the Nicky Henderson-trained legend, and time and time again he was left in awe of Altior and jockey Nico de Boinville at the Festival. However, last year Mullins rerouted Min for the Ryanair Chase and the change in tactics worked wonders as the 10-year-old beat Saint Calvados over the line by a neck to win the Grade 1 crown. A further victory in the Punchestown Chase in December had punters thinking that Min was nailed on for back-to-back Ryanair Chases. However, after pulling up in the Dublin Chase last month, momentum is starting to sway towards Allaho.
Kemboy – 6/1
Hot on the heels of Allaho and Min is their stablemate Kemboy. At 6/1, the nine-year-old is the joint-third favourite alongside the Kim Bailey-trained Imperial Aura. Like Allaho, Kemboy has struggled with form of late, and failed to pick up a single victory across his five outings in 2020. However, his victory in the Paddy Power Irish Gold Cup at the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown last month arguably couldn’t have come at a better time, and as a result his odds of winning the Ryanair Chase have been slashed in half. It is worth noting, however, that with Min and Allaho ahead of him in the betting, Mullins could instead turn his attentions to the Gold Cup, where Kemboy is now as short as 10/1 after once being as far out as 28/1, or the day three feature race, where he is a 12/1 shot in the Stayers’ Hurdle – Non Runner Money Back betting.