So Young can get his revenge in Punchestown Grade One
Willie Mullins has a fine recent record in the Cathal Ryan Memorial Novice Hurdle and he looks set to saddle another winner in the form of So Young.
So Young is 11/10 in the Punchestown odds to take victory in the Grade One showdown and certainly seems capable of reversing form with Cheltenham conqueror First Lieutenant.
Mullins’ horse could only finish third in the Neptune Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, despite travelling better than the eventual winner for a large portion of the contest.
However, he should be better suited by the slight step back in trip to 2m4f, while he should also be more at home at Punchestown, which is a far less taxing track than Cheltenham.
Mullins has trained five of the last nine winners of the novice hurdle, which puts a big plus in the column of So Young, while favourites have a strong record in the race.
The market leader has pleased favourite backers in six of the last seven years, with the one exception being when Tranquil Sea sprung a surprise in 2008.
First Lieutenant is 15/8 to win the Cathal Ryan Memorial Hurdle and a victory would complete a hat-trick of Grade One successes.
Also in his favour is that eight of the last ten winners had triumphed on their previous start ahead of arriving at Punchestown.
An interesting statistic for the race is that all of the last 14 winners were aged either five or six, which eliminates half of the six-runner field.
Based on this statistic, Prima Vista is the only other horse that can win the encounter and he can be backed at 9/1.
Prima Vista is also not without a chance based on the fact that he has finished in the first two on his last two starts, which have been in Grade Two company.
A £30 stake on Prima Vista winning the Cathal Ryan Memorial Novice Hurdle would return £270. New customers can sign up here for a free £30 bet.