2021 Punchestown Festival Tuesday Tips by Dave Stevos

by | Apr 26, 2021

2021 Punchestown Festival Tuesday Tips

The last two weekends have failed to yield a winner. However, we nicked place money with Buxted Too (40/1), Buck Dancing (50/1), Dulas (16/1) and Cap Du Nord (18/1). The UK jumps season ended on Saturday, now it is time for the last hurrah for the Irish equivalent. The finale at Sandown was a seven race card but in Ireland, the closing National Hunt meeting of the season at Punchestown is almost as long as an AP McCoy retirement farewell tour. Dave Stevos is hoping to see a few shock results, check out his 2021 Punchestown Festival Tuesday tips and preview below.

4.15 – Champion Novice Hurdle (Grade 1)

The first Grade 1 of the week at Punchestown is this 16f Novice Hurdle. Just the five runners will go to post and the bookies make it a match between Blue Lord and Echoes In Rain. Both horses are trained by Willie Mullins and Paul Townend has opted for Blue Lord. He fell when in the process of running a big race behind Appreciate It at Cheltenham.

The son of Blue Bresil was 3rd behind the same horse in another Grade 1 at Leopardstown over Xmas and he previously chased home Bob Olinger at Naas. He won his maiden over C&D on soft but his sole win in France came on good ground so he could well appreciate today’s conditions. His stablemate won a Grade 2 at Fairyhouse last time in facile fashion (16f yld). Her 8L defeat of Belfast Banter couldn’t have worked out much better too. If this ground suits, Echoes in Rain is a danger to all with her weight for sex allowance.

Keen On Mustard

I tipped up Colonel Mustard in the Fairyhouse race won by Echoes In Rain and he ran with great credit to finish 3rd. Yes, he was nearly 20L behind the winner but I was hoping for genuine good ground that day and it turned out to be yielding. The handicapper has awarded this son of Makfi a mark of 122 on the back of that run. If that is correct, he hasn’t got a hope here. However, I believe he has the potential to be much better than that, especially on this good ground.

Dewcup is another one that has the potential to improve on this sort of a surface. He ran well in a couple of Graded contests during the Winter months on ground that wouldn’t have suited him. He has a 100% record from three starts on ground with no soft in the description. Two of those wins came at this track over 16f (gd) and 20f (yld). Uhtred is the unknown quantity in this race for Blackmore and O’Brien. He won a Listed bumper on his penultimate outing but his sole hurdles outing resulted in defeat.

The Verdict

On ratings and overall form, Blue Lord looks the most likely winner of this race. However, he fell last time and it remains to be seen if that has left a mark on his confidence. Echoes Of Rain has hoovered up a couple of Grade 2s on her last two outings but on softer ground than she gets today. As I outlined when tipping up Colonel Mustard last time, I think good ground is going to bring out the best in this horse and this is going to be his first chance to prove whether my theory is correct. I also think Dewcup could outrun his big odds but at 50/1, hopefully Lorna Fowler’s charge can sneak into the first two.

2021 Punchestown Festival Tuesday Tips: Colonel Mustard e/w @ 50/1

4.50 – Handicap Hurdle (Grade B)

Another horse who I think is going to love today’s ground is Getaway Gorgeous. I was sweet on this mare for the County Hurdle at Cheltenham off a mark of 136 but that race turned out to be a non-event. She is best when ridden prominently and unfortunately Bryan Cooper got trapped wide early and he could never get her into the race. She did look like she might come into it between the 3rd and 2nd last hurdles but a sticky jump cost her any chance.

Getaway Gorgeous is now back down to her Irish rating of 129. So, obviously, I think she is even better handicapped than when she went to England. Her short head defeat to Drop The Anchor off 125, who she was conceding 8lbs to, sticks out like a sore thumb given that her conqueror went on to land a massive pot at Leopardstown over Xmas off a mark of 131. He then ran a blinder off 146 in the County (beat just 3.5L). So, on that run, Getaway Gorgeous is very feasibly treated off 129.

She is back on familiar territory now too. The daughter of Getaway was a winner of a mares’ novice hurdle on her last visit to this track by 6L (16.5f yld), confirming the form of her previous cracking Listed Galway 2nd. She had Telmesomethinggirl half a length behind her that day and she dotted up in the Mares’ Novice at Cheltenham. Barring her festival run this mare has form figures of 2122 on ground with no soft in the description. With today’s conditions in her favour, I am giving her another chance at odds of 33/1.

2021 Punchestown Festival Tuesday Tips: Getaway Gorgeous e/w @ 33/1 NAP (6 Places P Power)

5.25 – Champion Chase (Grade 1)

I think it is safe to say that is this the best race of the day at Punchestown. Chacun Pour Soi failed to get up the hill at The Festival last time when finishing 3rd behind Put The Kettle On. Nube Negra finished a length ahead of today’s market leader that day and he previously lowered the colours of Altior at Kempton. I am not sure why the bookies have made Chacun Pour Soi the 5/4 favourite and Nube Negra is available at as big as 11/2. Nube Negra was argubaly unlucky not to win at Cheltenham and he beat Chacun Pour Soi fair and square.

Allaho takes a big drop back in trip for Mullins and Blackmore. He dotted up by 12L in the Ryanair, form since boosted by the runner up at Aintree. This is going to be his first run over 16f since he was beat 4L by Exit Poll in a Leopardstown bumper. Whether he will be able to dominate in the same manner over the minimum distance as he did over 5 furlongs further is debateable. One thing his presence will ensure though is a strongly run race.

First Flow also lines up but I am certain connections were hoping for much softer ground. He wasn’t disgraced behind Nube Negra and Chacun Pour Soi at Cheltenham but he is a stone better when the mud is flying. Castlegrace Paddy ran a blinder over 20f last time. However, he usually gets tapped for toe over this trip on quick ground. Daly Tiger has winning form over hurdles on good ground here but his best form has come on testing ground.

Cilaos Could Surprise

One that could potentially be overpriced is Cilaos Emery for Willie Mullins and Brian Hayes. He was fancied by a few shrewdies to run a big race at Cheltenham and he was sent off at just 12/1. He didn’t rest the script though and he ran a stinker. This 9yo son of Califet is 4/7 over fences, including wins at Grade 3 and Grade 2 level. All those wins came on soft/heavy but his best ever run over hurdles came on good ground when he beat Melon in the Champion Novice Hurdle here back in 2017.

Amazingly, this will be his just his second run on ground with good in the description since. The only other one came at Cheltenham where he didn’t produce his best. Cilaos Emery is 1/2 at Punchestown with the defeat coming in a Listed hurdle by a neck to Mick Jazz. His Champion Chase run was too bad to be true and if he can get his act together in the jumping department, he has the ability to get involved at the business end here. I think Nube Negra is the best value of those at the top of the market and if you fancy him, I wouldn’t put you off. However, with Betfair paying 3 places e/w, I’ll be taking a chance on Cilaos Emery at odds of 33/1.

2021 Punchestown Festival Tuesday Tips: Cilaos Emery e/w @ 33/1 NB (3 places Betfair Sportsbook)

6.30 – Champion Novice Chase (Grade 1)

I am not a man for solving 24 runner bumpers so I’ll be leaving those races alone this week. The final race of the day I’ll be looking at is the 24f Champion Novice Chase. A field of just four will go to post but even though the turnout is small, the level of quality is top drawer. Envoi Allen bids to atone for his Cheltenham misadventure and he is now the mount of Rachael Blackmore. He is trying three miles for the first time. We will find out today if he has the stamina required to be a Gold Cup contender in the future.

One horse who won’t be lacking in that department is Monkfish. This 7yo is a winning machine.While he wasn’t at his brilliant best at Cheltenham, he still won the 3 mile Grade 1 Novices’ Chase by over 6L. The son of Stowaway has now won his last seven starts and three Grade 1s on the bounce. Those wins came on ground ranging from heavy to good to soft so conditions today aren’t a worry. I think he could and probably should be shorter than the 11/10 currently on offer from a couple of firms.

Can Colreevy Cause An Upset?

The only mare in the race is Colreevy, who is reportedly in foal. This 8yo daughter of Flemensfirth is having her final career start before retiring to stud. It is a brave decision to take on Monkfish and connections must think that the 7lb allowance she gets from the boys gives her every chance of winning. She has won her last four in a row, including the Mares’ Chase at Cheltenham. She  had Elimay and Shattered Love behind her that day, conceding weight to both of them.

The ratings suggest she could play a part here but she has to prove she stays this distance. Franco De Port could improve for this step up in trip but he has a lot to do to beat Monkfish. I think the Ricci horse is going to be very hard to pass here but I am not usually one for backing horses at such short odds. I’m happy to let him run without my money weighing him down and this is a race I’ll just watch. No bet.

 

2021 Punchestown Festival Tuesday Tips: No Bet

 

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