Who to follow at Punchestown on Saturday

Horse To Follow - Saldier

The feature race on the card is the Grade One Morgiana Hurdle and in this five runner event we fancy the Willie Mullins trained Saldier.

This five year old gelding has been off the track for some time but if retaining his ability has to be respected if stepping into this contest which was the plan last year before his nasty injury.

With a big target of the Champion Hurdle Mullins sent Saldier to Naas for his seasonal debut last year in the Grade Three Fishery Lane Hurdle.

The gelding had jumped lovely all the way round before coming up to the last alongside Espoir D'Allen, who landed the Champion Hurdle at the 2019 festival, but unfortunately taking a nasty fall when he looked sure to take the race.

That form alone is a huge thing to look at if being able to replicate it but after the fall it was revealed Saldier had broken his nose and was not raced again throughout the season.

Mullins admitted he could of raced last term but has been saved for this season and is in rude health ahead of this seasonal return.

Trainer To Follow - Willie Mullins

Ireland's leading trainer Willie Mullins has some huge shouts at Punchestown on Saturday and we have outlined which of his horses on the day are worth following.

The first is the superstar Faugheen with the nine time Grade One winner over hurdles is trying himself over the bigger obstacles and could turn out to be just as good as he was over flights.

The big race of the day is the Grade One Morgiana Hurdle and we have already offered our selection for the race with Saldier but he runs two others in the contests that have just as good of a chance with Sharjah and Klassical Dream.

Blue Sari makes his debut over hurdles in the maiden contest and he JP McManus owned four year old has a huge chance of opening his account.

He started his career back in January of this year in a two mile bumper at Gowran where he showed clear staying ability to land the contest with ease.

He was then noticed by his owner and was bought for hefty a sum and was set for the Champion Bumper at Cheltenham with still plenty to prove compared to many in the field only having one run.

At the festival he ran a stormer laying down the gauntlet to Envoi Allen making the five year old work harder than ever to hold on up the hill but proved from just two starts that there was not much between them.

Blue Sari this season will be able to gain more experience, have more outings in the run up to Cheltenham and looks to have a big future in this one.

The final runner of the day for Mullins that is worth following is in the bumper The five year old gelding looks more of a horse for obstacles but has been very consistent in his bumpers so far and should make it third time lucky in this one.

He has finished second on both his bumper outings to date with the first behind Fiddlerontheroof for Colin Tizzard who looks a big prospect over hurdles and latest behind a smart type from Noel Meade's yard and it sets the standard in his race.

Jockey To Follow - Kevin Brouder

Kevin Brouder has a few decent rides on Saturday with the youngster claiming five for most of them and the one we think is his biggest chance comes in the first race of the day.

Brouder sits of the Charles Byrnes trained Poseidon and the five year old gelding has some of the stand out form on offer in this contest with back to back seconds over hurdles.

His latest run at Gowran was when he finished just in behind the Gordon Elliott trained Abacadabras that has the Champion bumper form and is unbeaten on both his starts to date.

If coming on for his early experiences over hurdles he will not be far away at all.

MPU

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