2021 Ryanair Chase Betting Tips – Fakir D’Oudairies Fancied for Festival Glory at Third Attempt

Cheltenham Festival Betting Tips · Thursday, 18th Mar 2021 - 14:30

O’Brien and McManus finally pick right Cheltenham race

In the extended 2m 4f Grade 1 Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival this Thursday (14:30), Fakir D’Oudairies looks value in a wide-open renewal. I have a theory about this Joseph O’Brien and JP McManus horse, so let me explain.

Fakir D’Oudairies has run in the wrong race at this meeting in each of the last two years. Connections chose the Supreme in 2019 while he was still a four-year-old off the back of an impressive Grade 2 Triumph Hurdle Trial win at the course that January.

McManus had other runners for the Triumph itself, and they flopped. Fakir D’Oudairies was a fine fourth against his elders. Last year, they dropped him back in trip for the Arkle when he was denied by Put The Kettle On. The best performance of his novice chase career came in the Drinmore over roughly this trip at Fairyhouse that winter.

Fakir D’Oudairies jumped dual Cheltenham Festival winner Samcro off his feet that day, defeating subsequent Stayers’ Hurdle runner-up Ronald Pump by 22 lengths with that year’s Irish Grand National hero Burrows Saint also in-behind. He has finished second on four of five starts when completing since.

The way that Fakir D’Oudairies stayed on and chased home Queen Mother Champion Chase favourite Chacun Pour Soi, reversing previous form with Notebook suggests this is his trip. He thus appeals most at 8/1 with bet365 in a Ryanair Chase renewal where there are cases for many runners.

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Allaho and Imperial Aura bigger dangers than Min

Last year’s winner Min tries to do what Balko Des Flos and Frodon could not, and defend his title. Now a 10-year-old, he looks vulnerable to younger rivals from within his own yard let alone other stables. Willie Mullins also saddles Allaho, who took the old Kinloch Brae Chase at Thurles when proving three lengths too good for Elimay.

The runner-up is favourite for the inaugural Mares’ Chase at this meeting on Gold Cup day. Allaho placed third at the last two Cheltenham Festivals, behind Minella Indo in the 2019 Albert Bartlett and Champ in the RSA 12 months ago. He may have more to offer at this trip and odds of 5/1 with Boylesports instead of 3m.

Imperial Aura is a leading British contender, meanwhile, for track local trainer Kim Bailey. This eight-year-old won the Listed novices’ handicap chase at the meeting last year, which has seen been transferred to Sandown. Following that, Imperial Aura landed the Colin Parker at Carlisle on reappearance and then the Grade 2 1965 Chase at Ascot.

An early tumble in the Silviniaco Conti under a penalty at Kempton wasn’t ideal prep for the Ryanair Chase. However, Imperial Aura has had extensive schooling; so, provided he’s no worse for the fall, he could resume winning ways.

Saint Calvados and Samcro among Ryanair Chase each-way plays

Plenty are in with chances, and another to consider is last year’s runner-up Saint Calvados. Trained by Harry Whittington for Kate and Andrew Brooks, Min only held him by a neck. Connections have tried Saint Calvados over longer trips this season and he shaped like a non-stayer.

However, this intermediate distance should suit him just fine. Saint Calvados could go one better than last year or even better it. He’s a solid each-way bet at 9/1 with bet365 in a cracking Ryanair Chase renewal where so many hold claims.

Also of each-way interest at bigger odds is the aforementioned Samcro. The highly-regarded Gigginstown House Stud owned gelding has always saved his best for Cheltenham. His recent record is a bit patchy, but an on-song Samcro still commands respect.

Samcro was a major gamble 12 months when backed into favourite for the Marsh. He prevailed in a memorable, ding-dong tussle with re-opposing rival Melon up the Cheltenham hill by a head. If reproducing the pick of his form, then hitting the frame is well within Samcro’s compass. He is 14/1 with Betfred to do just that.

Finally, a sounder surface suits Mister Fisher and he may get his ideal conditions. Trained by Nicky Henderson, he landed the rearranged Grade 2 Peterborough Chase here. The Ryanair Chase demands more, but Mister Fisher could also play his part in an ultra-competitive contest.

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