Ainsi Va La Vie – 7yo – Willie Mullins
Has had to be handled with kid gloves following a couple of set-backs, meaning she didn’t make it to a race until July 2017, however has quickly made up for lost time by winning three bumpers over distances from two to two and a half miles and on ground ranging from good to heavy. If staying fit there should be plenty more to come from the lightly raced seven year old and she looks to be another potential star in the making for the Willie Mullins stable.
American 7yo – Harry Fry
Has a perfect record of three from three since switching to the larger obstacles, looking more impressive with each run, and with all three races producing subsequent winners the form looks to stand up well. Stays on strongly over three miles in soft ground and could be difficult to beat if continuing to progress this season.
Bullionaire – 4yo – Harry Fry
Won a bumper in impressive fashion, beating a couple of highly thought of rivals, in what has been his only race to date. Hailing from a yard that also train the likes of Unowhatimeanharry, American and Air Horse One, he will be well looked after and should be capable of scooping a big pot or two over the course of the season.
Colin’s sister – 6yo – Fergal O’Brien
Won four in a row since switching from bumpers to hurdles, including a Grade 2 contest at Sandown on penultimate run last season. Ran a respectable fifth on last start in a hot Grade 1 at Fairyhouse and remains with potential for the season ahead.
Cool Getaway – Gordon Elliott
Has only raced once so far, winning a point-to-point with the minimal of fuss, and following this was given a rave review by Jamie Codd who rode the runner-up King Of Kilmeague. Both were subsequently bought by JP McManus and although it’s very early days they could both be worth following over this and the coming seasons.
Dame De Compagnie – 4yo – N Henderson
Recruited from France following a bumper win and a couple of subsequent placed efforts on the flat and over hurdles. Both these races have produced subsequent winners so look to set a decent standard and, under the tutelage of Nicky Henderson should be winning races this season.
Daphne Du Clos – 4yo – Nicky Henderson
An exciting, twice-raced filly hailing from the Nicky Henderson yard who was an excellent second to subsequent listed winner Cap Soleil on debut at Cheltenham. Followed up with a victory at Newbury the following month and although a small set-back meant we haven’t seen her since, she is highly regarded by the stable and looks an interesting prospect reverting to hurdles this season.
Footpad – 5yo – W Mullins
Won five from eight in his first season for Willie Mullins, including a couple of Grade 1’s at Cheltenham and Auteuil respectively. Didn’t manage to get his head in front in five attempts last season but did place in three of those five and is added to our follow list for the season ahead as he was a consistent, high class performer over hurdles and looks an exciting recruit to the chasing ranks this season.
Give Me A Copper – 7yo – Paul Nicholls
A lightly raced seven year old who won’t attract as much attention of his stable companions, yet has quietly notched up four wins from his five career runs to date, beating the highly regarded Nicky Henderson trained Burbank last time out. Given his age is likely to go over fences this season but if taking to the larger obstacles (won a point-to-point in his early career) he could sneak a race or two without attracting too much attention.
Global Stage – 6yo – F O’Brien
Is yet to get his head in front since joining Fergal O’Brien but won a point-to-point earlier in his career, has placed behind the likes of Champion Bumper third Claimantakinforgan and was a respectable ten lengths behind Finian’s Oscar in the 2017 renewal of the Tolworth. Loves soft ground and is highly regarded by the trainer so looks one to follow over the winter months.
Great Field – 6yo – W Mullins
Returned from a ten month lay-off to record a seven length victory on debut over fences in January 2017 and has since gone from strength to strength, winning a listed contest by thirty two lengths and finishing the season by winning the Grade 1 Ryanair Novice Chase at Punchestown. Now unbeaten in four over fences he travels strongly in to his races and should be capable of further successes this season.
If The Cap Fits – 5yo – Harry Fry
A winner of two from three in bumpers before opening his account at the first time of asking over hurdles, showing a good display of jumping and staying on strongly to win by eight lengths at Exeter recently. Has been spoken highly of by connections and looks to have an exciting season ahead.
Irish Prophecy – 4yo – Emma Lavelle
An exciting four year old from the Emma Lavelle yard who won his both his bumpers with the minimum of fuss and looks likely to continue progressing now switching to hurdles.
Le Richebourg – 4yo – Joseph O’Brien
Two promising runs in bumpers, behind Red Jack and Debuchet respectively, before taking to hurdling like a duck to water and winning three from three in impressive fashion over the summer of 2017. There should be plenty more to come this season and as such is a must to follow in the coming months.
Malaya – 3yo – P Nicholls
Won a hurdles race by three lengths at Auteuil, with the third from that race going on to notch a four-timer, before moving to Paul Nicholls and running a very respectable second behind the highly rated Gumball at Chepstow on seasonal re-appearance (thirteen lengths ahead of third). There looks to be plenty more to come from this filly and at just three years old has time on her side to develop in to a major player in the coming seasons.
Malton Rose – 6yo – Nicky Henderson
Won his bumper with ease before looking even more impressive on hurdles debut, beating Gettysburg Address, who has won twice since, by twenty-five lengths at Uttoxeter in July. A relatively late starter having just the two runs to date, it’s still early days but he looks to have an exciting future ahead.
Not That Fuisse – 4yo – Dan Skelton
Has only been seen on a racecourse once so far but that resulted in a commanding four length victory, beating a Tom Lacey runner who has since won two from two. Received promising reviews from jockey Harry Skelton and has already been reported to have schooled well over hurdles, stating that he has plenty of speed and will likely to stick to around a two mile trip.
Outofthisworld – 4yo – Harry Fry
Showed a great turn of foot to put her bumper to bed in a matter of strides at Market Rasen in March 2017, winning unchallenged by eleven lengths. Still early days after just one career run to date, however showed enough to suggest she has a lot of potential for the season ahead.
Pym – 4yo – Nicky Henderson
Overcame signs of greenness to assert himself well, pulling clear inside the final furlong to win what looked to be a decent looking bumper (has produced three subsequent winners so far) by four lengths. Needs to mature but this should come as his experience grows and looks to be an exciting prospect for the season ahead.
Redhotfillypeppers – 5yo – Willie Mullins
Won a point-to-point by ten lengths before moving to Willie Mullins, following up at the first time of asking over eighteen furlongs in a bumper at Punchestown. Disappointed in two subsequent bumpers last spring but both of these came over a two mile trip and remains of interest over longer trips now tackling some obstacles.
Red Jack – 4yo – Noel Meade
A winner on debut, beating the likes of Champion Bumper second Debuchet and unbeaten hurdler Le Richebourg, and followed up with another bumper victory at Fairyhouse in April 2017. The first victory in-particular suggests he is capable of mixing it with the elite this season and it would be no surprise to see him win a race or two at one of the festivals later in the season.
River Wylde – 6yo – Nicky Henderson
Won his first three over hurdles, including the Grade 2 Dovecote Novices Hurdle at Kempton in February 2017. Followed this up with an excellent third in the Supreme at The Cheltenham Festival, behind Labaik and Melon, and should be capable of winning races again this season.
Samcro – 5yo – Gordon Elllott
Won a point-to-point before being sold for £335,000 and has subsequently demolished his opposition in three bumpers. Based on comments by the trainer he is held in very high regard, has the speed for two miles but the stamina for further and has already been installed as an early favourite for the Neptune Novices Hurdle at Cheltenham in March 2018.
Stratum – 4yo – Willie Mullins
Showed reasonable ability on the flat for John Gosden, ending 2016 with one win and five seconds from his seven runs, and opened his account for Willie Mullins at the first time of asking in testing conditions at Galway in September. It remains to be seen whether he will emerge as a stable star but his debut over hurdles was encouraging enough and he should prove capable of winning more races this season.
White Moon – 5yo – C Tizzard
Got off the mark at the third time of asking, winning a point-to-point in May 2017 with much more authority than the half-length winning margin suggests. Has subsequently moved to the Colin Tizzard stable and looks an exciting prospect for the season ahead.