Horses To Follow » Saint Roi

Saint Roi

Saint Roi kept on well to finish fourth in the Dan & Joan Moore Memorial Chase at Fairyhouse on Saturday. Held up early on in a race in which Paul Townend dictated a moderate pace on the ultimate winner Uncle Phil, Saint Roi travelled well through his race, and his jumping was better than it had been earlier in the season. He was hampered when Rosey’s Hollow fell in front of him at the third last fence but, only seventh turning for home, he stayed on well from there to move into fourth at the final fence on the near side. He got in tight to the final fence, but he still kept on well to finish fourth.

Willie Mullins’ horse was well beaten in his first two runs this season, but this was a step back in the right direction. He was weak in the market beforehand, but he is finding his range now this term. He was a high-class hurdler, he finished third in the 2022 Champion Hurdle, and he won the Grade 1 Racing Post Novice Chase at Leopardstown later that year and finished third in the Arkle. He will be interesting now again over this type of trip, two miles and one and a half furlongs, but he will be of greater interest over a little further. He stays an extended two miles well and, on his only run over two and a half, at Aintree last April, he kept on well to finish second behind Banbridge in the Grade 1 Manifesto Chase. He is nine now, but he is unexposed over two and a half miles, and a handicap rating of 151, 6lb lower than his peak over hurdles, is more than workable, should connections choose to go down the handicap route.

Fairyhouse, 13th January 2024