DAVY RUSSELL: Fairyhouse Saturday

Cracking Smart gave me a great feel when winning the Boyne Hurdle in Navan last Sunday and he stayed on nicely all the way to the line. Tiger Roll was back in fifth and everyone was pleased with his comeback race. It was great to see him pop a few of the cross country fences at Cheltenham earlier today and he seems on very good terms with himself.

Testing ground at both Fairyhouse and Naas over the weekend. It’s already heavy at both tracks and there’s a bit more rain forecast.

I can’t believe how quickly Cheltenham is coming around now and I hope to meet a few of you at the Star Sports Cheltenham Preview Night in Mayfair next week. I’ll also be recording some Cheltenham preview videos which will be on this site, so stay tuned.

I’ll bring you my thoughts on Sunday’s rides at Naas in a new blog published after racing on Saturday but for the time being a look ahead to Saturday.




I was at Tallow Point the day this fella won and was quite impressed. He made all the running and jumped nicely – it was only two weeks ago so I’m looking forward to see how he fares on his first start over hurdles.

BATTLE OF WILLS (2.17pm Norman Colfer Winning Fair Hurdle Grade 3)

He ran a nice race for me when winning the last day in Naas but looking back it probably wasn’t the strongest of races and quite a few of the outsiders were close up. However he has improved since at home as I guess he’ll need to have done for this step up to Grade 3. He’s got an entry for the Triumph and we’ll know how realistic that looks after today. Willie (Mullins() has a strong looking entry here including French AQPS (French bumper) winner Gamin Original. Also Bajan Excell has plenty of experience and is useful.

HELL ON EARTH (3.27pm)

He’s been struggling so far and probably needs a lot more help from the handicapper. I’m riding him for the first time but clearly he needs to start showing us plenty more as he his stepped up in trip again.

ALPHA DES OBEAUX (4.37pm Bobbyjo Chase)

The Bobbyjo is always a race I look forward to and I’m pleased to have won it twice previously. Alpha Des Obeaux (pictured at home) is a grand servant who has run well all season and has got a fighting chance here based on the ratings. He was a good second to Rathvinden in this 12 months ago and comes into today on the back of a break since finishing third over the National fences to Walk In The Mill in the Becher Handicap Chase in December. Willie Mullins has dominated the race in recent seasons and trains four of my five rivals. In a small field everything’s a danger but Acapella Bourgeois and Bellshill are probably the two I fear most.


He’s no superstar by any means but has bits and pieces of form and seems versatile ground wise. His jumping can often let him down though and hopefully he can but in a better round on that front.

Good Luck

If you have a question for Davy drop us a line at content@starsportsbet.co.uk and we’ll try and include in the next blog…