Mullins Set to Send Three to Take on Buveur D’Air
Buveur D’Air was a faller at Cheltenham in the Champion Hurdle and his trainer Nicky Henderson will send him to Aintree as he looks for compensation. He will run in Thursday’s Aintree Hurdle over 2m4f, and it looks as though he will face stiff competition.
Irish trainer Willie Mullins will send up to three runners to go against him, with Melon stepping up from the Champion Hurdle distance of two miles, Faugheen dropping down from the Stayers Hurdle distance of three miles and Beni Des Dieux moving into open company after running in the Mares Hurdle.
The race is shaping up to be a very good one, and there are other horses who look set to join these four. The only one with a question mark over her from the above named is Benie Des Dieux, who needs the ground to stay the same to run, as the yard are worried about her on ground that dries out.
Faugheen ran a great race in the Stayers Hurdle before fading slightly as he doesn’t quite get home over three miles at Cheltenham. He can front run, and would need a very strong gallop over 2m4f to be seen to best effect, and a big run would be no surprise from the veteran, who could be retired after running here and then going to Punchestown.
Melon always stays on strongly and the 2m4f trip could well bring out further improvement from him, although he does drop short of being top class. He would need the others to slightly disappoint if he was to be the winner of this one.
We don’t really know how good Benie Des Dieux is right now, but she would have wont he Mares Hurdle with ease if staying up at the final hurdle. She didn’t and fell, and if she turns up here then she will be looking to restore her reputation in the race.
The Aintree Grand National meeting gets underway on Thursday and lasts for three days. We get to see plenty of Cheltenham runners on show here, trying to either bounce back from poor runs or confirm their class by winning again. Buveur D’Air is certainly one on a recovery mission after his fall at Cheltenham, and all eyes will be on him on Thursday as he looks to restore his reputation.