Willie Mullins has a 40-1 runner at Newbury and Bryony Frost gets the ride

Willie Mullins is having an unbelievable season even by his high standards, winning all eight Grade 1s at Leopardstown at the Dublin Racing Festival last weekend. The master of Closutton sends three horses over to the feature Betfair Hurdle at Newbury Racecourse on Saturday. Interestingly, Bryony Frost has picked up a ride on one of his aboard a so-called outsider, but as we know with Mullins, there’s no such thing as a horse that can’t win from his yard! Read on for more information.

3.15 Newbury

The horse in question is Alvaniy, and although the son of Iffraaj is the biggest outsider of Mullins’ three runners in the race, he is not to be discounted. This horse was third behind Albert Bartlett entrant Largy Hill on his debut in a Limerick bumper in December 2022, and had the now 145-rated Lucid Dreams behind when second in a Ballinrobe bumper last April.

Alvaniy then left trainer Paul Gammell and went to Willie’s yard. Fifth to the talented High Class Hero on stable debut at Galway on hurdling now in August, he justified favouritism at the same track after that. He has been disappointing in two runs since, including when well beaten at Newton Abbot when sent off long odds-on.

Despite that, Alvaniy clearly has plenty of ability and a mark of 123 might seriously underestimate his chances in this race. This will only be his second handicap start and although jockey bookings would suggest he’s third string for the yard, he should be given a confident prominent ride by Bryony and could surprise a few with a huge run.

Bryony has ridden for Mullins on three occasions, including in the Savills Chase aboard Franco De Port in the past. However, she hasn’t got the leg up on one in Britain very often, only once in fact.

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