Willie Mullins reckons Chacun Pour Soi finally banished his Cheltenham Festival demons after soaring to a hat-trick of Grade 1 victories in
the Paddy’s Rewards Club Chase, writes Will Jennings.
Mullins’ eight-year-old was scratched from this year’s Queen Mother Champion Chase at Prestbury Park but roared back in style to topple Henry de Bromhead’s Notebook at the Leopardstown Christmas Festival.
Chacun Pour Soi suffered an abscess in his foot ahead of the Cotswolds showpiece but Mullins, who sent his mount to Cork for a victorious prep run last month, says he was back with a bang in Dublin.
“I was really pleased with that,” said Mullins, 64.
“He showed a great spring in his jumping and really attacked his fences. After the last fence he flew around the final bend and was then idling a bit.
“It was frustrating what happened to him at Cheltenham, but these things happen with horses every day.
“We had to pull Klassical Dream out of the beginners chase today. I’m hoping it’s just a muscle problem and nothing too serious.
“I hadn’t intended going to Mallow with him until I saw what we had left in the John Durkan. It was a good opportunity to go to Mallow and it worked out perfectly and left him just right for today.”
Chacun Pour Soi delivered a dominant display as De Bromhead’s Notebook, ridden by Rachael Blackmore, was left firmly in the rear-view mirror.
The six-strong field were waved clear of the final fence and there was nothing they could do to stop Mullins’ star romping clear on the yielding Leopardstown ground.
Chacun Pour Soi crossed the line over six lengths clear of two-time Grade 1 winner Notebook and more than eight ahead of Put the Kettle On to claim his third top-flight triumph.
Mullins’ chaser lowered the colours of Min at this year’s Dublin Racing Festival as he scooped the Ladbrokes Dublin Chase by three and three quarter lengths over his Closutton stablemate.
And the champion trainer admits that’s the next destination as Chacun Pour Soi ramps up preparations for a long-overdue tilt at the Cheltenham Festival in March.
The eight-year-old was cut from 11-4 to 7-4 for the Queen Mother Champion Chase and Mullins added: “His ears were pricked and I’d say he’d plenty in reserve.
“He’ll probably come back here for the Dublin Racing Festival.”