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Blackstairmountain in the Supreme Novices - Willie Mullins positive

Willie Mullins is in positive mood as he prepares to saddle Blackstairmountain in the Spinal Research Supreme Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham.

The five-year-old, twice a winner in bumpers and in one race on the Flat at Galway last July, was mightily impressive on his hurdling introduction at Punchestown in January.

The champion trainer admits the lack of experience over obstacles is a slight concern, but feels his charge heads to the Festival with strong claims if his jumping stands up to the test.

"We gave him one good school before Punchestown and he did everything right that day and Ruby (Walsh) was delighted with him," said Mullins.

"He has lots of gears and while he's a bit inexperienced over hurdles he's not inexperienced as a racehorse as he's run in five bumpers and twice on the Flat.

"I've had him away schooling a couple of times and he hasn't put a foot wrong.

"I know it will be a fast-and-furious race and we are taking a bit of a chance, but we have to do that."

The County Carlow handler admits Dunguib is going to be tough to beat in the Prestbury Park curtain-raiser.

Yet hile many questioned his jumping after his latest win in the Deloitte Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown, Mullins expects that to improve in a fiercely run Supreme.

"Dunguib looks the part and I think he'll jump better than he did in Leopardstown. They probably took a view of what they wanted to do that day and it helped settle the horse but probably didn't help his jumping," the trainer told At The Races.

"Once he let him down to race I thought he jumped much better and when they are going a gear faster in Cheltenham it will make him easier to ride and I think he'll jump better.
"If my fellow jumps well enough I think he has a great chance."
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Blackstairmountain in the Supreme Novices - Willie Mullins positive

Willie Mullins is in positive mood as he prepares to saddle Blackstairmountain in the Spinal Research Supreme Novices' Hurdle at Cheltenham.

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