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2016 Mares' Hurdle - Willie Mullins targets eight in a row with Vroum Vroum Mag

  • Willie Mullins is going for an eighth successive win in the Mares' Hurdle
  • Read what the trainer has been saying about his 2016 contender
Ruby Walsh and Vroum Vroum Mag win at Ascot on January 23 2016 (credit: Cheltenhampro.com)

Willie Mullins has completely dominated the Mares’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival and is set to rely on Vroum Vroum Mag to continue his remarkable record this year.

The Irish handler has won seven of the eight runnings of the Mares’ Hurdle, which is named after the late Gloucestershire-based trainer David Nicholson in its registered title.

Six of those victories were courtesy of the astonishing Quevega, who was never beaten at Cheltenham, while last year Glens Melody capitalised after Annie Power crashed out at the last flight with the race seemingly at her and jockey Ruby Walsh’s mercy.

This season, rather than go on a redemption mission in the same race, Annie Power is set to be switched to the Champion Hurdle in the absence due to injury of last year’s winner Faugheen.

But Mullins need have few fears about missing out on his customary Mares’ Hurdle triumph because he has Vroum Vroum Mag ready and waiting to pick up the mantle.

Also owned by Rich and Susannah Ricci, the seven-year-old is a French import to the Mullins yard who is unbeaten since starting her career in Ireland in November 2014, firstly in six chases and then two hurdle races including a three-and-a-half length success at Ascot in January.

Mullins said:
“She has stuck to racing against her own gender because the races were there, but I would have no problem with her racing against male horses. I imagine she will go for the Mares' Hurdle though.  
“To step into the World Hurdle she would have to take on Grade One horses at level weights, or with her mares’ allowance, and that would be a big jump up. 
“I've been taken with how she has won her races rather than what she has beaten. I think she's a very good mare. She doesn't look it, she looks very ordinary, but she has an engine. It was amazing how easily she won at Ascot. 
“She's fast, she jumps well and she stays - you can put her in at any trip, she relaxes and goes to sleep in a race and you switch her on when you want her.”


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2016 Mares' Hurdle - Willie Mullins targets eight in a row with Vroum Vroum Mag

Willie Mullins has completely dominated the Mares’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival and is set to rely on Vroum Vroum Mag to continue his remarkable record this year.

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