Visually, there is no doubt that one of the best performances at the Cheltenham Festival was Balko Des Flo’s win in the Ryanair Chase. He cantered through the race and dismissed Un De Sceaux in style.
He is taken to deny another Willie Mullins-trained star in Min in the JLT Melling Chase on day two of the Grand National Festival at Aintree.
Balko Des Flos has taken some big steps forward on his last two starts and was an excellent second to Road To Respect in the Christmas Chase over three miles at Leopardstown in December.
But that Ryanair win was at an extra level and gained over a similar trip to today’s big race (which is actually a furlong shorter) and that seems to be ideal for the Henry De Bromhead-trained gelding.
Min was no match for Altior in the Champion Chase (Politologue held) and is one of the best two-milers around. He has tackled this trip once before when easily landing short odds at Gowran Park on his reappearance. He will be no pushover and a fine duel is in prospect.
Tip: Balko Des Flos (2/1)