4 Dublin Racing Festival Winners Who Could Go on to Follow-Up at Cheltenham

4 Dublin Racing Festival Winners Who Could Go on to Follow-Up at Cheltenham

"Faugheen" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by batiacha

Another terrific Dublin Racing Festival saw shocks, bubbles burst, and big names live up to their racing reputations at Leopardstown.

Last year's edition of this fabulous weekend of Irish jumps action saw two winners go on to follow-up at the Cheltenham Festival in the UK, so Leopardstown form is worth plenty in relation to the premier British National Hunt meeting. That's on in 2020 from Tuesday, 10 to Friday, 13 March.

Here are four Dublin Racing Festival winners who could well replicate their exploits across the Irish sea at Cheltenham.


Dropping back in trip for the Irish Champion Hurdle was no cakewalk for unbeaten Henry De Bromhead trained mare Honeysuckle. While her handler pulled out other horses on the drying ground, namely A Plus Tard and Chris's Dream to keep their powder dry for Cheltenham, she continued her undefeated streak.

This looked harder work than the impressive Hatton's Grace Hurdle success at Fairyhouse last time out in December. However, Honeysuckle has now won three Grade 1s and proved she can deliver away from her happy hunting ground.

The quandary for connections is now what race to go for at the Cheltenham Festival? Honeysuckle is second-favourite with the bookies for both the Champion Hurdle and the Mares' Hurdle over half-a-mile further.

Delta Work

Shrewd observers tried to pick holes in the form of Delta Work's success in the Savills Chase over the Irish Gold Cup course and distance on his penultimate start. He silenced all doubters by following-up with another Leopardstown success.

Kemboy certainly came on for his reappearance run over Christmas in the Irish Gold Cup, but not enough to deny the Gordon Elliott trained Delta Work. He looks like being owners Gigginstown House Stud's best chance of a Cheltenham Gold Cup winner since Don Cossack after confirming previous form with the Aintree Bowl and Punchestown Festival winner.

Delta Work is now 5/1 to complete the Irish and English Gold Cup double, and you can use 888 sports Cheltenham betting page to view the latest odds and offers for all Festival races.


"Faugheen" (CC BY-SA 2.0) by robertwatters2

Racegoers at Leopardstown flocked to the paddock after the Grade 1 Flogas Novice Chase to get a look at beloved veteran Faugheen in the winners' enclosure. Willie Mullins' 12-year-old followed-up on defeating Samcro by jumping another Gigginstown young pretender in Battleoverdoyen off his feet at the Dublin Racing Festival.

There wasn't a more popular winner across the weekend. Faugheen may be old, but he's wily and taken to chasing pretty well despite his advancing years. The bookies have shortened him to 4/1 favourite for the Marsh Novices' Chase at Cheltenham after leading home a stable 1-2-3 in the Flogas for Mullins.

Latest Exhibition

Away from the larger stables of Irish jumps racing, Latest Exhibition punched his ticket to Cheltenham with victory in the 2m 6f Grade 1 novice hurdle that opened the Dublin Racing Festival for trainer Paul Nolan. All the big boys had representation in the field against him, but he stayed on best on a yielding surface and turned away their challenges.

County Wexford handler Nolan was close to a Cheltenham Festival winner last year when Disocrama went down fighting in the National Hunt Chase to Le Breuil. Latest Exhibition is now 7/1 second-favourite for the Albert Bartlett on Gold Cup day and, having beaten the best of the Irish, looks sure to give leading British contender Thyme Hill a race.