Allaho (4-7 Favourite) repeated his success of 2021 to win the Grade One Ryanair Chase again. The eight year becomes the second dual winner of the 2m 4f 127y contest following Albertas Run (2010 & 2011).
It is a 1-2 for trainer Willie Mullins as Janidil comes home the 14-length runner-up with Eldorado Allen another three-quarters of a length back in third.
It is an 83rd winner at The Festival for trainer Willie Mullins, a 21st for jockey Paul Townend and a ninth for owner Cheveley Park Stud.
Successful trainer Willie Mullins said:
“Paul was good on the horse and the horse was good. Mrs Thompson was here as was Richard and the whole of the family. It is a great day for all of them. This year people were keeping an eye on him and they werent going to give him an easy time out in front. He just showed them he can jump and gallop them into submission. We didn’t have any negative things about him. I was just worried would himself and Paul gel over the first few fences. I’m very happy with him.
“Excellent (is how to describe it in one word). The horse jumped and galloped for Rachael last year so he (Paul Townend) had huge pressure coming into this competition and after the first race he had more added pressure. But as I’ve already said Paul Townend is someone better with pressure. When there is someone leaning on his neck he excels and that is what I love about Paul he doesn’t get flustered and he gets the job done. You wouldn’t think he has any nerves at all the way he jumped out in front in that race.
“He jumped from fence to fence and came down to the last as if it wasn’t there and that is a mark of a champion. I was a nervous wreck. The horse was doing everything right for Paul then coming to the last I thought here we go again but he got over it and jumped it well. Paul has nerves of steel and I’m delighted he is on our side.
“I don’t know what the form book says but 12 months ago I was standing in awe of him. This year I was suppose we were used to it now. Last year it was just an awesome performance and a very good performance this year.
“You know me I like to stick to what works so I’d be planning for the Ryanair next year and I wouldn’t be backing him ante-post for any other races yet. I might go back to two at Punchestown with him we will see.”
Winning jockey Paul Townend said:
“It makes you wonder why I didn't pick him last year, doesn't it?! He's an animal. He gallops and jumps. He's just really, really good. Got into a lovely rhythm on him again, and it was straightforward.
“We took our time learning about him, and I think we've got there now. That's what he likes to do and he's built for it, look at the size of him. I'm delighted.”
On his earlier disappointment aboard Galopin Des Champs in the Turners Novices’ Chase, Townend said:
“Earlier is done, look, I'm OK and the horse is OK. We have a good horse [in Galopin Des Champs] and I was lucky in those colours here a couple of years ago in the Triumph, I suppose it doesn't make it any easier to swallow, what goes around comes around.”
Mark Walsh, jockey of second-placed Janidil, said:
“We’re very happy with the run, he ran his heart out.”
Colin Tizzard, trainer of third placed Eldorado Allen said:
“He’s done us proud again. At least we put it up to the winner and that’s what we wanted to do. Allaho was always going to be difficult to beat, but we didn’t want to let him have it all his own way. We can look forward to Aintree now.”
Brendan Powell, rider of the third Eldorado Allen, said:
“I really enjoyed that. He’s an absolute gent of a horse to ride and if they were all like that the job would be easy. We couldn’t live with the winner though. He’s an aeroplane.”
Venetia Williams, trainer of fourth Fanion D'Estruval, said:
“We’re very pleased. They’ve gone a fierce gallop and he was struggling to lay up, but he’s galloped all the way to the line and bar Allaho the race was full of tired horses – so he’s run well.”
Charlie Deutsch, rider of fourth Fanion D'Estruval, said:
“We were just flat out all the way, we went a good gallop and he’s carried on staying up the hill. They were tiring and we’ve kept going, so we got fourth.”