Mouse’s Trifolium has more than a squeak in Arkle
Irish trainer Mouse Morris is no stranger when it comes to success at the Cheltenham Festival and in Trifolium looks to have another ace to go to war with in the Arkle Chase.
Morris saddled Trapper John to win the World Hurdle in 1990, and Buck House to win the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle in 1983 and the Queen Mother Champion Chase in 1986.
However, his biggest success came in 2006 when the Gigginstown Stud-owned War Of Attrition triumphed in the Gold Cup.
That resulted in Gigginstown providing him with a string of quality horses, and in 2011 the partnership struck again with First Lieutenant in the Neptune Investment Novices’ Hurdle.
They now have another potential star on their hands in the shape of Trifolium, who should arguably be favourite for the Arkle Chase on the opening day of the Festival, Tuesday, March 11th.
The seven-year-old was a top class hurdler who finished a close up third behind Cinders And Ashes in the 2012 running of the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, and has looked the real deal since being sent chasing this season.
He has won two of his four starts, and was most impressive on his latest outing in the Grade 1 Arkle Chase at Leopardstown.
The gelding jumped impeccably throughout, and after leading three from home drew clear to beat Felix Yonger by 9 lengths.
It was a very taking peformance, and prior to that he had finished 11 lengths in front of the current 3/1 Arkle favourite Champagne Fever when chasing home Defy Logic in the Grade 1 Racing Post Novices’ Chase at the same venue.
He beat Willie Mullins’ charge fair and square that day, and his latest win suggest that he is improving with every run.
The two aforementioned races have also proved to be the two key trials for Irish runners in the Arkle.
The last seven out of eight winners of the Arkle had won the Irish version, and that is a massive tick as far as Trifolium is concerned given the manner of his success in it last time out.
Another positive is that Trifolium was rated 147 over hurdles, as 13 of the last 14 winners of the Arkle had been rated 142 or higher.
Nine of the last 10 winners had also won at Cheltenham or been placed at the Festival before, and Trifolium ticks that box as well having finished third in the Supreme.
All in all, looks to have a rock solid profile going into the contest and is a 5/1 chance with Coral to land the spoils.