by Andrew Gibson
14:05 Gowran Park (IRE) Sat 18 February
Red Mills Chase (grade 2) (Class 1) (5YO plus)
Winner €26,000 - 5 ran
RUBI LIGHT cemented his position as the top two and a half mile soft ground chaser in Ireland with a convincing display on desperate ground in the Grade Two Red Mills chase at Gowran Park. Whatever he manages to achieve at the Cheltenham festival he will continue to be difficult to beat when racing on home soil in these conditions.
The runner up here Chicago Grey finished legless on ground that would not have suited him whilst the second favourite Apt Approach ran no sort of race and was never travelling. Consequently the form of this race does not add up to much in itself; however, Rubi Light has plenty of previous form which suggests that he will be a serious contender for the Ryanair Chase providing the ground is no quicker than good to soft. That scenario can have no more than a fifty per cent chance of occurring at best and, therefore, Rubi Light could not be considered as an ante-post bet.
In 2011 he came third in the same race on good going and his jockey reported that the ground was as quick as he could cope with. He went on to say that he felt his horse would have won given soft ground. If the ground did happen to come up soft in 2012 then 5/1 would look a very generous price indeed; conversely, Rubi Light’s ability to run to his best on the goodish ground that usually prevails at the Cheltenham festival has to be open to some doubt.