Cheltenham Day 1
Aye Right E/W
Admirals Secret E/W
Our first selection in this impossible to solve looking handicap is the Mrs H O Graham trained 8-year-old gelding Aye Right who has been coming along nicely in his two run this season with his last time out runners up effort to the now 151 rated Talking Chris looking decent enough to be given a live chance in this, our selection was only 1.25L behind the winner that day and was coming from a 63-day break. Handicapper has put him up to 154 for this which seems fair and we expect a decent showing.
Our second selection is more of a punt especially as 10-year-olds don’t have the best record in this race, however this V A Dartnall trained gelding ran a cracker behind the 149 rated winner Two For Gold finishing a 1.75L 3rd of 12 and staying on strongly over 20F, deserves his chance here after looking in that race that 3 miles plus would suit and looks on paper at least to be a lively outsider.
Balko Saint E/W
Hell Red E/W
There is a strong line of form here with a horse called Duffle Coat who won the Triumph Hurdle Juvenile Hurdle last year beating a horse called Adagio by 5L with in 3rd a further 4.25L away our selection. Adagio then went on to win his next two races and will be running off 145 on his next start. This J William trained 4-year-old gelding did not run again for 109 days and duly won first time out this season off a mark of 129, that form is decent in the context of this race and we have to assume there is still more to come from this one? Looks a solid each way option
Our 2nd selection is the 4-year-old gelding from the P Nicholls yard who was the 11/10 fave for the race Duffle Coat won at Cheltenham and pulled up with reported breathing problems, has since undergone wind surgery and was a heavy favourite 4/11 when finishing a 7.50L 3rd of 14 in Feb off 134. Couple of factors was (A) the ground was heavy and (B) the first run after a break of 98 days and a wind op. It is common knowledge horses tend to run better on the 2nd run after that wind op and been dropped to 131 today. Could easily be overlooked by punters and is no forlorn hope!
Cheltenham Day 2
This Paul Nicholl’s trained 6-year-old gelding looked pretty average on his first two run under rules in NH flat races and then came from a break of 294 days and a wind op to make his hurdling debut and ran an excellent race to be runner up to Soaring Glory off level weights beaten just half a length. Since that run has gone from strength to strength winning his next 3 starts the last one by an impressive 10L off 143. Every chance of more to come and looks to have an excellent chance here.
Le Breuil E/W
This is certainly a race to be watching for me, Easysland if taking part will certainly prove hard to beat and be looking to make it back-to-back wins. Tiger Roll will be popular and is my favourite NH horse but can’t with any confidence say I expect a good run so will take a punt on our selection the Ben Pauling trained 9-year-old gelding has undergone wind surgery and has ran two solid races since that op finishing 3rd and 4threspectively. Distance will not be a problem and is an outsider to note.
Cheltenham Day 3
Glens Of Antrim 8/1 E/W Ladbrokes
Although this Willie Mullins trained 6 year old mare is still a maiden from her 3 runs she has ran some solid races in defeat and this looks an easier race on paper that her last couple of runs with a line of form with the last two horses who beat her. There is a strong looking piece of form with Gallard Du Mesnil with both horses who beat our selection and with that one a big fancy earlier in the week in the Ballymore that piece of form could take a massive boost, our selection was as big as 20/1 last week so there has been plenty of money come for it and a big run is expected
Deise Aba 8/1 E/W Ladbrokes
Musical Slave 20/1 E/W William Hill
Really competitive race and a couple of interesting veterans taking part but I like the look of the P Hobbs trained 8 year old gelding who came from a 63 day break to win last time out by an easy 4.25L on heavy ground off 137. Been put up to 142 for this which is the same mark as when finishing 5th in last year’s race and looks a player.
Our 2nd selection is again from the Hobbs yard in the form of the 8 year old gelding Musical Slave whose last couple of efforts have hardly been inspiring but from a mark of 135 today is we feel worth a punt. Ran well 3 starts back off 137 when just 3.5L behind the 151 rated Clondaw Castle in receipt of a stone, a repeat of that effort could see a decent run at decent odds?
Cheltenham Day 4
13:20 Tritonic 5/2 Bet365
If this was a flat race then surely our selection would be quite short and the fact he has done nothing wrong in his hurdling career makes him look a very attractive proposition here. The Alan King trained 4 year old gelding beat the same rival Casa Loupi on both of his hurdles starts, firstly by a length on hurdles debut (Soft) and then by 10 lengths on his 2nd start. Out of all the field the drying ground will help the cause of Tritonic the most and with no rain forecast for the rest of the week this is a confident selection to turn the favourite Zanahiyr over.
Threeunderthrufive 14/1 E/W (Bog) Bet365
So many in this field look ground dependant and this improving Paul Nicholl’s trained 6 year old gelding is one of only a handful in the field that can handle all conditions. Looking through his hurdles form he beat a horse called Valleres by over 5L at Ludlow last November on Good ground off level weights on only his 2nd start over hurdles, that one has just won his last race off 135 by 1.5L. If our selection is anywhere near 16/1 come race day I will be amazed, still improving and not fully exposed in this sphere and is still unbeaten over hurdles. Big Chance