Saturday, November 12, 2011

Cheltenham Open meeting 2011 - Sunday

Very quick thoughts for Sunday...

The opener should prove informative. Supreme Novices' Hurdle winner Al Ferof makes his chasing debut with Ruby Walsh in the plate. Trainer Paul Nicholls should have a decent idea about this one's chance as the stable's Toubab was beaten threequarters of a length by Lancetto who looks to face a tough task giving weight to this field.

The Greatwood Hurdle (2.20) is the feature and has been won by some decent sorts in the past including Menorah, Khyber Kim, Sizing Europe, Detroit City and Rooster Booster. The winner has come from the top two in the market seven times in the past decade but in the same timeframe only one four-year-old has collected the spoils (Detroit City, 2006). I like Colin Tizzard's Third Intention but this stat is a negative for that well as his Ascot conqueror of two weeks ago Brampour. A number reoppose from the Ascot race including Via Galilei (second), the much-touted filly A Media Luz (third) who needs to give herself a chance by settling better, Nearby (seventh), Kumbeshwar (eighth) and Topolski (last). Pateese is the market leader on the back of an impressive victory at Sandown the last time, although you could argue jock Matt Griffiths nicked it from the front with a bold break for home two out. Back in March Pateese was beaten just over two lengths by Via Galilei at Newbury; Josh Moore's five pounds claim means the pair look closely matched again. Via Galilei was my idea of a wager but the ground appears to have gone against Gary Moore's charge so I'll maintain a watching brief.

On official ratings Woolcombe Folly has plenty in hand over his rivals in the Shloer Chase  (1.45) but will be priced accordingly and I'll keep a close eye on African Broadway in the 3.30 for future reference.

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