Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Cheltenham Festival 2019 - Wednesday

Superstitious? Not me. Except that yesterday morning I encountered a money spider in the bathroom, two magpies out the back kitchen window during breakfast, then a black cat crossed the road but didn't cross my path, preferring instead to hide under a rusting Vauxhall Corsa, as I was walking in to work, while on the return journey my right shoulder took a direct hit from a rather impertinent pigeon...

The thing is I can't decide whether all this means Hell's Kitchen is going to win the Champion Chase at odds of 40/1 or not.

In the opening Ballymore Novices' Hurdle (1.30) Champ bids to become only the second seven-year-old to come home in front; French Holly won in 1998. Champ won a muddling Challow at Newbury in December but he looks a highly-strung individual and I'd be slightly worried about how he'll handle the preliminaries.

Brewin'Upastorm was beaten four lengths by Champ in the Challow and I'm not keen on backing horses that fell last time out but Olly Murphy's charge appeared to be in the ascendancy when coming to grief at the last in the trial for this event - I'll chance Brewin'Upastorm each-way at 9/1.

The RSA (2.10) looks difficult this year.

Delta Work would appear to have a favourite's chance and, quite frankly, I'm not sure what to make of Santini with his participation the subject of some conjecture over the past week.

Topofthegame is bang there with every chance but at a bigger price I'll take an each-way interest in On The Blind Side (10/1) who bounced back to form at Kempton following wind surgery, has won here previously, sports first-time cheekpieces and has the assistance of Noel Fehily in the saddle.

A quick mention too for Mortal who didn't run well last time out but on his penultimate start was giving Delta Work a run for his money when a mistake at the last cost him. I just wonder whether he'll see out this trip on soft ground.

After much deliberation my each-way wager in the Champion Chase (3.30) is going to be Sceau Royal (14/1).

On official ratings Politologue is the third best horse in the field but he was slightly disappointing when fourth (God's Own third) in this race last year and I just feel he's better going right-handed. God's Own is eleven years old now so course and distance winner Sceau Royal gets the nod. If in the mood, Hell's Kitchen could easily outrun his odds but he's a risky conveyance, as I'm sure Barry Geraghty is aware...

There's a smaller field than usual for the bumper (5.30). I always think it's a big ask for a four-year-old but the market tells us Willie Mullins' sole entry Blue Sari is held in high regard. Cue Card was the last four-year-old to come home in front in 2010 - the only other winners in that age bracket were Rhythm Section (1993) and Dato Star (1995) - remember him?

Envoi Allen is prominent in the betting while Abacadabras was giving his stablemate a run for his money last time when running out. On official ratings Envoi Allen is seven pounds clear of Abacadabras so I'll take an each-way interest in previous course and distance winner Master Debonair currently priced around the 11/1 mark.


Anonymous said...

1:30 Ballymore Novices' Hurdle


Easy Game has perhaps a few lengths to find with the top-rated and does need to prove himself on soft ground but he’s not done too much wrong thus far in his career and odds of 25/1 for the Mullins/Walsh runner look generous.

1PT EW Easy Game 25/1 4 places 1/5 odds

2:10 RSA Insurance Novices' Chase


The top 3 rated look short enough in the market, Top Ville Ben is unlikely to get the soft lead he requires to be seen at his best so it might pay to take a chance on The Worlds End (TWE). A decent hurdler who was not disgraced in last year’ Stayers Hurdle, TWE has taken to chasing O.K but does need to put aside a disappointing effort LTO. Cheek Pieces on for the first time and with Adrian Heskin still injured Paddy Brennen takes over the steering.

1/2PT EW The Worlds End 25/1 4 places 1/5 odds

2:50 Coral Cup Handicap Hurdle

Be great to think Sue & Harvey have been planning this all winter but their journey south is probably more in hope than expectation. That said he does get at the right end of the handicap and a mark of 132 does look within his grasp. He had almost a year off and a wind operation before winning with ease at Newcastle in February, he is not fully exposed but does need to prove he can stay this trip and mix it with the big boys outside of the northern circuit.

1/2PT EW Joke Dancer 40/1 5 places ¼ odds

3:30 Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase

RTG Horse
178 MIN(FR)

A race to watch and enjoy!

Good luck.


GeeDee said...

Thanks for providing your ratings, TW.
Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Lake View Lad provided a nice Day-1 6PT profit for the blog, well done.

I managed to turn my 8PTS investment in to a 1.9PTs profit courtesy of Fakir D’Oudairies and Big River placing so not the disaster it might have been!

Good luck with your Day-2 selections


GeeDee said...

Pleased to see both selections run well for the north, TW.

Spent much of the race beating myself up as I hadn't noted Vintage Clouds, in the same ownership as LVL, from Sue Smith's stable. In the final event it didn't matter too much...

Thought that may be a pointer for your selection Joke Dancer in the Coral Cup but I see he's a non-runner now.

BR made up a lot of ground at the business end - 15 lengths down three out, he was only beaten six and a half. I wonder what the plan will be going forward.

Nice to show a profit for the start of the second day; a different tale likely come 5.45... ;)

GeeDee said...

In the event...

The Ballymore saw City Island (8/1) and Champ (9/2) fight out a finish with the former prevailing by two lengths. Selection Brewin'Upastorm (11/1) jumped left at the last and was denied third spot by Bright Forecast (25/1).

Just before the off in the RSA Chase ITV commentators told viewers that On The Blind Side (14/1) was sporting first-time cheekpieces because he was slow to warm up. The selection did not jump well and by the time he had warmed up, it was time to pull up. In a thrilling finish Topofthegame (4/1) sealed the win with a fine leap at the last to deny Santini (3/1) with Delta Work (15/8f) third.

Sceau Royal (16/1) briefly headed Altior (4/11f) after the last in the Champion Chase before the current champion powered up the hill to claim the spoils with Politologue (11/1) second and the selection third.

2/1 favourite Envoi Allen beat Blue Sari (7/2) in the concluding bumper with Thyme Hill (20/1) third. Previously selection Master Debonair (12/1) had beaten the third a neck over course and distance but he ran too keenly for his own good here and trailed in twelfth of the fourteen runners.