Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Cheltenham 2022 - Wednesday

The going on the hurdle and chase courses is currently described as good, good to soft in places; heavy rain is forecast from mid morning onwards.

2.10 Brown Advisory Novices' Chase

Ahoy Senor has a big engine and the jumping is getting better. Lucinda Russell's charge burst onto the scene last April when beating Bravemansgame seven lengths in the Sefton Novices' Hurdle at odds of 66/1.

Bravemansgame is quick and slick at his fences; he beat Ahoy Senor seven and a half lengths at Kempton in the Kauto Star on Boxing Day. 

The question is - will he come up the hill? I remain to be convinced. 

Quoting from the Racing Post's published comments-in-running after his third behind Bob Olinger in last year's Ballymore: '...pushed along two out,  soon rallied and every chance, lost ground approaching last, ridden and lost second run-in, weakened inside final 110yds.'

Connections have decided to run L'Homme Presse here rather than in the Turners (1.30 Thursday) when Galopin Des Champs and Bob Olinger are set to locks horns. 

A sound jumper, he won The Dipper here over two miles four and a half furlongs on New Year's Day and shapes as though he'll handle the step up in trip.

Of the market principals L'Homme Presse gets the nod. 

With a number of layers paying four places both Beacon Edge and Fury Road are worth a second look. 

The former, fourth in last year's Stayers' Hurdle, beat the latter over two and a half miles at Fairyhouse in November. 

Fury Road was pulled up in the Stayers' Hurdle but looked good when winning at Leopardstown over Christmas before disappointing behind Galopin Des Champs at the Dublin Racing Festival. 

In receipt of seven pounds Farouk D'alene beat Beacon Edge threequarters of a length at Naas last month - the winner's jumping looked a cause for concern that day.

Selection: Beacon Edge each-way (12/1 with bet365, Coral and Bet Victor paying four places).

2.50 Coral Cup

Of the market principals, Camprond's fourth behind West Cork in the Greatwood reads well while Gowel Road beat Unexpected Party over course and distance in November conceding a stone.

At bigger prices McFabulous has been dropped five pounds since the turn of the year and sports first-time cheekpieces. 

Call Me Lord is now six pounds lower than on seasonal debut at Uttoxeter in December; perhaps his third behind Cobblers Dream in the Lanzarote hinted at a return to form.

26 runners and, as always, devilishly difficult.

Selection: Gowel Road each way (11/1 with William Hill paying six places).

3.30 Champion Chase

Energumene's quick jumping had Shiskin in trouble at Ascot but Nicky Henderson's charge stayed on stoutly to lead on the run-in. 

When going left-handed, Energumene has, on occasions, jumped out to his right. 

Chacun Pour Soi wasn't at his best when third in this last year behind Put The Kettle On and Nube Negra or when well beaten behind Greaneteen in the Tingle Creek. 

Willie Mullins has indicated he thinks the trip over on the ferry affects his charge and has made minor adjustments to the training regime to compensate. 

Chacun is in with every chance if running to his very best; two 10-year-olds have obliged in the past decade - Sprinter Sacre (2016) and Special Tiara (2017).

Henry De Bromhead has said the mare Put The Kettle On 'comes alive' at Cheltenham. 

Although she beat Nube Negra half a length last year, the second stumbled at the final flight and was making ground on the leader as they raced up the hill. 

Dan Skelton's charge reversed the form in the Shloer Chase and, after a below par effort in the Tingle Creek, has been kept fresh for this. 

In a recent stable tour Dan Skelton said:

"The better the ground the better result and we have a very fast horse who we know is best when fresh and it is a hot, hot race but we have him where we want, and I can't do anything about the others." 

On the proviso eight make it to post - and too much rain doesn't fall from the skies - Nube Negra makes most appeal as an each-way play against the main protagonists.

Selection: Nube Negra each-way (14/1 generally).   


TW said...

The forecast rain looks to be over egged, I don’t think it will impact the going much if at all.

A poor first day with both of my long shots running….well like long shots.

2.10 Brown Advisory Novices' Chase

With a number of layers paying four places both Beacon Edge and Fury Road are worth a second look.

I've taken a second look and my dart landed in the other one in the hope that Fury Road's jumping can hold together and he can bounce back and make one of those four places at 16/1.

2.50 Coral Cup

Not much juice in the price but Unexpected Party looks primed to run big race at 12/1 7 places.

3.30 Champion Chase

A race I'm happy to just watch and enjoy, at the odds Energumene looks the value to the system.

16:50 Johnny Henderson Grand Annual

Gumball has dropped to a very tempting mark, first-time cheek pieces might be a plus 33/1 6 places looks an interesting option.

Good luck!


GeeDee said...

Not at Cheltenham this year. TW, but the Champion Chase remains one of my favourite races in the calendar.

Sorry to have missed out on the chance to see Energumene at the track - his jumping at Ascot was something to behold.

The Racing Post points out tomorrow's trip is over 221 yards shorter - enough to make a difference? We'll find out tomorrow.

TW said...

The forecast rain looks to be over egged, I don’t think it will impact the going much if at all.

It could be a week where I fail to get anything right!

Official going now Soft and rain continues to fall.


GeeDee said...

Bravemansgame and Fury Road out, TW.

GeeDee said...

The rain showed up and, as a result, Bravemansgame didn't for the Brown Advisory.

Jumping is the name of the game and L'Homme Presse (9/4f) was efficiently assured in that department, beating Ahoy Senor (4/1) three and a half lengths.

Selection Beacon Edge (8/1) was another to struggle at the fences, finishing a disappointing seventh.

Gowel Road raced prominently in the Coral Cup but was unable to keep tabs on the principals. He came home seventh behind shock 50/1 winner Commander Of Fleet.

Nube Negra was withdrawn from the Champion Chase on account of the ground. Shishkin (5/6f) took his chance but was beaten after the first and pulled up after the eighth, allowing Energumene (5/2) to collect the spoils.