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Extreme Conviction
08 Feb 12 11:33
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Date Joined: 30 Mar 08
| Topic/replies: 363 | Blogger: Extreme Conviction's blog
The Albert Barlett is the newest of the novice hurdles to take place at the Cheltenham Festival. Although seen by many as the poor man's Neptune, it has already produced some top class graduates from only a handful of runnings. These include Bobs Worth, Weapons Amnesty and Wichita Lineman.

When looking at this from an ante post perspective the problem is finding a horse who will actually run as many horses are also entered in the Neptune too. Looking at this year's renewal, those at the top of market (Fingal Bay and Boston Bob) also head the betting for the Neptune, so there is a good chance they could both miss this event. In this case, it looks better to look further down the list for something that is more likely to run.

Although there has only been seven renewals there is a strong trend emerging, course form. Six of the seven winners had run at least once at Cheltenham, with five of them at least twice.

The key trials have been (with the respective odds for those entered in the Albert Bartlett at the moment):

The Hyde Novice's Hurdle (produced four winners)

1st - Fingal Bay (8/1)
2nd - Barbatos
3rd - Polisky
4th - Well Regarded

The Bristol Novice's Hurdle (produced two winners as well as last year's runner up, Mossley)

1st - Deireadh Re (33/1)
2nd - Rev It Up (50/1)
3rd - American Spin (100/1)
Fell - Sea of Thunder (16/1)

The Classic Novice's Hurdle (produced two winners)

1st - Batonnier
2nd - Broadbackbob
3rd - Secret Edge
4th - Hard to Swallow (50/1)

As Fingal Bay couldn't be backed with any confidence until you know his target, there are two horses from this who stand out massively to me.

The first is SEA OF THUNDER who is available at 16/1 with both Coral and Ladbrokes. It is his only festival entry and given his run over the course and distance in December, he is a certain runner (injury permitting).

He is a half brother to Macs Joy but looking at his performances so far he is a totally different kind of horse. Kept at two miles for his first six starts (perhaps because of his breeding) he showed a solid if not spectacular level of form including a maiden hurdle win in Ireland.

Stepped up to three miles in December he looked a totally different horse. After travelling well the whole  way, he quickened impressively under little pressure and was six lengths and going further clear when coming down at the last. The form has been franked with the first and second, Deireadh Re and Rev It Up taking handicaps next time out and being rated 139 and 135 respectively now. This all points to Sea of Thunder putting up a performance in the high 140s that day.

He has since come fifth in a very good race at Leopardstown over a trip too short and ground far too heavy, so I am inclined to still think he is a lot better than that. Also Gigginstown Stud have an envious record in the staying novice races at the Festival and his whole season is likely to be being geared towards this one day in March. His performance in December, would have been good enough to at least place in all of the renewals of this race and consequently 16/1 is way too big.

The second selection I like at the prices is the only horse who reaches the stat of having run at the course at least twice, HARD TO SWALLOW. Having won a point to point in Ireland by 20l he was sent to the Martin Keighley and duly took his bumper by an easy six lengths.

First time out over hurdles he was disappointing when chasing home Mart Lane, but looking at his trainer's record, his horses always come on massively for their first run, so I am happy to forgive that run.

Since then he has competed in three very good races. In the first of these he was a few lengths behind Fingal Bay and staying on when coming down two out. Before then finishing fourth in two very good races at Cheltenham.

Although his form is nothing special so far there are reasons to think why he could improve massively on what he has shown. Firstly the trip. In both of his Cheltenham runs over 21f he has been staying on eye catchingly up the hill after being outpaced, looking as if he would appreciate a step up in trip. He was a 3 mile point to point winner in Ireland as a 4 year old, so he obviously has a lot of stamina and also interestingly connections have not even bothered to enter him in the Neptune. So clearly they think he will better over this trip too.

It is also seems clear that he needs good ground to be seen at his best. He has been kept away from soft ground so far and he was rerouted to Cheltenham on New Years day instead of taking part in the Grade 1 Challow Hurdle the day before after the ground turned soft. This being the case his run on trials' day deserves extra credit, as the times that day all suggested the ground was 'soft' and not the official 'good to soft'. The Jockey also kept him noticeably wide for a lot of the race that day, perhaps searching for better ground. If he can run an RPR of 137 over a trip short of his best and on ground he doesn't like, he surely can put up a performance in at least the mid 140s in ideal conditions (which he should get come March).

The fact he has only been kept in the highest company and was being aimed at a Grade 1 until weather intervened shows he is clearly well thought of and in a race that could cut up 50/1 seems very generous from an each way perspective.

1pt E/W Sea of Thunder 16/1 (Coral, Ladbrokes)
1pt E/W Hard to Swallow 50/1 (Coral)
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Report liam the lips February 8, 2012 12:58 PM GMT
Great stuff EC as ever.I agree the Keighley horse is way too big at 50s, didn't think he was off a yard last time and he didn't jump very well either, though that was probably down to the pilot strangling him !
Report Can't Catch Me February 8, 2012 1:00 PM GMT
Great write up EC.

Boston Bob is my standout novice of the season and I will back him wherever he goes. I actually think this would be the right race for him as he looks to have stamina in abundance. If he does I think he will be very hard to beat.

Agree it makes sense to concentrate on horse only going for this race though, and he one I like is Rocky Creek. Andy Stewart has talked about him in glowing terms and he thought he won the Doncaster trial very impressively.

I acnt help but feel Sea of Thunder wont quite be up to this standard myself.
Report Can't Catch Me February 8, 2012 1:01 PM GMT
Hadnt really noticed Hard to Swallow. Just had a look through his form. Looks a very good shout at the prices indeed!
Report Hubert February 8, 2012 1:05 PM GMT
Agreed, Sea of Thunder looked ordinary in behind last week behind Bostob Bob regardless of ground conditions so i can have him irrespective of price..
Report Senor El Betrutti February 8, 2012 2:14 PM GMT
Totally agree EC, 2 of my 3 ante-post bets for this race being Sea Of Thunder and Hard To Swallow (third being Mount Benbulben). Hard To Swallow will run a good race at the festival but he may go for the Pertemps instead (i'd say he's more likely to go for the AB because connections also have Wolf Moon who could go for the Pertemps)and at 50/1 its worth the risk!
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 2:22 PM GMT
Agree with Boston Bob but just wouldn't want to second guess Willie at the moment. With regards to Sea of Thunder, last week was a completely different test to that of Cheltenham and I think it is harsh to judge him on it.
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 2:25 PM GMT
The mixing of Our Vic with a Supreme Leader mare has yielded 13 runners on the race track but among them are this lad, 1833, Sonofvic and the potentially very smart Folsom Blue. They are all stayers so I'm inclined so say he'll be much better over 3m than the 2m4f that he faced last weekend.

Also 1833 and Sonofvic are both very backward horses, which may be a reason to suggest Sea of Thunder is now only coming into his own at the age of 7 which some experience on his back.

SEB - Didn't realised he was Qualified? Was he in the qualifier that got abandoned at Carlisle?! His mark of 130 looks very tasty, but then again I think that mark would mean he usually wouldn't make the cut, so hopefully the AB will be the aim
Report Senor El Betrutti February 8, 2012 2:32 PM GMT
According to the trainer both Hard To Swallow and Wolf Moon were entered in the abandoned qualifier. Wolf Moon doesn't have much room off his hurdles mark of 132 but he's not a natural jumper so I think he will go for the Pertemps leaving Hard To Swallow for the AB.
Report malcolm213331 February 8, 2012 4:12 PM GMT
What a peoples view on ballyrock?
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 4:45 PM GMT
CCM although I like Rocky Creek as a horse I think this race may just come a bit too soon for him. He's only had two starts under rules and I'm not sure if he'll be streetwise enough to take this on just his third start.

It would be worry me he struggled for pace in a weak race on his debut over 22f when met with good ground. He looked better on softer ground last time but I'm not sure how much I rate the horse who came second giving him weight. His brother, Tell Massini, looked far more comfortable on softer ground and disappointed when favourite in this two years ago when he first met decent ground.

In Mark Howard's One Jump Ahead, 'Irish Point Expert' Declan Phelan described him as likely to develop into a "130-150 type staying chaser, capable of a decent crack at one of the Grand Nationals".

You get a lot of old fashioned chasing types running in this (because of the trip and connections think they might as well run as it's Cheltenham) which it seems is what he is, but looking at the past renewals that type of horse has a poor record in this race (joint together, tell massini etc.) especially when run on better ground.
Report Scuttler February 8, 2012 4:53 PM GMT
Excellent write up.

My worry with Sea of Thunder is his jumping. Doesn't seem to get away from the hurdles too quick and has made some serious errors, including the fall. Even last time, although difficult to see in the gloom he seemed to back away from a few hurdles.

If he were a better jumper I'd be backing him, but it does worry me.
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 4:54 PM GMT
Malcom at the moment to be honest I don't have much of a view on Ballyrock so at the prices I'm happy to leave him alone. He could be good but I don't know how much you can draw from a 5 runner race on soft ground. I'd like to see him again before forming a proper opinion, but wouldn't put you off if you fancy him.

It would worry me though that the stable allowed him to go off 25/1 in novice hurdle (Hereford) if they thought he was anywhere near Grade 1 class. They thought he would come on that day for the run, but you still wouldn't have him anywhere near that price in a Hereford novice hurdle if you thought he was half decent.
Report liam the lips February 8, 2012 4:55 PM GMT
EC, what's your opinion on Dedigout in this ? Up 4f is surely going to suit this Bob Back out of a Buckskin mare and better ground being a Bob Back. Gigginstown have got a few in this so second guessing them is probably not a good strategy, although it's not beyond the realms for them to run 2 or 3 in the each of the novice races such is the strength they have.
Report Shakepseare's Sheriff February 8, 2012 5:00 PM GMT
Great write up Extreme.....Actually I'll put up one not many will think of....Gullinbursti.  Ran very well behind a well though of Nicholls?Andy Syewart horse (Rocky Creek).. Gullinbursti gave the Nicholls horse 4lb for a 3 length beating.  Emma Lavelle loves the horse and has stated as a intended runner in this.  In fact the horse missed a week of work prior to the race so believes he will improve (I have backed him at 36s but he is now 27s....still good value)
Report Springmoon February 8, 2012 6:38 PM GMT
Extreme Conviction - re HTS

All of the yard horses that went to Perth for his first run were seriously wrong - HTS, Champion Court etc
His fall in the Persian War was very heavy, and the trainer has done a great job getting him back this season. Both his runs since have been confidence boosters from which he has returned very fresh.
Hopefully he will run in the AB - that is the race of preference. If however he doesnt get in, he would be thrown in for the Pertemps off his current mark, particularly if the going is good.
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 7:17 PM GMT
Thanks Springmoon. May I ask, are you a connection of the horse?
Report horse9 February 8, 2012 9:02 PM GMT
I've taken the last of the 14s Rocky Creek with Hills today.
I was fortunate enough to be at a dinner with Andy Stewart last Autumn and he told me he had just bought this horse and was very excited about him, in fact he said he though the horse was the best 5yo he'd ever owned - connections were very disappointed when he failed to settle at Exeter and was beaten on his debut but they put him away and worked on him for a while, he came out and won at Donny last weekend and I'm led to believe they think there's a hell of alot more to come.
Report R Carver February 8, 2012 9:06 PM GMT
Great post EC, very enojoyable. Big fan of Rocky and Mount Benbulben though the last run was disappointing.
Report Can't Catch Me February 8, 2012 9:18 PM GMT
Thanks for the reply EC. You make some very valid points. I did actually look at Dr Massini as a sire, and thought the ground could well be an issue. It may also come a bit too soon for him.

But I just really like the look of him, and was very taken with the Donny performance.
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 9:41 PM GMT
Liam to be honest I don't know that much about Dedigout so wouldn't like to pass judgement. Gigginstown have a cracking record at the festival, but the key seems to be finding those who will improve for the better ground at the festival. Like I say I haven't watched him enough to pass judgement on that, but Bob Backs seem pretty adaptable with regards to conditions underfoot. Will be interesting to see if he is allowed to take part in the Deloitte on Saturday.
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 9:41 PM GMT
However, the fact that his prep is going to be over 2m2f, doesn't fill me with confidence he'll be aimed at the Albert Bartlett at the festival, when he is also still engaged in the Neptune
Report bestmate February 8, 2012 9:42 PM GMT
outstanding thread & follow up comments EC
Report Extreme Conviction February 8, 2012 9:45 PM GMT
Thanks bestmate, appreciate it
Report tomdeane February 8, 2012 9:53 PM GMT
I think Mount Benbulben is a standout bet here - tremendous form and heading straight to the Festival with this race his guaranteed target. This one beat Lovehtehigherlaw by 7l in a bumper last season and since then has only been beaten when slipping up on the flat and when finding Boston Bob four and a half lengths too good last time. That form alone makes him a very solid player (seeing as that one went and defied a 10lb penalty in a really good race and will be favourite in whatever he runs in at Cheltenham), but it's even more meritorious when you hear that he came back from it a sick horse and very sore. In good nick again now, being prepared for the Festival by a very shrewd trainer - I just can't believe he is available at 12-1. For all that Sea Of Thunder is very promising and a real stayer, I doubt he would have the class to get within 5l of Boston Bob over two and a half miles.

Get on!
Report marychain1 February 8, 2012 9:54 PM GMT
Yes, really good thread, a very enjoyable read and very informative. The two I have got for this race are Sea of Thunder and Folsom Blue. I will be adding HTS. Feel free to turn your thoughts to the Supreme Laugh
Report FOYLESWAR February 8, 2012 9:56 PM GMT
nice thread extreme !
Report FOYLESWAR February 8, 2012 9:56 PM GMT
nice thread extreme !
Report RyanWe February 8, 2012 10:10 PM GMT
Nice write up.

The ill fated Tell Massini scoped dirty after his defeat in the Albert Bartlett didn't he? Plus the ground might of been described as good that day, but I remember it being tacky.

Not sure why people think that Dr Massini's progeny don't act on better ground either: they have 12% SR for both good, and good to firm, compared to only 8% on heavy, soft, and good to soft.

You might argue with me that this is including all the horses that have run on the flat, and that they jump better out of softer ground. However, his best progeny over jumps have shown better form on quicker ground imo e.g. Master Medic, Fix The Rib, Psycho, Massini's Maguire, Clopf - these are his 5 highest rated progeny over jumps, and they all loved quicker ground.

Every horse is different, but I don't believe Rocky Creek lost on his hurdling debut because of the good ground. He's just a backward horse, or he was a backward horse.

I agree about Sea Of Thunder though, the better ground and trip will be right up his street. After all my harking on, the ground will probably be heavy come race time now Laugh

All the best.

P.S I've obviously backed Rocky Creek!
Report bluebirdfan February 9, 2012 12:02 PM GMT
Backed Hard to Swallow on every run this season, really like the horse. If we knew the AB was the intended target he would be a massive price, I'm worried they'll go handicapping instead though.
I've backed Rocky Creek and Sea of Thunder in this so more than happy with my bets at this stage
Report sintonian February 9, 2012 4:57 PM GMT
Im remaining loyal to Emma Lavelle and had a few quid on Gullinbursti. He has a 4lb pull in the weights from the run behind Rocky Creek, and whilst that is not necessarily enough to see him turn the tables, he did travel like the best horse in the race and was last off the bridle, so if the trainer reports him to have missed some work due to stepping on a slipped shoe, then there is a chance he could improve for that run in terms of fitness.

I backed Court In Motion for this last year, also trained by Emma Lavelle, who finished 3rd at a nice price and he had no previous Cheltenham course form, so it does not concern me so much. At 33/1 I dont mind being wrong.
Report revedesivola February 9, 2012 5:00 PM GMT
i think its fair to say that anything jack doyle rides is last off the bridle, even if its not going wellDevil
Report Springmoon February 9, 2012 6:36 PM GMT
Bluebirdfan - HTS is definitely targeting the A Bartlett
Report Springmoon February 9, 2012 6:36 PM GMT
Bluebirdfan - HTS is definitely targeting the A Bartlett
Report Springmoon February 9, 2012 6:36 PM GMT
Bluebirdfan - HTS is definitely targeting the A Bartlett
Report marychain1 February 9, 2012 6:38 PM GMT
Does anyone know if HTS is definitely targeting the A Bartlett?
Report tomdeane February 9, 2012 8:05 PM GMT
marychain1 - HTS is definitely targeting the A Bartlett

In all seriousness, am struggling to see how the Rocky Creek/Gullinbursti form compares to being beaten less than 5 lengths by Boston Bob off levels when not at your best - cannot understand why Mount Benbulben is 12/1 for this.
Report R Carver February 9, 2012 8:19 PM GMT
Tom, I am a big fan of Mount too.

What do you think about his tendency to go right LTO - attributable to whatever physical issue was wrong with him? From memory it had not surfaced before, so possibly. That is the main thing that puts me off for the AB at the Festival.

I also think Boston is a serious horse - I am not sure Mount would reverse the form, which also puts me off Mount in March. Is BB definately going for the Neptune?
Report tomdeane February 9, 2012 9:50 PM GMT
Hi R Carver - hope you're doing well.

I am indeed attributing the right-handed jumping to being sore. Dangerous to assume what you hear is true, but that was what connections put it down to, and as it was the first sign of it I am inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt.

In truth, I suspect BB wins this if he runs in it but my personal feeling is that he will go for the Neptune. Just think Mullins usually sends his best novice that way and I get the impression they think this one is a really serious tool. Either way, I cannot see how MB won't be second-favourite at worst on the day, so you should have the option to trade out for a serious free bet.

The form just looks a cut above the English staying youngsters to me.
Report stevo1 February 10, 2012 3:05 AM GMT
Agree with Benbulben hopefully sorted probs from lto, and if Boston Bob goes and wins Neptune this will go off about 5/1.

Great summary Extreme look forward if you do anymore mate and good luck at Festival.
Report bland82 February 10, 2012 7:14 AM GMT
lf l remember rightly Mount Benbulben put his back out when behind Boston Bob so that wouldn't of helped his jumping. Also it was a small field that went a slow gallop and turned into a bit of a sprint which wouldn't of suited Mount Benbulben as he is an out and out galloper. l backed him for this race after his defeat last time out and the subsequent form shown by Boston Bob has only strengthened my view on Mount Benbulben.
Report Meadow February 10, 2012 7:15 AM GMT
Meister Eckhart 14.1 to 40.1 - just sold, won a hurdle and has bumper prices, add to that Benheir is in there, whats all that about?
Report R Carver February 10, 2012 7:41 AM GMT
Thanks Tom, yes good here, if getting a little anxious in the build up! Hope you are coping!

I suspect you are right about BB running on Weds. They may see the AB as 'there for the taking' but I think you are right, at MB's current price, even if BB is declared, you can trade out. I'll have to step in!

I do think Rocky is a seriously nice horse and imagine he will improve again. Staying looks his forte but I was very taken with MB's earlier efforts so assuming mitigation exists for LTO (which it seems to) and BB goes elsewhere I think his price is too big. I also think a couple more will step forward, including another from the Nicholls camp, but whether good enough.

Out of Lavelle's, I think Highland Lodge is a better horse than Guilambursti and will leave Warwick miles behind. I think Ambion Wood is probably a better horse potentially than Cotton Mill, though which way they go and whether good enough, I am not sure.
Report sintonian February 10, 2012 9:04 AM GMT
Tom, i've not said the form of Gullibursti is better. It blatantly isn't. But thats why he is a 33/1 chance. A suspect on the day he'll be around 16's or 20's if he makes it.

I backed Mount Belbulben 2 runs back (posted on the NH Ante-post thread) and believe he is top class like everyone else on here. But I dont like backing horses who have injured themselves in their run prior, albeit a minor one. I'd rather wait and see how they are on the next outing first to see they are over it, and if they go and hack-up then so be it. Gl.
Report sintonian February 10, 2012 9:07 AM GMT
Hard To Swallow runs today at Kempton on the AW.
Report duncan idaho February 10, 2012 10:25 AM GMT
good OP and thread, tho i disagree that 'it seems clear HTS needs good ground to be seen at his best etc'....evidence flimsy at best. good luck.
Report Extreme Conviction February 10, 2012 2:48 PM GMT
Happy enough with that run in a race that was never going to suit.
Report sintonian February 10, 2012 2:53 PM GMT
Yes a good run. No match for the winner Tetlami.
Report hemsby February 10, 2012 11:06 PM GMT
Excellent OP EC,and very imformative opinions after also.

Does anyone know if Corbally Ghost is being targeted at this?I was very taken with his attitude and desire to win when beating Midnight Game at Punchestown,before winning a Grade 3 at Cork.Also entered for the Neptune,but no money for him in either race on B/F.
Report TD_Gunner February 12, 2012 5:41 PM GMT
great post EC, hope you're doing well mate.

have had a few quid on Hard To Swallow, still waiting further news on Boston Bob before getting stuck into this race.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan February 12, 2012 7:25 PM GMT
Willie on RTE when Tracy asks for a tip (one to follow) - his immediate reaction is a hesitation to tip Sous Les  Cieux - says afterwards he hasn't "lost faith in Sous".

BUT then tips "Boston Bob - his best young horse to follow - depending on which race he runs in at Cheltenham of course" in a laugh !


WE'LL WAIT N' SEE.....

Boston Bob (5) , Fingal Bay (8) , Mount Benbulben (12) , Rocky Creek (14) , Sea Of Thunder (14) , Ballyrock (16) , Folsom Blue (16) , Ipsos Du Berlais (16) , Cotton Mill (20) , Make Your Mark (20) , Sizing Symphony (25) , Sword Of Destiny (25) , The Real Milan (25) , Ambion Wood (33) , Ballycasey (33) , Benefficient (33) , Brindisi Breeze (33) , Corbally Ghost (33) , Dedigout (33) , Deireadh Re (33)  - Others  33 or more
Report differentdrum February 18, 2012 2:42 PM GMT
For me the best staying performance by a novice this season by Brindisi Breeze - if he was trained by Mullins he would now be favourite. Some potentially very good horses well beaten off. Obvious concern with the ground but if soft does happen to appear in the going description he looks a big player.
Report Wicketd February 18, 2012 3:14 PM GMT
agree. cant believe i didnt get on when he was bigger. backed him at 12s, serious performance.
Report differentdrum February 18, 2012 3:32 PM GMT
Crazy that a horse like Rocky Creek who won a far less competitive race at Doncaster (receiving weight) is a shorter price.
Report Mystic Wind February 18, 2012 3:59 PM GMT
Hugely impressive today, not sure he'd be troubled by quicker ground (jockey thinks he'd be OK on faster too). Unfashionable (yet competent) connections = great value @ 12/1 imo. Another big plus is there's no ambiguity over which race he'll be aimed at.
Report sintonian February 18, 2012 8:16 PM GMT
Was very impressive. Slight concern perhaps that he put up such a good performance on Heavy ground with just over 3 weeks to recover ?
Report sintonian February 18, 2012 8:22 PM GMT
When Gullinbursti just failed to win a handicap off 134 yesterday at Newbury I thought my small bet for March was phucked. But in hindsight Knock A Hand is a very good horse, he had won 3 from 3 hurdles race previously, and one of the horses Gullinbursti beat previously, Grand Vision, conceding him 10lb, hacked up in the class 2 pertemps qualifier handicap at Haydock today. So not a forlorn hope, but still needs to improve.
Report sintonian February 18, 2012 8:25 PM GMT
Lucinda Russell feels Brindisi Breeze represents her best ever chance of having saddling a Cheltenham Festival winner after his superb front-running display in the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle at Haydock.

The Kelso and Newcastle winner was the 9-2 co-favourite of four for the three-mile Grade Two, and dictated matters from start to finish under Campbell Gillies, galloping on relentlessly to score by 12 lengths from Harry Topper.

Both Ladbrokes and Betfred were suitably impressed, slashing the six-year-old to 12-1 for the Albert Bartlett at Cheltenham.

"That was amazing," said a thrilled Russell.

"He's not an overly-big horse but he has an amazing attitude and amazing ability - he's awesome.

"You can go down to Cheltenham and have a nice day out with a horse, but judged on that performance, he would be my best chance of having a winner there.

"I don't know if that makes it more exciting or worse, I'll tell you by the end of Cheltenham week!"
Report red and white February 19, 2012 9:42 AM GMT
I wouldn't trust heavy ground Haydock form at Cheltenham. The jockey said he'd go on any ground but he's got bendy legs and so has the horse. Ha'way The Lads!
Report Dark Destroyer February 19, 2012 9:55 AM GMT
Despite concerns about the jockey's legs I thought that was a cracking performance. With Boston Bob and Fingal Bay more likely to run in the higher prestige Neptune (my opinion only) the 12/1 each way is more than fair and most unlikely to last for long.
Report red and white February 19, 2012 2:14 PM GMT
You never know, it would be good to see soft ground at the Festival this year for a change to help those of us who like slow horses.
Report bland82 February 19, 2012 4:09 PM GMT
He won his point on good ground in a very good time beating horses with lofty reputations. l wouldn't be too concerned about the ground personally.
Report harry callaghan February 19, 2012 4:20 PM GMT
Bland 82 he won his point on soft ground and was beaten on good ground in a bumper...he looks a decent prospect but you will only be able to take it on jockey comments that he will be able to handle spring ground...not sure myself but he does look a big improver...
Report bland82 February 19, 2012 4:26 PM GMT
Sorry Harry your right, l got them mixed up, he made his debut in points on good ground but was brought down and won his point on soft.
Report harry callaghan February 19, 2012 4:45 PM GMT
no probs easily done
Report BJG February 22, 2012 12:08 PM GMT
Scratching made for 21
The remainder pay scratching deadline fee

Aikideau (FR) (The Stewart Family) Richard Rowe..................................................... 5 11 7
Alderwood (IRE) (Mr John P. McManus) Thomas Mullins, Ireland ........................ 8 11 7
Ambion Wood (IRE) (Mr O. C. R. Wynne & Mrs S. J. Wynne) Victor Dartnall .....................
6 11 7
American Spin (Mr G. Collacott) Luke Dace................................................................. 8 11 7
Ardkilly Gunner (IRE) (Mr R. S. Brookhouse) Ian Williams .................................... 7 11 7
Aupcharlie (IRE) (Ann & Alan Potts Partnership) W. P. Mullins, Ireland ............. 6 11 7
Baldadash (IRE) (Mr R. Cooper) George Baker........................................................... 7 11 7
Ballyboker Boy (IRE) (The Ballyboker Boy Partnership) Jamie Snowden ......... 8 11 7
Ballyrock (IRE) (Pearn’s Pharmacies Ltd) Tim Vaughan............................................. 6 11 7
Barenger (IRE) (Mr R. A. Bartlett) Nicky Henderson................................................ 5 11 7
Benefficient (IRE) (A Shiels/Niall Reilly) A. J. Martin, Ireland.................................. 6 11 7
Benheir (IRE) (Mr G. Costelloe) Rebecca Curtis.......................................................... 6 11 7
Big Occasion (IRE) (The Old Betfairians) David Pipe ................................................ 5 11 7
Boston Bob (IRE) (Andrea & Graham Wylie) W. P. Mullins, Ireland..................... 7 11 7
Brass Tax (IRE) (Mrs Carolyn Kendrick) Ben Case ..................................................... 6 11 7
Brindisi Breeze (IRE) (Mr Sandy Seymour) Lucinda Russell ................................... 6 11 7
Brough Academy (IRE) (Mr W. F. Caudwell) Lawney Hill....................................... 6 11 7
Buddy Bolero (IRE) (Mr Malcolm C. Denmark) David Pipe................................... 6 11 7
Cape Dutch (IRE) (Bloomfields) John Ferguson............................................................ 5 11 7
Captain Moonman (IRE) (Diamond Racing Ltd) Tim Vaughan.............................. 7 11 7
Chac du Cadran (FR) (Bingley, Williams & Pepperdine) Chris Bealby................ 6 11 7
Cotton Mill (Bloomfields) John Ferguson....................................................................... 5 11 7
Dawn Commander (GER) (Mr Alan Halsall) Charlie Longsdon............................ 5 11 7
Dedigout (IRE) (Gigginstown House Stud) A. J. Martin, Ireland ............................ 6 11 7
Deireadh Re (IRE) (Mr Ian J. Fogg) Paul Nicholls........................................................ 6 11 7
Destroyer Deployed (The Craftsmen) Tim Vaughan ................................................. 6 11 7
Dont Back Down (IRE) (Gigginstown House Stud) Gordon Elliott, Ireland..... 5 11 7
Felix Yonger (IRE) (Andrea & Graham Wylie) W. P. Mullins, Ireland ................... 6 11 7
Fill The Power (IRE) (The McGoldrick Partnership) Sue Smith............................. 6 11 7
Folsom Blue (IRE) (Gigginstown House Stud) Conor O’Dwyer, Ireland ........... 5 11 7
Fox Appeal (IRE) (Fox Inn Syndicate 3) Emma Lavelle ............................................. 5 11 7
Go All The Way (IRE) (Ann & Alan Potts Partnership) J. T. R. Dreaper,
Ireland ............................................................................... 7 11 7
Goulanes (IRE) (Mr R. S. Brookhouse) David Pipe...................................................... 6 11 7
Grand Vision (IRE) (Mr Terry Warner) Colin Tizzard ............................................... 6 11 7
Gullinbursti (IRE) (Mr N. Mustoe) Emma Lavelle ....................................................... 6 11 7
Hard To Swallow (IRE) (Mrs Louise Jones) Martin Keighley .................................. 6 11 7
Hasty Times (IRE) (Mr Colm White) John Joseph Murphy, Ireland ..................... 7 11 7
Ipsos du Berlais (FR) (Gigginstown House Stud) Noel Meade, Ireland ............. 6 11 7
Jigsaw Puzzle (IRE) (Mr Malcolm C. Denmark) Warren Greatrex ...................... 6 11 7
Keenes Day (FR) (J. O’Brien & C. J. Leech) Sophie Leech...................................... 7 11 7
Knight Pass (IRE) (Mr Malcolm C. Denmark) Warren Greatrex .......................... 6 11 7
Knock A Hand (IRE) (Mr Alan Halsall) Richard Lee................................................... 7 11 7
Lord Gale (IRE) (Mrs Robin Birley) W. P. Mullins, Ireland......................................... 6 11 7
Lovcen (GER) (The Barbury Apes) Alan King................................................................. 7 11 7
Make Your Mark (IRE) (Gigginstown House Stud) W. P. Mullins, Ireland ......... 5 11 7
Marasonnien (FR) (Mrs S. Ricci) W. P. Mullins, Ireland .............................................. 6 11 7
Meister Eckhart (IRE) (Carters Of Baltimore) Rebecca Curtis............................. 6 11 7
Mount Benbulben (IRE) (Mr Barry Connell) Gordon Elliott, Ireland ................. 7 11 7
Nagpur (FR) (Miss S. Douglas-Pennant) Venetia Williams ......................................... 6 11 7
Perpetually (IRE) (Bloomfields) John Ferguson ............................................................. 6 11 7
Pickapocketortwo (IRE) (YITBA Racing Club) W. P. Mullins, Ireland.................. 8 11 7
Poole Master (Mr G. Thompson) David Pipe ................................................................ 7 11 7
Real Milan (IRE) (Mrs Diana L. Whateley) Donald McCain..................................... 7 11 7
Rev It Up (IRE) (The Bill & Ben Partnership) Tim Vaughan .................................... 6 11 7
Rocky Creek (IRE) (The Johnson & Stewart Families) Paul Nicholls ................... 6 11 7
Same Difference (IRE) (Mrs R. Vaughan) Nigel Twiston-Davies ........................... 6 11 7
Sea of Thunder (IRE) (Gigginstown House Stud) Charles Byrnes, Ireland....... 7 11 7
Sheer Genius (IRE) (O. Finetto) John Joseph Murphy, Ireland............................... 7 11 7
Sivola de Sivola (FR) (D O’Donohoe, S & P Nelson & D Silvester)
Tom George......................................................................... 6 11 7
Sizing Symphony (IRE) (Alan & Ann Potts Partnership)
Henry de Bromhead, Ireland........................................................................ 6 11 7
Super Villan (Mr Mark Tamburro) Lawney Hill............................................................. 7 11 7
Sword of Destiny (IRE) (Gigginstown House Stud) Noel Meade, Ireland ........ 6 11 7
Talkonthestreet (IRE) (Mrs Diana L. Whateley) Philip Hobbs............................... 5 11 7
Terminal (FR) (Favourites Racing) W. P. Mullins, Ireland ............................................ 5 11 7
Theatrical Star (Brocade Racing) Colin Tizzard ........................................................... 6 11 7
The Bosses Cousin (IRE) (Mrs J. M. Mullins) W. P. Mullins, Ireland..................... 7 11 7
The Druids Nephew (IRE) (The Stonehenge Druids) Andy Turnell.................... 5 11 7
Thehillofuisneach (IRE) (Walters Plant Hire Ltd) Jonjo O’Neill ............................ 8 11 7
The Tracey Shuffle (Mrs Jo Tracey) David Pipe............................................................ 6 11 7
Toostrong (FR) (Gigginstown House Stud) W. P. Mullins, Ireland .......................... 5 11 7
Tour des Champs (FR) (Mr H. R. Mould) Nigel Twiston-Davies .......................... 5 11 7
Vesper Bell (IRE) (Mrs S. Ricci) W. P. Mullins, Ireland................................................ 6 11 7
Whispering Hills (IRE) (Mr P. Aspell) D. T. Hughes, Ireland ................................... 7 11 7
Theleze (FR) (Ann & Alan Potts Partnership) W. P. Mullins, Ireland ..................... 5 11
Report krl February 22, 2012 10:56 PM GMT
I have spent hours on this race , if its heavy there is only one winner - Brindisi, if its soft 12/1 is still cracking value.
Report Andymca February 22, 2012 10:59 PM GMT
AAny thoughts on Sword of Destiny ?
Report krl February 22, 2012 11:19 PM GMT
Certainly one of the harder horses to weigh up as he won a poor grade 3 very easily.RP rating off 151 is open to question as is his american pedigree.He would have to be by a long way the best NH horse the sire has produced to be involved at the business end in this race.On the plus side he has done whats asked of him very easily and if Davy Russel took the ride he deserves respect .
Report krl February 22, 2012 11:36 PM GMT
Harry, Brindisi won his point in a time 11 secs faster than any other race that day.
Report Andymca February 22, 2012 11:56 PM GMT
cheers krl
Report Catch Me ifyoucan February 23, 2012 2:52 PM GMT
That's 74 left in
Report harry callaghan February 23, 2012 10:50 PM GMT
Any chance mullins will let us know the decision on this race...have spent hours on it and want to get involved but cannot with boston a likely runner...very annoying for the punterPlain
Report Mister T February 24, 2012 2:50 AM GMT
I agree with bland82

lf l remember rightly Mount Benbulben put his back out when behind Boston Bob so that wouldn't of helped his jumping. Also it was a small field that went a slow gallop and turned into a bit of a sprint which wouldn't of suited Mount Benbulben as he is an out and out galloper. l backed him for this race after his defeat last time out and the subsequent form shown by Boston Bob has only strengthened my view on Mount Benbulben.


Also, I was in Leopardstown the last day when Boston Bob won (some performance) under top weight and in crap conditions!! That was over 2m5f, the same distance in Cheltenham is closer to 2m7f - taking into account the undulations and the hill. Now Leopardstown and Cheltenham are chalk and cheese. Ever since MB came on the scene Gordan Elliott has always said he's a three miler, he made BB work hard for his win - even though MB had put his back out! MB was the "hype" horse before that defeat but I truly believe he if he stays sound he could be anything. Also, the Neptune is seen as the more prestigious race!

Bottom Line, I think Boston Bob will run in and will win the Neptune, I also think it would be great to see the Wileys back in the winners enclosure in Cheltenham after all they have put into the game. I think W P Mullins knows that Gordan Elliott is going for the 3 miler and is not for changing (they're neighbours) plus there must be a slight doubt that BB beat a horse that wasn't running to his full potential when they last met and for those reasons I have backed both horses accordingly!!!

Best of luck whatever you back at the festival, can't wait!Love
Report Dark Destroyer February 24, 2012 2:56 PM GMT
Based on past experience (does anyone else remember how long it took him to confirm MDH for the Neptune/Sun Alliance) I doubt we will hear anything relevant from Mr Mullins. However the Neptune is surely the more prestigious race and with Fingal Bay looking doubtful I would be pretty surprised if he lined up anywhere else.

As a big Brindisi fan for the longer race I would say that though     Laugh
Report Extreme Conviction February 24, 2012 3:03 PM GMT
According to Twitter, Wylie has said Boston Bob heads to Neptune, seems betting on here suggests that too.
Report wellchief February 24, 2012 4:47 PM GMT
Mr T, I echo your thoughts completely.

There were similarities between the trainers reactions when Peddlers got beat by Sprinter and Mount Benbulben got beat by Boston Bob.

Gordon Elliot was genuinly shocked that something had come along and lowered Mount Benbulben's colours because he is thought the world of (Similar to McCain and Peddlers).

To only get beat 4 lengths when he was jumping to the right at every hurdle and was found to be injured is quite impressive imo.  He still managed to finish ahead of Ipsos Du Berlais who is no mug at all.

Historically this is a race I've always struggled to get excited about though; but I can see Mount Benbulben going off quite short if Boston does go the Neptune route.  The 10's available is good value imo, just disappointed I missed the 12's earlier in the week.
Report krl February 24, 2012 10:28 PM GMT
It will be interesting to see how well Netminder runs tomorrow. I fully expect him to frank the BB form, no not the Boston Bob form.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 2, 2012 5:00 PM GMT
Boston Bob (5) , Mount Benbulben (7) , Rocky Creek (8) , Sea Of Thunder (8) , Brindisi Breeze (10) , Ballyrock (16) , Ipsos Du Berlais (16) , Cotton Mill (20) , Lovcen (20) , Make Your Mark (20) , Benefficient (25) , Felix Yonger (25) , Folsom Blue (25) , Sizing Symphony (25) , Sword Of Destiny (25) , Aupcharlie (33) , Dedigout (33) , Deireadh Re (33) , Fox Appeal (33) , Grand Vision (33)  - Others  33 or more
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 6, 2012 2:45 PM GMT
ALBERT BARTLETT NOVICE HURDLE from the preview nights......

Paul Nicholls very keen on Rocky Creek. As mentioned earlier he believes Boston Bob will go to the Neptune. Rocky Creek wouldn't want ground too quick. Be a nice chaser next year & won't run if too quick. Will run well.

Andrew King thought Rocky Creek would go off 7-2 if Boston Bob was NR, so 10-1 at the moment was excellent

Paul Jones was not taken by Brindisi Breeze last run, not up to the standard to win this race

Patrick Mullins said he believed this would be the target for Boston Bob and he was very keen on its chances. I got the impression this was his favourite horse in the yard such was his enthusiasm.

Paul Carberry flagged up both Mount Benbullben for Gordon Elliott and Meade’s Ipsos Du Berlais.

John Francome - Rocky Creek/Brindisi Breeze

Jim McGrath - Rocky creek

Davy Russell - Brindisi breeze

Jessica Harrington - Sea of thunder

Noel O’Brien – Ballyrock

Tom Segal - Mount benbulben. Fox Appeal 33/1 Emma Lavelles horse.

Paddy Power - Mount Benbulben cost a quarter of a mill. 2nd to Boston Bob. Great chance.

Gordon Elliott - His best chances of a winner are Mount Benbulben.
Report duffy March 6, 2012 2:52 PM GMT
i like fox appeal for this, must confess to not knowing if he fits the stats but have been mightily impressed with the way this thing travels through his races, last time he made a shocking mistake mid race but was still back on the steel soon after, the narrow margin of his victory in the end doesn't tell the story of his superiority....i thought they might have gone for the martin pipe race with the regular jock being a conditional and they won it with pause and clause recently.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 11, 2012 10:31 PM GMT
Boston Bob (7/4) , Mount Benbulben (11/2) , Rocky Creek (7) , Sea Of Thunder (8) , Brindisi Breeze (10) , Ipsos Du Berlais (16) , Lovcen (16) , Cotton Mill (20) , Make Your Mark (20) , Ambion Wood (25) , Benefficient (25) , Felix Yonger (25) , Fox Appeal (25) , Sword Of Destiny (25) , Aupcharlie (33) , Deireadh Re (33) , Grand Vision (33) , Hard To Swallow (33) , Marasonnien (33) , Sivola De Sivola (33)  - Others  33 or more
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 12, 2012 12:18 AM GMT
Mullins said “Boston Bob will be kept to the end of the week for the Albert Bartlett Novice Hurdle. I was talking to Mr Wylie (owner) this morning and that is what I said and he is happy enough to do that.”
Report stevo1 March 12, 2012 12:28 AM GMT
Even though he allegedly owner told Paul Nicholls different, bad as fickin trainers,on win any race at 9/2 so not too bothered only one to beat in Bartlett, Mount Benbulben if over jumping / back problem? Neptune looks wide open to me with fav too short imo.
Report Penguin Keeper March 12, 2012 2:30 PM GMT
Have bet Sea of Thunder for this race but am very worried about Boston Bob obviously.Also had to back Sivola de Sivola since it looks like it will run in this instead of Pertemps now.
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