Cheltenham Festival

Welcome to Live View – Take the tour to learn more
Start Tour
There is currently 1 person viewing this thread.
08 Feb 21 15:36
Date Joined: 05 Oct 11
| Topic/replies: 13,619 | Blogger: differentdrum's blog
In the absence of Honeysuckle I would have expected her to have shortened up considerably for the Mare's Hurdle. She hasn't which makes me think Skelton is going to be stupid enough to run in the Stayers.

I think she has improved this year and consequently has every chance of winning a Mare's Hurdle. She should be around a 4/1 chance, if not shorter.

On the other hand she has already been beaten fair and square by two of her rivals if she goes the Stayer's route. No reason whatsoever to overturn that form, and more than likely she won't even place.

So it's a very good chance of winning (rather than fluking a Grade 1) or more than likely finishing fourth or fifth in a Grade 1. It should be a no brainer.
Show More
Report differentdrum February 16, 2021 11:11 AM GMT
Skelton now throwing out questions about the ground and target. Shouldn't the level of opposition be the overriding factor? Good to Soft or Soft she shouldn't be going near the Stayers. It sounds to me that he has already decided that he would like to finish fifth in the Stayers and is clutching at straws to justify the ridiculous thinking.
Report harry callaghan February 16, 2021 11:20 AM GMT
I thought he mentioned skipping Cheltenham and going to aintree Skelton?
Report harry callaghan February 16, 2021 11:28 AM GMT
Skelton’s assistant Tom Messenger said: “It was always the plan to give her three races – at Wetherby, the Long Walk and this race – before letting her down ahead of a possible trip to Cheltenham. It’s now up in the air whether she runs in the mares’ race there, the Stayers’ Hurdle or waits for Aintree.
Report differentdrum February 16, 2021 10:52 PM GMT
With Benie Des Deux out which wasn't too much of a surprise, she now has one horse to beat in the Mare's as opposed to half a dozen plus in the Stayer's. There isn't a decision to make but Skelton will still manage to make the wrong one.
Report irishone February 17, 2021 6:54 AM GMT
Differentdum why don't you go to a race meeting as soon as you get the chance and ask skelton to employ you ?. Its obvious you have a vast knowledge and experience of training racehorses, why you waste your time on here is beyond me ? I reckon he would immediately see your talent and jump at the chance.
Report differentdrum February 17, 2021 10:15 AM GMT
Oh dear frightened I might get something else right so you dip headlong into your bowl of sarcasm. Very poor but not unexpected.

Training racehorses and race planning are two separate things. Most people could understand that but obviously you are not most people.
Report FOYLESWAR February 17, 2021 12:30 PM GMT
dan skelton on roksana ....if the ground is  soft or worse on the first day then roksana could go for the mares ,if it is good /good to soft then she could wait for the stayers .
Report unclepuncle February 17, 2021 10:14 PM GMT
Markets on here definitely suggesting the Mares rather than the Stayers.
Might find the Mares trip a shade on the short side but would still have a favourites chance and it's hard to see her beating Paisley Park and/or Thyme Hill over 3m.
Report Cash Is King February 17, 2021 10:52 PM GMT
I very much agree with differentdrum. Connections should go for the Festival Grade 1 they have the best chance of winning with this mare. There is no question that Roksana is better placed to win Tuesday's mares hurdle than she is Thursday's stayers hurdle notwithstanding the weight allowance she'll receive in the latter contest.

If Dan Skelton is in any doubt he should just ask himself the question "what would Willie Mullins do if he was in my shoes"?
Report Bentring February 18, 2021 2:17 AM GMT
Dan jesus your feet are massive?
Report irishone February 18, 2021 7:23 AM GMT
Then he would fall over.... wouldn't he ?
Report layingisthewayforward February 18, 2021 8:06 PM GMT
Looking at the odds on here she's going for the mares.
Report differentdrum March 1, 2021 8:43 PM GMT
It seems from tonight's 'In The Know' that Skelton has finally seen the light - 100% Mares unless the ground is Good and Claisse should make sure that isn't the case.

He is correct in suggesting she is the form horse. Concertista was impressive in beating not very much over a shorter trip last year and her form stepped up in trip doesn't match that of Roksana.
Report Bentring March 1, 2021 10:00 PM GMT
Did she not race 2m4 at leopardstown and won the race on new course last festival,not saying I favour any but it doesn't look cut and dried
Report differentdrum March 2, 2021 9:44 AM GMT
The whole idea of the thread was that Roksana had a much better chance of winning another Mare's Hurdle than a Stayers. It was logical to target the much easier race.

She is now best priced 7/2 so although I am not saying she is a certainty I would much rather be on her at that price than Concertista at 11/10. As it stands I don't think her form is as good as Roksana and I am not convinced that she isn't better at a shorter trip. She hasn't been properly tested up in trip.

The biggest concern I have for Roksana is that they go a dawdle. That makes life difficult in that she has always been held up.
Report jedi sophie March 2, 2021 2:24 PM GMT
All over Roksana here....

Really am.

Has been an eway bet to nothing and still plenty value there to me.
Report differentdrum March 2, 2021 5:12 PM GMT
Had another look at the entries and there is only Minella Melody, Indefatigable, and Perfect Myth likely to go forward. Hopefully, between them they can do a job because Mullins will be looking for as slow a pace as possible.
Report The Dragon March 2, 2021 8:06 PM GMT
i have had a dip on the 7/2
Report JJmbe March 3, 2021 12:19 PM GMT

Feb 17, 2021 -- 6:30AM, FOYLESWAR wrote:

dan skelton on roksana ....if the ground is

Report JJmbe March 3, 2021 12:20 PM GMT
Remember the quote, strange market considering the drying ground.
Report duffy March 3, 2021 5:47 PM GMT
differentdrum 01 Mar 21 21:43 
It seems from tonight's 'In The Know' that Skelton has finally seen the light

Notice how Skelton and Kealy ventured their thoughts on the Elliott pic, Clare had obviously told them to stay clear of him as he wasn't even asked for his thoughtsCry
Report differentdrum March 4, 2021 1:52 PM GMT
Yes, but what could he have added? At least Betfair took swift action.

I have been disappointed by the industry reaction. Trotting out endless pictures showing horses being well looked after just won't cut it. The reaction should have been an unequivocal condemnation (no ifs or buts), and a total commitment to root out and expose this kind of thing. Nobody in their right mind could believe these are the only two cases out there. Instead we have the Racing Post running quotes which would almost infer that we should be feeling sorry for him.
Report JJmbe March 12, 2021 11:30 AM GMT
Might be tempted by stayers now with TH out.
Report harry callaghan March 12, 2021 11:41 AM GMT
Just matched at 12 on here for mares
Report cobra sam March 12, 2021 11:46 AM GMT
yep carnage today
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 12:01 PM GMT
I hope there is no wavering, but who knows? She had a stronger chance in the Mare's than the Stayers before Thyme Hill came out, and she still does. Both Roksana and Concertista are 153, but I think Roksana's rating is by far the more solid of the two. Concertista has been beating up Grade 3 horses.
Report JJmbe March 12, 2021 12:07 PM GMT
Ive backed DDC for the mares at 16's, from a personal greedy point of view, think they should go stayers route CoolCool.
Report Andymca March 12, 2021 1:35 PM GMT
Dan Skelton has confirmed Roksana off the back of the news Thyme Hill will miss out due to injury, but is still favouring an outing in Tuesday’s Close Brothers Mares’ Hurdle – a race she won in 2019.

Skelton said: “I wasn’t going to confirm her for the Stayers’, but when I saw the news (about Thyme Hill) I did, because it just gives us a little bit more time to consider and look at forecasts etc.

“I don’t think Thyme Hill coming out is going to make any difference, but at the same time, I have confirmed her to give ourselves the option.

“We are still leaning towards the Mares’ Hurdle as things stand.”
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 2:02 PM GMT
Sensible thinking from Skelton. The people jumping up and down are those who are on for the Stayers who keep saying she has improved for three miles when in fact there is nothing to suggest she hasn't just improved full stop. As I said earlier the worry in the Mare's is the lack of pace, not the opposition.
Report harry callaghan March 12, 2021 2:09 PM GMT
I think the biggest thing with roksana is whether she actually likes Cheltenham, seems a far better mare on a flat track to me

even though her odds for the mares race seems fair on all known form, I Would of waited for aintree
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 2:29 PM GMT
Thank goodness you don't own her.

She has only run three times at Cheltenham, and the only disappointing effort was last year and she looks in better form this year. At Aintree she is 0/3.

Even if she was better on a flat track will she need to be at her absolute best to beat this opposition?

The market is crazy. It has reacted almost as if she isn't running.
Report harry callaghan March 12, 2021 2:43 PM GMT
You will get the answers Tuesday but for me even though beaten she has performed much better on a flat track and her defeats at aintree were top class efforts...she has a great chance Tuesday no doubt about it and when you say, will she have to be at her best? yes she will imo their are some decent opponents in opposition here...I can see the argument about her form being better ratings wise if she produces it at Cheltenham
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 2:48 PM GMT
Until she lines up I won't be counting any chickens. Far too many non runners already.
Report Fashion Fever March 12, 2021 3:28 PM GMT
dan never keen on stayers from the interviews I seen
, amazed she switches
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 4:38 PM GMT
He is on the ARC preview tonight so assuming it is live people can gauge for themselves.
Report GAZO March 12, 2021 5:45 PM GMT
i thought the better the going the more chance going for the stayers
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 6:23 PM GMT
I would be surprised if it is much better than good to soft on the first day. Possibility it will dry up later in week, but it doesn't look a scorcher.
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 8:08 PM GMT
Fitzy and Ruby very strong on Roksana for the Mare's on the Irish Examiner preview.
Report Jb23 March 12, 2021 8:48 PM GMT
Everything I can cross, is crossed for the mares. Tough week on the AP front automatically makes you expect the worst
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 8:56 PM GMT
I am a pessimist where my betting is concerned but if it's good to soft on the opening I think it is odds on she runs in the Mare's.
Report differentdrum March 12, 2021 8:56 PM GMT
^ day
Report sageform March 13, 2021 12:40 PM GMT
Announced as a definite for the mares today. I am surprised she is not even money now.
Report layingisthewayforward March 13, 2021 1:49 PM GMT
You're getting 3/1 about an even money shot then sageform, I'd get stuck in if i were you.
Report differentdrum March 13, 2021 5:00 PM GMT
Amazing how the market moved as if she wasn't going to run even though nobody had said anything to suggest it.

Now they have had to boot out the ones they shortened yesterday and cut Roksana. 3/1 still looks big against a favourite with much to prove. She has only beaten Minella Melody and I don't think that one would get close to placing in this.
Report impossible123 March 13, 2021 5:36 PM GMT
I think Roksana ought to be fav as her form is more superior than Concertista (who's younger with possibly more potential). But, odds-on for the latter is a bit silly on given form, I think.
Report sageform March 14, 2021 4:26 PM GMT
I did that within 30 seconds of hearing Roksana was running. Just had some more at 4.1. Masses of fancied horses are non runners on Tuesday. I had written off Eldorado Allen but he is one of only 6 Arkle runners along with Allmankind. I know I have Shishkin to beat but if anything happens to him, I fancy a 1-2.
Report Cash Is King March 14, 2021 9:44 PM GMT
Interesting to hear from Dan Skelton that the decision to go for the Mares hurdle was made 2 weeks ago on the understanding that all the expected runners would turn up to the Mares hurdle and the Stayers hurdle.

Thyme Hill injury caused the Skelton team to pause and re-think but ultimately leave the decision unchanged. They obviously feel very confident that they've got the measure of Concertista.
Report sageform March 15, 2021 8:20 AM GMT
Concertista has not been tested against male horses at the highest level. In an early novice against geldings she was third of five! That does not mean she is any the worse for that but the average ability of mares and geldings are a long way apart. The mares novice is a fairly new race and it is hard to rate last years running. A lot of listed mares winners are only rated between 110 and 120. Roksana is among the top 5 3 mile hurdlers and has run really well against Paisley Park. My only doubt is the trip. She was outpaced by Honeysuckle last year but that is hardly a disgrace!
Report HaylingBilly March 15, 2021 9:34 AM GMT
I need educating. Can anyone explain why Concertista ran in the Mares Novice Hurdle in both 2019 (2nd) and 2020 (1st) ? All help much appreciated.
Report Johnny The Guesser March 15, 2021 11:12 AM GMT
Because she was still a novice in 2020. That was her first victory.
Report HaylingBilly March 15, 2021 11:24 AM GMT
Thanks Johnny. Does that mean a horse could forever be a novice if it never wins a race ?
Report differentdrum March 15, 2021 11:25 AM GMT
Roksana is clearly better this year than last. Can't emphasise enough the potential lack of pace is the issue. Who is going to make it a test of stamina?
Report Ibrahima Sonko March 15, 2021 11:41 AM GMT
Big fan of Roksana but i cant get it out of my head on how she could not live with them in this race last year, she has improved but mainly over further. One could argue that she was beat by honeysuckle and then she was beaten by summerville boy. Reckon she would be placed in the stayers....
Report differentdrum March 15, 2021 2:03 PM GMT
If I remember correctly at Wetherby she came there tanking and had the race won three out. She didn't win through stamina. At Ascot she was outstayed by the front two. I am not sure why they need to drop her out at the shorter trip.
Report sageform March 15, 2021 7:39 PM GMT
Hayling, to answer your question, a horse is still a maiden and eligible for a maiden or novice race until it wins even if it has run 100 times. Similarly a Gold Cup winner can run in a novice hurdle if it has never won one.
Report HaylingBilly March 15, 2021 9:10 PM GMT
sageform - thanks for taking the time to educate me. Much appreciated. I genuinely thought it was about experience and time. I thought novices were first/second year only. No wonder I've been feeding the bookies for years !!!!
Report Derhandy March 16, 2021 7:45 AM GMT
For me, she has always struggled to finish off her races.
Remember her being clawed back by Santini (I think it was) at Aintree a few years ago and subsequently noticed the same thing again.
Maybe the drop back to 2m4f mitigates that and the Skelton's are flying at the moment too.
Report differentdrum March 16, 2021 3:50 PM GMT
Concertista was vulnerable but the ground and lack of pace has dented Roksana's chances.
Report Deptford March 16, 2021 3:55 PM GMT
Tail swish, not a battler.
Report sageform March 16, 2021 4:33 PM GMT
Harry Skelton has been too aggressive on all of his rides today. Getting carried away by the occasion. No need to fire Cabot Cliffs in that last race.
Report differentdrum March 16, 2021 5:38 PM GMT
I don't think he did anything wrong on Roksana. He rode her a lot closer to the pace and short of making the running what else could he have done? Circumstances conspired against him.

As for Cabot Cliffs he rode the horse in keeping with his previous runs. It was just a much more competitive race.
Report Autocue March 16, 2021 6:25 PM GMT
He was hopeless on Allmankind. The horse was outclassed by the winner but could have hit second with less testosterone from the jockey. Maybe Bridget rations him during the Festival?
Report differentdrum March 16, 2021 7:10 PM GMT
I don't want to sound like a jockey apologist but again what else could he have done? He was constantly harried by Captain Guinness who was up and down like a yo-yo. Given what happened last year it's pretty clear Allmankind doesn't relish the Cheltenham hill. If there was a bad ride in the race I think it was Blackmore on the third. Had she decided to sit just off the leader she might well have had enough petrol to finish second.
Report Autocue March 16, 2021 7:19 PM GMT
Watch him riding a finish before the home turn. Did he really think he could catch Shishkin?
Report sageform March 16, 2021 7:26 PM GMT
I can see that looking at each ride can give him excuses but, together with Alnadam, that made 4 aggressive rides and none of them got home. Perhaps that is as good as they are but I think that if you wind horses up in the first half mile you are in trouble. And I write as a big fan of the Skeltons as a rule.
Report Autocue March 17, 2021 3:26 PM GMT
Another poor ride from Skelton. Got in a bad position and had to switch, costing him the race.
Report Deptford March 17, 2021 3:35 PM GMT
Yep ^
Report Ibrahima Sonko March 18, 2021 1:30 PM GMT
Skelton is riding liking a mug, too aggressive.
Report duffy March 18, 2021 1:34 PM GMT
Everyone was busy getting stuck into Cobden after the CC yesterday but I thought that Skelton had his own nightmare and should have won.
Report Autocue March 18, 2021 7:26 PM GMT
I thought the same. If you’re going to ride a horse quietly for speed you need to put it into a position where it can have one good run at the end. He failed. It’ll be one for the Aintree notebook though as there’s a nice long straight. It’ll win on the staff.
Post Your Reply
<CTRL+Enter> to submit
Please login to post a reply.


Instance ID: 13539