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Catch Me ifyoucan
26 Feb 12 19:38
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Date Joined: 09 Sep 03
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CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL PREVIEW EVENING at EXETER RACECOURSE Sponsored by Sky Bet

From Thursday, February 23rd

The panel comprised of four top trainers Paul Nicholls (PN), David Pipe (DP), Philip Hobbs (PH), Nick Williams (NW) who basically only talked about their own horses, Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide author Paul Jones (PJ), Racing Post West Country Correspondent Andrew King (AK), Paddy Power representative Paul Binfield (PB) who mainly gave betting updates and Zoey Bird (ZB) as Master of Ceremonies.

With such a big panel, a lot of races were rushed through in time of the excellent Toad In The Hole Supper so not all panellists were asked for their views on all races but here are the best bits. For the latest prices for each race please click on the Sky Bet banners.

SUPREME NOVICES’ HURDLE
PN: We’ve had coughing in the yard so had to cancel the media day as it wasn’t fair on the horses but also provided a good excuse not to have the media here! We will possibly run Prospect Wells. He has had a breathing op since his last run and is a big price at 33/1 on his best form.
PH: Colour Squadron is fine after his fall but that was not the ideal prep. He has schooled well since so no reason why he shouldn’t perform on the day. He has not had the strongly run race he needs yet.
PJ: Simonsig is the most likely winner if he runs here but I fear they will run him in the wrong race. Looks like he is crying out for a fast-run 2m given his cruising speed. In his possible absence then Midnight Game appeals most as he is coming right at the right time, is the Mullins number one and expected to improve again for better ground than he has faced in Ireland.
AK: I think Darlan will run and has a major chance as long as his confidence has not been affected by his bad fall last time. I’ve also a sneaky feeling Cinders And Ashes will run very well.

ARKLE TROPHY
PN: Al Ferof got some good experience against established two-milers at Ascot. I’m hopeful we can outstay Sprinter Sacre who could be a speed horse on flat tracks who is very keen in his races. He got outstayed by Al Ferof in last year’s Supreme and it will be interesting to see if he gets up the hill this time.
DP: Sprinter Sacre is a good thing. He can go long and short and will come up the hill okay and have too much pace for his rivals.
PH: Menorah jumps well for the most part but the most part isn’t good enough and especially in a race like the Arkle. A strong pace will suit him better but I don’t think he can beat Sprinter Sacre but he has a good place chance.
PJ: Stats point to Peddlers Cross but in my heart of hearts I think the only thing can stop Sprinter Sacre is him being too brave at a fence. The hill argument is a red herring as he has had a wind op since last year, he has physically improved since last year plus the Arkle is a shorter race than the Supreme and they jump five more obstacles so it’s not quite as all-out a gallop as the Supreme is which means that would be against Al Ferof.
AK: Sprinter Sacre is my lay of the meeting. He can not win! He is not guaranteed to come up the hill and folded tamely last year in the Supreme. He is up against strong stayers here and four Cheltenham Festival winners and he has yet to win at the course. At around Evens he is too short.

JLT SPECIALTY HANDICAP CHASE
PN: Noland will be my only runner I suspect.
DP: The Grand National is the main aim for The Package but he runs here first and was second two years ago off 141 and is now rated 139. He’s in great form but needs everything to go right. Massinis Maguire is also in the Grand National but he is sore after Ascot as he puts so much into his races. We’ll see if he goes here. Junior could go here as his Grand National prep or the Gold Cup or maybe the Grimthorpe at Doncaster.

CHAMPION HURDLE
PN: I was beginning to sweat regards Zarkandar before Newbury as the horses next to him were coughing. Since he won as he has snuffling and is on antibiotics but has cantered well since. The quicker they go the better for him. We’ve got improve enormously to beat Hurricane Fly but he is the one unexposed horse. Rock On Ruby will improve enormously for the return to Cheltenham and Noel Fehily rides. I don’t think Binocular enhanced his claims beating Celestial Halo last time. I would rather run Celestial Halo in the World Hurdle but the owner thinks he can finish second in the Champion Hurdle so he runs here.
PJ: I will keep it short and sweet as I can’t see past Hurricane Fly. Oscars Well is my idea of the horse most likely to finish second.
AK: The way Binocular beat Celestial Halo was impressive. If that Binocular turns up I think he will give Hurricane Fly a race. He’s an each-way good thing.



CROSS COUNTRY CHASE
NW: Maljimar will run again and has won two cross country races in France. He has twice been beaten at the Festival at 1-10 in running so hopefully it will be third time lucky.
PH: Balthazar King will run. He hurt himself in the fracas here at the December Meeting but is okay now.

OLBG MARES HURDLE
NW: There is no strength in depth in the mares race whereas there will be 24 runners in the Coral Cup so we will run Swincombe Flame here. I want to take the easier option and I think she will be in the first three.

NH CHASE
PN: Harry The Viking will definitely stay and has not run as he want him fresh. He has been coughing but we are confident he will get over it.
NW: Alfie Spinner will run after his good third in the Reynoldstown and we have booked Sam Waley-Cohen. He will definitely get the trip.

NEPTUNE INVESTMENTS NEPTUNE HURDLE
PN: I was discussing running plans for Prospect Wells with Graham Wylie and he told me Boston Bob is likely to run here.
PH: He has pulled a hamstring and needs a few days easy. He is not out of the race but more than a week off and it’s a problem. It’s 50-50.
PJ: I have a lot of respect for the Fingal Bay-Simonsig Sandown form but I rate Boston Bob even a notch up from that giving 10lbs in heavy ground to class horses last time and I hope they run here and think they might as Mullins and Wylie both like the race and it is more prestigious than the Albert Bartlett. I strongly fancy Boston Bob to win whichever race he runs in.

RSA CHASE
PN: We’ve purposely not run Join Together saving him for this. He jumps well and stays very well. Stamina is his forte so he would prefer the New Course (RSA run on Old Course).
DP: If I could have £1 for every time I have been asked where Grands Crus will run. It’s a nice dilemma to have. It’s frightening looking at the media every day seeing who is missing the Festival so let’s see. We will decide five days before.
PJ: Grands Crus wouldn’t be a stats horse as Feltham winners have a shocking record but we know he bounds up the hill. I strongly fancy Bobs Worth each-way. He was giving Invictus weight at Ascot when not beaten far having only had one gallop since a wind op and is much better racing left-handed being unbeaten at Cheltenham in three starts. He also only had five lengths to find with Grands Crus in the Feltham and has had a wind op since and will be happier away from Kempton.
AK: Grands Crus has to be one of the better bets of the meeting of those at short prices.

QUEEN MOTHER CHAMPION CHASE
PH: The problem with Wishfull Thinking has been his breathing. He has 2 wind ops already and it is still not sorted. He has one decent runs this season and three moderate runs. His best trip is somewhere between 2m-3m. I don’t know! It’s hard to tell when he can’t get the air.
PJ: Sizing Europe for me is not just the best two-miler chaser in training but the best chaser in training full stop and is a bet at odds-against.
AK: Wishfull Thinking has lost the plot. Finians Rainbow is very beatable. Sizing Europe should win but it’s not a race I want to get involved in.



CORAL CUP
DP: Our Father will go for this or the Pertemps Final. Battle Group’s owners want to run in the novice handicap chase instead.
PH: Dare Me and Featherbed Lane are intended runners. Dare Me may be eight but he is still improving. Dunraven Storm was a possible but returned lame from Ascot so may not go anywhere at Cheltenham.

FRED WINTER JUVENILE HANDCIAP HURDLE
PN: Hinterland will probably run. Ruby told me he overdid the waiting tactics last time saying it wasn’t his best ride. He is still on the same mark. He’ll have a big weight but is built to carry it. He is not as well handicapped as when Sanctuaire won it but good enough to win off his mark.

WEATHERBYS CHAMPION BUMPER
PH: Village Vic will probably run but he wouldn’t be as good as Cheltenian who won it last year. He is going the right way.
NW: Horatio Hornblower will be entered and if he is full of himself and looks well in his coast I would go for it. If he can improve a 3-4 lengths then we are in the mix but he would need good-to-soft or slower to run.
PB: Sword Of Honour is interesting for pat Flynn who has had a winner and second in this race before. He is ex Aidan O’Brien and an interesting outsider if he runs.

JEWSON NOVICES’ CHASE
PN: The plan is to run Cristal Bonus in the Pendil and then this race if good or softer. He is classy being rated 152 over hurdles.
NW: For Non Stop needs everything to go right in his races. Quite a few of these are much of a muchness so he has a chance.
PJ: If you split stakes on Sir Des Champs and Cristal Bonus I don’t think you will lose on the race.

PERTEMPS FINAL
PN: I will run Sonofvic who qualified courtesy of bad weather at Carlisle.
DP: Buena Vista will be going for a third win. I was worried after his Kempton run but he showed a lot more spark last time and that run coincided with better ground. He has won this race off 133 and 138 and is 140 this year so it is not impossible and we will probably put a 10lbs claimer on. Whoever rides he will give them a fantastic spin.
PH: Voladaor is a proper stayer with a squeak but nothing stronger than that.

RYANAIR CHASE
DP: Great Endeavour is the Plate but I imagine the owner will want to run here. Everything went wrong with him in the 3m Festival handicap last year and needs to improve to win. 2n5f at Cheltenham is ideal for him.
NW: Gauvain is a 2m4f horse but he will go to the race where he has the best chance of picking up some prize money so the race with the smallest field (other option is Champion Chase).
PJ: Having not been a great fan if they run Somersby here I am very much warming to his each-way chance as he has the class, is most consistent and cheekpieces could be the making of him.

WORLD HURDLE
PN: Big Buck’s is not coughing. He wasn’t at his best in the Cleeve and came back a bit quiet but has bloomed since. He worked with Kauto this morning and I am very happy with him. Oscar Whisky could be the hardest opponent he has faced as more pacey and has looked very good over 2m4f and is an unknown over 3m. He could be very good. He’s been hurdling too long now to ever go for the Gold Cup.
DP: Big Buck’s is a cert but there is lots of good prize money for Dynaste to chase. Worrying to hear Big Buck’s not at his best last time given he gave us weight an easy beating.
PJ: I’ll be betting without Big Buck’s and reckon if he runs Thousand Stars is the e/w value as he is more or the less than same horse as Oscar Whisky over 2m and 2m4f.



TRIUMPH HURDLE
PN: Ruby will school Dildar on Friday. He has worked and schooled well on Tuesday and there is plenty of improvement to come. He runs in the Adonis and Dodging Bullets runs in the Dovecote. Pearl Swan has the best form so far and I can get him better than last time. All are also in the Supreme so let’s see how Dildar gets on first.
PH: Sadlers Risk is a good horse but let’s get over Saturday first. He has a lot to prove has the potential to be very good. He is my best chance of the week.
NW: Urbain De Sivola is a jumps bred so our chances are helped a lot if it comes up soft to make this a real stamina test.
PJ: Grumeti is so professional that he looks an each-way steal to me at 10/1.

GOLD CUP
PN: It just astounds me how Kauto Star looks. He did a strong 5f with Big Buck’s and for the first time in a long time he took a long time to pull up. His enthusiasm is unbelievable. He is in as good form now as before Haydock and Kempton. Ruby schools him on Friday. Not having Denman harrying him this year will be in his advantage and I also think there is more pressure on Sam (Waley-Cohen) this year. I don’t think Long Run has trained on.
PH: Captain Chris has always jumped to the right but not like that before. Let’s see how we go in the next two weeks, he’s in the Ryanair as well but may not go to Cheltenham. If there was an obvious race on a right handed course he would go there but there isn’t now until Pucnhestown. He’s not looking great in his coat right now.
NW: Diamond Harry has had a wind op. That’s the first time I’ve done it mid season and wouldn’t do it again, I’d wait until the summer.
PJ: Weird Al e/w for me. Doesn’t have a lot to find with Kauto and Long Run on Haydock form which came too soon after winning the Charlie Hall and has a very good Cheltenham record.
AK: I have a feeling that the big two could get beat but prefer Kauto to Long Run. What A Friend is a massive e/w price at 40/1.



NAPS
Paul Nicholls: Chapoturgeon
David Pipe: Alfie Spinner
Philip Hobbs: Sadlers Risk
Nick Williams: Swincombe Flame e/w
Paul Jones: On The Fringe
Zoey Bird: Scotsirish

(© Catch Me ifyoucan) Devil
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Report Arklearkle March 2, 2012 10:33 AM GMT
Thanks Money. Davy very entertaining at these but dont expect to mke money from what he says.
Report Masterminded March 2, 2012 10:49 AM GMT
Wincanton Racecourse

PN-Paul Nicholls
JT- Joe Tizzard
PP-Paddy Power Rep
TS- Tanya Stevenson
DP- David Pipe
AP- Alice Plunkett

Supreme
PN- Prospect Wells runs. Ran well early in season just getting beat by Steps To Freedom. Hinterland could run.
DP- Catch Tammy a lot to do, Close House lightly raced probs run in this or Neptune. Neptune more likely.
TS- Irish dominated race. Darlan had a heavy fall. She likes Cinders & Ashes. Feels Darlan would have won the Betfair.
JT- Loves Cinders & Ashes could be a Haydock bog horse but D McCain feels he's not. Could shake them up.
PP- Loads of money for Darlan. Likes Cash & Go who should be running at Leopardstown for a bit of a school round. Scoped badly last time.

Arkle
AP- Sprinter Sacre blown everyone away. Saw him at Nicky Henderson's described him as an absolute beast of a horse.
JT- Can't not be impressed by Sprinter Sacre. Cue Card done nothing wrong glad Bob's Worth beat him at Newbury as he feels CC a 2 miler Colin thought he was a stayer. Had a knock could be a blessing in disguise not running in Game Spirit against SS. Made Oiseau De Nuit look very average in a racecourse gallop. Goes into the race confident. Will bounce him out in front but needs to get it right as doesn't want to play into Al Ferof's hands.
PN-Jokes he has a little plan of running Sanctuaire to go off at a million miles an hour and take on Cue card & SS. Jumping the last in Supreme SS going backwards. Need a horse that stays in Arkle. Has a suspicion Al Ferof wants further but keeps winning over 2 miles & will be a tough race. Thinks SS might not get up the hill and the fact he's been running on flat tracks gives him hope.
TS- Says Sprinter Sacre has stats against him. Peddlers Cross a drifter thinks he goes Jewson. Puts up Menorah thinks he will jump better going faster.
DP- Stats there to be broken and Sprinter Sacre will break them. Only beaten handicappers but I'm So Lucky was one of them who ran in the Champion Chase last year. Sprinter Sacre beat him very well & will get up the hill. Pretty confident Sprinter Sacre will win.
PP- Special money back if SS wins. Latest figure at 3 million payout if he wins. Thinks they have made a mistake. Noel Meade thinks he's the best chaser for years. Plenty of money for Al Ferof.

Champion Hurdle
PN- Few horses coughing. Wasn't confident Zark was at his best before Betfair. Called Darlan a bridle horse had a bit of a pop at him saying Zarkandar would have won anyway. Says he must be some horse to win with a cough and is ok now. Rock On Ruby has a great chance on form with Binocular. Celestial Halo runs but not much of a chance. Brampour runs.
AP- Binocular 20kg lighter best he's been. If he's gna win another Champ hurdle it's now.
JT- Likes Hurricane Fly doesn't think English bunch are up to much. Didn't think the Betfair was a great race. The Fly all day.
TS- Doesn't like odds on shots but thinks H Fly wins. Mentions Celestial Halo before picking Overturn E/W.
DP- Hurricane Fly should win runs on any ground. Also likes Overturn e/w off a nice break. Without H Fly it's an open Champ Hurdle.

Best bet Tuesday

DP- comes out to put up The Package as best bet of Tuesday. In good form likes his mark all signs are good at home.
TS-Maljimar X Country
AP- Sizing Australia X Country
JT- Cinders & Ashes
PN- Zarkandar
PP- Unaccompanied if she runs in the Mares race.

Neptune
AP- Simonsig likely fav. Trainer feels he's a proper champion of the future. He stays but has exceptional speed.
JT- Possibly runs Ohio Gold but ground gone against him but not without an e/w chance.
TS- loves Battonier. Reeled in Broadbackbob looked strong coming up the hill.
DP-Has a couple of entries Boston Bob the horse for him.
PN- doesn't have any runners not spoken to Ruby but feels Boston Bob will take all the beating & best form in the race.
PP- Boston Bob best novice in Ireland. Top class form feels he will run in Neptune now Fingal Bay come out. Thinks he's very very good.

RSA
JT- Cannington Brook got an entry but might go handicap.
DP- After hearing news about Kauto Star will be left in both 5 day entries. Grand Crus done nothing wrong. Gave him an entry in Betfair not worried about taking on older horses. Long way to go & plenty to happen. Not totally sure he will get the 3 m 2. Said everything up in the air has the ability to travel & jump in a Gold Cup. If Kauto's out he's 2nd fav. He seemed very undecided at times but just get the feeling he was edging towards Gold Cup.
TS-Always felt Bob's Worth crying out for Cheltenham.
PN- Join together not far off Grand Crus on ratings. In good order. Proper chaser thought he was slow but kept on improving. Ruby not said who he's riding yet. S Conti goes to Aintree. Didn't feel he stayed at Kempton or Ascot.
PP- A lot of people waiting for NRNB. Bob's Worth 3/3 at Chelt. 4/4 Left handed. First Lieutenant ran well behind Last Installment.

Champion Chase
JT- Sizing Europe fan. Not the strongest Champ chase. Thought he was a spring horse but done well this season.
DP- Im So Lucky & Imsingingtheblues may run for some gd prizemoney. The fav looks a gd thing.
TS- Thinks Sizing Europe will win. Bookies may go out to get him on the day. Master Minded only recent QM Champ to retain crown.
PN- Thinks fav will be hard to beat. Will probs run Kauto Stone doesn't think he stayed at Ascot.
PP- Feels Big Zeb & Sizing Europe beat each other value with Big Zeb.

Coral Cup/Fred Winter
DP- Our Father could run in this or Pertemps. Got to improve but has a big reputation. Big horse will carry weight. Thinks he will stay 3 mile or has the speep for 2 and a half. Mentions Kazlian for the Fred Winter needs to brush up jumping. 130 is ok in his opinion but won 2 poor races. Hopeful.
PN- Nothing in Coral Cup unless King Of The Night runs. Fred Winter Ulck Du Lin def runs didn't want to ruin his mark. Hinterland could run.
JT- Third Intention runs in Coral Cup but not happy with rise in weights. Didn't think it was a gd National Spirit hurdle.

Best bets Wednesday
PP- Sword Of Honour in the Champ Bumper
PN- Harry the Viking in the NH Chase
JT- Royal Guardsman e/w in Champ Bumper
TS- Battonier Neptune
DP- Alfie Spinner in the NH Chase

Jewson
TS- Peddlers Cross turns up will be fav.
PN- S Conti had a few coughs goes to aintree see RSA. Crystal Bonus very fragile/hard to train but very good on his day. Wouldn't want it too quick jumps & travels well.
JT- Michael Flips could run well at a big price
AP- For Non Stop has some very good form.
DP- For Non Stop has a good chance.  Crystal Bonus looked impressive but questions what he beat after Minella Class pulled up. Notus De La Tour & Zaynar entered. NDT also in H'caps. Zaynar just arrived only knows what he's done on track & only entry. Thinks if Peddlers Cross goes here it's the right race for him.

Pertemps
DP- Buena Vista better on good ground not impossible but getting older. Probs last festival. Didn't think he would win last year. Going well at home. Our Father would be his best chance if he runs.
PN- Son Of Vic. Aimed at this race since jumping moderately. Got a chance.

Ryanair
DP- Great Endeavor got to improve. Best fresh in cracking form drier the form the better but has 10 lbs to find. Would go h'cap if up to him but owner wants to run in Ryanair.
PN- Poquelin in good form the drier the ground the better. Big price and has an e/w chance.
PP- Love for Great Endeavour to win. Noble Prince has a great chance. Had a small op. Step up in trip just like in the Jewson.
JT-Riverside Theatre just coming right could be the horse he thought he would be last year. Seemed very keen on him.

World Hurdle
PN- Gave him another run to keep fitness up. In good form. Oscar Whisky very worthy & interesting opponent. Thinks OW will be fine over longer trip but says Big Buck's' strengths are his stamina.
DP- No way to get Big Buck's beat. Only way he gets beat if Ruby doesn't ride him. Dynaste can get in the first 3. Will be great if he can looking forward to RSA with him next year.
TS- BB a 1/7 shot
PP- A lot of ppl looking for other options. Oscar Whisky unlucky not to be beaten this season. 3 miles could bring out more. Big Buck's will win.

Handicaps
DP- Keen on Salut Flo. Still young hopefully at right end of handicap in Byrne Group Plate. Entered in other races.
JT- Would love for Hunt Ball to win something to see what Anthony Knott does.

Best Bets Thursday
PP- Sunnyhillboy Kim Muir
PN- Big Buck's too short Son Of Vic Pertemps
JT- Grand Vision Pertemps
AP- Big Buck's if you like free money
TS- Faasel Kim Muir

Triumph
TS- 5/10 Adonis winners won Triumph. Likes Baby Mix. Balder Succes also a possible at a bigger price.
PN- Thought it was a harsh decision to take race away from Pearl Swan.Thinks he has best form & will improve. Dodging Bullets really interesting outsider lots of improvement. Dildar disappointing.
DP- Kazlian could still run.
PP- At a preview with Phillip Hobbs who said Saddlers Risk his best chance at festival even if Fingal Bay running. Baby Mix beat him giving 3lb.
JT- Paddy Brennan told him about Baby Mix at the start of season. Felt they were training him too hard when he lost at Chelt.

County
PN- Ted Spread running won at Taunton recently. Needs some to come out. Brampour won't run.

Albert Bartlett
PN- Rocky Creek wouldn't want ground too quick. Be a nice chaser next year & won't run if too quick. Will run well.
TS- Fox Appeal 33/1 Emma Lavelles horse.
PP- Mount Benbulben cost a quarter of a mill. 2nd to Boston Bob. Great chance.

Martin Pipe
DP- May run I'msingingtheblues off 145 which will be ideal over 2 and a half around Chelt
PN- Ted Spread, Empire Levant Edgardo Sol possibles.
JT- Feels David Pipe has a better one lower in the weights than Imsingingtheblues.

Grand Annual
JT- Falcon Island & Oiseau De Nuit 2 runners. S Clements to ride ODN to get weight down again.
PN- Toubab not fully tuned up last time and will run well on better ground.

Gold Cup
PP- Long Run much better last time. Jumping better. In The Kauto camp and hopes he can get there. Burton Port will improve. Puts up Midnight Chase D Costello gets a huge tune out of horse,
PN- Kauto better than last year. Chelt will help Long Run but Kauto won 2 Gold Cups. Feels Long Run not improving had a lot of hard races in France as a young horse. Says if Burton Port was trained by anyone else he would have gone past Long Run in the Denman Chase. Long Run one to beat if he jumps well. Won't run Kauto unless he's 100% for the race. To me it seemed it was less likely Kauto would run. Said What A Friend will run well.
JT- Kauto been phenomenal. Weighing room got a bit emotional when Kauto won at Haydock.
DP-Not sure Long Runs been the horse he was last year. Tom Scu rode The Giant Bolster in Denman Chase & feels Grand Crus would have gone very very close. Seemed quite confident Grand Crus would have won that race. Put up Quel Espirit E/W and also joked Grand Crus E/W. Thought Midnight Chase would come 5th.
AP- Midnight Chase E/W
TS- Midnight Chase E/W. Also feels Burton Port could have won lto.

Best Bets Friday
JT- Toubab Grand Annual
PN- Chapoturgeon Foxhunters
PP- Salsify Foxhunters
DP- Monkerty Tunkerty Foxhunters

Bet Of The Week
DP- Grand Crus/Alfie Spinner
PP-Salsify
TS-Fox Appeal
PN- Son Of Vic E/W
JT- Royal Guardsmen E/W
Report moneypenny March 2, 2012 2:22 PM GMT
Arklearkle     02 Mar 12 10:33 
Thanks Money. Davy very entertaining at these but dont expect to mke money from what he says.


Was looking thru last years notes last night

Davy said
Hurricane Fly was unbeatable
First Lieutenant was his best chance of a winner
Also tipped up Sir de Champs & Cheltenian
Report lookingforthewildman March 2, 2012 2:40 PM GMT
Davy said trifolium best novice in Ireland.....thats why he is riding midnight game.....good these things arent they....still its just a few idiots that go....
Report An Ard Ri March 2, 2012 3:11 PM GMT
a bit more detail from the Westmanstown Preview.

Cheltenham Preview Night – Westmanstown Sports Centre Dublin –
29th February 2012- Notes

Barry Geraghty – BG
Davy Russell – DR
Colm Murphy – CM
Jessie Harrington – JH
Don McClean – DMC
Paddy Power – PP
Ruby Walsh - RW

Supreme Novices Hurdle

RW – He has no stand out horse in the first, each way at best. Darlan is his preferred ride. Sous Le Cieux needs a longer race.

BG – 2m4f would be better for Simonsig. Darlan was impressive in last gallop.

JH – Steps to Freedom goes straight to Cheltenham. Decided not to do a prep run at Dundalk. The faster the ground, the better. A great bet!

DR – Midnight Game’s form is not good enough. Trifolium has more solid form but better ground may not suit.

PP – Money for Darlan, but fancies Steps to Freedom.

DMC – Steps to Freedom.

Arkle Chase

RW – Al Ferof needs to improve to beat Sprinter Sacre, but has an each way chance. Peddlers Cross is not a good enough jumper and spends too much time in the air.

BG – Sprinter Sacre to win. No worries about the hill.

PP – Sprinter Sacre.

JH – Sprinter Sacre. BG told her he is better than Moscow Flyer.

DR – Sprinter Sacre is hard to beat, but is keen on Peddlers Cross. Bog Warrior does not run.

CM – Sprinter Sacre.

DMC – Sprinter Sacre.





Champion Hurdle

RW – Hurricane Fly will win. Zarkander has not enough pace.

PP – Hurricane Fly will win and Binocular has a good each way chance.

JH – Oscars Well loves good ground and a fast run 2m will suit, will possibly be in the first 3. But Hurricane fly will be hard to beat.

DR – Hurricane Fly will win.

CM - Hurricane Fly will win and Binocular has a good each way chance.

DMC – Hurricane Fly will win.

NIM Novice Hurdle

DMC – Monksland.

PP – Boston Bob and Monksland each way.

RW – Boston Bob prefers better ground. Unsure about Sous Le Cieux. Whatever Willies Mullins runs has a chance.

JH - Simonsig

RSA Chase

RW – Grand Crus is beatable. Sir De Champs has a chance with a run.

BG – Grand Crus is beatable. Bobs Worth is his choice.

PP – Bobs Worth.

DR – First Lieutenant does not have a chance and his form is not good enough and would prefer 2m 5f. He fancies Call the Police with a run.

JH – Grand Crus, but admits he is vulnerable.

CM - Whatever Davy Russell rides.

DMC – First Lieutenant. But was disappointed to hear what DR had to say.








QM Champion Chase

CM – Big Zeb will find it difficult to beat Sizing Europe, but has a chance.

BG – Finnians Rainbow is 90% of the horse he should be, he was a better horse last year. He may come good in this race. Big Zeb will be close to Sizing Europe.

DMC – Either of the top two.

RW – Sizing Europe.

PP – Sizing Europe.

DR – Better ground will suit Big Zeb.

JH – Sizing Europe, but Big Zeb will get close.

Bumper

PP – Moscow Mannon

DR – Do not back New Years Eve as the sire is rubbish. An English horse should win it such as Royal Guardsman. The best Irish horses are not running in the race.

RW – Maybe Village Vic.

JH – Maybe Moscow Mannon.

CM – The New One, trained by Nigel Twisten Davis.

DMC – No opinion. In fact no one had a strong opinion.

World Hurdle

RW – Big Bucks will win. Thousand Stars has an each way chance.

BG – Big Bucks will win.

PP – Big Bucks will win. Oscar Whiskey has a chance.

JH – Big Bucks a certainty.

DR – Betters horses in this year’s race than last year. Carlito Brigante has no chance. Big Bucks to win.

CM – Big Bucks to win. Voler La Volette. Would not explain why she was in the stayers hurdle and not the Mares Hurdle. He reckons 3mmight be best trip.

DMC – Big Bucks.

Triumph Hurdle

PP – Early bets taken on Ranjan. Pearl Swan, Shadow Catcher and Balder Success.

RW – None really stand out. Maybe Ut De Sivola.

JH – Irish form does not stand up. Use a pin to pick the winner.

DR – No bet. Bookies benefit.

BG – Lyvius, if he runs well on Friday in Newbury.

CM – Saddlers Risk

DMC – Shadow Catcher

Ryanair Chase

RW – Rubi Light is vulnerable on good ground. Would love Quel Esprit to run. His choice is Albertas Run.

DR – Rubi Light can have one good run on good ground and this is his chance. He has improved 10lbs since last year. His bet of the meeting is Noble Prince! Has had a wind op since last year.

BG – It is a very open race and is keen on riverside Theatre.

CM – Noble Prince providing the ground is good as well as Somersby.

DMC – If ground is soft then Rubi Light, if ground is good, the Noble Prince.

JH – Noble Prince.

PP – Somersby.

Gold Cup

DR – Long Run to win. But Midnight Chase has a great each way chance.

RW – Kauto Star has a chance but could struggle to beat Long Run over 3m 2f. He would not give up his ride on Kauto Star.

BG – Long Run will improve for his last run. Burton Port has an each way chance.

JH – There are questions overs Long Run’s jumping, but he should win. Burton Port can come third.

PP – Long Run is vulnerable but should win.

DMC – Weird Al is the value of the race.

Willie Mullins Phonecall

Quevega – Gave herself a little bang during schooling. All ok. Loves the fast ground.

Hurricane Fly – Good Form. Did 1m 4f gallop on Tuesday.

Sous Le Cieux – Wants a trip if the ground dries.

Midnight Game – Goes for the Supreme Novices. Needs good ground. Expecting a big run.

Boston Bob – Schooled well. No decision on which race yet. A very special horse.

Ut De Sivola – Galloped well on Tuesday. Not much experience.

Scots Irish – Never won over 3m 7f, but has a good chance.

Sir De Champs – No decision yet. Being a course winner will be in his favour.

Alle Garde – Will float on the ground, would prefer a bit more experience.

Mourad – A great each way bet in the Stayers Hurdle.

Bumper – Best chance is probably Champagne Fever.

Best Bets – Sweet My Lord in the Pertemps and Boston bob wherever he runs.


Paul Nicholls Phonecall

Big Bucks – In great form. Oscar whiskey is the threat. Banker!

Al Ferof – Sprinter Sacre hard to beat.

Zarkander – Should be placed.

Pearl Swan – Fancies him in the Triumph.

Rock on Ruby – has an each way chance in the Champion Hurdle

Crystal Bonus – Keen on him in the Jewson

Harry the Viking – good each way chance in the 4m chase.

Join Together – Has an each way chance in the RSA Chase.

Ulk Du Lin – Has a good rating and will go in the Fred Winter


Other Bets

Paul Flynn was in the audience and he said Moon Dice has a great each way chance in the County Hurdle.

Sir De Champs has a great chance wherever he goes, possibly the Jewson.

Alle Garde in the 4m amateur chase.

JH said Citizenship has an each way chance wherever he goes and Jetson has an each way chance in the Pertemps.
Report moneypenny March 2, 2012 3:12 PM GMT
To clarify he said if it was up to him he would choose Trifolium. Not certain to travel and plans have not been finalised regarding the Mullins horse.
Report lookingforthewildman March 2, 2012 4:50 PM GMT
And who do you think it would be up to?.....these things are a load of balooney.....attended by apes....
Report ChildOfMine2 March 2, 2012 5:02 PM GMT
Theres a lot of Apes on here so then Wildman - And you're the biggest one of them all judged on that statement. There was 720 odd apes in Waterford last night then fwiw Laugh
Report Dan Chipowski March 2, 2012 5:11 PM GMT
Good stuff. Thanks to everyone who posted reports, always enjoyable reading.
Report kavvie March 2, 2012 5:17 PM GMT
i always enjoy these.you have to listen for the insidious tips..not apes id say..the true ape is the guy who said that!!
Report wildmanfromborneo March 2, 2012 5:36 PM GMT
ChildofMine2 the gentleman who called ye all apes is looking for me but he is not me.
Strange for him to be so dismissive of these previews since its a good earner for his contact.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 2, 2012 6:31 PM GMT
Catch Me ifyoucan 10 Jan 2009 17:43
Please keep comments like "A total and utter waste of time attending one of these" to yourself
Devil
Report mincer11 March 2, 2012 8:02 PM GMT
What contact?.....yer off yer head man..... They are for apes and the funny thing is ya agree with me wildman..... How many have you been at yourself?.....None.....
Report Ozymandius March 2, 2012 8:14 PM GMT
Whatkind of dosh would say Francome or Cattermole pick up to travel to Waterford for an evening?
Report mincer11 March 2, 2012 8:41 PM GMT
Whatever it is Tis too much.....wouldn't cross the road to see either of them.....
Report pa lapsy March 2, 2012 9:05 PM GMT
Don,t think they are too many daws around here and most see these events for what they are.I liked the thread as an appetizer to Cheltenham and thanks to the contributers for writing.
Report ReaseHeath March 2, 2012 9:13 PM GMT
I appreciate efforts of all of those who have attended and taken the time and trouble to write about it.

Really good of all of you.
Report neill d March 2, 2012 9:17 PM GMT
depends on who is there, I wouldn't be interested in listening to a those 2 either mincer, but Davy Russell, who for example put up Cheltenian in the bumper last year, Ruby Walsh, Quevega the first year she won, and the likes of Donn McClean and gary O'brien are worth listening to. Paddy Mullins said last season that Menorah had no chance against the Fly as he knew him from his time with his uncle. It is all sorting the wheat from the chaff really, but I read one a while ago and there at least seems to be some strong oppinions which gives a certain entertainment factor. Alan King doesn't mince his words for one.

I've never been to one either btw
Report moneypenny March 2, 2012 9:41 PM GMT
Looking for wildman seems to have logged in under Mincer mid thread- Ooops! Laugh
Report wildmanfromborneo March 2, 2012 10:08 PM GMT
They are not very popular round here and i haven`t seen any ads for any but as i am not as mobile i would probably give it a miss.
In most cases they are a bit of gas and generally for a good cause but i am sure the odd gem gets unearthed but i would never call the people who attend them apes.Try rereading the thread and you will find some great posters on here who make good contributions.
As most of these events are for charity i think it is bad form for these panel members to charge a fee.
John Francome once said that he never went racing unless he was paid to go,sums up the man,also i never forgot Forgive n Forget.
Report Cupwinkcook March 2, 2012 10:25 PM GMT
got an email about a purple one in cafe en seine next thursday, early start

good panel
Report ChildOfMine2 March 3, 2012 12:13 AM GMT
PP have just gone NRNB on all Cheltenham races.....
Report DeSSieReborn March 3, 2012 12:27 PM GMT
Fantastic thread!!! Hope to see more!!
Report DeSSieReborn March 3, 2012 12:39 PM GMT
I'm surprised at the individuals firing abuse. There will be some diamonds in amongst these posts. If you don't like the content, dont ****ing look at the thread imo!!!!
Report OnTheSnaff March 3, 2012 5:13 PM GMT
Mincer how many different usernames do you post under?just the two,is it?
Report red and white March 3, 2012 8:07 PM GMT
I enjoy reading the thread. Thanks to those who take the time to make notes and put them up. Always thought provoking and nobody's forced to read or act upon the comments.
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 3, 2012 11:19 PM GMT
lookingforthewildman 02 Mar 12 16:50
And who do you think it would be up to?.....these things are a load of balooney.....attended by apes....

wildmanfromborneo 02 Mar 12 17:36
ChildofMine2 the gentleman who called ye all apes is looking for me but he is not me.
Strange for him to be so dismissive of these previews since its a good earner for his contact.

mincer11 02 Mar 12 20:02
What contact? .....yer off yer head man..... They are for apes and the funny thing is ya agree with me wildman..... How many have you been at yourself?.....None.....



Mincer how many different usernames do you post under?just the two,is it?
Looking for the wildman seems to have logged in under Mincer mid thread- Ooops!
Laugh
Report A Hard Day's Night March 3, 2012 11:41 PM GMT
Considering he came on under the looking guise with some bull story about hearing about WMFB from peers this really shows how much of a fookin moonman mincer is. And to think he insults and cuts people assunder to beat the band and yet he's that type of a sad pr1ck to have multiple usernames (not that it wasn't plain as day that they were the same people). Typical keyboard warrior. When  it comes to the real world though I guarantee he'd be found wanting if he came face to face with all the people he talks **** about. Makes ya wonder about what kind of stupid **** are being reared in this country.
Report dj876 March 4, 2012 6:18 AM GMT
Jimeen,lookingforwildman,mincer etc.-all buddies with davy!Shocked
Report mincer11 March 4, 2012 10:44 AM GMT
Onthesnaff,i post under 2 usernames usually 1,mincer and robo the odd time.I have access to other accounts should i need them,possibly another four.None of these accounts are active,none of them are my own and all carry the same password with a different number at the end.The thing is that i do not have sole use of any account and would be only one of many who have bet on each account.
A hard days night,well done for figuring out that i was the same person as lookingforthewildman,although as you said it was as plain as day.
Finally,if you want my opinion these preview nights are basically a waste of time,most of the panellists arent really worth listening to and very few will be putting their money where their mouth is.
Report MCKENNA March 4, 2012 9:54 PM GMT
^ Where do we get these fools from? Have they ever anything useful to add to a discussion?  Love to know why these clowns want to use so many accounts/usernames/ when they talk such s hite.
Report wildmanfromborneo March 4, 2012 10:43 PM GMT
A Hard Days Night having finally found his voice complains about Mincer cutting people asunder yet his post is full of hate profanities and some of his own cutting asunder,an ironic post.
Report OnTheSnaff March 5, 2012 12:36 AM GMT
Thanks for the answer Mincer,most obliging,for what its worth,i tend to agree with you re preview nights
Report jumper March 5, 2012 12:03 PM GMT
Back to the reports

Walterstown GAA Club, Navan, Co Meath
Sunday 4 March

Damien McElroy
Kevin O’Ryan
Ted Walsh Jr
Tony Martin
MC, David Jennings, The Racing Post

Attended this last night. A lively affair, which started late, almost 90 minutes or so as the organisers couldn’t decide which room to hold the feckin thing in, the hall or the bar. The hall won in the end. The evening didn’t end until almost midnight and was getting more and more livelier as the panel were fed round after round by the lads in the club. Perhaps if they had started partaking earlier we may have got some real juicy stuff, or perhaps it could just have turned into a punch up.

Split into two halves. First off the hurdlers, then the chasers and some thoughts on handicaps towards the end.

Supreme Novices
Damien McElroy, Kevin O’Ryan and Tony Martin – none impressed with Steps to Freedom. Damien sweet on Cinders & Ashes and to a lesser extent, Charles Byrnes’ Trifolium. O’Ryan keener on Galileo’s Choice and then Trifolium but said he’s had strong vibes from the Darlan camp and thinks this could now start as low as 3/1-4s favourite on the day. With Ted Walsh Jr giving a mention to Steps to Freedom and Montbazon and Tony Martin highlighting Midnight Game’s chances although his main fancy too was Darlan, Damien summed it up aptly. This is so open a race. Interestingly, the panel believed Jessica Harrington’s Steps to Freedom could be better at a flatter Aintree or even Punchestown.

Neptune
A lot more of the Boston Bob ‘where he runs, he wins stuff’. Both Ted Walsh jr and Tony Martin were suitably reverential. Damien edged more towards Monksland and all agreed they would be surprised if this doesn’t go the Irish trainers’ way. Tony Martin thought Sous Le Sioux would beat his Benefficient if they met again, implying that he won’t get that soft lead here. Kevin O’Ryan believes Boston Bob will go to the Albert Bartlett. Nobody impressed with Simonsig  whose sketchy jumping will see him struggle.

World Hurdle
Tony Martin, similarly to Noel Meade last week, was of the opinion that the Big Bucks winning run must come to an end sometime. While the panel all were confident enough regarding Big Bucks, the one they wanted to see run was Mullin’s So Young. Both Tony Martin and Kevin O’Ryan recommended him either each way or “without the favourite” market.

Triumph Hurdle
Kevin O’Ryan and Damien McElroy both expressed enthusiasm for Gordon Elliot’s Shadow Catcher and the money is now coming for him. Damien also thought Darroun is good value. Snippet from Kevin – Robert Thornton thinks Balder Success is the better of the two Alan King horses but is committed to Grumeti, as it’s his sponsor’s horse. Ted Walsh Jr and Tony Martin also believed Shadow Catcher was the best value but the former did pass on Ruby’s confidence with Pearl Swan. For such an open looking race this panel didn’t shy from nailing their colours to Shadow Catcher. Thoughtful.

Champion Hurdle
Hurricane Fly all the way, place money only for the others who turn up.

Arkle Trophy
Ted Walsh jr, in a similar vein to Patrick Mullins last week, ‘Sprinter Sacre is the lay of the meeting’, and he’s confident Al Ferof can win again at the festival. Kevin O’Ryan has heard the stable are getting increasingly concerned that Peddlers Cross has not shown much at home recently with maybe the alternative plan being a better option for him. He thinks Sprinter Sacre is beatable with Al Ferof the most likely. Rest of the panel with Sprinter Sacre.

RSA Chase
Both Kevin O’Ryan and Tony Martin solidly against Grand Crus. Tony preferring Sir Des Champs while both Kevin and Damien opted for First Lieutenant, confident of Mouse Morris’s abilities with his small string to get one ready for the meeting.

Champion Chase

Off all the shorties the panel remained most confident over Sizing Europe or maybe it was just way past my bed time and I was beginning to doze off.

Ryanair Chase
Range of views here. Most were against Rubi Light as it more than likely won’t be soft enough. Ted Walsh jr keen on Somersby but Damien McElroy strongly against the horse who is the proverbial bridesmaid in these events, or words to that affect. Kevin O’Ryan, Somersby and Great Endeavour with Tony Martin favouring Riverside Theatre.

Gold Cup
Long Run mostly. Tony Martin wouldn’t pitch Grand Crus in this early in his career. Quel Esprit not good enough, Kauto getting too old for this. Weird Al and Midnight Chase best of the rest.


Bits and pieces

Ted Walsh jr very animated with Uncle Junior who he won’t see beaten. He thinks he’ll comfortably dispose of Scotsirish in the Cross Country.

Kevin O’Ryan talked up Gordon Elliott’s Toner D'Oudairies in the Coral Cup but he has been backed into favouritism. Vendor of Alan King’s for the Fred Winter but that’s no news anymore. Allee Garde for the 4 miler.

Damien McElroy. Pipe’s Our Father & Master of Arts. Toner D’Oudairies too as well as Moon Dice for the County Hurdle.

Ted Walsh jr pillow talk alert. The horse that Nina won on last weekend at Naas. Paul Cashman’s Idarah. Connections are confident. I see it’s in the Grand Annual on the Friday.

Tony Martin. Would love to see his Saddler’s Storm get into the Cross Country. He seemed very sweet on the horse.

The Bumper. Ted Walsh jr isn’t keen on Moscow Mannon, sweated up last week at a (after race spin?). Won’t handle the pressure of the festival. In an open event, Clonbanan Lad for him at the prices.  Kevin O’Ryan – the Mullins bumper horses this year are just not to the same level of the others in the field. Again, the feeling that the English based trainers could have this between them. Pretty much, a steer clear of this one.

Charity Bets

Ted Walsh jr. Uncle Junior, Cross Country
Damien McElroy. Monksland, Neptune
Kevin O’Ryan. Shadow Catcher, Triumph
Tony Martin. Saddlers Storm, Cross Country but if he doesn’t get in, then Boston Bob in whatever he appears in.
Report ChildOfMine2 March 5, 2012 12:16 PM GMT
Good write-up, I'll be at a couple this week and will report back!
Report moneypenny March 5, 2012 12:22 PM GMT
Cheers for that Jumper.
Preview coming up now on RUK
Report Monte Christo March 5, 2012 1:00 PM GMT
Many thanks to everyone who took the time and effort to post these on here.

It is much appreciated.
Report boltonsevs March 5, 2012 3:13 PM GMT
Would like to echo what Monte and others have posted on here of course these are a good help when trying to sort out the conundrum that is Cheltenham
Report monksland March 5, 2012 4:38 PM GMT
I often do lucky 15's coming up to the festival mostly on the chamionship and novice races, maybe 1 on handicaps when the weights come out. This year I backed horses based on this thread and the 1 on cheltenham forum based on trainers comments regards targets and confidence.

The last post I read was child of mine's on the 29th before I put on the bet( I checked, That was the day the bet was made)

Toner D'oudairies at 14 ... now 10
Crack away jack at 16 ... now 10
shadow catcher 16 ... now 12
master of arts 25 ... now 16
all E/W

some people might think the preview nights are rubbish and thats fine, their own opinion. but personally I think you can use the information given to your advantage most of the time and hopefully a lot of people can profit from them
Report db1974 March 5, 2012 5:18 PM GMT
OK I won't make it to any Previews this year so I have summarised each race from the previews already posted up on here

Each day to be posted separately
Report db1974 March 5, 2012 5:20 PM GMT
TUESDAY

SUPREME NOVICES’ HURDLE

Paul Nicholls: We will possibly run Prospect Wells. He has had a breathing op since his last run and is a big price at 33/1 on his best form. Very classy at home, and goes there with a decent chance, allowing for poor effort last time. Prospect Wells runs. Ran well early in season just getting beat by Steps To Freedom. Hinterland could run.

Philip Hobbs: Colour Squadron is fine after his fall but that was not the ideal prep. He has schooled well since so no reason why he shouldn’t perform on the day. He has not had the strongly run race he needs yet. Colour Sergeant was fine after his recent fall, and should go very well.

Paul Jones (Cheltenham, Festival Guide): Simonsig is the most likely winner if he runs here but I fear they will run him in the wrong race. Looks like he is crying out for a fast-run 2m given his cruising speed. In his possible absence then Midnight Game appeals most as he is coming right at the right time, is the Mullins number one and expected to improve again for better ground than he has faced in Ireland. Paul Jones thinks Simonsig will run Neptune, but if running in the Supreme would win. Steps to Freedom has the best form, whilst Midnight Game is improving

Andrew King (Racing Post): I think Darlan will run and has a major chance as long as his confidence has not been affected by his bad fall last time. I’ve also a sneaky feeling Cinders And Ashes will run very well.

Paul Binfield (Paddy Power rep): Galileo’s Choice was the best of the Irish

Charlie Longsdon: We will run Vulcanite and Hazy Tom. My horses are not right at the moment so you can see from both of their last runs. I was disappointed with Vulcanite at Newbury as he is 7lbs-14lbs better than that. He wants a strong pace and leading last time was hardly ideal. The owner wanted to take him to a valuable staying prize in Dubai instead but thankfully David Redvers has managed to change his mind which is good for me as he runs here. I hope you will see a far improved performance off a strong pace. I think we will reverse Kempton form with Tetlami. Hazy Tom wasn’t right at Ascot so forget that. Dickie Johnson thinks a fast-run 2m will really suit him when he is right so we have taken him out of the Neptune.

Andrew Tinkler: Simonsig schooled very slicky this morning and has the pace to run in either the Supreme or Neptune. They go very, very quick in the Supreme so I would like to see him run here as it would really suit him. He is a real two-miler that would see it out very well. I schooled Darlan today and he went very well and showed no ill effects of his bad fall. Tetlami is by Daylami and has the traits of many offspring of his sire in that he only shows you half his hand as he does what you ask and no more. He has ten times more ability that he has shown.

Kevan Minter (The Colonel): I always find this a hard race to predict. I know some shrewd judges are on Steps To Freedom at 14s but it worries me that he will not have run since November.

Willie Mullins (phone): Very sweet on Midnight Game, but stressed good ground is essential,and we havent seen the best of him by a long way, the faster the ground the better. Sous Le Cieux wants a trip if the ground dries. Midnight Game goes for the Supreme Novices. Needs good ground. Expecting a big run.

Ruby Walsh: likes Darlan,

Noel Meade: Preferred Galileo’s Choice but did say that Dylan Ross would be going and will be better on good ground although he only gave it an each way chance.

Nina Carberry: Also went with Steps to Freedom, she wouldn’t rule out Dylan Ross either.

Patrick Mullins: didn’t think his father’s Midnight Game would be the obvious one here, and we should take a look at the bigger priced Allure of Illusion.

John Francome: Tetlami

Jessica Harrington: Confident of Steps of freedoms chances. Steps to Freedom goes straight to Cheltenham. Decided not to do a prep run at Dundalk. The faster the ground, the better. A great bet!

Tom Segal: Midnight game

Davy Russell: Trifolium "Best novice in Ireland ". Midnight Game’s form is not good enough. Trifolium has more solid form but better ground may not suit.

Henry de Bromhead: Prospect Wells ew

Mike Cattermole: Cinders and Ashes

Jim McGrath: Gallileo's choice

David Pipe: Catch Tammy a lot to do, Close House lightly raced probs run in this or Neptune. Neptune more likely.

Tanya Stephenson: Irish dominated race. Darlan had a heavy fall. She likes Cinders & Ashes. Feels Darlan would have won the Betfair.

Joe Tizzard:  Loves Cinders & Ashes could be a Haydock bog horse but D McCain feels he's not. Could shake them up.

Paddy Power: Loads of money for Darlan. Likes Cash & Go who should be running at Leopardstown for a bit of a school round. Scoped badly last time. Money for Darlan, but fancies Steps to Freedom.

Ruby Walsh: He has no stand out horse in the first, each way at best. Darlan is his preferred ride. Sous Le Cieux needs a longer race.

Barry Geraghty: 2m4f would be better for Simonsig. Darlan was impressive in last gallop.

Donn McClean: Steps to Freedom.

Tony Martin: not impressed with Steps to Freedom. Highlighted Midnight Game’s chances although his main fancy too was Darlan,

Damien McElroy: not impressed with Steps To Freedom. Sweet on Cinders & Ashes and to a lesser extent, Charles Byrnes’ Trifolium. This is so open a race.

Kevin O’Ryan: not impressed with Steps To Freedom. Keener on Galileo’s Choice and then Trifolium but said he’s had strong vibes from the Darlan camp and thinks this could now start as low as 3/1-4s favourite on the day.

Ted Walsh Jr: gave a mention to Steps to Freedom and Montbazon

Walterstown Panel (Damien McElroy, Kevin O’Ryan, Tony Martin, Ted Walsh jr) believed Jessica Harrington’s Steps to Freedom could be better at a flatter Aintree or even Punchestown.



ARKLE TROPHY

Paul Nicholls: Al Ferof got some good experience against established two-milers at Ascot. I’m hopeful we can outstay Sprinter Sacre who could be a speed horse on flat tracks who is very keen in his races. He got outstayed by Al Ferof in last year’s Supreme and it will be interesting to see if he gets up the hill this time. Paul Nicholls thought Sprinter Sacre was by no means certain to stay as he has done all his top class form on flat tracks. PN-Jokes he has a little plan of running Sanctuaire to go off at a million miles an hour and take on Cue card & SS. Jumping the last in Supreme SS going backwards. Need a horse that stays in Arkle. Has a suspicion Al Ferof wants further but keeps winning over 2 miles & will be a tough race. Thinks SS might not get up the hill and the fact he's been running on flat tracks gives him hope.

David Pipe: Sprinter Sacre is a good thing. He can go long and short and will come up the hill okay and have too much pace for his rivals. Stats there to be broken and Sprinter Sacre will break them. Only beaten handicappers but I'm So Lucky was one of them who ran in the Champion Chase last year. Sprinter Sacre beat him very well & will get up the hill. Pretty confident Sprinter Sacre will win.

Philip Hobbs: Menorah jumps well for the most part but the most part isn’t good enough and especially in a race like the Arkle. A strong pace will suit him better but I don’t think he can beat Sprinter Sacre but he has a good place chance. Philip Hobbs says Menorah jumps well at home, but does make the odd mistake, which he will need to avoid on the day. Doesn’t think anything can beat Sprinter Sacre

Paul Jones: Stats point to Peddlers Cross but in my heart of hearts I think the only thing can stop Sprinter Sacre is him being too brave at a fence. The hill argument is a red herring as he has had a wind op since last year, he has physically improved since last year plus the Arkle is a shorter race than the Supreme and they jump five more obstacles so it’s not quite as all-out a gallop as the Supreme is which means that would be against Al Ferof. Paul Jones says Sprinter Sacre is the one to beat, reminded us the best “hurdler” often wins the Arkle, and that would be Peddlers Cross


Andrew King: Sprinter Sacre is my lay of the meeting. He can not win! He is not guaranteed to come up the hill and folded tamely last year in the Supreme. He is up against strong stayers here and four Cheltenham Festival winners and he has yet to win at the course. At around Evens he is too short. Andrew King wanted to oppose Sprinter Sacre big time, doesn’t think Cheltenham will suit, similar to the Supreme last year

Charlie Longsdon: Barry Geraghty rode Moscow Flyer and he seems to think that Sprinter Sacre is in a different league to him so I can’t go against him. Flat tracks may suit him better and he has not done it yet at Cheltenham like four of his rivals but, even so. Peddlers Cross to chase him home.

Andrew Tinkler: Sptrinter Sacre needs very little introduction now. I made the running on French Opera at Newbury at what I thought was championship pace and he just breezed by me at half-way like I wasn’t even there. He has to work on his own at home as nothing can live with him and we don’t want to break the hearts of horses like Oscar Whisky by working with him. The intention was sit him in behind at Newbury so he can learn but that only lasted about five fences as he just took off past them without even trying. He was a shell of a horse last year which is why he didn’t get up the hill but came back to us looking unrecognisable after the summer and has grown up now.

Kevan Minter: The stats are against Sprinter Sacre as favourites have a poor Arkle record but I still see it as a match between him and Peddlers Cross.

Paul Binfield said it was quite possible Sprinter Sacre could go off at odds on

Noel Meade even went as far as believing Sprinter Sacre could be the best he’s ever seen.

Patrick Mullins was adamant that Sprinter Sacre was his lay of the meeting and believed he would be caught by one of the other previous course winners.

John Francome: Sprinter Sacre

Jessica Harrington: Sprinter Sacre"Machine". Barry Geraghty told her he is better than Moscow Flyer.

Tom Segal: Sprinter Sacre/Menorah ew

Davy Russell: Sprinter Sacre"Unbeatable " Bog warrior wont travel unless soft ground. DR – Sprinter Sacre is hard to beat, but is keen on Peddlers Cross. Bog Warrior does not run.

Henry de Bromhead: Al Ferof

Mike Cattermole: Sprinter Sacre

Jim McGrath: Sprinter Sacre

Alice Plunkett: Sprinter Sacre blown everyone away. Saw him at Nicky Henderson's described him as an absolute beast of a horse.

Joe Tizzard: Can't not be impressed by Sprinter Sacre. Cue Card done nothing wrong glad Bob's Worth beat him at Newbury as he feels CC a 2 miler Colin thought he was a stayer. Had a knock could be a blessing in disguise not running in Game Spirit against SS. Made Oiseau De Nuit look very average in a racecourse gallop. Goes into the race confident. Will bounce him out in front but needs to get it right as doesn't want to play into Al Ferof's hands.

Tanya Stephenson: Says Sprinter Sacre has stats against him. Peddlers Cross a drifter thinks he goes Jewson. Puts up Menorah thinks he will jump better going faster.

Paddy Power: Special money back if SS wins. Latest figure at 3 million payout if he wins. Thinks they have made a mistake. Plenty of money for Al Ferof.

Ruby Walsh: Al Ferof needs to improve to beat Sprinter Sacre, but has an each way chance. Peddlers Cross is not a good enough jumper and spends too much time in the air.
Barry Geraghty: Sprinter Sacre to win. No worries about the hill.

Paddy Power: Sprinter Sacre.

Colm Murphy: Sprinter Sacre.

Donn McClean: Sprinter Sacre.

Ted Walsh jr: in a similar vein to Patrick Mullins last week, ‘Sprinter Sacre is the lay of the meeting’, and he’s confident Al Ferof can win again at the festival.

Kevin O’Ryan: has heard the stable are getting increasingly concerned that Peddlers Cross has not shown much at home recently with maybe the alternative plan being a better option for him. He thinks Sprinter Sacre is beatable with Al Ferof the most likely.

Gordon Elliot saying that the 'vibes weren't good for Peddlers Cross in the Arkle' (Presume that came from Jason Maguire)



JLT SPECIALTY HANDICAP CHASE

Paul Nicholls: Noland will be my only runner I suspect.

David Pipe: The Grand National is the main aim for The Package but he runs here first and was second two years ago off 141 and is now rated 139. He’s in great form but needs everything to go right. Massinis Maguire is also in the Grand National but he is sore after Ascot as he puts so much into his races. We’ll see if he goes here. Junior could go here as his Grand National prep or the Gold Cup or maybe the Grimthorpe at Doncaster.

Davy Russell: Magnaminity ??, Going Wrong novice h/cap



CHAMPION HURDLE

Paul Nicholls: I was beginning to sweat regards Zarkandar before Newbury as the horses next to him were coughing. Since he won as he has snuffling and is on antibiotics but has cantered well since. The quicker they go the better for him. We’ve got improve enormously to beat Hurricane Fly but he is the one unexposed horse. Rock On Ruby will improve enormously for the return to Cheltenham and Noel Fehily rides. I don’t think Binocular enhanced his claims beating Celestial Halo last time. I would rather run Celestial Halo in the World Hurdle but the owner thinks he can finish second in the Champion Hurdle so he runs here. Paul Nicholls thought Zarkander had a chance and would be better than he was at NewburyAlso said Zarkandar was on anti-biotics and would finish the course next couple days, but seemed OK. Also thought Rock on Ruby was way overpriced on form with Binocular. Brampour will run and may have EW squeak, Celestial Halo will take his chance. PN- Few horses coughing. Wasn't confident Zark was at his best before Betfair. Called Darlan a bridle horse had a bit of a pop at him saying Zarkandar would have won anyway. Says he must be some horse to win with a cough and is ok now. Rock On Ruby has a great chance on form with Binocular. Celestial Halo runs but not much of a chance. Brampour runs.

Paul Jones: I will keep it short and sweet as I can’t see past Hurricane Fly. Oscars Well is my idea of the horse most likely to finish second.

Andrew King: The way Binocular beat Celestial Halo was impressive. If that Binocular turns up I think he will give Hurricane Fly a race. He’s an each-way good thing. Andrew King thought Binocular was the EW bet, impressed with last win

Charlie Longsdon: Hurricane Fly is outstanding and I expect him to win. I hear Zarkandar didn’t come out of his Newbury win brilliantly.

Andrew Tinkler: Binocular looked great at Wincanton and I will be really surprised if he is not in the first three. I preferred him to Grandouet as our main hope even before Grandouet had his setback.

Kevan Minter: I could win on Hurricane Fly. The Evens keeps getting wiped out every time someone offers it on the exchanges.

Paul Binfield thought Zarkandar had a decent chance of beating Hurricane Fly

Ruby Walsh: reckons Zarkandar isn't quick enough to win a CH. Hurricane Fly will win. Zarkander has not enough pace.

John Francome: Binocular

Jessica Harrington: Hurricane Fly/ Oscars Well ew. JH – Oscars Well loves good ground and a fast run 2m will suit, will possibly be in the first 3. But Hurricane fly will be hard to beat.

Tom Segal: Doesn't like odds on shots but thinks H Fly wins. Mentions Celestial Halo before picking Overturn E/W.

Henry de Bromhead: Hurricane Fly

Mike Cattermole: Hurricane Fly/ Overturn ew

Noel O’Brien: Hurricane Fly

Jim McGrath: Hurricane Fly

Alice Plunkett: Binocular 20kg lighter best he's been. If he's gna win another Champ hurdle it's now.

Joe Tizzard: Likes Hurricane Fly doesn't think English bunch are up to much. Didn't think the Betfair was a great race. The Fly all day.

David Pipe: Hurricane Fly should win runs on any ground. Also likes Overturn e/w off a nice break. Without H Fly it's an open Champ Hurdle.

Paddy Power: Hurricane Fly will win and Binocular has a good each way chance.

Colm Murphy: Hurricane Fly will win and Binocular has a good each way chance.

Donn McClean: Hurricane Fly will win.




CROSS COUNTRY CHASE

Nick Williams: Maljimar will run again and has won two cross country races in France. He has twice been beaten at the Festival at 1-10 in running so hopefully it will be third time lucky.

Philip Hobbs: Balthazar King will run. He hurt himself in the fracas here at the December Meeting but is okay now. Paul Jones asked Philip Hobbs about Balthazar King, and I thought he got quite a positive response to his chances 14-1 EW not the worse bet in this race

Noel O’Brien: Scotsirish cross country

Davy Russell: Scotsirish wont stay 3m7f in a horse box!

Henry De Bromhead reported Sizing Australia is going well and the faster the ground the better for that one
Ted Walsh jr very animated with Uncle Junior who he won’t see beaten. He thinks he’ll comfortably dispose of Scotsirish in the Cross Country.

Tony Martin: Would love to see his Saddler’s Storm get into the Cross Country. He seemed very sweet on the horse.

Willie Mullins - Scots Irish never won over 3m 7f, but has a good chance.



OLBG MARES HURDLE

Nick Williams: There is no strength in depth in the mares race whereas there will be 24 runners in the Coral Cup so we will run Swincombe Flame here. I want to take the easier option and I think she will be in the first three.

Willie Mullins: Quevega schooled over hurdles at the curragh at the weekend,worked great but got a slight bang,nothing worrying though. Quevega gave herself a little bang during schooling. All ok. Loves the fast ground.



CENTENARY NOVICE HANDICAP CHASE

Mike Cattermole: Bless the wings- Novice h/cap or Byrne group
Report db1974 March 5, 2012 5:22 PM GMT
WEDNESDAY

NATIONAL HUNT NOVICE CHASE

Paul Nicholls - Harry The Viking will definitely stay and has not run as he want him fresh. He has been coughing but we are confident he will get over it.

Nick Williams - Alfie Spinner will run after his good third in the Reynoldstown and we have booked Sam Waley-Cohen. He will definitely get the trip.

Charlie Longsdon - The plan is to run Universal Soldier. He has only had one run for us and, to be fair, although he won easily it was a mickey mouse race as Chartreux didn’t get very far. He pulled a muscle on his last start for his previous trainer and is best fresh. He is as slow as a hearse and needs all of 4m so this race should suit him and there is a good chance that Jamie Codd will ride and he has won this race twice before. I would like it to be on the easy side of good ground for him. Strongbows Legend is entered but this might come a year too soon for him, we’ll consider it as he won’t get another chance.

Andrew Tinkler - We don’t really have anything for this. Loose Performer maybe but he is not a horse to back at the Festival. Teaforthree I like but just concentrate on the best amateur riders.

Kevan Minter - A hard race to play in. Teaforthree and Fists Of Fury have been the horses for money recently.

Jim McGrath - Quantitative easing

Kevin O’Ryan - Allee Garde for the 4 miler.

Willie Mullins - Alle Garde will float on the ground, would prefer a bit more experience.



NEPTUNE INVESTMENTS NEPTUNE HURDLE

Paul Nicholls - I was discussing running plans for Prospect Wells with Graham Wylie and he told me Boston Bob is likely to run here. Doesn't have any runners, not spoken to Ruby but feels Boston Bob will take all the beating & best form in the race.

Philip Hobbs - He has pulled a hamstring and needs a few days easy. He is not out of the race but more than a week off and it’s a problem. It’s 50-50.

Paul Jones - I have a lot of respect for the Fingal Bay-Simonsig Sandown form but I rate Boston Bob even a notch up from that giving 10lbs in heavy ground to class horses last time and I hope they run here and think they might as Mullins and Wylie both like the race and it is more prestigious than the Albert Bartlett. I strongly fancy Boston Bob to win whichever race he runs in. Paul Jones thought Boston Bob had the soundest chance, indeed had the best novice hurdle form at the meeting. Also didn’t think Simonsig would win this if running

Charlie Longsdon - We’ve got Cross Of Honour for this. He’s rated 126. If he was 130 he would have gone for the Coral Cup which would have been ideal but I doubt he would get in off 126. We need to a 140+ horse for this. Dawn Commander will run either here or the Albert Bartlett.

Andrew Tinkler - This is Simonsig’s other option but I would personally like to see him in the Supreme as think he is a real two-miler.

Kevan Minter - Even if Fingal Bay does run I would be worried about the form of the Hobbs yard. Boston Bob will start favourite if he runs here or the Albert Bartlett.

Andrew King thought it was between Fingal bay and Boston Bob

Henry de Bromhead - Monksland

Tanya Stephenson - Battonier/Boston bob if he runs. She loves Battonier. Reeled in Broadbackbob looked strong coming up the hill.

Davy Russell - Boston Bob wont run and if he does wont win this. Make your mark not good enough. Mount Benbulben will win if he runs in this

Noel O’Brien - Boston bob

Alice Plunkett - Simonsig likely fav. Trainer feels he's a proper champion of the future. He stays but has exceptional speed.

Joe Tizzard - Possibly runs Ohio Gold but ground gone against him but not without an e/w chance.

David Pipe - Has a couple of entries Boston Bob the horse for him.

Paddy Power - Boston Bob best novice in Ireland. Top class form feels he will run in Neptune now Fingal Bay come out. Thinks he's very very good. Boston Bob and Monksland each way.

Donn McClean - Monksland.

Ruby Walsh - Boston Bob prefers better ground. Unsure about Sous Le Cieux. Whatever Willies Mullins runs has a chance.

Jessica Harrington – Simonsig

Both Ted Walsh jr and Tony Martin were suitably reverential about Boston Bob

Damien McElroy - edged more towards Monksland and all agreed they would be surprised if this doesn’t go the Irish trainers’ way.

Tony Martin thought Sous Le Sioux would beat his Benefficient if they met again, implying that he won’t get that soft lead here.

Kevin O’Ryan believes Boston Bob will go to the Albert Bartlett. Nobody impressed with Simonsig  whose sketchy jumping will see him struggle.



RSA CHASE

Paul Nicholls - We’ve purposely not run Join Together saving him for this. He jumps well and stays very well. Stamina is his forte so he would prefer the New Course (RSA run on Old Course). Paul Nicholls said Join Together has won twice at the course, and would stay on as well as anything in the race. Join together not far off Grand Crus on ratings. In good order. Proper chaser thought he was slow but kept on improving. Ruby not said who he's riding yet. S Conti goes to Aintree. Didn't feel he stayed at Kempton or Ascot.

David Pipe - If I could have £1 for every time I have been asked where Grands Crus will run. It’s a nice dilemma to have. It’s frightening looking at the media every day seeing who is missing the Festival so let’s see. We will decide five days before. David Pipe said Grand Crus was in great form at home, probably wouldn’t decide on the race, until the 5 day decs. After hearing news about Kauto Star, Grand Crus will be left in both 5 day entries. Grand Crus done nothing wrong. Gave him an entry in Betfair not worried about taking on older horses. Long way to go & plenty to happen. Not totally sure he will get the 3 m 2. Said everything up in the air has the ability to travel & jump in a Gold Cup. If Kauto's out he's 2nd fav. He seemed very undecided at times but just get the feeling he was edging towards Gold Cup.

Paul Jones - Grands Crus wouldn’t be a stats horse as Feltham winners have a shocking record but we know he bounds up the hill. I strongly fancy Bobs Worth each-way. He was giving Invictus weight at Ascot when not beaten far having only had one gallop since a wind op and is much better racing left-handed being unbeaten at Cheltenham in three starts. He also only had five lengths to find with Grands Crus in the Feltham and has had a wind op since and will be happier away from Kempton. Paul Jones respected Invictus and Bobs Worth who is 3/3 at Cheltenham. Indeed thought Bobs Worth EW at 5-1 was one of the best bets at the meeting

Andrew King - Grands Crus has to be one of the better bets of the meeting of those at short prices. Andrew king thought Bobs Worth would go well, but Grand Crus would win if running

Charlie Longsdon - I really can’t see past Grands Crus, he has too much class for these.

Andrew Tinkler - I’ve not had much to do with Bobs Worth until five days before Ascot when I was asked to school him beforehand. He has no wow factor about him and I would be a bit surprised if he can beat Grands Crus. It can often take a run to get over a wind operation as they think it might hurt them the next time they race. I think that might have happened at Ascot as he looked quite laboured but then when he realised it wasn’t going to hurt he ran on.

Kevan Minter - Grands Crus is one of my bankers of the meeting. He has high-class hurdles form and travels really easily. Invictus would be my idea of the main danger.

Ruby Walsh – Grand Crus doesnt really see out his races,Ruby also doesnt like peddlers cross,says he doesnt have a good enough cut at his fences. Grand Crus is beatable. Sir De Champs has a chance with a run.

Barry Geraghty was quite sweet on Bobs Worth in the RSA. Grand Crus is beatable. Bobs Worth is his choice.

Davy Russell - First Lieutenant/Sir de Champs. First Lieutenant does not have a chance and his form is not good enough and would prefer 2m 5f. He fancies Call the Police with a run.

Jim McGrath - Grand Crus/First Lieutenant

Tanya Stephenson - Grand cru's will go for gold- First Lieutenant/Bobsworth. Always felt Bob's Worth crying out for Cheltenham.

Joe Tizzard - Cannington Brook got an entry but might go handicap.

Paddy Power - A lot of people waiting for NRNB. Bob's Worth 3/3 at Chelt. 4/4 Left handed. First Lieutenant ran well behind Last Installment. Bobs Worth.

Jessica Harrington - Grand Crus, but admits he is vulnerable.

Colm Murphy - Whatever Davy Russell rides.

Donn McCVlean - First Lieutenant. But was disappointed to hear what DR had to say.

Both Kevin O’Ryan and Tony Martin solidly against Grand Crus.

Tony Martin preferring Sir Des Champs

Both Kevin O’Ryan and Damien McElroy opted for First Lieutenant, confident of Mouse Morris’s abilities with his small string to get one ready for the meeting.



QUEEN MOTHER CHAMPION CHASE

Philip Hobbs - The problem with Wishfull Thinking has been his breathing. He has 2 wind ops already and it is still not sorted. He has one decent runs this season and three moderate runs. His best trip is somewhere between 2m-3m. I don’t know! It’s hard to tell when he can’t get the air.

Paul Jones - Sizing Europe for me is not just the best two-miler chaser in training but the best chaser in training full stop and is a bet at odds-against.

Andrew King - Wishfull Thinking has lost the plot. Finians Rainbow is very beatable. Sizing Europe should win but it’s not a race I want to get involved in. Andrew King thought Wishfull Thinking at his best would be interesting

Charlie Longsdon - Sizing Europe should retain his crown. There is not much more to say really, he bolts up over 2m and doesn’t stay 3m. If healthy, he’ll win.

Andrew Tinkler - Finian’s Rainbow schooled well this morning. I can’t see him beating Sizing Europe though. Whoever wins this year won’t win it again next year though as Sprinter Sacre will.

Paul Binfield thought Big Zeb was the better bet at the prices

Tom Segal rates Sizing Europe as a 1/3 shot. Thinks Sizing Europe will win. Bookies may go out to get him on the day. Master Minded only recent QM Champ to retain crown.

Henry de Bromhead reported all is well with horse

Joe Tizzard - Sizing Europe fan. Not the strongest Champ chase. Thought he was a spring horse but done well this season.

David Pipe - Im So Lucky & Imsingingtheblues may run for some gd prizemoney. The fav looks a gd thing.

Paul Nicholls - Thinks fav will be hard to beat. Will probs run Kauto Stone doesn't think he stayed at Ascot.

Paddy Power - Feels Big Zeb & Sizing Europe beat each other value with Big Zeb.

Colm Murphy - Big Zeb will find it difficult to beat Sizing Europe, but has a chance.

Barry Geraghty - Finnians Rainbow is 90% of the horse he should be, he was a better horse last year. He may come good in this race. Big Zeb will be close to Sizing Europe.

Donn McClean - Either of the top two.

Ruby Walsh - Sizing Europe.

Davy Russell - Better ground will suit Big Zeb.

Jessica Harrington - Sizing Europe, but Big Zeb will get close.



CORAL CUP

David Pipe - Our Father could run in this or Pertemps. Got to improve but has a big reputation. Big horse will carry weight. Thinks he will stay 3 mile or has the speep for 2 and a half.

Philip Hobbs - Dare Me and Featherbed Lane are intended runners. Dare Me may be eight but he is still improving. Dunraven Storm was a possible but returned lame from Ascot so may not go anywhere at Cheltenham.

Jim McGrath - Cape Dutch

Davy Russell - Toner Doudaries

Paul Nicholls - Nothing in Coral Cup unless King Of The Night runs.

Joe Tizzard - Third Intention runs in Coral Cup but not happy with rise in weights. Didn't think it was a gd National Spirit hurdle.

Kevin O’Ryan - talked up Gordon Elliott’s Toner D'Oudairies in the Coral Cup but he has been backed into favouritism.

Gordon Elliott - His best chances of a winner are ... Toner D'Ouderies(really likes him in the Coral Cup).



FRED WINTER JUVENILE HANDCIAP HURDLE

Paul Nicholls - Hinterland will probably run. Ruby told me he overdid the waiting tactics last time saying it wasn’t his best ride. He is still on the same mark. He’ll have a big weight but is built to carry it. He is not as well handicapped as when Sanctuaire won it but good enough to win off his mark. Ulck Du Lin def runs didn't want to ruin his mark.

David Pipe - Mentions Kazlian for the Fred Winter needs to brush up jumping. 130 is ok in his opinion but won 2 poor races. Hopeful.

Kevin O’Ryan - Vendor of Alan King’s for the Fred Winter but that’s no news anymore.

Willie Mullins - Ut De Sivola Not much experience. (also entered in Triumph)



WEATHERBYS CHAMPION BUMPER

Philip Hobbs - Village Vic will probably run but he wouldn’t be as good as Cheltenian who won it last year. He is going the right way.

Nick Williams - Horatio Hornblower will be entered and if he is full of himself and looks well in his coast I would go for it. If he can improve a 3-4 lengths then we are in the mix but he would need good-to-soft or slower to run. Nick Williams said Horatio Hornblower was nice horse and would run, if the going had “soft” in it

Andrew King likes New Years Eve and Population

Paul Jones said that the top BHA rated horse on the flat do run well in this race, and Moscow Mannon would be the horse backed on the day

Ruby liked the bumper at newbury few weeks ago that Shutthefrontdoor won,said it rode like a very good race

Tom Segal - Village vic

Davy Russell - Will be an english trained winner, likes Royal Guardsman. Do not back New Years Eve as the sire is rubbish. An English horse should win it such as Royal Guardsman. The best Irish horses are not running in the race.

Jim McGrath - New years eve

Jessica Harrington - Jetski if all goes well when it runs this weekend. Maybe Moscow Mannon.

Paddy Power - Moscow Mannon

Ruby Walsh - Maybe Village Vic.

Colm Murphy - The New One, trained by Nigel Twisten Davis.

Donn McClean - No opinion. In fact no one had a strong opinion.

Ted Walsh jr isn’t keen on Moscow Mannon, sweated up last week at a (after race spin?). Won’t handle the pressure of the festival. In an open event, Clonbanan Lad for him at the prices.

Kevin O’Ryan – the Mullins bumper horses this year are just not to the same level of the others in the field.

Again, the feeling that the English based trainers could have this between them. Pretty much, a steer clear of this one.

Willie Mullins - Best chance is probably Champagne Fever.
Report db1974 March 5, 2012 5:24 PM GMT
THURSDAY

JEWSON NOVICES’ CHASE

Paul Nicholls - The plan is to run Cristal Bonus in the Pendil and then this race if good or softer. He is classy being rated 152 over hurdles. PN- S Conti had a few coughs goes to aintree see RSA. Crystal Bonus very fragile/hard to train but very good on his day. Wouldn't want it too quick jumps & travels well.

Nick Williams - For Non Stop needs everything to go right in his races. Quite a few of these are much of a muchness so he has a chance.

Paul Jones - If you split stakes on Sir Des Champs and Cristal Bonus I don’t think you will lose on the race. Said he thought he had never seen Ruby Walsh look happier than the last time he got off Cristal Bonus who jumps for fun, also likes Sir Des Champs, winner would come form one of these two

Andrew Tinkler - I schooled Solix this week. He jumped the first three beautiful but was bit flat at the fourth, or French as we like to call it at the yard. He has a good chance and he is better than his form says he is. Andrew king thought For Non Stop could go off favourite and was the most likely winner

Tom Segal - Peddlers Cross turns up will be fav.

Joe Tizzard - Michael Flips could run well at a big price

Alice Plunkett - For Non Stop has some very good form.

David Pipe - For Non Stop has a good chance.  Crystal Bonus looked impressive but questions what he beat after Minella Class pulled up. Notus De La Tour & Zaynar entered. NDT also in H'caps. Zaynar just arrived only knows what he's done on track & only entry. Thinks if Peddlers Cross goes here it's the right race for him.



PERTEMPS FINAL

Paul Nicholls - I will run Sonofvic who qualified courtesy of bad weather at Carlisle. Paul Nicholls was keen on Sonofvic, 20-1 seems a decent price. PN- Son Of Vic. Aimed at this race since jumping moderately. Got a chance.

David Pipe - Buena Vista will be going for a third win. I was worried after his Kempton run but he showed a lot more spark last time and that run coincided with better ground. He has won this race off 133 and 138 and is 140 this year so it is not impossible and we will probably put a 10lbs claimer on. Whoever rides he will give them a fantastic spin. David Pipe expected Buena Vista to run well again, he had been concerned from two races ago, when he seemed to lose form, but last run was pretty good. Buena Vista still has a chance on official rating DP- Buena Vista better on good ground not impossible but getting older. Probs last festival. Didn't think he would win last year. Going well at home. Our Father would be his best chance if he runs.

Philip Hobbs - Voladaor is a proper stayer with a squeak but nothing stronger than that.

Willie Mullins - likes sweet my lord in the pertemps

Tanya Stephenson – Sonovic

Jessica Harrington - Jetson has an each way chance in the Pertemps.



RYANAIR CHASE

David Pipe - Great Endeavour is the Plate but I imagine the owner will want to run here. Everything went wrong with him in the 3m Festival handicap last year and needs to improve to win. 2n5f at Cheltenham is ideal for him. David pipe thought Great Endeavour had a really good chance which would improve on better going. DP- Great Endeavor got to improve. Best fresh in cracking form drier the form the better but has 10 lbs to find. Would go h'cap if up to him but owner wants to run in Ryanair.

Nick Williams - Gauvain is a 2m4f horse but he will go to the race where he has the best chance of picking up some prize money so the race with the smallest field (other option is Champion Chase).

Paul Jones - Having not been a great fan if they run Somersby here I am very much warming to his each-way chance as he has the class, is most consistent and cheekpieces could be the making of him. Paul Jones thought Somersby was very good EW bet, but not sure he wouldn’t go for the Queen Mother Chase. Great Endeavour and Medermit needed to find around 7lbs

Charlie Longsdon - I don’t think you can rule out Albertas Run again and Jonjo knows what it takes. I’d love to this horse win it for a third time. If it comes up soft though I would switch to Rubi Light.

Andrew Tinkler - Riverside Theatre was very much tuned up for Ascot. He gets himself fit so there is not much to work on. He could be better on a flat track. I quite like the chances of Medermit to reverse form as Choc almost fell off during the race which we gave him stick for and he wasn’t beaten far and 2m5f suits him really well. If you offered me the ride between Riverside Theatre and Medermit, I would pick Medermit.

Kevan Minter - The message was very strong for Riverside Theatre at Ascot and the money was right. For me he is an outstanding each-way bet.

Paul Binfield said Noble Prince is the selection here, last race, ground was too soft. Massive chance this time

Andrew King thought it was between Somersby and Great Endeavour

John Francome - Albertas run

Jessica Harrington - Rudi Light/Albertas run/Noble Prince

Tom Segal - Medermit if runs/Noble Prince

Davy Russell - Noble Prince. Rubi Light can have one good run on good ground and this is his chance. He has improved 10lbs since last year. His bet of the meeting is Noble Prince! Has had a wind op since last year.

Hayley O’Connor - Noble Prince

Mike Cattermole - Rudi Light/Noble Prince

Jim McGrath - Noble Prince

Paul Nicholls - Poquelin in good form the drier the ground the better. Big price and has an e/w chance.
PP- Love for Great Endeavour to win. Noble Prince has a great chance. Had a small op. Step up in trip just like in the Jewson.

Joe Tizzard - Riverside Theatre just coming right could be the horse he thought he would be last year. Seemed very keen on him.

Ruby Walsh - Rubi Light is vulnerable on good ground. Would love Quel Esprit to run. His choice is Albertas Run.

Barry Geraghty - It is a very open race and is keen on riverside Theatre.

Colm Murphy - Noble Prince providing the ground is good as well as Somersby.

Donn McClean - If ground is soft then Rubi Light, if ground is good, the Noble Prince.

Paddy Power - Somersby.

Ted Walsh jr keen on Somersby but Damien McElroy strongly against the horse who is the proverbial bridesmaid in these events, or words to that affect. Kevin O’Ryan, Somersby and Great Endeavour with Tony Martin favouring Riverside Theatre.



WORLD HURDLE

Paul Nicholls - Big Buck’s is not coughing. He wasn’t at his best in the Cleeve and came back a bit quiet but has bloomed since. He worked with Kauto this morning and I am very happy with him. Oscar Whisky could be the hardest opponent he has faced as more pacey and has looked very good over 2m4f and is an unknown over 3m. He could be very good. He’s been hurdling too long now to ever go for the Gold Cup. Paul Nicholls said Big Buck’s was Ok, no cough. Indeed he said the older horses all seem Ok, it’s just the younger ones who have shown some signs. Big Buck’s has come on from last run. He did think Oscar Whisky would be his toughest challenger yet. PN- Gave him another run to keep fitness up. In good form. Oscar Whisky very worthy & interesting opponent. Thinks OW will be fine over longer trip but says Big Buck's' strengths are his stamina.

David Pipe - Big Buck’s is a cert but there is lots of good prize money for Dynaste to chase. Worrying to hear Big Buck’s not at his best last time given he gave us weight an easy beating. David Pipe said Big Buck’s was certainty and that Dynaste was playing for one of the places. DP- No way to get Big Buck's beat. Only way he gets beat if Ruby doesn't ride him. Dynaste can get in the first 3. Will be great if he can looking forward to RSA with him next year.

Paul Jones - I’ll be betting without Big Buck’s and reckon if he runs Thousand Stars is the e/w value as he is more or the less than same horse as Oscar Whisky over 2m and 2m4f. Paul Jones wished they would run Thousand Stars in this race rather than Champion Hurdle

Charlie Longsdon - Big Buck’s, what more can I add?

Andrew Tinkler - Ruby says Big Buck’s is the biggest cert in racing. Oscar Whisky will be second or third. If there were a Ryanair Hurdle though he would win that. As for the Aintree Hurdle as some say he won’t stay as Thousand Stars nearly caught him that day, I thought Barry nicked the race at Aintree rather than committed too soon him. I thought it was a brilliant ride.

Kevan Minter - Big Buck’s is an awesome machine but why take 4/9 now when he will trade at around Evens in-running at some point?

Colm Murphy confirmed Voler la Vedette runs in the WH. Big Bucks to win. Would not explain why Voler la Vedette was in the stayers hurdle and not the Mares Hurdle. He reckons 3m might be best trip.

Davy Russell - Big bucks/ Thousand stars w/o, says Carlito Brigante has no chance,he was quite funny actually lol. Better horses in this year’s race than last year. Carlito Brigante has no chance. Big Bucks to win.

Noel Meade thought Big Bucks winning run could come to an end sometime and why not here. He’s preference was Oscar Whisky.

Patrick Mullins believed Thousand Stars was as good as Oscar Whisky yet he is double the price.

Andrew Lynch believes he can nick a place on Voler La Vedette.

I think it was Paul Carberry on the night who quoted Ruby Walsh as stating Big Bucks just ambles along and doesn’t get himself in the race until the final turn. He couldn’t see anything other than a Big Bucks repeat win.

John Francome - Big bucks/ Mourad w/o

Jessica Harrington - Voler la vedette w/o. Big Bucks a certainty.

Tom Segal - Big bucks/ Carlito Brigante w/o. BB a 1/7 shot

Noel O’Brien - "Big bucks might be beaten"

Mike Cattermole - Oscar Whiskey

Jim McGrath - Big bucks

Paddy Power - A lot of ppl looking for other options. Oscar Whisky unlucky not to be beaten this season. 3 miles could bring out more. Big Buck's will win. Oscar Whiskey has a chance.

Ruby Walsh - Big Bucks will win. Thousand Stars has an each way chance.

Barry Geraghty - Big Bucks will win.

Donn McClean - Big Bucks.

Tony Martin, similarly to Noel Meade last week, was of the opinion that the Big Bucks winning run must come to an end sometime. While the panel all were confident enough regarding Big Bucks, the one they wanted to see run was Mullin’s So Young. Both Tony Martin and Kevin O’Ryan recommended him either each way or “without the favourite” market.
Willie Mullins - Mourad is a great each way bet in the Stayers Hurdle



BYRNE GROUP HANDICAP CHASE

Paul Nicholls said Crack Away Jack would run here, seemed quite keen on a decent run as well I thought

David Pipe said Salut Flo was entered in just about every race; there was some money for this one yesterday in this race. DP- Keen on Salut Flo. Still young hopefully at right end of handicap in Byrne Group Plate. Entered in other races.
Report db1974 March 5, 2012 5:25 PM GMT
FRIDAY

TRIUMPH HURDLE

Paul Nicholls - Ruby will school Dildar on Friday. He has worked and schooled well on Tuesday and there is plenty of improvement to come. He runs in the Adonis and Dodging Bullets runs in the Dovecote. Pearl Swan has the best form so far and I can get him better than last time. All are also in the Supreme so let’s see how Dildar gets on first. Paul Nicholls said Pearl Swan has the best form so far of his horses, but also said Dildar runs this Saturday, against Sadlers Risk. I (Catch Me If You Can) got the impression he has very high hopes for Dildar. Paul Nicholls did say he wouldn’t be surprised if Minsk never ran either this weekend or at Cheltenham! PN- Thought it was a harsh decision to take race away from Pearl Swan.Thinks he has best form & will improve. Dodging Bullets really interesting outsider lots of improvement. Dildar disappointing.

Philip Hobbs - Sadlers Risk is a good horse but let’s get over Saturday first. He has a lot to prove has the potential to be very good. He is my best chance of the week. Philip Hobbs said Sadlers Risk runs this Saturday, very happy with him

Nick Williams - Urbain De Sivola is a jumps bred so our chances are helped a lot if it comes up soft to make this a real stamina test. Nick Williams said Urbain De Sivola would run if ground was on the soft side

Paul Jones - Grumeti is so professional that he looks an each-way steal to me at 10/1. Paul Jones thought Minsk could go off as low at 2-1, as his flat form is far in excess of anything else

Andrew king liked Grumeti and Pearl Swan

Paul Binfield likes Darroun

Ruby and Willie both agree Ut De Sivola is way overpriced,They hadnt got him ready in his last race and wanted to get another run into him for experience,They were confident he's a lot better than he showed last time out.

Ruby Walsh - None really stand out. Maybe Ut De Sivola

Nina put up Darroun and Baby Mix but nobody felt there was a stand out juvenile left in the race.

Paul Carberry gave a mention to Gordon Elliot’s Shadow Catcher as his value in an otherwise open contest.

Tom Segal - Shadow Catcher. TS- 5/10 Adonis winners won Triumph. Likes Baby Mix. Balder Succes also a possible at a bigger price.

Jim McGrath - Shadow Catcher

David Pipe - Kazlian could still run.

Paddy Power - At a preview with Phillip Hobbs who said Saddlers Risk his best chance at festival even if Fingal Bay running. Baby Mix beat him giving 3lb. Early bets taken on Ranjan. Pearl Swan, Shadow Catcher and Balder Success.

Joe Tizzard - Paddy Brennan told him about Baby Mix at the start of season. Felt they were training him too hard when he lost at Chelt.

Jessica Harrington - Irish form does not stand up. Use a pin to pick the winner.

Davy Russell - No bet. Bookies benefit.

Barry Geraghty - Lyvius, if he runs well on Friday in Newbury.

Colm Murphy - Saddlers Risk

Donn McClean - Shadow Catcher

Kevin O’Ryan and Damien McElroy both expressed enthusiasm for Gordon Elliot’s Shadow Catcher and the money is now coming for him.

Damien also thought Darroun is good value.

Snippet from Kevin – Robert Thornton thinks Balder Success is the better of the two Alan King horses but is committed to Grumeti, as it’s his sponsor’s horse.

Ted Walsh Jr and Tony Martin also believed Shadow Catcher was the best value but the former did pass on Ruby’s confidence with Pearl Swan. For such an open looking race this panel didn’t shy from nailing their colours to Shadow Catcher.

Gordon Elliott - His best chances of a winner are ... Shadow Catcher (Will be on the bridle at the last hurdle in the Triumph but doesn't know what will happen after that)


VINCENT O’BRIEN COUNTY HURDLE

Philip Hobbs said Snap Tie is in good form, he reported this last year but the horse never got in, hasn’t run for two years, so you’d want a very big price, not sure 33-1 is big enough to tempt me

Jim McGrath - Prospect wells

Jessica Harrington - Citizenship County or Martin Pipe if it doesnt get in county

Tom Segal - Citizenship County

Mike Cattermole -Snap tie-county hdle

Paul Nicholls - Ted Spread running won at Taunton recently. Needs some to come out. Brampour won't run.

Damien McElroy - Toner D’Oudairies too as well as Moon Dice for the County Hurdle.

Paul Flynn said Moon Dice has a great each way chance in the County Hurdle.



ALBERT BARTLETT NOVICE HURDLE

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 ...



GOLD CUP

Paul Nicholls - It just astounds me how Kauto Star looks. He did a strong 5f with Big Buck’s and for the first time in a long time he took a long time to pull up. His enthusiasm is unbelievable. He is in as good form now as before Haydock and Kempton. Ruby schools him on Friday. Not having Denman harrying him this year will be in his advantage and I also think there is more pressure on Sam (Waley-Cohen) this year. I don’t think Long Run has trained on. Paul Nicholls said Kauto Star was in top form at home, as good as he has seen him Wasn’t sure Long Run had trained on, and that meant there was not a lot between them. PN- Kauto better than last year. Chelt will help Long Run but Kauto won 2 Gold Cups. Feels Long Run not improving had a lot of hard races in France as a young horse. Says if Burton Port was trained by anyone else he would have gone past Long Run in the Denman Chase. Long Run one to beat if he jumps well. Won't run Kauto unless he's 100% for the race. To me it seemed it was less likely Kauto would run. Said What A Friend will run well.

Philip Hobbs - Captain Chris has always jumped to the right but not like that before. Let’s see how we go in the next two weeks, he’s in the Ryanair as well but may not go to Cheltenham. If there was an obvious race on a right handed course he would go there but there isn’t now until Pucnhestown. He’s not looking great in his coat right now. Philip Hobbs was asked about Captain Chris, he said he has always jumped right, so that was not an issue as such, however he was not at his best IF HE RAN it would be Ryanair or Gold Cup, however then said he wouldn’t really want more than 3 miles, so I (Catch Me If You Can) give him next to no chance of running in the Gold Cup, and I got the impression he was by no means certain to run at the Festival

Nick Williams - Diamond Harry has had a wind op. That’s the first time I’ve done it mid season and wouldn’t do it again, I’d wait until the summer.

Paul Jones - Weird Al e/w for me. Doesn’t have a lot to find with Kauto and Long Run on Haydock form which came too soon after winning the Charlie Hall and has a very good Cheltenham record. Paul Jones thought the front two were vulnerable, and that Weird Al was the best bet at 20-1

Andrew King - I have a feeling that the big two could get beat but prefer Kauto to Long Run. What A Friend is a massive e/w price at 40/1. Andrew king thought What a Friend EW, although Paul Nicholls dismissed this saying 3rd was his best chance if everyone turned up

Nina Carberry – Synchronised

Patrick Mullins - Kauto with a view that Quel Esprit is his value.

Noel Meade thought the same with Quel Esprit (ie – value).

Andrew Lynch - Long Run.

Paul Carberry - Kauto Star.

Robbie Hennessy - Synchronised.

John Francome – Long Run

Jim McGrath – Long Run

Noel O’Brien – Long Run

Mike Cattermole – Long Run

Davy Russell – Midnight Chase. Long Run to win. But Midnight Chase has a great each way chance.

Tom Segal – Midnight Chase. Midnight Chase E/W. Also feels Burton Port could have won lto.

Hayley O’Connor - Burton Port

Paddy Power - Long Run much better last time. Jumping better. In The Kauto camp and hopes he can get there. Burton Port will improve. Puts up Midnight Chase D Costello gets a huge tune out of horse. Long Run is vulnerable but should win.

Joe Tizzard - Kauto been phenomenal. Weighing room got a bit emotional when Kauto won at Haydock.

David Pipe - Not sure Long Runs been the horse he was last year. Tom Scu rode The Giant Bolster in Denman Chase & feels Grand Crus would have gone very very close. Seemed quite confident Grand Crus would have won that race. Put up Quel Espirit E/W and also joked Grand Crus E/W. Thought Midnight Chase would come 5th.

Alice Plunkett - Midnight Chase E/W

Ruby Walsh -  Kauto Star has a chance but could struggle to beat Long Run over 3m 2f. He would not give up his ride on Kauto Star.

Barry Geraghty - Long Run will improve for his last run. Burton Port has an each way chance.

Jessica Harrington - There are questions overs Long Run’s jumping, but he should win. Burton Port can come third.

Donn McClean - Weird Al is the value of the race.

Tony Martin wouldn’t pitch Grand Crus in this early in his career. Quel Esprit not good enough, Kauto getting too old for this. Weird Al and Midnight Chase best of the rest.



MARTIN PIPE HANDICAP HURDLE

As usual; David Pipe gets questioned on this race, however he said it is very difficult to even get a horse in this race, he tried with Grand Crus a couple years ago, but couldn’t as he had an OR of only 124. May run I'msingingtheblues off 145 which will be ideal over 2 and a half around Chelt

A few mentioned and maybe the most likely is Salut Flo if this

Jessica Harrington - Citizenship County or Martin Pipe if it doesnt get in county

Paul Nicholls - Ted Spread, Empire Levant Edgardo Sol possibles.

Joe Tizzard - Feels David Pipe has a better one lower in the weights than Imsingingtheblues.



GRAND ANNUAL

Joe Tizzard - Falcon Island & Oiseau De Nuit 2 runners. S Clements to ride ODN to get weight down again.

Paul Nicholls - Toubab not fully tuned up last time and will run well on better ground.

Ted Walsh jr pillow talk alert. The horse that Nina won on last weekend at Naas. Paul Cashman’s Idarah. Connections are confident. I see it’s in the Grand Annual on the Friday.
Report db1974 March 5, 2012 5:30 PM GMT
CHARITY BETS / NAPS

Andrew King - Rocky Creek (Albert Bartlett)

Paul Jones - On The Fringe (Foxhunters)

Zoey Bird - Scotsirish (Cross Country)

Nick Williams - Swincombe Flame EW (David Nicholson Mares)

Paul Nicholls - Chapoturgeon (Foxhunters) & Son Of Vic E/W

David Pipe - Alfie Spinner (National Hunt Chase) Gave Salut Flo and Our Father as his best chances in handicaps. Race plans not finalised yet. Grand Crus/Alfie Spinner

Paul Binfield - Salsify (Foxhunters)

Philip Hobbs - Sadlers Risk (Triumph)

Willie Mullins - Sweet My Lord (Pertemps) and Boston Bob wherever he runs.

Paddy Power - Salsify (Foxhunters)

Tom Segal - Fox Appeal (Albert Bartlett)

Joe Tizzard - Royal Guardsmen E/W (Bumper)

Ted Walsh jr - Uncle Junior (Cross Country)

Damien McElroy – Monksland (Neptune)

Kevin O’Ryan - Shadow Catcher (Triumph)

Tony Martin - Saddlers Storm (Cross Country) but if he doesn’t get in, then Boston Bob in whatever he appears in.

Ruby Walsh - Boston Bob, & Ted Spread (County Hurdle)

Davy Russell - Noble prince (Ryanair)

Colm Murphy - Scotsirish (Cross Country) and Somersby (Ryanair?)

Jessie Harrington - Steps to Freedom (Supreme)

Barry Geraghty - Bobs Worth (RSA)

Gordon Elliott - Master Of Arts (County Hurdle) - connection obviously still there with Pipey.



Best bets Tuesday

David Pipe - comes out to put up The Package as best bet of Tuesday. In good form likes his mark all signs are good at home.

Tom Segal - Maljimar – Cross Country

Alice Plunkett - Sizing Australia – Cross Country

Joe Tizzard - Cinders & Ashes - Supreme

Paul Nicholls – Zarkandar – Champion Hurdle

Paddy Power Unaccompanied if she runs in the Mares race.


Best bets Wednesday

Paddy Power - Sword Of Honour in the Champ Bumper (now a NR)

Paul Nicholls - Harry the Viking in the NH Chase

Joe Tizzard - Royal Guardsman e/w in Champ Bumper

Tom Segal - Battonier - Neptune

David Pipe - Alfie Spinner in the NH Chase


Best Bets Thursday

Paddy Power - Sunnyhillboy - Kim Muir

Paul Nicholls - Big Buck's too short. Son Of Vic - Pertemps

Joe Tizzard - Grand Vision - Pertemps

Alice Plunkett - Big Buck's if you like free money

Tom Segal - Faasel - Kim Muir



Best Bets Friday

Joe Tizzard - Toubab - Grand Annual

Paul Nicholls - Chapoturgeon - Foxhunters

Paddy Power – Salsify - Foxhunters

David Pipe - Monkerty Tunkerty - Foxhunters
Report Arklearkle March 5, 2012 6:59 PM GMT
Great stuff db and thanks for the effort - what do you do in your spare time!
Report Monte Christo March 5, 2012 7:09 PM GMT
I'll second that arklearkle.

db you need to get out more.Laugh
Report frank60 March 5, 2012 7:25 PM GMT
The word excellent come to mind ,ty DB
Report kavvie March 5, 2012 8:00 PM GMT
lots of confusion among the experts!!
Report Fayzer March 5, 2012 8:13 PM GMT
Andrew tinklers comments re Sprinter Sacre are interesting, great effort DB tanx
Report ChildOfMine2 March 5, 2012 8:41 PM GMT
More proof that these nights can provide good info. At the Ballymore preview night SEVEN days ago, Gordon Elliot said the 'vibes aren't good about Peddlers'. Tonight, McCain rules Peddlers OUT of the Arkle Shocked
Report DeSSieReborn March 5, 2012 8:56 PM GMT
db1974 you are a star. Thanks very much for that race by race summary Love
Report Clunkis March 5, 2012 10:46 PM GMT
Post of the year db, great stuff.
Report db1974 March 5, 2012 10:58 PM GMT
No worries lads

I feel like I've earned a degree in "cut & paste" in Word
Report tobellie March 5, 2012 11:15 PM GMT
wow was thinking of doing a lazy mans version of this before i saw post - agreed clunkis
Report itcanbedone March 6, 2012 12:42 AM GMT
Thats very helpful db, thanks.  Will make for interesting reading after the event!
Report DeSSieReborn March 6, 2012 8:40 AM GMT
kavvie 05 Mar 12 20:00 
lots of confusion among the experts!!

Depends who you regard as "experts"..........
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 6, 2012 11:16 AM GMT
"Post of the year db1974, great stuff". (© Catch Me ifyoucan)LaughDevil
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 6, 2012 11:20 AM GMT
ANYWON at the Europa Hotel OR Co.KILDARE, Kavanaghs Pub wons last nite ?
Report dasium March 6, 2012 6:42 PM GMT
irishracing.com asked a selection of Irish racing personalities for their best bets at this Year's Cheltenham Festival

Gordon Elliott - SHADOW CATCHER (Triumph Hurdle)
“He travelled very well at Leopardstown, and a fast pace will suit him in the Triumph where we’ll be able to drop him in.”

Noel Meade - SPRINTER SACRE (Arkle)
“He’s one of the best horses I’ve seen for a long, long time. He’s so much better since he’s gone over fences, and I think if you can back him at odds against it’s a great price.”

Robert Power - JETSON (Pertemps Final)
“I think he won despite the soft ground in the qualifier at Leopardstown over Christmas. He’s in very good form and has a good each-way chance.”

Tom Malone (bloodstock agent) – PEDDLERS CROSS (Jewson Novices’Chase)
I think he’s a stonewall certainty. They are not side-stepping Sprinter Sacre, they’re just doing what is right for the horse and that’s putting him into a race that he’ll win. I can’t see him beaten.

Paul Townend - BOSTON BOB (Neptune Investment Novices Hurdle)
“He seems to be doing everything right, won well the last day at Leopardstown and I think he could be a Cheltenham type.”

Davy Russell - MIDNIGHT GAME (Supreme Novice Hurdle)
“I'd say Midnight Game is maybe my best chance judged on the way the Mullins camp are talking about him.”

Paul Carberry - SHADOW CATCHER (Triumph Hurdle)
“He's a lovely horse with loads of ability and I think the race should suit him.”

Andrew Lynch - SALSIFY (Foxhunters)
“He was impressive here last time and the better ground will suit him.”

Barry Geraghty - SPRINTER SACRE (Arkle Chase)
“He's the obvious one. What he has done so far is unbelievable. He broke the track record at Newbury and gave me some feel that day – the way he travelled and jumped. If things go well on the day and we get a clear round he'll be hard to beat. .”

Frank Berry - SNAP TIE (County Hurdle)
“He was my nap for the meeting last year but was taken out on the morning of the County Hurdle. He has come down the weights a bit since.”

Jessica Harrington - STEPS TO FREEDOM (Supreme Novice Hurdle)
“He's a nice horse to go there with and I think it's a big plus that he has won around there already.”

Tom Taaffe - ARGOCAT (Fred Winter Hurdle)
“I like the horse and think he's progressive. He represents a bit of each-way value in the race.”

Joe Burke (Stan James) - SIZING AUSTRALIA (Glenfarclas Cross Country)
“He’s only up 5lb for winning the race last year, and the prospect of fast ground on the cross-country course will suit him.”

Bryan Cooper - LUCKY WILLIAM (Grand Annual)
“He’s only got 10st2lb, and I think he’s got a right chance off that mark. He’ll be suited by good ground.”

Darragh Fitzpatrick (Ladbrokes) - OSCAR WHISKY (World Hurdle)
“I think he’s great value each-way, and he could just do Big Buck’s for toe on the run-in.”

Tony Kenny (William Hill) - SIZING EUROPE (Champion Chase)
“I think it is a weaker race than last year, and he has such a good record at the track.”

Denis Kirwan (TV3) - TETLAMI (Supreme Novices’ Hurdle)
“I was filming at Nicky Henderson’s yard and he’s very sweet on him.”

Ryan McElligott (Irish Field) - FIRST LIEUTENANT (RSA Chase)
“He’s a course winner who will love the stiff three miles and the drying ground. His trainer has few peers when it comes to preparing one for this meeting.”

Damien McElroy (Journalist) - FIRST LIEUTENANT (RSA Chase)
“He’s got a lot in his favour having won there before and will like the trip and good ground. I also think he’s better going left-handed.”

Gary O’Brien (At The Races) - SHADOW CATCHER (Triumph Hurdle)
“I thought he hit the front too soon at Leopardstown last time, and he looks a bit of value.”

Noel O’Brien (NH Handicapper) - BOSTON BOB (Neptune Investment Novices Hurdle)
“He gave 10lb and a beating to Lyreen Legend, who has won a Grade 2 since, at Leopardstown. That performance gives him a rating of over 150 which is high for a staying novice at this time of year.”

Brian O’Connor (Irish Times) - SHADOW CATCHER (Triumph Hurdle)
“He didn’t get the run of the race the last day at Leopardstown, and will appreciate the stronger gallop in the Triumph.”

Barry Orr (Betfair) - MOUNT BENBULBEN (Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle)
“He was found to be not right when beaten by Boston Bob at Navan, and will love the trip.”

Dessie Scahill (Commentator) - DARLAN (Supreme Novices’ Hurdle)
“He appeared to be going well when falling in the big handicap at Newbury, and was previously very impressive in novice hurdles.”

Leon Blanche (****) - BOSTON BOB (Albert Bartlett/Neptune Hurdle)
“I'm a big fan of Boston Bob. He's in a couple of races but I've a feeling he'll go for the Albert Bartlett. I think he'll win whatever race he goes in.”

Brian Graham (Bookmaker) - AL FEROF (Arkle Chase)
“I thought his run in the Victor Chandler was superb for a novice and if you go back to the Supreme last year he was in front of both Sprinter Sacre and Cue Card. Cue Card is going to make it a real test and Al Ferof will get every yard whereas I have a slight doubt about Sprinter Sacre's stamina, especially if by any miracle it turns up soft..”

Bernard Barry (leading point-to-point and Shelbourne Park bookmaker) – MOUNT BENBULBEN (Albert Bartlett Novices’Hurdle)
Liked him since seeing him win his ‘point’in Tinahely and he looks a bit of value at around 6/1 for the Albert Bartlett.

Johnny Birrane (prominent on-course market analyst) – PIQUE SOUS (Weatherbys Champion Bumper)
He was impressive at Leopardstown. There were plenty fancied against him including the Weld horse (Dancers Dilemma, finished 2nd) and Fenton’s (Five Point Plan) who finished fourth, but he just ran away from them. He’ll do for me in the bumper.

David Redvers (bloodstock agent) – GRANDS CRUS (Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup)
would be my fancy if he goes for the Gold Cup and I fancy Vulcanite each-way for the Supreme Novice. Obviously I think Hurricane Fly will win the Champion and Sprinter Sacre will win the Arkle but what do I know as I’m a flat boy these days.

Mike Barrett (point-to-point enthusiast/punter) – SALSIFY (Christie’s Foxhunters Chase).
He’s won the last three big hunter chases in Ireland, he likes good ground and his performance at Leopardstown the last day makes him the main Irish contender. I know Chapoturgeon and Cloudy Lane are fancied for the home team but with Boxer Georg and Merchant Royal as solid back-up, I think this will be a race for the Irish.

Peter Kavanagh (former jockey and a key cog in the Noel Meade team) – SIZING EUROPE (Sportingbet.com Queen Mother Champion Chase) and SPRINTER SACRE (Racing Post Arkle Chase)
Should both win, but they are short prices. .
At bigger odds MONKSLAND (Neptune Investment Management Novices’Hurdle) has a big each-way shout. He would want a drop of rain. He is a good horse.

Neil O’Donnell (journalist and agent for DBS) – MONKSLAND (Neptune Investment Management Novices’Hurdle)
He looked good in his point-to-point before running out and he couldn’t have been any more impressive when winning an admittedly ordinary bumper at Down Royal. He’s gone the right way since and Noel Meade thinks he’s very very smart. His sire, Beneficial is getting plenty of winners.NOT BEFORE EIGHT (Christie’s Foxhunters Chase) has an each-way shout

Franco Hughes (bookmaker) – MOSCOW MANNON (Weatherbys Champion Bumper)
Up North here we’re all hoping the local horse does the business. It’s creating great banter at the ‘points’up here every Saturday. He is a good horse and I think he can do it for Brian Hamilton and young Lavery.

Paul Cashman– FIRST LIEUTENTANT (RSA Chase)
He is a good horse and I think he’ll take a lot of beating.

Matt O’Connor (amateur rider) – ROYAL GUARDSMAN (Weatherbys Champion Bumper)
He was very impressive at Ascot the last day and he has plenty of experience now. I know the Tizzards think a lot of him and they obviously know what’s required to win this race after Cue Card. He should be a value price too.

Jim Murphy (Redpender Stud) – QUANTITATIVEEASING (JLT Speciality Handicap Chase)
He’s been put by for this and it’ll be on to the Grand National for him after this. I have a two-year-old half-brother to him here by Robin Des Champs so I’d like to see him go well. I bought First Lieutenant as a foal and sold him as a three-year-old so I’ll be watching him closely but a lot will depend on whether Grands Crus goes in the RSA or the Gold Cup.

Mikey O’Connor (amateur rider and trainer) – BURTON PORT (Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup)
Just looking in from the outside you’d have to love his run the last day. He is a good each-way bet for the Gold Cup. He lost ground going to the last on Long Run last time out but he pressed him all the way to the line after that and you’d have to think that there’ll be more to come.

Mark Molloy (trainer and seller)
My hope would be an Irish one, two in the Christie’s Foxhunter Chase with SALSIFY and ON THE FRINGE. I don’t know which of the two to pick. Salsify put up a very taking performance the last day whilst Enda’s horse should come on from it and he gallops, jumps and stays. They are two young progressive horses and you’d like to think they’d have too much for the home team.

P J Colville (trainer and seller) – PEDDLERS CROSS (Jewson Novices’Chase)
Two and half around there won’t be any bother as he’s obviously won a point-to-point and he stays. Over two he was second to Hurricane Fly last year so at 3/1 he looks the bet to me.
Report DeSSieReborn March 6, 2012 9:26 PM GMT
Dessie Scahill (Commentator) - DARLAN (Supreme Novices’ Hurdle)
“He appeared to be going well when falling in the big handicap at Newbury, and was previously very impressive in novice hurdles.”

Anybody know any win stats for fallers going straight to Cheltenham?
Report dasium March 6, 2012 10:04 PM GMT
according to Nick Mordin in the Irish Field, he commented in reference Colour Squadron
"From 1996 there have been 53 horses that ran in hurdle races at the Cheltenham Festival which fell last time out. None of them scored."
Report theboyfrommatebeleland March 6, 2012 10:17 PM GMT
And Dasium he then went on to tip Colour Squadron
Report dasium March 6, 2012 10:41 PM GMT
And Dasium he then went on to tip Colour Squadron

I certainly didn't get that impression from the piece...

MONTBAZON WANTS LONGER

The re-match between old rivals MONTBAZON (36) and Colour Squadron at Newbury proved unsatisfactory because Colour Squadron slithered to the ground on landing two out when looking set to score.

As soon as Colour Squadron exited Montbazon pricked his ears and appeared to idle. Stoked up by his rider he got going again halfway up the run in and powered away for a seven length success. My impression was that it was stamina as much as regaining focus that enabled Montbazon to kick clear. Seeing that he's built and bred for chasing and two and a half miles plus I now have doubts about him being fully effective over two miles in the Supreme Novices. He'd looked pacey enough against inferior rivals at Plumpton, but here my strong suspicion was that Colour Squadron would have left him floundering with superior speed.

I think COLOUR SQUADRON (38) would have equalled the rating I've given him before and won this by three or four lengths had he stood up. He's clearly very effective over two miles but this fall is surely going to dent his confidence and make it hard for him to bounce right back at Cheltenham. From 1996 there have been 53 horses that ran in hurdle races at the Cheltenham Festival which fell last time out. None of them scored.
Report DeSSieReborn March 7, 2012 7:57 AM GMT
Mordins comment seems to relate to hurdlers but I would hazard a guess it is similar for falling chasers too. Has to be regarded a major negative imo.
Report silvergreaser March 7, 2012 8:22 AM GMT
How many of those 53 horses actually placed or ran cracking races to be just out of the frame?, and how many of these fallers were rank outsiders anyway?.

Cheltenham is the most competitive NH racing found anywhere on the planet, so Mordins stat might not stand up to closer scrutiny.
Report shaggykev March 7, 2012 11:38 AM GMT
I've uploaded some of the videos from Monday nights preview in Salthill Hotel fi any of ye are interested.
http://johnmulhollandbookmaker.blogspot.com/

and yes before I get dogs abuse from Galwayman and all his alter egos, yes I work For John Mul. Just incase anyone is interested

Hector, Paul Kealy, Barley Curley, Davy Russell, Derek O Connor, Patrick Mullins, Jonathan Mullins & George McDnoagh all interviewed

Heres Hector if anybody is too lazy to go into blog
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnE1Np2Wbqk&context=C30a8ee5ADOEgsToPDskLH7-Mogl6oqSo3wGWyJSwF
Report Arklearkle March 7, 2012 12:35 PM GMT
Have not got any statistics to hand but some lto falling chasers do win. Moscow Flyer Arkle and St Pirran Grand Annual were recent examples. Voy por Est pu Ch Chase and Albertas Run pu Ryanair.
Report BJG March 7, 2012 12:41 PM GMT
Of the last 387 winners at Cheltenham only 13 have won when not completing LTO.

Since 1996 53 have ran over hurdles after a fall lto and none have won
Report ilikewavingatbuses March 7, 2012 12:46 PM GMT
menorah also the highest rated hurdler in the field which is a big arkle pointer. i want to back menorah but he cant jump god bless him, so far anyway. if he put in a flawless round he'd win imo.


BIG IFLaugh
Report seanog36 March 7, 2012 1:02 PM GMT
good stuff, shaggy. I am interested in Trilfoium for the supreme, interesting that davy puts up midnight game as his best bet. I also get the feeling that the mullins yard rate Sir Des champs a lot higher that Russell, and Paul townsend would LOVE to ride it in the RSA. Gordan Elliot want as far to say, sir des champs will win what ever it runs at in cheltenham and will win gold cup next year. From the belfast preview the other night
Report ilikewavingatbuses March 7, 2012 1:06 PM GMT
barney trying to pronounce tetlamiLaugh

reminds me of my old man trying to pronounce foreign footballers nameshaha!!

tetlami does appear to be a big enough price in what looks a very open race!
Report seanog36 March 7, 2012 1:06 PM GMT
in terms of jumping, there were concerns last year before the arkle in Captain chris and finians rainbow jumping. they came first and second. the way the prices are going i am pushing towards hobbs having menorah right for the day and at 8/1 it would fall in line with the stats for the arkle. i just feel in the novices, too much made of prior to cheltenham form when racing against horses at least a stone not as good as them, these are just the getting ready for the big day, and seeing how a horse reacts to a few mistakes in part of the process. how will SS react when he does not get a fence perfect, we will see.
Report ilikewavingatbuses March 7, 2012 1:08 PM GMT
im half leaning toward menorah myself. dont have too strong opinion on the arkle tbh only im v strogly against the fav, i dont think he'll win.
Report neill d March 7, 2012 1:39 PM GMT
By and large, Menorak actually jumps really well, might do a Quel Esprit on it, I'm not too put off by his jumping, ore the fact that Sprinter Sacre is a machine and Cue Card is pretty good too, Menorah gets 2 miles really well though so these two could set it up for him. I'd be dissapointed if al Ferof is good enough
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 7, 2012 2:45 PM GMT
Silver,

See thread "Powerful mordin Stat for next week-Darlan???" on the Cheltenham forum too.
Report ChildOfMine2 March 7, 2012 4:53 PM GMT
The Cheltenham Preview, in aid of Temple Street Children's Hospital, is now online....
http://kildare.tv/cheltenham-preview-2012/
Report OnTheSnaff March 7, 2012 5:05 PM GMT
Cheers for that COM2,
Just had a good laugh listening to the Shark about Hurricane Fly,
"listen,maybe he will or maybe he wont,he's just a montjeu and a lot of them dont come up it"(the hill)

Was the man on drugs during that interview?or maybe he was on the moon last season when Hurricane Fly and Noble prince both píssed upConfused
Report ChildOfMine2 March 7, 2012 5:08 PM GMT
I know - He's living on cloud cuckoo land. He laid Gordon Elliot an even €500 on Hurricane that night Laugh
Report OnTheSnaff March 7, 2012 5:11 PM GMT
You serious?
Thanks for confirming he was indeed on drugs that night so Laugh
Report ChildOfMine2 March 8, 2012 1:37 AM GMT
I am defo serious - about 180 odd witnesses too Happy
Report mincer11 March 8, 2012 8:01 AM GMT
Gordon has actually had an even monkey a double,getting the horse to win will be the easier part ,the second leg may not be as easy.
Report wildmanfromborneo March 8, 2012 8:59 AM GMT
The Shark as well as Allduckornodinner.
Report ChildOfMine2 March 8, 2012 10:57 AM GMT
For anybody who's interested, I heard last night that Sweet My Lord is doubftul for the Pertemps, which is a huge pity for Colm Murray and co. Got a splint yesterday and was told off the record!
Report almera March 8, 2012 11:52 AM GMT
Cheltenham Preview from Leopardstown last night
********************************************
Tom Segal
Anthony Bromley
Davey Russell
Willie Mullins
Paudie Hassett-**** Rep

Day 1

Supreme
TS-cant have Darlan esp after the fall LTO,questioned form of Steps To Freedom
WM-Midnight Game not worked well yesterday.Didnt sound as confident as reported in prev previews.
DR-Midnight Game or Trifolium.He has choice between the 2 and says both should go well.Was disappointed with Mullins update on Midnight Game.
AB-Tetlami wont win,cant have Darlan after the fall.Talked up Montbazon and says he did a sparkling piece of work this morning.
PH-no real opinion and says more open race than prev years.

Arkle
DR-Sprinter Sacre best novice he has ever seen.Breathing op will help him.Accepts doubts bout the hill but reckons op has improved him.
WM-Worried bout the hill for SS but says he is classy horse.Said Blackstairmountain wont win and is looking at getting place at very best.Wasnt confident at all about him.
AB-SS is the real deal and will win by a fence.Said price is on short side though and he needs to settle but pace in this race will help that.Said he would win Champion Chase if ran in that.
TS-SS wont be beaten.Extremely confident about this one and said will win by a distance.
PH-SS to win easy.He cant have Cue Card as he doesnt jump well enough.

Champion Hurdle
WM-HF in great form and very pleased with him.Seemed extremely confident.
AB-not confident about Binocular.Zarkandar is a smart horse and will stay.Got impression he will be over further next year and poss future world hurdle runner.
TS-Zarkandar is a stayer and poor price.Likes his attitude though.Hurricaine Fly will win.Oscar Wells each way alternative.
DR-Hurricaine Fly wont be beaten.Reckons he is best he raced against.Said the Irish Champion rode like a very good race and Fly won it on the bridle.
PH-Fly will be hard to beat and one he wasnt confident of taking on.

Mares
WM-Quevega is in good form.Worked at the Curragh and made a bad mistake at on of the hurdles.Nothing major as he says she prone to making odd mistake in races.

CrossCountry
WM-Uncle Junior and Scotsirish will both love the ground.Uncle Junior will love the trip as he only gets going after 3m.

Day 2

Neptune
TS-Simonsig is very highly rated by his connections.Batonnier has a chance gave it as selection because others could run in alternative races.
AB-Batonnier not good enough to win this.Gave tip for Molotof for the Martin Pipe on friday should they decide to avoid this reace.Seemed confident on that one.
DR-Make your Mark will prefer the better ground at Chelt.Said he felt good to 2 out in heavy Leop ground.Can improve as only 2 starts.Simonsig has huge ability.
WM-Boston Bob worked well and he sounded very confident but no decision on where he runs(got felling it could be Albert Bartlett)Make you Mark worked very well yesterday.SLC has a chance feels Beneficient got the run on them the last day.
PH-Money says BB goes for Albert Bartlett.Simonsig a bridle horse and doesnt think he will win this.

RSA
DR-First Liutenant jumped well the last day can be a bit careful.Should not have ran at Fairyhouse and then rushed back for Leop race at Christmas.
WM-Sir Des Champs in good form.Alle Garde wont run in this and goes for the 4 miler(sounded very confident on this one)FL owners want him to run in this-got feeling SDC goes to Jewson but no decision on where he goes.
AB-Bobs Worth great festival form and wind op after Kempton.Grands Crus wont win gold cup and has to run in this.SDC goes to the Jewson.Not confident on Invictus.Join Together looks great and will stay all day.
TS-Join Together has no chance.Massive fan of FL and last years form has been franked.SDC should run here as wants the trip.Grands Crus not a 3miler and should go Jewson or Ryanair.
PH-Huge money for SDC but questioned form of last win.FL or Invictus to win.(Offered 4-1 for FL and SDC coupled as special)

Champion Chase
AB-Sizing wins by default as no opposition.Finians finds little of the bridle.SE most certain fav for him.
TS-SE wins.Hard to find any alternative.
DR-SE hard to beat.He will win on ability and not by default.Sound jumper.
WM-Cant see what will beat SE.
PH-SE beaten too often and opposes.BZ e/w value as evens to be placed.-(Offered 6/4 SE on the night as a special)

Bumper
WM-Champagne Fever in good form but may not handle the ground.Moscow Mannon confident he will be there at the finish.
DR-Village Vic but no great confidence in anything.This one is an improver.
TS-Royal Guardsman was impressive and will go well.
PH-Bookies benefit race and wide open.Jetzki and Village Vic to run well.
AB-Royal Guardsman one of the best.Impressed by Moscow Mannon.Negative for New Years Eve is that he is by Motivator.

National Hunt
DR-Four Commanders jumps well and is in good form
AB-Teaforthree connections very bullish about his chance.

Fred Winter
AB-Vendor will win and is only a steering job.

DAY 3

Ryanair
TS-Riverside not won Chelt and is massive lay.Medermit is preferred if runs in this.Great Endevour won PP well and has great chance.
AB-No idea why Rubi Light is the fav.Albertas has had troubled prep and doesnt fancy it.Poquelin is good e/w.Reckons Medermit runs in this one.
DR-Noble Prince to go close and better on good ground.
WM-Blazing Tempo could run here and e/w value.
PH-Riverside class horse in the race but its wide open.

World Hurdle
DR-Feels Thousand Star could be a big threat to BB.Carlito Brigante may go to Coral cup.
WM-BB has huge ability and thinks Ruby is most confident about this one than any other for the week.Thousand Stars may run in this and is proper stayer.
TS-Hardest race yet for BB if TS and Oscar whiskey both run.BB best horse in training full stop.
AB-BB should win with Dynaste to be placed.
PH-BB too short at the moment and could be higher on the day.OW plenty of class.So Young to run a big race.

Jewson
TS-All is not well with Peddlers Cross.vibes not confident from the yard.
WM-Not commiting to SDC running but sounded like he was leaning towards this race.
DR-Wants a runner in this race and SDC only option.Hinting to Mullins to run him here.
AB-Solix trainer is very pleased with him.Nichols pleased with Crystal Bonus.For Non Stop good form and goes for this race.

DAY 4

Triumph
AB-Pearl Swan and Grumeti to run well.Boulder Success the better horse and value bet for this.
TS-Dodging Bullets better than Pearl Swan.
DR-Worst race of festival.
WM-Darroun to run a big race.Improving stayer and good e/w.

Albert Bartlett
PH-Plenty of money for Boston Bob.will be 7/4 if runs in this.Mountbenbulben to reverse the form.
TS-Mountbenbulben was impressive the last day he ran.
WM-Boston Bob will run well in either race but this looks easier of the 2.Mountbenbulben the alternative.
DR-MBB wont reverse for with BB.Sea of Thunder is a good horse.
AB-Rocky Creek.BB to run here and will win.

Gold Cup
AB-Kauto will run but not ideal prep.Long Run to win.
PH-Long Run jockey is worst he ever seen.(9/4 special on the night)
TS-Long Run is a fruit bat and jockey is suspect.Midnight chase to run well and will stay the distance.
WM-Quel Esprit would prefer bit of cut.Long Run to win.
DR-Long Run best horse in the race.Burton Port.

OTHER MENTIONS OVER THE 4 DAYS
PH-Alle Garde 4 miler(prob NAP of meeting)New Story e/w in cross country.
AB-Hinterland runs in Imperial Cup not Chelt with Ted Spread going for County Hurdle(tip in itself)Triolo Dalene in the Novice handicap,Hold on Julio and Local Hero in County hurdle.
WM-Boston Bob wherever he runs,Final approach in Coral cup and Gorgeous Sixty in Fred Winter.
DR-Going Wrong in Novice handicap and Shop DJ e/w in mares race.
TS-Itsagimme,Getmeoutofhere and Citizenship should run a big race.

NAPS
TS-Citizenship
AB-Teaforthree and Vendor
PH-Alle Garde
DR-Shop DJ e/w
WM-Boston Bob wherever he runs.
Report the istabraq years March 8, 2012 1:22 PM GMT
cheers...an excellent read
Report Mister T March 8, 2012 5:28 PM GMT
OTHER MENTIONS OVER THE 4 DAYS

AB-Hinterland runs in Imperial Cup not Chelt

LaughLaugh Guesser!
Report Mister T March 8, 2012 5:29 PM GMT
Excellent read, thanks to all who took the time and effort!
Report Arklearkle March 8, 2012 7:00 PM GMT
Thanks Almera. Has anyone anything on Maynooth last night. Normally quite good,
Report Byerley_Racing March 8, 2012 8:29 PM GMT
A few videos from last night

Supreme Novice http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJujDx4McN0

Arkle http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqn3_NePQ3A

Champion Hurdle http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ylEOmx7g2n8

More will follow.
Report OnTheSnaff March 8, 2012 9:23 PM GMT
Cheers for them GimmeaBreak,Tom lashing the Guínness into him Laugh
Report Catch Me ifyoucan March 9, 2012 10:48 AM GMT
WHAT ABOUT Mckenna’s, Harold’s Cross LAST NITE !


Presume "the panel hasn't changed much over the years".



kavvie,MCKENNA,soapp,Mincemeat2011,The Icchantika,wildmanfromborneo & Rocketfingers on here are very KEEN to know the identity of this year's Special Guest !
Report kavvie March 9, 2012 12:23 PM GMT
i know who the great man is!!
Report frank60 March 9, 2012 1:56 PM GMT
do tell,Confused
Report Byerley_Racing March 9, 2012 2:36 PM GMT
more videos from Leopardstown


Champion Chase http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FV895rIn4JU

World Hurdle http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dPFN_hPA400

Gold Cup http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHdomwnEYoE

Ryanair Chase http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5i53MjwUj0

Albert Bartlett http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKhUHmC3E2o

RSA http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Y4BR6TT7L8

Jewson http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3asqfxdIMII

Neptune http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CERgfcZuHF8

Champion Bumper http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7StOw9S6KaM
Report Monte Christo March 9, 2012 4:33 PM GMT
Cheers for posting those links Gimme.

DR is good craic.

"If the fly is beat i'll take John McCririck out for dinner" - Laugh.That would be some bill.
Report BJG March 11, 2012 10:51 PM GMT
Come back to this page this Sunday 11 March 2012 when I'll be live blogging the Official Cheltenham Festival Preview from Cheltenham Racecourse. Event starts at 7pm.

Abbreviations for panel:

Alan Lee (AL)
Gordon Elliott (GE)
Aidan Coleman (AE)
Noel O'Brien (NO)
Tanya Stephenson (TS)
Mick Fitzgerald (MF)
Russ Wiseman (RW)

All set up now with power and WiFi sorted. Panel will start to preview Cheltenham Festival 2012 in about 25 minutes. Only TS is here so far. While you're waiting for the fun to start why not check out our preview videos? The main Festival news tonight is that Boston Bob goes for the Albert Bartlett on the Friday as opposed to the Neptune.

Audience is being asked to take their seats and lights are being dimmed. Lots of people here...way more than last year. I reckon around 1200.

Intro by Mary, Chair of Cheltenham and Three Counties Race Club. Alan Lee introduces Edward Gillespie who says course is in great nick and grass is terrific...never known it better. Good news. Watering will continue tomorrow. Going is good (good to soft) in places although Ed thinks it's good to soft. New course is half a point less good at moment with watering scheduled for Wednesday. Light drizzle forecast for Friday but otherwise sunny. Ticket sales are 10,000 ahead of last year.

RW says a few words about Sportingbet. He informs us that the lovely Sportingbet ladies will 'help us in any way'. Might take them up on that.

AL introduces panel. Jason Maguire not on the panel tonight and is replaced by Aidan Coleman (AC). Tanya Stephenson (TS) gets a good round of applause. Senior handicapper from Ireland Noel O'Brien (NO) in the house. AL reminds us that Gordon Elliott (GE) trained 2 winners at Festival last year. Rider of 14 winners Mick Fitzgerald (MF) is here to complete the panel.

Supreme Novices Hurdle
RW - Points out that more open than usual.
AC - Darlan has impressed Aidan and also likes Vulcanite.
MF - MF needs to speak up a bit! He's watched Darlan school and all is A1. No issues with confidence. Gives Tetlami a big chance too.
TS - Likes Hazy Tom thinking sounder surface will suit him better and also like Colour Squadron and also Distant Memories (50/1 shot).
NO - Steps To Freedom is top rated of Irish and is joint top rated for the race with Tetlami. Jessica Harrington is bullish. Also mentions that Trifolium is progressive and good value at 14/1.
GE - Steps To Freedom is classy although might have too much speed. Says Cinders And Ashes is best ride of week according to Jason Maguire.

Please comment on this page below or tweet me at @jpfestival.

Arkle Chase
MF - Sprinter Sacre is best horse he's seen since he retired. Nicky Henderson very excited about him. He's 'the real deal'. Much stronger this year.
AC - Sprinter Sacre not yet put to test but looks superior.
NO - Looks very good. Top rated on 161. Jessica Harrington not impressed with Barry G's comments about 'best horse he's ridden'. 'What about Moscow Flyer?!', she said.
GE - SS looks really special. No one else has mentioned another horse yet!
TS - Also for Sprinter Sacre...unusual she's going for a shorty. Since 1998 every horse that has finished in the first 3 in Supreme has not won at following Festival so not good for Al Ferof..at last another horse mentioned. But she has an each way one....Menorah. She has same theory as Ben Aitken @narrowthefield in that if Menorah goes faster he'll jump better. Cue Card won't go fast enough.
RW - Likes Al Ferof and thinks bookies have a chance of getting Sprinter Sacre beaten.

Champion Hurdle
RW - Difficult to find contender to beat Hurricane Fly.
NO - Hurricane Fly looks every bit as good as last year. Thinks it's an easier race than last year.
GE - Looks the best since Istabraq.
TS - Likes Overturn for an each way and he's good when fresh.
AC - Liked Zarkandar's run at Newbury.
MF - Potentially Rock On Ruby is smart but Hurricane Fly is a cut above. Never seen Binocular look better. Likes Zarkandar as form of Triumph is strong.

Other Tuesday races
MF - Likes Molotov wherever he runs.
Mares Hurdle
TS - Terre Du Vent could be good each way against Quevega in Mares.
GE - Quevega will win if she stands up. Quite likes Shop DJ.
AC - Rides Tempest River.

JLT Speciality
AC - Venetia Williams is really in form. Rides Carrick Boy which is his best chance on first day.

Cross Country
NO - It's a big type of event in Ireland. Quality of horse has improved in recent years.
GE - Tony Martin fancies his horse in this - Sadlers Storm.

Neptune Hurdle
GE - Mount Benbulbin goes for Albert Bartlett not Neptune.
NO - Monksland is unbeaten and is hugely progressive and unexposed. Liked by Noel Meade. Form connected with Boston Bob. Best of the Irish.
MF - Simonsig looks very smart. Proven at top level. Scoped bad after being beaten by Fingal Bay at Newbury.
TS - Likes Batonnier in this. 2nd best best of meeting. Came into reckoning on Festival Trials Day with win. Also likes Cotton Mill following Ambion Wood win on Saturday.
RW - Monksland very well backed today with Sportingbet.
AC - Likes Simonsig.

RSA Chase
RW - Think they can get Grands Crus beat. Will be offering 13/8.
AC - Thinks Grands Crus is beatable too and likes Bobs Worth.
MF - Has been disappointed with Bobs Worth but thinks following wind op and back left handed he'll go well. Just a bit worried he'll struggle to hold his position though.
GE - Really likes Sirs De Champs and thinks he'll win Gold Cup next year.
NO - Sir De Champs looks good. First Lieutenant is different type of horse. Join Together is best of English.
TS - Teaforthree could give Join Together a form boost in 4 miler. Says Paul Nicholls is very keen on Join Together. Likes Bobs Worth best though.

Just clocked that 2600 people are reading this! More than double last year. Hope you're all finding it useful.

Queen Mother
NO - Can't believe Big Zeb was himself last time out. Sizing Europe looks as strong this year as last. Pensioners are top in this race! Sizing Europe is clearer at the top than any other horse running at Festival.
MF - Sizing Europe is one that comes back again and again to Cheltenham. Revels at Cheltenham. Finians Rainbow is well and Nicky Henderson happy with him. Barry Geraghty hopes there's better to come.
TS - Can't see Big Zeb winning. Likes Sizing Europe for this.
AC - Wishful Thinking too short in betting as has been disappointing.
GE - Sizing Europe looks good.
RW - Would be biblical if all 4 champions won again. Major blow to bookies. Sizing Europe looks the best of the shorties.

Other Wednesday races
Coral Cup
GE - Carlito Brigante goes for Coral Cup although bit worried about top weight. Could get into place.


4 miler
MF - Harry The Viking looks like dour stayer. Allez Gard looks good for this.

Fred Winter
AC - Rides Kapga De Cerisy in this and think he's well handicapped. Venetia Williams would probably say this was her best chance of week.
NO - Hard to get handicapping right between Irish and English but happy this year that it's all balanced and French form complicated it further.
TS - Wants to take on favourite Vendor. Likes Dark And Dangerous and Royal Bonsai.

Bumper
RW - 6/1 the field. Market is quiet.
GE - Jessica Harrington's Jezki is best in this.
TS - Likes New Year's Eve.



Break over in 5 mins time....

We're off and running again.
AL: 900 people here tonight (JP: 3200 have read this blog post today).

Jewson
MF - Peddlers Cross has not looked quick this season and is taking his time to find his feet. Likes Solix.
TS - Much more viable horses in this race compared with Peddlers Cross. Likes Champion Court.
NO - Likes Peddlers Cross. Call The Police best of the Irish.
AC - Likes Champion Court more than Peddlers Cross. Has got his act together in Dipper. Alan Cawley is keen on his ride Champion Court him (lives with Aidan).
RW - All about Peddlers Cross. Could be a big drifter on day. For Non Stop is 13/2.

Ryanair
RW - Tough race and very deep. Have seen money for 9 horses.
NO - Noble Prince a bit disappointing this year. Strongest race of the 4 days. Wide open. Likes Somersby.
GE - Rubi Light has no chance! Wrong sort of race for Rubi Light last time.
TS - Likes Kalahari King as Ferdy Murphy is great in Spring and KK likes Cheltenham.
AC - Likes Great Endeavour. Thinks he's been trained for race. Captain Chris should jump better now.
MF - Great Endeavour looks good. Albertas Run would bring the house down.
RW - Little bit of money each way for Captain Chris today.

World Hurdle
RW - Big Bucks will be 4/9 on come Thursday.
TS - Moment at Cheltenham last time when Big Bucks faltered a bit but then he stormed clear. Great to watch. Majority of bookies she's interviewed gave Big Bucks as the one at the meeting they want to take on. Thousand Stars will come second.
NO - Would like to see Thousand Stars run well. Likes the drama of watching Big Bucks. Thinks race has more quality than usual.
GE - Doesn't run Carlito Brigante. Good field but thinks Big Bucks will win. Not sure that Oscar Whisky will get up hill.
MF - Flat spot of Big Bucks has happened at right time. If flat spot happens late then he could be beaten by Oscar Whisky. Barry Geraghty likely to play his cards late. Doesn't think Big Bucks will win.

Pertemps Hurdle
AC - Will ride Houblon Des Obeaux for Venetia Williams.
GE - Says his own has no chance. Thinks Our Father will win it.

Triumph Hurdle
RW - Very good race. Good quality. Those at the top of market have been heavily backed. Thinks Grumeti will go off favourite and could be a push for Baby Mix.
TS - Likes Balder Success and Countrywide Flame. Not ever liked Grumeti.
MF - Grumeti has good Flat form and is battle hardened. Thinks Choc will ride him. Likes Balder Success best.
GE - Shadow Catcher (trained by GE) has come on for every run and jumps well. Won't be too far away. Best horse his run in Triumph before. Stone better than Carlito Brigante who came 4th. Adds he thinks he'll win! Frightened of Darroun.
NO - Not a vintage year for juveniles. Baby Mix tops on ratings. Likes Darroun. Thinks there could be an upset.
AC - Baby Mix should beat Sadlers Risk. Likes him.

Albert Bartlett
GE - Hopes he'll win with Mount Benbulben who has a good each way chance.
AL: Says Paul Nicholls thinks Rocky Creek could be future Denman.
MF - Thinks Rocky Creek is a future chaser. Boston Bob says Ruby think's he's his best chance! (Has Mick got that right??).
TS - Has a strong one, her NAP is Fox Appeal. Brindisi Breeze may not like ground.
AC - Not much of a view on this but says Brindisi Breeze got easy lead at Haydock.
NO - Boston Bob well ahead on ratings on 151. Has looked special so far. A strong race now. Mentions Beneficient from Tony Martin and if trained by Mullins would be half odds.

County Hurdle
GE - Runs Plan A and Dirar but doesn't really fancy them.
AC - Unlikely that any of Venetia's will get in.

Martin Pipe
GE - Best chance of week in this with Toner D'oudairies.
MF - Likes Bourne.

Gold Cup
MF - Long Run has not been at his best this season. But trip will bring out best in him. Hasn't travelled with  usual vigour. Doesn't seem too keen on Long Run. (Could be significant as he usually likes Nicky's fancied horses - JP). Likes Synchronised.
AC - Given choice would ride Long Run.
NO - Irish weak this year. Top Irish horse is Quel Esprit. Thinks his jumping is a revelation. Could win a Ryanair. Lots of questions about top two. Synchronised looked good when winning. Out and out stayers do well in Gold Cup and has each way chance. Long Run will beat Kauto Star.
GE - Long Run will be better suited by trip than Kauto. Thinks he needs blinkers. However, thinks top two will be turned over.
TS - Away from top two likes Midnight Chase whose had a lighter season and has regular rider on board. Her each way selection. The Giant Bolster will make a frenetic pace.
RW - Bookies think tempo will be too much for Kauto. Wants to lay Kauto Star.

Questions (and answers!)
AC - Restless Harry's time was quicker than Brindisi Breeze. Big bull of horse but not sure he can carry top weight to success.
MF - Pearl Swan vibes from Ditcheat are strong.
TS - For Non Stop gave Al Ferof scare. Not sure he'll like a larger field.
GE - No chance for Forpadydeplasterer

NAPS
AC - Zarkandar
GE - Sizing Europe
NO - Boston Bob
MF - Boston Bob
TS - Fox Appeal
Report shaggykev March 12, 2012 12:53 PM GMT
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZUChR6tqZ4

Davy's done me up like a kipper
Report jumper March 19, 2012 1:11 PM GMT
Just looking at the two I went to, my feelings at the time and still are that these events provide little information unless you are not a regular follower of the sport. Pretty woeful tipping to be honest although Sir Des Champs was given favourable mentions but both previews I attended that was only with reference to the RSA Chase whereas it went to, and won convincingly, the Jewsons. However NRNBs were in place at this time so they can be forgiven for that.

I'll take away Tony Martin's enthusiasm for Saddlers Storm, though it didn't get into the Cross Country. His 3 3/4 length defeat to Salsify at Leopardstown earlier this year now reads well in addition to his 2nd to Killyglen Saturday just gone at Down Royal. The winner's at only 25s on here for Aintree. One to keep an eye out for it it comes up at a price perhaps Punchestown bound.
Report jumper March 28, 2012 7:24 PM BST
Saddlers Storm has the national entry, a week on Monday. Best price 25/1 generally.
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