Let’s hope I can repeat my 10/1 success of Celestial Halo’s victory last year. Well, it won’t be 10/1 I’m afraid as my selection Walkon is now a best priced 9/1 with Boylesports. If you want to get involved then be quick as only Boylesport and Sportingbet have this price and it can only contract.
My preview for the Cheltenham Festival 2009 will be even earlier this year and is coming soon…watch this space!
A busy day tomorrow with 4 selections running. There are good vibes and positive noises from the connections of all 4. First up is Theatre Girl who runs in the 12.30pm curtain raiser of what should be a magnificent day’s racing. Choc Thornton rides for Alan King who would love to win the first running of this race which named after his former boss. Watch out for emotional scenes in the winners’s enclosure should this one take centre stage. Best price is 5/1 having been recommended at 7/1. In the next Forpadydeplasterer runs for the Goat Syndicate and this time there could be wild as well as emotional scenes – you won’t be able to miss the red and white colours of his many owners. Best price is 5/1 having been recommended at 8/1. His is ridden by leading Irish jockey, Davy Russell and trained by Thomas Cooper. Next up is Celestial Halo at 2.15pm, trained by Champion Trainer Paul Nicholls and who will be ridden by Ruby Walsh. I make him my best bet of Festival 2008. Finally, the main event and arguably the best steeplechase in the past 40 years, is the Totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup at 3.30pm, featuring what could be an epic duel between Kauto Star, the Maserati and Denman, the tank, two of the best horses in quite some time. However, I take the wonderfully named Exotic Dancer to upstage them both. Best price is now 12/1 having been recommended at 14/1. It’s still a massive each way price. Good luck and if you can’t watch the race live make sure you watch a recording – it’ll be a cracker.
This is my last Festival preview post but I’ll be doing a preview of each Saturday’s racing on a new blog. The address will be posted here this Saturday morning.
It’s all systems go today with a mild dry day in prospect and what is probably the greatest ever 2 days of National Hunt racing in front of us. Two selections running today. Air Force One goes in the second race and will be ridden by Charlie Mann’s stable jockey Noel Fehilly. He is currently vying for favouritism and having been advised at 8/1 is now trading at a best price of 11/2. Connections are confident and he looks a solid each way bet. In contrast, there seem to be negative vibes surrounding Blazing Bailey both from connections and in the betting market. Having been advised at 7/1 he can now be backed at a standout 9/1 with William Hill. The form is there in the book though so we’ll have to see what happens. Good luck and enjoy!
Not yet confirmed by Cheltenham racecourse but the revised schedule for Thursday and Friday is likely to be as follows. Note the early starts!
Thursday (Old course)
12.30 Peter O’Sullevan National Hunt Chase
1.05 Royal & SunAlliance Chase
1.40 Jewson Novices’ Handicap Chase
2.20 Queen Mother Champion Chase
2.55 Ryanair Chase
3.30 Ladbrokes World Hurdle
4.05 Racing Post Plate Handicap Chase
4.40 Pertemps Final
5.15 Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir
5.50 Weatherbys Champion Bumper
Friday (New course)
12.30 David Nicholson Mares Only Hurdle
1.05 Ballymore Properties Novices’ Hurdle
1.40 Coral Cup (Handicap Hurdle)
2.15 Triumph Hurdle
2.50 Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle
3.30 Totesport Gold Cup
4.05 Christie’s Foxhunter Chase Challenge Cup
4.40 Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase Challenge Cup
5.20 Vincent O’Brien County Handicap Hurdle
Shocking news this morning. The racing has been abandoned with the races due to be re-scheduled on tomorrow and Friday.
In a late jockey change Robert Thornton rides Captain Cee Bee. This is a big plus as arguably he is the best jockey around Prestbury Park. The ground should be OK although we could have done without the rain as he loves genuine good going. 9/1 is now generally available and the big Irish gamble has yet to materialise.
Moon Over Miami is ridden by regular jockey Noel Fehilly. Let’s hope he copes with the hustle and bustle of his big day. 16/1 is generally available. He’s won at Cheltenham on both good and soft so the ground won’t be a problem.
Osana, ridden by tom Scudamore, has been well backed today and as short as 4/1 although you can get 11/2 with Hills. The ground will be fine as he’s won on soft and it was good when he won at Cheltenham in December.
Strong winds and rains from about 2.00am this morning. Winds have now eased off a bit and there is light drizzle. Skies are very grey. Not sure what impact rain will have on the going…more news later.
Just back from town and no sign of the storm yet and there are clear skies, light winds and there is no rain. Maybe it’ll hit during the night but given the reliability of the weather people lately I wouldn’t bet on it. Update to follow in the morning.