Fair morning to punters of Britain – A rare Friday post from the Major who has been awake many hours solving the puzzles that the opening day of the PAddy Power meeting at Cheltenham throws our way.
Hope you were on the winners last weekend at 7/1 and 8/1 respectively – Lets see what we can muster to allow us to prize the loot from our nemesis, the man with the satchel.
I am attending the Cheltenham course today, courtesy of the fine folk of the good ship Hiscox. I see it like this:
The opener could go to Nicholls and I fancy a plunge on Earth Planet – Going in style I plan on making this the NAP. Put simply, the form with Lie Forrit is the best on show, Nicholls is in fine form and a decent 5lb claim off what I consider a good handicap chase mark for Earth Planet adds up to a tasty bet.
1.50 and a suprise may be on the cards. OK, it is unlikely that anything will beat Cue Card who looks a star in the making but the price will reflect that and I think forecast 11/10 on will be a fantasy. I suspect the good folk will be shephereded to this bet like it cannot fail and it will go off at 4/6. Maybe I’m wrong. I am sticking with in form Nicholls in this race. OK Dunraven could be good too, forgive his Champion Bumper run and you have a star horse and he is well regarded. I also think he will like good ground but 7/2 to beat the star in a straight punch up…… seems tight to me. This is why I like King of the Night – 8/1 at least gives you a chance of earning a profit on an each way stake. This horse is not far off Dunraven form either and crucially gets the support on Noel Fehily from the saddle one of my favourite jumps jockeys and one who carries an amazing 55% strike rate for Nicholls
Daves Dream may go well fresh but the Pricewise horse probably won’t carry the honest price I want. Keelaghan may be a McCoy / Tony Martin sure thing but against this quality I am unsure. Although Reviliste is unproven on the ground, the unexposed 5yo has a lot going for it. On balance I will take the best I can above a 5/1 Reviliste price and a 6/1 Daves Dream price and suspect the first will be the easiest to find.
There could be an upset in the cross country. Joe Lively is as much a bet as for the heart as for the head but Garde Champetre who admittedly looks a good thing off the weights may not enjoy the top of the ground as much as oe does – 9/1 each way, the Major thinks it is a good bet.
Betting large in a 24 runner conditionals handicap at Cheltenham is the fastest way to the poor house there is. So the 3.35 will carry just a small investment. It will probably go on Max Bygraves who (if fit) could go well with a decent 8lb claim. Sound Stage, Traffic Article and Turner Brown all had an argument forming in my head before I stopped myself – Get a grip, you might put a line through some of these but seriously…
The best is saved until last. The Steel Plate novice chase is a great race. I really fancy second favourite Reve de Sivola to conquer here. I think it has shown easily the best form when 2nd in the World Hurdle and the trainer of Time for Rupert has expressed a minute doubt about the readiness of his runner. Othermix is a worthy each way bet, pricing permitting.
The nap is Earth Planet. Money on, sit back and have a glass in hand. Don’t forget to tell the man, that you are one of the Majors and you will be back.