What a cracking day of racing at Cheltenham….. Finians got the better of Sizing Europe in an eventful and epic Champion Chase.
The Major had tipped Wishfull Thinking who kept out causing chaos at the last fence in the home straight. Course staff then seemed to indicate (by the positioning of signs) that horses should jump the fence on the final circuit but to the right. Then the flag man came out at the last second to seem to instruct the horses to go round.This caused a late swerve from Sizing Europe but in the Majors eyes, probably inconvenienced Finians Rainbow more that Sizing Europe. On balance, I think the course staff moved the signs on the fence to protect the area where Wishfull Thinking had fallen; what is sure is that we dodged a bullet because Finians and Sizing did well to lead the field around.
The Major had the first two winners tipped up on the blog and then the day was blessed by a 40/1 winner in Une Artiste who the Major had tipped up at Kempton on 25th Feb and was delighted to see return a winner. At this stage it is definitely The Major 2, Bookies 0.
Enough of all that, this is merely half way, the enemy is wounded but it beaten and Thursdays cards carry the despicably fatal handicaps that are the Byrne Plate and the Kim Muir.
The Trixie of Death took a bit of a beating – Reds are losses, the greens are wins…
|Hurricane Fly||Boston Bob||Oscar Whisky (w/o Big Bucks)|
|Quevega||Sprinter Sacre||Sizing Europe|
|Grand Crus||Going Wrong||Simonsig|
Thursday Cheltenham Tips….. Once more dear friends…
Already Advised: Sir Des Champs 6/1
Five likely sorts in Solix, Champion Court, Peddlers Cross, Sir des Champs and Cristal Bonus.
Peddlers dodged two other festival engagements to run in the Jewson and with the trainer scoring winners already, 7/2 is very fair. Sir Des Champs a winner last year has had support all week and won’t mind conditions at all. Hendersons festival form simply means you cannot ignore Solix and Cristal Bonus looks suitably progressive.
On balance I think Sir Des Champs is the one for me. Although Peddlers destruction by Sprinter Sacre was probably on a ‘wrong day’, Sir Des Champs has relative form anyway an is 1/1 on good ground.
The Pertemps Final
No louder cheer bar that which would meet Kauto will be available if Buena Vista completes a hat trick of Pertemps Finals wins. The Major doubts it will happen but in a competitive race where the bottom of the handicap carries 10, 6; anything can happen.
The Major has settled on thehillsofuisneach who has the relevant experience and is a generally improving sort. 16/1, shabash.
Already Advised: Noble Prince 6/1
Put simply I think Noble Prince and Riverside Theatre are the choices and of the two I feel the conditions have come right for Riverside Theatre. How he will run here and the ‘bounce’ factor are not factors in the Majors mind.
The World Hurdle
Already Advised: Oscar Whisky (w/o Big Bucks) 7/4
Big Bucks. Simple. My son turns 4 in April, he was not born the last time a horse beat Big Bucks.
I did advise Oscar Whisky originally without Big Bucks. I am not sure about this anymore – If he tries to take on Big Bucks, he might lose by a mle.
Byrne Group Plate
Bar the opening race of the week, the Byrne Plate is the hardest race to call of the festival in the Major’s eyes.
No solid trends to the race mean that you have less framework to the decision.
On balance the Major suggests Salut Flo and Niceonefrankie who both should go well. Again a race in which being double handed is a benefit.
The Kim Muir
Another puzzle of a handicap and one in which the Majors pin has stopped on Brackloon High. His latest dead heat was decent with the front pair well clear, the ground is a big plus and at 25/1, the Major is interested.
The New Trixie Table of Doom
This one is flatter but all lines are doubles and trebles…… 11 bets..
|Riverside Theatre||Brackloon High||Long Run|
|Pearl Swan||Sir Des Champs||Big Bucks|