DESPITE the best efforts of that dreaded lurgy coronavirus we’ve made it to Gold Cup day. And that’s a result in itself.
So whatever happens let’s just celebrate the racing as, the way things are going, we will all be behind closed doors soon!
We’ve already had some great stories this week with the return of the ‘Second Coming’ Samcro yesterday who just about saw off fabulous Faugheen.
We also had the great man JP McManus celebrating his 69th birthday with Epatante’s Champion Hurdle win, Politologue giving Paul Nicholls a sixth win the Champion Chase and what about Rebecca Curtis winning the Stayers’ Hurdle with 50-1 chance Lisnagar Oscar just three months after having a baby!
While the entire world has been going into self-isolation Cheltenham has certainly put on a show.
And now we have the main event this afternoon to look forward to. It will be a thriller, for sure. From Arkle to Dawn Run, Desert Orchid to Best Mate and Kauto Star to Denman the great race always delivers.
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I think you all know where I stand on this one. My two against the field are Delta Work and Clan Des Obeaux. I am on both each-way.
Gritty, tough Delta Work was unlucky when third in last term’s RSA and his whole campaign has been geared to this day.
Clan Des Obeaux is more like a ballerina, who will be ridden to get the trip. Both have a great chance.
But so do many others.
Defending champion Al Boum Photo could easily do it again for Willie Mullins, and Santini has cheekpieces to help him.
Added to that Presenting Percy has always caught the betting public’s imagination and Lostintranslation also has a big chance if you forgive him his flop in the King George, which I do.
The final day kicks off with the Triumph Hurdle and I’m banking on saying ‘golly Gosh’!
GOSHEN (1.30) is on a four-timer and has been described as a freak by his trainer Gary Moore.
MOHAAYED (2.10) can win the County Hurdle. He runs off just 3lb higher than when winning this in 2018.
THYME HILL (2.50) can take the Albert Bartlett for the master Philip Hobbs. The tip was third in the Cheltenham bumper last season and Hobbsy thinks he is good enough to win a Stayers’ Hurdle one day.
Another Hill can peak in the Foxhunter. HAZEL HILL (4.10) won well for us last year and I see no reason why he can’t repeat the feat. He was just touched off by Minella Rocco last time but is 4lb better off and jumped right that day. Hazel is better here.
Alan King usually pops up with a winner here so chance LISP in the 4.50. He was fifth in last year’s County Hurdle and will enjoy the way this race is run.
The last knockings is the Martin Pipe and this is a race Gordon Elliott loves to win. His COLUMN OF FIRE (5.30) will do for me. He will love a big field to attack late and stays strong. Good luck!
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