Happy St. Patrick’s day!! Ireland are now 8-6 ahead and we saw some lovely prospects yesterday. It is hard to believe that we went from course records on Tuesday to swimming on Wednesday.
Turners Novices’ Chase – 1.30pm
Only four runners but what a race in prospect between last year’s banker Bob Olinger and the runaway Martin Pipe winner Gallopin de Champs. Bob may well come alive at Cheltenham and the softer ground may suit but you rarely see a novice chaser jump as well as Gallopin de Champs. So though Bob Olinger is hugely respected, the selection has to be Gallopin de Champs.
Pertemps Final Handicap Hurdle – 2.10pm
The Irish are dominating the handicap hurdles to date so it makes sense to concentrate on the raiders here. Of the home party however, Honest Vic merits a mention coming back from chasing and is 9lbs lower than his last hurdles winning mark. Kevin Blake has already tipped up Winter Fog. Dual winner of this race Sire du Berlais looks a worthy favourite and could well do the business. The other Irish one that’s expected to run very well is Born Patriot at a nice each-way price.
Ryanair Chase – 2.50pm
Unfortunately we are down to seven runners here, limiting each-way options. Allaho has been put up as the Irish banker in most quarters, including by Willie Mullins. 4/6 is in no way tempting though and maybe Shan Blue could fill the forecast spot. He was in the process of hacking up when falling at the third last in the Charlie Hall Chase and was put away for this.
Stayers’ Hurdle – 3.30pm
This looks an open race with a few of the main protagonists clearly having their own ideas about the game, while ten-year-olds don’t win the Stayers. Last year’s winner Flooring porter cannot be underestimated, having been brought along with this in mind. Royal Kahala was very impressive in Gowran Park in the Galmoy hurdle, is unexposed at the trip and is still improving. She’s the each-way selection, with Home by the Lee for Joseph capable of running a big race at an attractive price.
Paddy Power Plate – 4.10pm
Imperial Alcazar was very impressive in his jumping and finishing strongly when winning here on trials day and an 8lbs rise might not be enough to stop him. The Glancing Queen’s form is strong with her second last time to l’Homme Presse well-advertised yesterday. At the prices the preference is Imperial Alcazar each-way at around 5/1.
Mares’ Novice Hurdle – 4.50pm
Mighty Blue for Joseph is a listed flat winner and was third in this last year, beaten just over 5 lengths by Telmesomethinggirl, who looked dangerous when coming down late on in Tuesday’s mares race. She is a year older and stronger and with the right noises coming from Carriganog, she can make her experience count. 20/1 is a tasty each-way price.
Kim Muir Challenge Cup – 5.30pm
School Boy Hours carries stable confidence with Derek O’Connor on board and looks to have been put away for this race. The other fancy is Ain’t That a Shame, while Jamie Codd’s selection must always be considered and he rides Smoking Gun for Gordon Elliot. Good Luck!