Cheltenham Festival 2016 – Day 4

Last night I counted up everything I’ve bet on over the week, not just what I’ve written on here and it’s truned out that I’ve gurenteed a profitable week for myself, unless I place more than these three bets today.

In terms of the site, it’s currently +2.25 points up to 1 point level stakes, which means a winner today and the site would have made a Cheltenham festival profit for another year.

[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”13:30 – Triumph Hurdle” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

At the moment there doesn’t appear to be a star in this field. Sceau Royal is consistent, but I don’t think he’s a grade one animal. Alan King has come out and said that Gibralfaro isn’t good enough, which leaves question marks about the form of the races he’s run in which included Connetable. Zubayr looks to be priced up on the name of the race he won, The Adonis, instead of what he beat which is similar to Beltor last year.

Ivanovich Gorbatov looked like a potential star on debut, but put in a below par performance last time when finishing behind Let’s Dance and Footpad. He’ll need to massively improve on that to justify favouritism.

The Footpad formline is the one that interests me the most as he was beaten eight and a half lengths by APPLE’S JADE at Leopardstown in December. This horse seems to be the forgotten horse in the race for me, it was met with a setback and therefore hasn’t been seen since that race, however that leaves her unexposed and open to plenty of improvement.

The concern with this Mullins horse is that it’s never raced on good ground, however on breeding that shouldn’t be an issue. Another slight concern is that the stable don’t often do very well with their four-year olds, they prefer to wait until they’re older and target the novice hurdles with their good ones. That being said in an open looking renewal I think she’s worth taking a chance on as the form line through Footpad has worked out well.

BACK APPLE’S JADE AT 17.0 (General)

[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”14:50 – Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

Barters Hill had been on my oppose list for some time, SHANTOU VILLAGE the one I want to take him on with. The price on the Neil Mulholland horse has been contracting all week, as the ground has dried out. He was absolutely smashed by Yanworth last time out, and even though Yanworth was beaten by the highly talented Yorkhill on Wednesday, he still ran a good race pulling seven lengths clear of the third placed horse.

Before that defeat Shantou Village beat the highly thought of Champers On Ice, at Cheltenham by fifteen  lengths. His record on good ground reads four races four wins. I’ve always thought that he should be outright favourite for this race and the market is now correcting itself.

BACK SHANTOU VILLAGE AT 5.00 (General)

[symple_heading type=”h2″ title=”15:30 – The Gold Cup” margin_top=”20px;” margin_bottom=”20px” text_align=”left”]

DON COSSACK fell in The King George at Kempton and I think he would have won if he’d stayed on his feet. The form of that race is working out well, Vautour won The Ryanair yesterday with Valseur Lido in second and Al Ferof fourth, Smad Place has won  The Betbright Chase, Silvinaco Conti won a Grade One at Ascot by twenty lengths.

The ground has dried out, we only have nine runners and Smad Place will set a decent pace for Don Cossack to aim at. I think this horse should be no bigger than 3.25 and he has no excuses today. I don’t think Cue Card will stay the trip and even if he does, I think that Don Cossack is a quicker horse and a better stayer over this distance. It’s also still fresh in my mind that Don Cossack destroyed Cue Card by twenty-six lengths at Aintree last season. That victory was backed up by beating last years Gold Cup second Djakadam by seven lengths at Punchestown, with the Gold Cup third Road To Riches (also third in The Ryanair yesterday) a further six and a half lengths back.

The only formline of a fancied horse that Don Cossack doesn’t tie in with is that of the plodder Don Poli. I don’t think that beating Many Clouds, receiving weight, or a half length victory over First Lieutenant with Foxrock a half length further back is anywhere near strong enough form to win this race. In my opinion he should be running in The Grand National.

BACK DON COSSACK AT 4.00 (General)

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