Festival 2018: Day 3 (complete)

TIPS + write ups x7, + stats + other thoughts

Day 2

1.Intro/re cap

2.TIPS: Summary

3.Micro Systems/Angles: Qualifiers

4.TIPS: Race Previews (inc shorlists)

5.Any Other Thoughts


Day 2

1.Intro/re cap

+25 points up... after two days (if getting 9s Mr W, 28/1 on Coral hurdle..both prices around with 3-5 bookies.. appears some of you got a Ladbrookes price boost to 35/1!) and i’d have taken that! I have used up 14 points of my 25 point bank, leaving 11 points in the pot…if I am disciplined it means that we will come away from Festival week with at least +14 points. I’ll try my best to find some more and with the pressure off there is no excuse. If I could finish up with a 25+ point week that would be decent, but i’ll dream of blasting through 50! I declared Turning Gold to 4 places, I only declare to standard places that everyone can definitely get – he finished 5th… those of you who backed 5 places should have another +6 points or so in the pot, so around +31 points.

As always i’m a restless perfectionist… my friends at SP2A tipped Veneer of Charm who returned 33/1, 50.00 BFSP. If you take a moment to flick through yesterday’s blog and look at the various ‘WON’  notes next to his sodding name (trainer pointers..and he appeared on nearly all race stats pointers) you may be wondering why I didn’t tip him, at least for 1/2 point. Well, I am! It is even more annoying in the context that I mentioned the trainers it may be best to focus on in the race, Elliot being one, and my eyes mainly fixated on all those that were 25/1+. How I haven’t considered him in more depth I have no idea. That critique may seem petty in the context of the day we have had, but it’s such an approach that has helped me find winners like we have had so far this week. I can always do better. Ifs, buts and maybes. We could be sat here on +58 points! Still, I shouldn’t be greedy.

From the comments I know at least one of you who used my stats/notes to throw £5 at Vaneer of Charm which is superb. Yes I tip, but the purpose of my approach is to provide you with content that you may use yourself to back the odd winner, outside of my tips if you follow those.

I owe you a slight apology…bloody Tiger Roll hit two of the Gigginstown owners stats.. I missed him… I didn’t back him and know full well if i’d have mentioned him in Section 3 I would have had £5-£10 on the nose at 7s as an interest bet. Damn. And I tipped him to victory at last year’s meeting in the NH Chase. Another one that got away. Always room for improvement in this game of ours.

Mullins, Elliot and Henderson have dominated so far. I suspect they may continue to do so.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the first two days, on we go…


2.TIPS: Summary


Lovenormoney – 1 point win – 25/1 (gen) UP

Sykes – 1 point win – 28/1 (gen) UP

*hmm, both poor there… one for the Davy ‘micro’ and gigginstown, 10/1 in morning..hmm..although he was a lucky winner, fav should have won. Hopefully some of you threw a saver at winner given content below. I can just about live with him going in not tipped, good job he wasn’t 20s>6s. 



Last Goodbye – 1 point win – 12/1 (bet365/BV) 11/1 (gen) UP

Willie Boy – 1 point win – 16/1 (gen) Fell

Oh, they were both poor… that saver horse… damn.. hope you covered yourself as per write up…



Sugar Baron – 1 point win – 11/1 (gen) (12/1 WH) UP

Final Nudge – 1 point win – 20/1 (bet 365) 16/1 (gen) UP

Missed Approach – 1 point win – 12/1 (Lad/Coral/BV) 10/1 (gen) WON 12/1>8/1 


That is all for official tips.


3.Micro Systems/Angles: Qualifiers

Micros X5 

2.10 –

Lovenormoney (m4, 33/1<) UP

Thomas Campbell (m4, 33/1<) UP

A Great View (m2, 25/1<)

Glenloe (m2, 25/1<) 2nd nose

Mine Now (m2, 25/1<)


4.10 –

Movewiththetimes (m3, 16/1<)

Last Goodbye (m5, 25/1<)

The Storyteller (m2,m5, 25/1<) WON 8/1>5/1 

Tully East (m2, 25/1<)


5.30 – Heron Heights (m2, 25/1<)




JP (9/1<)

2.10 – Glenloe 2nd

3.30 – Unowhatimeanharry / Yanworth

4.50 – Countister

5.30 – Squouatour


2.10 – Delta Work (16/1<) WON 10/1 | 12/1> 6/1 



2.10 – Connetable (PN) 3rd 33/1

4.10 – Kings Socks (Pipe, 16/1<) UP




2.10 – Delta Work (‘micro’) WON 10/1 | 12/1> 6/1 

2.50 – Balko Des Flos (20/1<) WON 8/1 

4.10 – The Storyteller (‘micro’) WON 8/1>5/1 



1.30 – West Approach (33/1<)

2.10 – Tajbadaladabad (33/1<) 4th 40/1

4.10 – Kings Socks (33/1<) UP



1.30 – Kemboy (25/1<) UP

Ah bugger… 3.30 Penhill… hit ‘distance move’ stats. Joins Tiger Roll in the missed qualifiers pile. 


4.TIPS: Race Previews (inc shorlists)

No video today…. just words…


2.10 Pertemps


Lovenormoney – 1 point win – 25/1 (gen) UP

Sykes – 1 point win – 28/1 (gen) UP


This race has a very strange feel to it for me – I am far from convinced there is anything lurking in this – absolutely thrown in – and those that are more lightly raced have questions to answer. My judgement is that they – mainly the JP battalion- may not be any good! I could have that wrong and one of Glenloe or Sort It Out may bolt up. I won’t be shocked but I’ve taken a view against them- they are the ‘interesting’ ones for sure, but unlike our Coral Cup winner, they don’t have any decent graded form to their name. They are single figure odds also. They should stay but they need to step up plenty from recent runs – JP doesn’t plot for this race, he doesn’t have a great record in it, certainly hasn’t won it in the last 20 years from 14 bullets (3 placing) – maybe interesting he fires more this year than the average. With any luck more in hope than expectation.

I should mention Delta Work WON 10/1 | 12/1> 6/1  (hope you may have had a dart..) also who hits a few stats above – again i’m not sure how good he is but again he is lightly raced. A French bred won the Ultima for the first time this decade, and what with rain over night, maybe its time for another FR bred to win a race they haven’t done in recent years.

I thought this just looks like a mediocre enough handicap hurdle and i’ve sided with in-form horses who are proven in the ground and who will stay the trip. I’m not sure I can say those two things about many others in this. I should also mention that in 20 years, those returning after 76 days or more off the track are 0/58,8p… that makes sense given the test of stamina, even more so this year. I have used that as a guide and there are plenty (well, namely Louis Vac Pouch/Forza Milan) who I have discounted, in part on that basis.

Lovenormoney- he hits my first time headgear angle which is interesting enough. He is a dour stayer who arrives in form, as does his trainer. Provided he settles in the visor he should be staying on strongly at the end. He did run a poor race here in January – maybe a one off, or he didn’t like the track. But the price allows the chance and it is on the New Course today, which isn’t as tight as the Old Course and will play more into his strengths. PACE is also a big factor here and influenced me… there is hardly any of it…well…it is packed of horses who have previously been held up or happy to race mid division. A couple of others have been up there but are not proven to stay so may be reined back to get the trip. Lovenormoney should blast out, there is every chance he gets his own way up front. Well, I think the 1-2, for most of the way round, at least until the bottom of the hill, will be him and….

Skykes – who hasn’t done much wrong this season and his last two runners even suggest he may have progressed. The last twice he has been ridden aggressively he has only been caught late on- and caught by the right horses. Both those who finished ahead of him on his last two starts were upwardly mobile and did have plenty more in hand. The Ruth Jefferson horse who beat him the last day, and who has since been sadly lost, was highly regarded i believe. This would be a fairy-tail win for a small yard/connections and would create quite the story. I don’t think it’s impossible that he will be a few lengths up at some point in this, and i’ll just be hoping that nothing is finishing fast. He has very solid form and if he repeats either of his last two runs, he will be bang there in this. I’d like to think they have freshened him up and the yard can ready them after a short break. This must have been the plan. He may not be well handicapped- hard to say 100% he can’t win from this mark- but given I have judged that I don’t think anything else is, given conditions etc – a repeat of his last two runs may be enough. I don’t think there is a Black Ivory type horse in this race.

So, i thought I would go with two pokes. EW would probably be wise as on my assessment of this race they have as good a chance as any, certainly of all the English runners. It’s just whether any of the Irish have a stack in hand…Sort It Out / Delta Work WON 10/1 | 12/1> 6/1  / Glenloe 2nd.. being the main dangers on that front I think.

Wins for Forza Milan and Louis Vac Pouch would be annoying, especially the former who hit all my main stats – the only one to do so. But, the days rest put me off both. They do have stamina to prove at a track like this/in this ground also. The 10 year stats are not so bad (in terms of placed horses against sample) but the 20 years were not great. We shall see if that fitness stat gets broken- I hope not.

With any luck one or both have our hearts racing at some point. I hope the pair are ridden aggressively and get this motley crew on the stretch. I’m fully prepared to be drowning in egg come the end of this, but can you imagine if one of them goes in?! Glory days.



Hmm, the stats are only so useful in this… Up 1 or 2 classes from last run is worth focusing on, as is 0-2 handicap hurdle wins. That leaves a ‘working list’ of 10.

Louis Vac Pouch / Who Dares Dreams / Forza Milan / Wait For Me / Lovenormoney / Theos Charm / Protek Des Flos / Shantou Bob / What A Knight / Connetable

Those in the top 10 of market have done best and that may help narrow it down.

On my notepad I have 7 other pointers with lots of ticks and crosses against those 10 above.

Forza Milan hits everything.

Anyway, plenty of pondering!


4.10 Stable Plate


Last Goodbye – 1 point win – 12/1 (bet365/BV) 11/1 (gen) UP

Willie Boy – 1 point win – 16/1 (gen) UP


In part I have assessed this like I would any other handicap chase really- and have used the stats as a guide only, and for Last Goodbye have ignored a couple of them. I mean, they were inconvenient to the case I wanted to make! 🙂

The first thing I will say is that I will not put you off either of the top two in the market, and I have had a saver on The Storyteller WON 8/1>5/1  who does look the most interesting. He comes from a yard on fire, a jockey riding superbly as he always does around here and he is unexposed – he hits a few angles above and the shortlist below. It’s his first time around here and his first race in a big field handicap chase- IF he handles the experience and if he jumps well (there are niggles on his jumping) he could take this. Those latter thoughts just put me off tipping and I went for two at bigger prices. But, happy to have a saver on and maybe I will regret not tipping him up for 1 point. 

Moving on, and well there is a lot of deadwood in this to my eyes. Plenty of out of form chasers, plenty who won’t handle the ground or stay the trip in it. I don’t like backing out of form chasers generally (although I do tip the odd one outside of the Festival, maybe I should stop doing that!) and certainly not around here. This is not the place to rediscover best form. I actually thought this was between The Storyteller / Kings Socks (just too inexperienced over here in context of price- he chased home Footpad in France…!.. he may improve for the faster pace/conditions, or he may find it too much. I may have this wrong, but of the top two i’d side with Elliots as above. No shock if he bolts up, thrown in. The first half of the race will be crucial for him. If he settles/jumps/tracks the pace… bugger!) and the two tips…

Last Goodbye…  well he has Festival form, having come fifth in last year’s Close Brothers Novices, on ground too quick maybe and around a track on the tight side. He should relish conditions much more here. He would have gone much closer last year but for being badly hampered a couple out- he was nearly brought down, lost his action momentarily while sidestepping/treading on a faller , took a while to reorganise and then somewhat flew after the last. He had plenty left in the tank. He is only 9lbs higher for that run. I say ‘only’ because I don’t care for such rises for chasers that are evidently in form and are open to progress- not if I like the price. He somewhat demolished a decent field the last day – the best recent handicap chase form on offer in this by some way I think- pulling 9 lengths clear of the second and sprinting through the line. The front two were miles back to the rest. It was very very impressive. So impressive, I was happy to play at 12s for him to follow up. This equipment combo seemed to do the trick the last day- he can hit a flat spot, but he has a big sweeping hill in which to get going (jockey pulling him wide to stoke him up maybe) and he has a longer straight to wind him up than on the Old Course. He stays well, he will relish the mud (more so than Tully East who we backed last year in the Close Brothers) and couldn’t arrive in better form. There is no way you can say he can’t win from this mark. With luck in running, and a clear round, he should be bang there after the last. Just then whether one of the top two is also still bang there as if they are it is likely they will have more in hand. Hopefully they have fallen out the back of the TV by that point 🙂

Willie Boy – Venetia is 2/19,4p in this in the last 10 years, and won the year before that also I think- so 3 wins in the last 11 renewals. Solid. If you are going to back her runners in one race at the Festival it is this. And the rain has arrived. She’s had a torrid season but she knows how to prepare one for this. This horse ran a blinder two starts ago- he set off like a scolded cat, was taken on for the lead at various points, looked to have shot his bolt about three from home, but rallied gamely after the last and won going away. It was a decent enough field. He flopped the next day but Venetia’s often do on their second start after a long break- he could have bounced etc. OR he could just be a horse that is best fresh, which makes his 100+ day break even more intriguing. VW can get them fit, no worries about that. With Liam Treadwell retired there is a jockey spot to be filled and it’s interesting that Cooper gets the leg up. He has been on a few of this owner’s runners in recent week. He has ridden the winner of this race twice in recent years (once for us on Empire of Dirt,. 20s…great day :)) so knows his way around. I do think his confidence is shot after recent injuries and it will be shot even more after Tizzard effectively sacked him on behalf of the Potts family. There is a chance that transmits to this horse and he doesn’t jump a fence! The horse is a front runner- I think they will try and make all and have every chance of doing so – and if he can get him jumping, the rest will have to catch him. He is unexposed and is far from finished progressing up the handicap ladder. At 16s I thought he was worth a play. He hits my ‘shortlist’ below and bar those already mentioned, I couldn’t be backing anything else on that list, given their form.

I should mention Mercian Prince who goes for Amy Murphy – i suspect the handicapper may have him and this is a deeper race than the last day and that may find him out. But he jumps well and it would be good to see him run a big one. Clearly i’d be a tad annoyed were he to win as he won’t carry any of my money – not even a last minute throw away £2.50 on BFSP. Well. Best not promise anything! Incidentally my two girls are back in from their holidays and I think Amy is prepping Blessed to Empress to return in March. Really Super will have a summer jumping campaign- she will hack up when we find the key! (so I keep telling myself)

Of the rest… two more I will mention… Tully East.. (you are always fond of past Festival winners that you backed) could well have been campaigned for this race- i’d like to think the ground and this stiffer test of stamina may find him out. I could be wrong there. If he handles it then he won’t be far way. King’s Odyssey is the other one- were Williams in better form i’d be tempted- but I can’t see any reason why he should improve on his recent runs. He may run into a place but I didn’t think looked in good form enough to take this- and neither does his trainer. But, of the bigger priced ones, he is interesting and I can see why some may take a dart, not for me though.



Another ‘long list’, but this approach to narrowing down has worked ok… so.. 0-3 runs in class / 0 wins in class / ran in handicap chase or novice chase LTO / 5th or lower in the weights… that has covered all previous 10 winners. The 0 from X stats are not the strongest, and I will just look at the race with ‘handicap chase eyes’ fixed on, but those leave 10…

The Storyteller / Movewiththetimes / Ballyalton / Oldgrangewood / Willie Boy / Drumcliff / Mercian Prince / Pougne Bobby / Midnight Shot/ Shanahans Turn


5.30 Kim Muir



Sugar Baron – 1 point win – 11/1 (gen) (12/1 WH)

Final Nudge – 1 point win – 20/1 (bet 365) 16/1 (gen)

Missed Approach – 1 point win – 12/1 (Lad/Coral/BV) 10/1 (gen)


Well, i have kept this simple. My unique stats/profile for this is decent enough to my eyes and there were three horses who hit every box of mine. So, I tipped all three, given they were all double figures. The rain has arrived which will help Missed Approach and Final Nudge. I have no idea if it will help Sugar Barron- I can’t work out if he is better on good ground or may actually want this going! He won a bumper (beat Gold Present) and a novice hurdle on testing ground but class can get you through those. But, he does stay well. As I was guessing – he may enjoy it- i wanted a decent enough price, which i judged 11s/12s was.


Sugar Barron- always stays on late! So maybe this ground may help. He arrives into this race as he did last year off a similar break. He stayed on late again in that race, as he did here in November. He has a more experienced jockey on today than in last year’s race and hopefully that may help. He has experience of the Festival, has stamina to burn, and should run his race. And he ticked all my stats. Henderson is in great form and I had to play him really. I was going to stick with two, but you and I know if I picked two from that list below, the other one would win!

Final Nudge- will appreciate the ground now. He has had a fine season, should just keep galloping, his jumping is fine and if this turns into a slog, he shouldn’t be far away. He has a decent enough jockey on here who rode a decent 3rd on Day 1 in the NH chase.

Missed Approach – he’s had a wind op and with any luck that may help. He is a prominent racer who ran well in the NH chase here last year. He will like conditions and last year’s jockey returns. I hope he’s aggressive on him and he can get into a rhythm on the front end. He shouldn’t be far away if he can. His trainer is in better form than he has been for most of the season and hopefully that rubs off on this one. He knows how to train a Festival winner.

So, i’ve kept it simple, guided by the stats on this one, but you can make a solid case for each horse anyway, at the prices.

Of the rest..  I’d like to think one of these three is winning, or one of the top two in the market- maybe one of those bolts up, given who is riding/connections etc – but 5/1 or so for two horses who have yet to win a chase was just too short for me. Kelly’s has placed in plenty so less of a concern for him maybe. On that basis I was happy to take the pair on but won’t fall off my seat if one wins well. 

Oh, i should mention Aubusson  could be worth a small tickle also… given the weather the French Bred stats for certain races could be broken.. not sure i’m a fan of young Chester over fences, but no forlorn hope. He was on the longer shortlist and there is money around.

The price of those two horses, and indeed Kings Socks, now makes me realise what a decent price 6s was on Coo Star Sivola! Hindsight is a wonderful thing.




3-7 runs in last 365 days / -0-4 runs in class / 1+ chase wins (1-3 best) / 0-2 handicap chase wins:

That lot leaves: Sugar Baron / Missed Approach / Final Nudge / Aubusson (FR bred, big neg) / Very First Time / Heron Heights (4 chase wins slight neg) / Millanisi Boy

There are a few other stats I have used to add to the pot… Age 7-9, OR 134+, OR 2lb lower to 2lb higher than last run / 11-4 on back…

Sugar Baron / Missed Approach / Final Nudge … the only three to hit all those… so, against my unique profile, they look very solid, stats wise.


5.Any Other Thoughts

Of the other races… (get the lay button at the ready, I know my strengths, and it is not in novice/graded races, generally speaking)

1.30 – Kemboy EW 16s – i’ll just trust in the Paul Townend angle for an interest wager – plenty to find on ratings and the three top rated OR- Modus / Finians Oscar / Invitation Only- you’d have to fancy the latter of those??

2.50 – i’ve used a free bet on Cue Card- sentiment of course- but tears in the eyes if he rolls back the years!

3.30 – no strong views.. small EW tickle on Wholestone maybe, who at least should be staying on all the way to the line. Would be great to see Sam Spinner win for connections.

4.40 – High School Days.. Russell (assuming he is fit to ride today??) has been a master this week of sneaking a big priced horse into the places.. is this another? Cap Soleil for interest also maybe… they do really like the Fav – Mullins has talked about her in ways he hasn’t many others- can only assume a machine at home against smart types to confirm that view.. so best EW tickles, if playing in the race at all!


That’s the lot for today, GL with any bets.




Post Comments

Do join in the conversation below, we're a friendly bunch.. all questions welcome, and do share your selections or thoughts

47 responses

    1. thanks, no problem, we do enjoy those ones going in… and nice work on the double! Top marks and good punting.

  1. The new course is a stiffer test of stamina than the old course anyway and so softer ground will make stamina come into it even more.

  2. 4 places from 6 picks for a bit of profit to add to the coffers although no winner today but everyone else seemed to have make up for it. Quiet day for me tomorrow given not a massive amount that takes my fancy:
    Sugar Baron Cheltenham Thursday 17:30 0.75pt e/w
    Protek Des Flos Cheltenham Thursday 14:10 0.75pt e/w

    Have also chucked £5 e/w on Midnight Shot in the 16:10 and Braqueur Dor in the 17:30

  3. Well done Josh on steering us through the minefield of Cheltenham.The highlight today for me coming from west of the shannon was the win for local trainer Pat Kelly and Presenting Percy.We have very few trainers in the west that can survive on the poor land away from the rolling hills of Meath.The first time i saw him jump,he looked a natural,very economical at his fences.Hopefully the man with one field can keep him sound and a gold cup might be coming home next year

    1. I agree with that. Jumped beautifully and economically and little doubt he’d get another 2.5 furlongs plus loves Cheltenham. Wonderful performance. Same connections have Mall Dini I believe in the last?

    1. thanks Shaun, no worries, that’s what i’m here for haha. two winners at 8s+ across the 13 races or so I target usually ensures the week can only get so bad, and if one of them is 20s+, then profit is always assured. That’s the foundation and thankfully I’ve done that after 2 days, so whatever happens we will have made something on the week- and as importantly got the heart racing a few times in the climb to the line. Fingers crossed I can add one or two more before the week is out.GL today.

  4. Josh – what a great day also managed to get a few quid on the bumper winner as well. 10:15 and no rain yet – I’ll update tomorrow morning if that would help

    1. cheers pal, yep all weather updates welcome! Well done with the bumper winner, one of those classic hindsight moments… mullins on fire, farms bumpers, 5 runners, just back them all for £5, or the 3 biggies! Easy after the event mind. Next year 🙂

  5. Just a mention, Tim Easterby makes hay with well h’capped front runners on the flat. tomorrow he has his son up on a potential front runner that hits almost all the trend stats. A bet to offload to have a free bet after 3/4 fences.

    1. GL, can see why you may throw a few freebies at him, maybe he will do well – i thought he would be too inexperienced for this and has nowhere near the class- as shown to date – as some of these, maybe not battle hardened enough for this but I could be very very wrong!

  6. I was talking to a tipster I know earlier and he was very strong on The Sugar Baron and he seems to be not on his own and so have backed him at 12/1 as it will likely shorten further. Louis Vac Pouch seems to have been laid out for the 2.10. It is very competitive and 10/1 sounds big normally but there are a number with a chance!

    I was fortunate to back the reverse forecast with Bleu Berry beating Topofthegame on Wednesday as well as backing them separately. I will have another go on Thursday with Louis Vac Pouch and one other. Any suggestions?

    I like a couple of others but will post them Thursday morning.

    That is it for now.

    1. 210 A severe test of stamina will be ideal for Thomas Campbell today, down in class and with JB able to claim again. Blinkers on, suggests maximum effort sought, now he’s fresh again, so top weight may not be a barrier, 25/1.

        1. Hmm, i’m not sure he will relish this ground or test of stamina in it, but I could be wrong. Looks handicapped up to the hilt, would have to be a graded performer to take this and i’m not sure he is- but I could be wrong- trainer on fire and 1st blinkers interesting. GL, ready to eat my hat,another one.

  7. Morning,

    Couldn`t get on here as had other commitments yesterday, so, stuck with SP2A tips and you also Josh, glad i did, didn`t get the RF with the two though in Coral cup….
    Anyways, now it`s time for me to jinx the showboat.
    14:10 Cheltenham
    LOUIS VAC POUCH 10/1 gen
    The combination of Hobbs/Johnson can take this competitive handicap courtesy of Louis Vac Pouch who was last on the track when winning impressively in November at Aintree. The selection looks the type to appreciate the testing conditions more than many of his rivals.
    LOVENORMONEY 33/1 boylesports
    I have been looking through the trends from about 4 different sites to try to narrow this field down and have worked through a lot of the runners and come up with LovenorMoney. It has a negative against it having won a pertemps qualifier however with a lot of rain expected before racing its 3 wins from 4 on heavy ground.

    16:10 Cheltenham
    WILLIE BOY 16/1 gen
    loves the soft going and Venetia’s horses stay and stay. He may not be the class of other runners but the RPRs are reasonable. Fits 10/10 stat of having won between 2m3f and 2m5f.
    MIDNIGHT SHOT 66/1 gen
    Useful hurdler who landed 4 of his first half-a-dozen starts over fences last year.If he can return to anything near that form he will go close, one of my TV horses.Think the heavy ground will help him get into a rhythm here and he could go close, big price…

    17:30 Cheltenham
    SQUOUATEUR 5/1 gen
    Another Elliot horse who will have been trained for this race, loves these conditions and was looking a likely winner last year until unseated rider, every chance again today.
    AUBUSSON 20/1 gen
    A smart staying hurdler when the mud is flying, winning the Grade 3 Fixed Brush handicap at Haydock off 141 back in 2014 and only beaten a nose in a French Grade 1 the following year. Hasn’t matched that over fences but is now down to a decent mark of 135 which he has placed off over 3 miles the last twice. This extra distance will suit as will the soft ground.

  8. Only sentiment but would love to see Cue Card bow out of Cheltenham by getting round and being competitive in the Ryanair today. A fascinating stayers in prospect all round. Combined with tough handicaps, a very hard day today.

    I was bowled over by 12 tipsters in the Racing Post going for Terrefort in the opener today. By Martaline who has a 1w 2p from 4 runs over 2m 4f chases from his proteges, this lad won the Grade 1 at Sandown last time beating a Nicholls horse who won a Graded race at Kempton next time. Same connections as who had Top Notch when 2nd to Yorkhill last year, this lad should relish the ground too. In a weakish looking JLT, he’s a bet for me.

  9. I will have more bets later but these are my thoughts now:

    1.30 I did Kemboy at 20/1 NRNB. I also backed it for the Arkle at 25/1 NRNB. I heard connections were serious enough about going for the Arkle but I am glad they went for the JLT and so see the horse going well. I also like Shattered Love on the ground despite his jumping quirks.
    2.10 I think that Louis Vac Pouch has been put away for this and so the days since last run negative that Josh mentions may be negated by that? I have backed him and have him in the reverse forecast with Lovenormoney.
    2.50 The Fav looks short on this ground and without Ruby on board. Cue Card is too old and the ground has gone against Balko Des Flos. I would prefer Bryony on Frodon but see it going well.
    3.30 I do like Sam Spinner. He won me a fair bit when he sluiced up before with me on at 8/1. The only negative apart from price is the inexperience of the jockey around the course and in having to make the pace in the ground. The ground has gone for Supasundae and he wont stay.
    4.10 I do like The Storyteller as he seems unexposed to me. I backed Willie Boy at 20/1 NRNB and am happy with those two against the field.
    4.50 Fav looks the winner. I like Cap Soleil as a horse going forward and so would not put anyone off a bit of each way on her.
    5.30 I am strong on Sugar Baron. I fear Mall Dini due to the Pat Kelly angle of success and so will back him as well even though he is 0/9 over fences!

    Good luck.

    1. Hmm, i’d suggest every horse that has run here after 76+ days has been ‘put away for it’ with the same intention of protecting a mark and coming here fresh.. in fairness his break may have been deliberate as Hobbs’ string have had virus/illness problems for most of the season. Signs that they are coming out of the slumber- another winner yesterday in the Huntingdon bumper.
      LVP- he is a keen sort, wears a hood for a reason- i’m not sure they will go quick enough- provide my two jockeys are not stupid which is a possibility! He needs to settle – i’d fear he may be too fresh and on that ground may pull chance away. We shall see, I could be very wrong- more a place lay for me- but I don’t do such things! Hobbs is 5/75 with all runners at Cheltenham returning after 60+ days, all meetings. Another hat for me to eat is that the ready, another half dozen eggs. But i’ll stick my neck out – prob won’t stop me throwing change at him on the machine given place on shortlist!

      1. Yes I think Louis either wins or is unplaced. I only mentioned the days off as it was pointed out as a negative and that was why he had not run again to protect its mark. Anyway tough race and so non of us can be really confident.

  10. Some friends of mine bumped into Rich Ricci in a bar at Cheltenham on Tuesday night, he said Salsaretta e/w in the 4.50 has a good chance

  11. BetFred paid 5 places on Turning Gold so total of £95 back on the day. Thanks Josh, Let’s hope we do as well today.

    1. Good stuff Victoria, we can but dream! Hopeful that all of those should be getting competitive, i’ll be disappointed if we dont have something to cheer over the last in at least two of them, just then whether we get collared in the climb to the line, or just can’t pull back whatever may have got away on front!

    1. You do the micro stats treble?? Well done for nabbing him, hopefully those who backed tips may have read write up and had saver on. That’s two I could maybe have tipped, lured in by bigger odds as always!

      1. Had two of the three, missed Balko Des Flos. High School Days in the next will be popular each way now.

  12. Someone on here put up an angle on Penhill earlier in the week? not sure who but thanks very much. Nice saver on The Storyteller as well thanks to the write ups Josh.

    1. Ah phew, well I’m glad someone read it and had a saver on haha – primarily that is why I write thoughts so you can see the thinking… I even underlined that one in bold! – Clearly in hindsight I wish i tipped but oh well. Survived race.

      1. Hi Josh, Thank you again! I did a Gigginstown multiple based on your angles plus Shattered Love. Had all of Davy Russell’s. Have come away with well into 4 figures for a £10.20 outlay. Thank you. I shall be in touch via e-mail when i come down from the ceiling!


        1. Blimey, well done, that’s what it’s all about, that’s why i provide the content I do. Now, if you could pay for a couple of my holidays later in the year…. haha. Super effort.

        2. Well into 4 figures? Or really 5 figures? Are you the 50k winner?
          If so truly well done.
          A thing of stupendous beauty.
          Enjoy your winnings and the euphoria that goes with it.

    1. what a horse, led as hoped/expected, was delighted when got easy lead. Deserved winner, outstayed second there, and was still going through line. Will take the +6 points.. could have been better with some sharper thinking around Russell/Elliot/Gigginstown, but happy to take +31 into last day.
      On we go.

        1. +42 on Festival week… topped up with +20 in the Midlands National which I tip in every year..backed winner twice in recent years… one year it saved the week haha.. last year it boosted profits somewhat. That is only for members/Festival subscribers.

    1. You’re not the only one haha. Can always rely on a gutsy front running, in form, 3m+ handicap chaser to win the day!

  13. Lovely winner in the last Josh
    Whatever happens tomorrow an excellent Cheltenham for RtoP
    Certainly makes watching it all an even better experience
    We can’t win everytime but when we do we should celebrate
    Great stuff

    1. Cheers Andrew… oh year, we certainly can’t win every time although i’m always trying to and I always think I should! Given I focus on 13 races with 18+ runners in, I won’t every get them all sadly, but 1 winner a day does the job just fine. Nothing to cheer after the last in the first two which is always annoying but Missed Approach made up for that, roaring him home and hoping the second had nothing left in the tank was enjoyable. On we go.

  14. WEll done Josh..between you and Ian at sp2a…my back is sore shovelling gold nuggets into my barrow…lol..
    Now for a couple of large Jimmie’s…ahh so much better.

    Keep going boys.

    Tony Mc.

    1. Get them down you young man, and have a couple for me! I’m awaiting Sat evening for the pleasure, although I may pour myself a scotch, i’m sure it will help??!! Green tea boost first though.

  15. Another lovely day thanks for the expanded notes as backed the winners to cover the first 2 races and then the icing on the cake in the last.
    A good case for keeping to the same OM of 7 points as first 3 days with some expanded notes as sure that focus will continue to pay dividends

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