Today’s delicious Double
Cudgel 1.10 @ 4/1
Shamson 4.40 @ 10/3
Selected Hexham – heavy ground on this undulating , very stiff and galloping track
12.40 The fav is Lady Villanelle who is a C&D winner on deep ground but very poorly handicapped on what she’s achieved .West End Lady has run well a few times over C&D on heavy ground and on a fair mark but the nod goes to the consistent Gamesters Icon , who’s been going well in handicaps on this kind of ground and every chance he’ll handle this stiff circuit .
½ pt win Gamesters Icon @ 5/2
1.10 The fav is the consistent Don Herbager but the 7 pound hit wont help and despite being proven on stiff tracks, the top stable has had no luck here admittedly in few tries . Deep ground is no concern but clear preference for the consistent C&D specialist Cudgel , a real mud lover and a very willing late player .
½ pt win Cudgel @ 4/1
1.45 Doesn’t look a deep novice event and the joint favs are the two last time winners in Franigane and Fugitif and neither will have a problem with the ground but this is a much stiffer track than what either have tried before , but both the stables have travelled some way for this and both have terrific records here ??
2.20 Too many ifs buts and maybes in this Marathon slog In the mud .
2.55 Taste The Fear doesn’t give the indication he is going to relish this slog in the mud up in trip on this highly demanding track but One fer Mamma does and gets the nod .
¼ pt win One Fer Mamma @ 5/2
3.30 Arqalina made a right fist of it last time at Leicester on soft ground trying to make all at that stiff track but just did a bit too much too soon and was hauled in , but still a good effort and should be fine over C&D and ground but the track regular westend Theatre just gets the nod despite dropping in trip and only has a one pound penalty for a gutsy win last time
¼ pt win Westend Theatre @ 7/2
Cheltenham – good to soft on this undulating , galloping and stiff track
1.20 The Marsh Chase
On the opening day of The Festival we saw the very wonderful Honeysuckle going 11 from 11 when far too good in The Campion Hurdle and Envoi Allen looks sure to go 12 from 12 as he’s just too good for these ,despite all being talented young chasers . He’s 1/2 to prevail and should do but at the odds I’m playing an ew on the prolific Fusil Raffles , 7 wins from 11 tries and 2 from 4 here . Proven on the ground and trip and if he hits the frame you’d get more back than a win on the fav .
¼ pt ew Fusil Raffles @ 16/1
1.55 PREMIUM RACE
2.30 The Ryannair Chase
This is arguably the most competitive non handicap of the Festival and you could seriously make a strong case for practically all but the progressive Imperial Aura is bang there on the ratings , proven over C&D and ground and this determined and talented sort looks a very nice ew play at the odds .
½ pt ew Imperial Aura @ 8/1
3.05 The Paddy Power Stayers Hurdle
All the usual suspects are taking part but the one to beat at the ratings is clearly the fav Paisley Park , who won this two years ago but flopped last year in the mud behind shock winner lisnager Oscar, but has returned this season with two big runs , running to his lofty mark both times and with the ground In his favour, should be too good .
½ pt win Paisley Park @ 9/4
3.40 PREMIUM RACE
4.15 The Dawn Run
Another highly competitive non handicap and lots of uncertainty surrounding the majority of the runners as the field is predominantly Irish trained and they will be racing on the quickest ground they’ve ever faced. This leads me to one of the home contingent in the highly consistent The Glancing Queen , who’s taken well to hurdling and bang there on the strength of her form . She’s been doing well despite racing on ground soft enough and has a Listed bumper win here on her CV on similar ground . Nice ew play .
½ pt ew the Glancing Queen @ 11/1
In theory Doncaster should be a good place for a bet today on this straight forward track and on good ground but as the majority of the horses are racing on ground quicker than usual ,this creates sufficient uncertainty to give the card a reluctant swerve.
Selected Chelmsford City- all weather – polytrack
4.40 The once useful Shamson can still go a bit despite now being a 10yo and this late player comes here in race winning form. He’s a dual C&d winner and this is absolutely there for the taking and it’ll be disappointing if this well drawn runner can’t nail this well.
½ pt win Shamson @ 10/3
5.25 The admirable Nortothorpe Boy’s winning spree has come to an abrupt end with the handicapper getting very serious and the drop in trip is no help to hm either . The Hulk is a likeable sort but now on a testing mark and very best runs have come on tapeta. Twilight Heir landed a small field handicap well last time and the penalty could have been worse but the nod goes to the prolific Elusive Treat , 3 wins in his last 4 and I’ve been with him few times . He had a terrific race make up last time I a small field where all the others were front runners and he expectedly was taken off his feet until mowing them down late on at Kempton . This is a very different type of race but with just a 2 pound penalty gets the nod .
¼ pt win Elusive treat @ 11/4
5.55 Healing Power is seriously knocking at the door and is well drawn to take these along and is effective at the track and the trip is fine . Hard to see what can spoil his day .
½ pt win Healing Power @ 5/2
6.25 The short priced fav is recent Newcastle winner United Front but he’s up in trip and the weights and looks vulnerable to me . The front running Songkran is holding his form well and taken to land this from Society Red .
½ pt win Songkran @ 3/1
6.55 The consistent Headley George is fav again but from a tricky draw , wouldn’t be surprised if something pipped him , again !
7.25 Not a deep race and understandable that the consistent Eyes is the fav , but 2/1 doesn’t look a great bet .
Chelmsford City Placepot