Day two was just as action packed and eventful as the first wasn't it! SPRINTER SACRE has the potential to be one of the all time greats, what a performance that was. How good is it to see jumping gods like him! I felt for BOSTON BOB today but I still think my tip LORD WINDERMERE would have beaten him. I also felt RIVAL D'ESTRUVAL may well have gone on to beat BACK IN FOCUS and I was relieved I had a wager on both!
So on to day three and one of my big fancies for the whole week.
1.30 JEWSON NOVICES CHASE
DYNASTE is an obvious pick for this race, however I feel a drop back in trip is against him and the stable aren't exactly flying at that moment and 13/8 at the time of writing this is short. CAPTAIN CONAN is an obvious choice too but he had to work hard last time to beat THIRD INTENTION. I'm therefore opting for TEXAS JACK (unplaced) who has some very smart form. He split BOSTON BOB and LORD WINDERMERE last time out and look what they did yesterday. He has also finished behind BACK IN FOCUS when 3 miles looked long for him. Unlike the style of BOSTON BOB and LORD WINDERMERE he is better at this trip and has to have a fantastic chance.
2.05 PERTEMPTS FINAL
This is one of my top selections for the festival. HOLYWELL (nap) (WON – 25-1) has performed gamely all year with four gutsy performances. He looked even more effective when being stepped up to three miles. Running in snatches last time cost him the race but he showed immense battling qualities to stay on up the hill behind ELY BROWN. The trip, the speed of the race, the pure test of stamina and more importantly the track will play into his strengths. I can see him being delivered over the last just behind and then bound on up to the line. He's my best bet of the day. I am also having an each way squeak on ACCORDING TO TREV (unplaced) who will appreciate the drying ground and you cannot ignore the win he had here in October.
2.40 RYANAIR CHASE
MENORAH (PU) is a favourite of mine and I have to side with him in this despite the worry of the poor form of the stable. In my opinion this distance and this track bring the best out of him. His performance when beating HUNT BALL at Kempton had to be noted as he probably hated the ground. He is impressive here as I said with 3 wins and a place from 6 runs. He has the class and remember he did beat CUE CARD here in the STAN JAMES INTERNATIONAL HURDLE a couple of years ago and despite getting beat in the HALDON GOLD CUP to CUE CARD he did give him 3 lbs that day. I'm hoping what I've stated backs up my gut! With the ground drying I am also having a little nibble at ALBERTAS RUN (PU) his record here speaks volumes and but for the ridiculous winter we've had he would have been our sooner. He's pure class and depending on how much the ground dries he could be a huge price for a horse of his stature.
3.20 LADBROKES WORLD HURDLE
A wide open contest in my opinion, the injury to BIG BUCKS gives plenty of these a shout. None more so than REVE DE SIVOLA who was very impressive last time. OSCAR WHISKY proved the doubters wrong last time by staying the distance. However, I'm opting for WONDERFUL CHARM (unplaced) this horse has been kept for this since the forecast was to be dry. He takes his chance here instead of the Coral Cup. Both the trainer and jockey think they potentially have a good one here, I'm happy to go with them judged on their experience of winning this. He has a fair bit to find on the figures, but he coud be anything. Well worth a sniff in a wide open contest!
4.00 BYRNE GROUP PLATE
I'm opting for an outsider in this who caught my eye last time out. HECTOR'S CHOICE (unplaced) ran an absolute stormer behind OPENING BATSMAN the other week at Kempton. He only dropped out close home and this drop to 2m5f will help. He won here last year in a Class 1 chase defeating AERIAL after getting nowhere near in this last year off a mark of 147. He's now rated 144 and I just fancy him to run well on better ground and as I say he really caught my eye last time out.
4.40 FULKE WALWYN KIM MUIR CHASE
PRINCE OF PIRATES (unplaced) for me is the answer here. He is a progressive horse, who despite a few dodgy jumping rounds produced a good effort at Kempton last time. He is another one that prefers good ground and has won round here before. A talented amateur jockey on board with a few big races successes this year will also help. Bring on the bucks.
5.15 CROSS COUNTRY CHASE – re-arranged.
I don't really like or pay much attention to these races so am just looking at form briefly for this and suggest taking a chance with the French one, especially if the ground is tacky. So for me SACREE TIEPY (unplaced) is the selection.
After a couple of successful days so far, I'm hoping for another few wins here, especially HOLYWELL. Enjoy the day whatever, I'm n a course all afternoon so will have no idea what's been going on!
Here's a summary of my tips :
1.30 TEXAS JACK (nb)
2.05 HOLYWELL (nap) (WON – 25-1) ACCORDING TO TREV (ew)
2.40 MENORAH (treble) ALBERTAS RUN (ew)
3.20 WONDERFUL CHARM
4.00 HECTORS CHOICE (ew)
4.40 PRINCE OF PIRATES
5.15 SACREE TIEPY