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Ruby Walsh and Frank Hickey have run the rule over the Pertemps Network Final ahead of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival, where Paddy Power are offering non-runner money back on every single race until final decs.
It’s one of the quirkier races at Prestbury Park as runners need to have placed in the top six in a qualifier to reach the final.
Speaking on the latest episode of our From The Horse’s Mouth ‘Countdown to Cheltenham’ podcast, Paddy’s dream duo talked through their tips for the second race on the third day’s card.
You can listen to the full show BELOW.
It’s a race I never won and I don’t remember having too many near misses. Willie Mullins also tends to target more valuable handicaps than this.
Last year’s renewal was really good as Sire Du Berlais beat The Storyteller – and look at the standard they’ve set. It can be a decent race and you’re looking for a good horse in it.
Everyone looks at the qualifiers and looks for horses that were fourth, fifth and sixth. THE BOSSES OSCAR was second at Leopardstown and has been duly penalised for that. He runs off 151 when he could end up with a mark in the 160s.
I know the handicapper’s been harsh on The Bosses Oscar but a claimer is set to be put up so he will have a huge chance. Everything went wrong for him in last year’s Martin Pipe but he flew up the hill and finished fifth despite being hampered by a faller at the last. He’s shaped OK this season including a second behind Flooring Porter, who went on to win a Grade 1. The history will tell you not winning a qualifier is a positive as well. There’s loads to like about him.
Imperial Alcazer is only seven and was impressive in his qualifier at Warwick. An 8lb rise isn’t excessive at all and he was just touched off in his previous run at Cheltenham. He’s better than 147.
THIRD WIND was fourth in last year’s renewal and is 12lb higher this time. He’s obviously improved this year but I’m not sure what that Haydock form is worth.
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CHAMPAGNE PLATINUM caught the eye at Haydock and I think he was given a Pertemps qualifier ride where it’s a case of not blowing the mark. He looks like he’s been lined up for this but I’m just not sure you can rely on him in the last furlong.
COME ON TEDDY won off 127 own here in December and was third behind Imperial Alcazer at Warwick. BUSHYPARK won a handicap at Hexham this season off a mark of 83 and is now rated at 132 so massive progression from him but he’ll want soft ground to be at his best.
PERTEMPS NETWORK FINAL BET SUMMARY – THURSDAY, MARCH 18
Ruby Walsh – The Bosses Oscar
Frank Hickey – The Bosses Oscar
*Paddy will be all over your telly box throughout the Cheltenham Festival sponsoring ITV’s live coverage from Prestbury Park – and you can get free and exclusive tipping columns EVERY DAY from Ruby Walsh, Matt Chapman and Mick Fitzgerald here on PP News.
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