Cheltenham Gold Cup day is always special, but there is no room for emotion on this blog. Taking Paddy for his cash is all I am worried about. I need to destroy him on the final day.
The opener today is the JCB Triumph Hurdle, and I’m lumping on SCEAU ROYAL each-way. It hasn’t been Alan King’s week so far, but this youngster is working better than ever and has some classy form. He won very easily at short odds last time at Huntingdon.
The County Hurdle is typically tricky, but I will have a few quid on GREAT FIELD for JP McManus and Barry Geraghty. I was hugely impressed by his Irish debut last time, and at this stage he could be anything.
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Barters Hill has been favourite for the Albert Bartlett for a long time, but I can’t help but feel the ground might be too fast for him now. He loves running in rain-softened ground.
The one I like now the ground has changed is the ultra tough LONG DOG, who just keeps winning and has already landed two Grade 1s for Willie Mullins. He’ll give it a good go.
Going for Gold
The Gold Cup is the feature and wide open, so for me I’m just want a horse I truly think will give me a run for my money. That horse is DJAKADAM.
He chased home Coneygree in the Gold Cup last season. He returned in great form this term in the John Durkan Memorial Chase but then fell at Cheltenham last time.
He also once fell in the JLT. But if his jumping holds up he’s surely got to be placed in this field at least given last year’s run.
My nap of the day is ON THE FRINGE in the St James’s Place Foxhunter Chase. He got stuck in the mud in his prep run at Leopardstown last time, but just forget that effort. He’ll take all the beating here.
What a minefield the Martin Pipe Conditional Hurdle is, but the big lad Gordon Elliott is desperate to win this race and I’ll go with SQUOUATEUR, who has been laid out for the race.
The selection went up 13lb for his success last time, but could be too good for this lot.
And then the finale. The Johnny Henderson Grand Annual ends the meeting, and I’ll be backing ROCK THE WORLD each-way. Rock the World won well at Cheltenham last time and has improved all season for Jessica Harrington and Robbie ‘I’ve got the Power‘ Power.