Friday is the biggest day of them all. My old guvnor Nicky Henderson has a chance to win all the big three races, which would be an unbelievable achievement.
Race 1: Triumph Hurdle – 13:30
This Apple’s Shakira could get him off to a flyer in the Triumph. She has course experience and loves the ground. The each-way selection is Mr Adjudicator who won in Ireland and posted a time 2 secs faster than Samcro did over the same trip that day.
Race 2: County Hurdle – 14:10
The County Hurdle is really competitive, as you would expect, but Spiritofthegames is one I really like. Placed in the Betfair Hurdle, he is on the same mark and can hit the frame. Sandsend is one I know the Willie Mullins team like so that is another each-way option.
Race 3: Albert Bartlett Novices Chase – 14:50
The rain coming here is great news for Chef Des Obeaux and I am very keen on him. Ok Corral is another with a big chance ew.
Race 4: Timico Gold Cup – 15:30
The big one. I really want Might Bite to win after what he did last year. The problem is that the opposition is very strong.
Native River is the one I have gone for purely because he did something amazing at Newbury. His time from the second-last fence to the line was a second slower than the time Altior did in the Game Spirit. We all saw what he did yesterday so that makes it more impressive.
Native River has had a better prep than last year when he was third. Slower ground suits him and he just gets the vote over Our Duke and Might Bite.
My idea of the four is:
Race 5: Foxhunters Chase – 16:10
The Foxhunters is the Amateurs’ Gold cup
Burning Ambition is very very fancied and gets the nod. He is being ridden by one of the best in the business ,Jamie Codd, and his run at Punchestown last time is good enough.
Race 6: Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle – 16:50
Diese Des Bieffes is the choice here for James Bowen and Nicky Henderson. He ran a belter in the Lanzarote and that is very good form. Gordon Elliot is mad keen to win this with one of his, and Flawless Escape is his first choice. But the each-way selection is Dream Berry for Jonjo O’Neill.
Race 7: Grand Annual – 17:30
The lucky last is the Grand Annual and I am hoping Le Prezien can get it done for us here.