Wednesday 13 March 2019

Down but not out (Cheltenham Festival 2019 - Day 2)

The first day of the festival didn’t go quite as planned, but to be honest, I should have known from the moment I got soaked going to work it wasn’t going to be my day. Sometimes gambling is like that and you have to take it on the chin. 

From the big disappointment Apple’s Jade to Gun Digger in the last, who I thought was running a great race until falling at the 18th fence when in contention and let’s not forget a great run by Ben Dundee to finish 3rd at 33/1, but as they say onward and upwards.

Day 2 (if it goes ahead) the first race on the card is the Neptune Novice Hurdle and Gordon Elliott has a double chance of a winner with the more fancied runner for the stable Battleoverdoyen hoping to keep his unbeaten record intact, he also runs Galvin. The Elliott stable had the winner of this race last year with the fantastic Samcro, so I am hoping either one can give me a run for my money. 

Delta Work is a short-priced favourite for the second race on the card but deserves to be so after rattling off a hatrick of wins over fences this season and winning the Pertemps Handicap Hurdle here last season.No luck for Elliott in this race the last two seasons would be my only concern. 

Triple handed in the third race of the day, which is good news unless none win and my betting bank start to dwindle. Farclas looks to have a decent chance with Davy Russell on board, next up is Diamond Cauchois who is also prominent in the betting and Cracking Smart is the third which all look to have some sort of chance.No winners again in this race last two seasons but Barra was a 16/1 third which is no good to me as am a win man only at Cheltenham. 

Nothing in the Queen Mother Champion Chases, so we move onto the Cross Country Chase with Tiger Roll (pictured) and Bless the wings taking part in this funny old race, am not even sure I can back Tiger Roll at that price, I guess I will see how desperate I am for a winner by this stage. Tiger Roll will be a worthy favourite after running them ragged here last year and Bless The Wings takes another crack after a superb second here in 2017 to stablemate Cause of causes. 

Another three runners in the sixth race of the day, (I should have thought this through, how many runners will he have by the end of the festival). Chief Justice, Coko Beach and Lethal Steps give Gordon a great chance of a winner as all well fancied again. I wouldn’t mind a 33/1 shot like Venner of charm, last year's winner for this stable doing the business again. Just the two in the Champion Bumper, Abacadabra and Envoi Allen who will hopefully make it an unforgettable day for me and keep the Elliott and get the money train back on track. I can’t finish without mentioning the 2017 winner here for Gordon Elliott, the mighty Fayonagh.

I hope the betting bank doesn't go bang and I can make it back here for day 3. 

Good luck as always.