It was great to see Henry de Bromhead nutting Potts at the death in the Queen Mother Chase on Wednesday with Special Tiara. Potts was the was one removed all his horses from de Bromheads after a disagreement. A couple of prominent owners down there say de Bromhead is nothing only a gentleman.
There is an incoherent look to the form for this G1 juvenile. Both the Irish form and the English form is topsy-turvy, where they’ve been overturning each other. Mega Fortune probably comes out on top as the best of the Irish, and no doubt the punters will latch onto the Elliot bandwagon again. Only time will tell if he’s good enough. Defi du Seuil is unbeaten and appears to be the one to beat. However, his jumping was very sloppy at Chepstow and I wouldn’t be re-mortgaging the house to lump on a short priced 4yo.
A special mention must go to our local trainer, Ellmarie Holden, who is having an incredibly successful rookie season. Abolitionist hitting the jackpot last weekend under Rachel Blackmore is just the tip of the iceberg. Great credit must go to Raymond Cody & the invincible John ‘Bon’ Fogarty behind the scenes. Ellmarie saddles the flat bred Ex-Patriot here, and is not without a chance. Hopefully he can hit the frame. Not a betting race.
A cavalry charge. However, I do feel that there’s a big race in Renneti for Willie Mullins. He had to concede 6 lbs when 2nd to Jezki at Navan, and that 3rd behind Sutton Place took a boost when Supasundae won the Coral Cup on Wednesday. He absolutely obliterated a decent field on the flat (off 91) in Naas last October over 1m4f. He might just be well treated off 149, and I’m willing to pay to find out at attractive odds with Ruby on board.
Death Duty reminds me of Don Cossack in his embryonic days. Don Cossack didn’t go down the AB route though. He has the best of the Irish form, and the Shantou gelding has gears and looks every bit of a stayer. Gordon Elliot was very bullish about his chances on the preview panels. Personally, I’ve a double going onto him, and am unwilling to take him on in the outright market.
The soundest proposition against him, in my opinion, is the proven horse Wholestone. He’s 3 from 4 at Cheltenham and two of those wins were over 3 miles.
There will be wild celebrations in The World’s End public house in Kilkenny if their namesake triumphs. Tom George’s horse is respected.
The defection of Thistlecrack has taken some gloss of the Gold Cup, but there is still a lot of substance to the race. It is nowhere near as weak as the 2014 edition, when Lord Windermere got up on the line to deny Willie Mullins a first Gold Cup. The Gold Cup famine for Mullins may well continue. Djakadam has fallen twice at Cheltenham, he was bitterly disappointing in the Lexus Chase, and probably would have been 3rd last year if Cue Card stayed standing. The English crowd with bring the house down if Cue Card wins. However, he’s had his chances and the stats are against an 11 year old. Native River has all the attributes of a Gold Cup winner and is a proven stayer. It’s no surprise he’s at the head of the market. Sizing John has been a revelation since being stepped up in trip, and claiming the Irish Cold Cup shows that he is G1 class. Watching that race again, he travelled sweetly and jumped well. This division is open for an up and coming star.
Martin Pipe Conditional Hurdle
I don’t like backing favourites in big handicaps, but Phillip Hobbs charge, No Comment form took a big boost last Saturday at Sandown, when Minella Awards won a decent handicap for Harry Fry. When they met, No Comment travelled well and won well conceding 10 lbs. If you shop around you might get 6s or 7s, or the opening show might be bigger.
Renneti 1pt win @ 16/1
Wholestone 1pt win W/O fav @ 7/2
[Sizing John 1pt win @ 9/1 Native River 1 pt win @ 7/2]
No Comment 1pt win @ 6/1
Hopefully you’ve made a few bob this week. It’s very satisfying when all the hours of studying form comes together on a week like this. As a friend of mine once said: “Gambling is only a problem when you’re losing!”
All the best!