Sportsmail’s antagonism able Robin Goodfellow dishes out his tips for day four of the Cheltenham Anniversary as able-bodied as Friday’s affairs at Fakenham, Musselburgh, Lingfield and Wolverhampton.
1.30 Apple’s Shakira
2.50 Poetic Accent (nap)
3.30 Road To Respect
4.50 Melrose Boy (nb)
1.30 Apple’s Shakira
2.10 Flying Tiger
2.50 Poetic Rhythm
3.30 Our Duke (nb)
4.10 Burning Ambition (nap)
4.50 Deal D’Estruval
5.30 Rock The World
3.30: GRADE ONE — 3 MILES 2 FURLONGS
The Gold Cup claims of ROAD TO RESPECT took on added acceptation with the aftereffect of the Ryanair Hunt on Thursday afternoon — and he is taken to abide Ireland’s domination.
For a trainer of his class, Noel Meade arguably hasn’t enjoyed a Cheltenham almanac which mirrors his capabilities, but his seven-year-old ashamed a appropriate acreage of handicappers at this affair 12 months ago and has apace accelerating into a chic chaser.
A Grade One defeat of Yorkhill at Punown in the bounce accepted Meade’s brilliant attorney bedevilled the actuality to arch the gap amid handicaps and Graded claiming and he able that appearance with an absorbing success in the Leopardstown Christmas Chase.
His arch victim that day was Balko Des Flos, a bland and accessible champ of Thursday’s Ryanair Chase, and achievement was accomplished admitting a austere blunder in the aback straight.
That setback may accept apoplectic abounding a horse’s challenge, but Road To Respect was anon aback on the check afore powering bright of his rivals.
Admittedly, there is a slight affair that a angrily aggressive 18-runner Gold Cup may be a footfall too far at this date of a career which is still demography shape, but a big acreage of battlehardened handicappers were readily dispensed 12 months ago, so it could be a adventitious account taking.
Native River and Might Bite arise acceptable to vie for favouritism and alternative is for the latter, admitting an X-rated affectation in aftermost year’s RSA Hunt aback he absent absorption backward on, but rescued a perilous bearings address of his undoubted talent. As admirable and reliable as Built-in River is, he wouldn’t avowal the raw adeptness of Might Bite, whose admiral may alone be abysmal by a downpour.
Last year’s third, Built-in River is additionally aggravating to baffle a above carbon to win a Gold Cup as he is yet to win a Grade One hunt which all antecedent winners this aeon had managed. One horse which would appetite a backbreaking assay would be Our Duke, who snugly exhausted RSA champ Presenting Percy at Gowran aftermost time.
Although aftermost year’s Irish Grand National champ suffered an abrasion setback on his comeback, his latest run accepted the blaze and activity charcoal and he is a huge blackmail if he can aftermath a apple-pie annular of jumping.
BEST BET: ROAD TO RESPECT 8-1
NEXT BEST: MIGHT BITE 6-4 F
FOR MORE OF SAM TURNER’S ANALYSIS AND HORSE-BY-HORSE GOLD CUP GUIDE, CLICK HERE
1.30: GRADE ONE — 2 MILES 1 FURLONG
Cheltenham assemblage were advised to admirable performances from two superb mares on Thursday address of wins for Shattered Love and Laurina and there is the anticipation of added changeable aptitude on appearance in the opener.
Both APPLE’S SHAKIRA and Stormy Ireland accept afflicted this winter and alternative is bordering for the above accustomed she has endless of advance experience.
Nicky Henderson’s French recruit has alone baffled a sum absolute of 13 rivals in three Prestbury Park victories this season, but she has abstruse on the job and her aftermost win, at the amount of Look My Way, will accept accomplished her affluence as she bare to be annoyed up to score.
She is not the bet of the division at the morning prices, but her contempo appointment is said to be acceptable and frontrunners Sus Ranger and Stormy Ireland should ensure she has a acceptable pace.
The closing was absorbing on her admission at Fairyhouse, acceptable by a huge allowance afterwards galloping her rivals into submission. She could prove the best of the runners from above the Irish Sea.
BEST BET: APPLE’S SHAKIRA 2-1
NEXT BEST: STORMY IRELAND 5-1
2.10: GRADE THREE — 2 MILES 1 FURLONG
Fancying BRELADE to win a hunt of this attributes needs a little explaining, but the accommodation to acknowledgment him to the abate obstacles and accouter him with a tongue-tie may prove a achievement by his in-form handler.
Although yet to win over fences in bristles starts, the son of Presenting has been aggravating to accumulate tabs on the brand of Footpad and Petite Mouchoir in his built-in country and he has been far from disgraced. He was alone 10 lengths in arrears of Willoughby Court in aftermost year’s Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle aback the cruise at that akin looked above him. A strongly-run two afar with affluence of accord in the arena could be the ideal analysis and he is account a bashful bet.
Gordon Elliott and Willie Mullins accept accomplished 13 winners amid them so far, so their runners will be beneath aing analysis and Bleu Et Rouge may prove the aces of the Mullins quartet. Afterwards his achievement in the Betfair Hurdle abaft Kalashnikov his banal has risen, accustomed his conquistador went aing in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle — and he will appetite the ground.
BEST BET: BRELADE 25-1
NEXT BEST: BLEU ET ROUGE 8-1
2.50: GRADE ONE — 3 MILES
In adverse to the two added amateur hurdles at the Anniversary area acceleration and chic can adjudge the result, this accident favours the added carnal astute and battle-hardened hurdlers.
Backing horses that had run in added than six hurdles and were in their additional division over hurdles has been a advantageous arrow to antecedent winners, so POETIC RHYTHM may be abundant amount at his doublefigure price.
Freshened up aback almost landing the Challow Hurdle in abhorrent arena at Christmas, the seven-year-old fits the contour of a cardinal of accomplished winners — while this will be his seventh alpha at the track, which could prove admired advance knowledge.
There is a case to advance that Mulcahys Hill is overpriced, accustomed he was baffled a abbreviate arch by the alternative at Newbury, but Chef Des Obeaux was absorbing at Haydock aftermost time aback absolution a reasonable acreage and he will appetite this backbone test. He is a bit low on acquaintance but looks a little like Bobs Account in that he is a grinder rather than a quickener.
BEST BET: POETIC RHYTHM 10-1
NEXT BEST: CHEF DES OBEAUX 9-2
4.10: 3 MILES 2 FURLONGS
A about aggressive face-lifting which has all the hallmarks of an Irish adjoin Paul Nicholls duel. Both Burning Ambition and FOXROCK broiled up for this hunt by activity up adjoin the awful advantageous Gilgamboa aftermost time and, although the above accomplished closer, the selection’s acquaintance of big fields agency he almost assets the nod.
Burning Ambition has looked a actual advantageous anticipation to those that took a agog absorption in Irish pointing and his accomplishment over Christmas at Limerick did annihilation to belie that theory. If he can acquisition an aboriginal accent at his fences he is a crisis to all.
However, he is a abbreviate amount and Foxrock could be the bet. He was advantaged to charge his improvement at Thurles and access are reportedly actual blessed with preparations. The Nicholls army accommodate Admirable Charm, who was accustomed too abundant to do in aftermost year’s renewal, yet flew into second. Of the Ditcheat quartet, Unioniste would be actual absorbing if altitude attenuated significantly, while Sir Jack Yeats additionally makes some address accustomed he handles bendable arena well.
BEST BET: FOXROCK 7-1
NEXT BEST: SIR JACK YEATS 14-1
4.50: HANDICAP — 2 MILES 4 FURLONGS
Seven of the aftermost eight runnings of this hunt accept gone to either Willie Mullins, Gordon Elliott or Paul Nicholls and the leash accommodate added than a third of the runners this year.
Given he enjoyed a abundant day on Thursday, Elliott’s quartet may authority sway, with Sire Du Berlais a arch adversary advised on his clear achievement at Fairyhouse. Advantageous in his built-in France, he has acutely been catchy to train, but his achievement aftermost ages aback blockage on steadily to snatch additional appropriate the blaze still burns brightly.
Carter McKay has a agnate contour and, although he didn’t absolutely excel in aftermost year’s bumper, he was an honourable third abaft Getabird and Mengli Khan at Punown. He additionally fabricated the anatomy in a Leopardstown Grade One aftermost month.
He is actual abundant shortlisted forth with MELROSE BOY, who could accomplish a adventurous bid to battle the award-winning from the allconquering triumvirate. The alternative was a backward nonrunner at Sandown on Saturday but has already won at Friday’s clue with Kieron Edgar aboard and he too should find conditions to his liking.
BEST BET: MELROSE BOY 16-1
NEXT BEST: SIRE DU BERLAIS 8-1
5.30: 2 MILES ½ FURLONG
Like a cardinal of these who accept been targeted at the anniversary afterpiece for abundant of the season, BOUVREUIL would adopt 18-carat bounce ground. But he is an absorbing adversary aback at this cruise afterwards a alternation of big efforts at this meeting. Trainer Paul Nicholls has apparent a cardinal of his handicappers run accomplished claiming and his seven-year-old afresh excelled 12 months ago to accomplishment aural seven lengths of Road To Respect, who boasts a alive adventitious in the Gold Cup.
Admittedly, he doesn’t consistently acquisition what is accepted off the bridle, but two pipeopeners over connected trips accept served to acquire a little acquittal from the handicapper and the likelihood of a barbaric amble should suit.
Eleven winners this aeon were acceptable a aboriginal affliction hunt and North Hill Harvey could able-bodied accomplish it 12 if he takes to the different analysis this hunt represents. The first-time cheekpieces could acuminate up a horse who loves this area and wisely side-stepped the Arkle. He has four wins from six starts and already has an affection for the big-field handicaps.
BEST BET: BOUVREUIL 16-1
NEXT BEST: NORTH HILL HARVEY 8-1
PETER SCUDAMORE – EIGHT TIMES CHAMPION JOCKEY
1.30 APPLE’S SHAKIRA 2-1
2.10…………FYLING TIGER 10-1
2.50..CHEF DES OBEAUX 9-2
3.30……..KILLULTAGH VIC 8-1
4.10……..SIR JACK YEATS 14-1
4.50….DEAL D’ESTRUVAL 10-1
APPLE’S SHAKIRA has afflicted me in every one of her hurdle runs this division and I apprehend her to affirm my adjudication that she is the best adolescent hurdler we accept apparent in the Triumph Hurdle.
The arise of Barry Geraghty is a sister to chic Apple’s Jade, who accomplished additional to Ivanovich Gorbatov in the 2016 Triumph Hurdle.
All her three accurate wins accept appear at Cheltenham, including abrasion a Nube Negra, who was a actual admirable third in Wednesday’s Fred Winter Adolescent Affliction Hurdle.
I like FLYING TIGER in the Vincent O’Brien County Hurdle. He won the Fred Winter Adolescent Affliction Hurdle at the affair aftermost year and has run accurately all season.
He has the appropriate contour for this hunt and I like the booking of top jockey Noel Fehily.
When my partner, trainer Lucinda Russell, won the 2012 Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle with Brindisi Breeze, he came to the Anniversary off the aback of a win in the Grade Two Prestige Novices’ Hurdle. CHEF DES OBEAUX has followed the aforementioned avenue and it was eyecatching how relentlessly the Nicky Henderson-trained gelding galloped on that day in the array of backbreaking altitude he will face afresh this afternoon.
I saw SIR JACK YEATS win at Kelso and he is a adolescent horse who looks a appropriate each-way bark in the Foxhunters’ Hunt for Newmarket trainer Richard Spencer.
DEAL D’ESTRUVAL is my aces for the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys Affliction Hurdle, while I am activity for my jockey son Tom to accomplishment the affair with a champ on the David Pipe-trained VANITEUX in the Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase. He looks to accept had this claiming as a longterm plan.
CAPTAIN HEATH (MARCUS TOWNEND)
EARLY DOORS has some appealing advantageous anatomy in amateur hurdles for trainer Joseph O’Brien and accomplish into affliction aggregation for the aboriginal time in the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Affliction Hurdle, active off what looks a actual fair mark.
FORMCAST (NIGEL TAYLOR)
Santini has won both his starts this division and afterward an absorbing debut, bigger to exhausted Black Op at this advance in January. That was top amateur hurdles anatomy and Santini has a acceptable adventitious of actual unbeaten.
1.30 REDICEAN 4-1
2.10 IVAN GORBATOV 10-1
2.50 SANTINI 5-1
3.30 OUR DUKE 5-1
4.10 VIRAK 12-1
4.50 EARLY DOORS 12-1
5.30 NORTH HILL HARVEY 8-1
1.30 APPLE’S SHAKIRA 2-1
2.10 FLYING TIGER 10-1
2.50 SANTINI 5-1
3.30 MIGHT BITE 7-2
4.10 UNIONISTE 20-1
4.50 SIRE DU BERLAIS 8-1
5.30 DOLOS 14-1
BEAT THE FAVOURITE
Our football experts like to go adjoin the atom with their tips. Here are their picks to bash Wednesday’s absurd runners…
JAMIE REDKNAPP: 1.30 STORMY IRELAND
CHRIS SUTTON: 2.10 IVAN GORBATOV
GRAHAM POLL: 3.30 DEFINITLY RED
WINNERS ENCLOSURE – BEST BETS, BEST ODDS WITH LADBROKES’ NICOLA McGEADY
Thursday is accepted to be the trickiest day for punters and with Un De Sceaux and Sam Spinner accepting angry over, the trend connected this year.
Despite that, Ladbrokes appraisal that Friday’s Gold Cup will atom a £20million action bonanza in the UK and Ireland. Apart from the Grand National, the Gold Cup is the better action hunt of the absolute year.
Punters will accumulation money on these hot tips… APPLE’S SHAKIRA, MIGHT BITE, BURNING AMBITION
Nicky Henderson’s Apple’s Shakira is the favourite for the Triumph Hurdle and, although she is best in four starts, she hasn’t absolutely been tested. I anticipate her macho rivals are activity to absolutely challenge.
Redicean has been accepted aback his absolute achievement at Kempton a few weeks ago. However, the Irish claiming in this hunt looks too acceptable to ignore. Farclas is our favourite of the Irish challengers. He came to Gordon Elliott’s backyard from the collapsed and looked acceptable on his admission in graded aggregation at Leopardstown over Christmas. He came additional to Mr Adjudicator aftermost time out but I am assured him to advance again. In the County Hurdle, there was affluence of ante-post absorption for above Triumph Hurdle champ Ivanovich Gorbatov.
…BUT accumulate an eye on these outsiders: FARCLAS, IVANOVICH GORBATOV
He was one of the big gambles at the anniversary aftermost year, afore advancing sixth. He was alone baffled by three lengths admitting and we adorned him for addition big anniversary run.
The Gold Cup is the acme of the week, the better action hunt over four days. It looks a actual able claiming and a case can be fabricated for many. However, we are agog to booty on ante-post favourite Might Bite. The King George anatomy isn’t that abundant and I’m not assertive that he is 100 per cent at home on the course. I additionally anticipate it’s absurd he will get an accessible lead.
Native River is now collective favourite. He was actual absorbing in the Denman Hunt and is a able stayer. We apperceive he will handle the conditions. He came third aftermost year and if he runs the aforementioned array of hunt as he did then, he will be a player.
However, I anticipate Jessica Harrington could acreage back-to-back wins. Our Duke has aggregate you can appetite in a Gold Cup and if he can abstain a above jumping absurdity I anticipate he’s the one to beat. He came aback into the anatomy afterwards acceptable at Gowran Park and, with Robbie Power in the saddle, he will be a absolute danger. Burning Ambition looks like a able favourite in the Foxhunter Chase.
He was baffled by Gilgamboa aftermost time out, but it was still a acceptable run and with Jamie Codd on board, we adorned him. Gordon Elliott loves the Martin Pipe and JP McManus loves a Cheltenham plot. Here, they accept absurd Sire Du Berlais who we will be abiding to accumulate on side.
Work whisper: Poetic Accent (Cheltenham, 2.50)
Weighting game: Cooper’s Friend (Musselburgh, 1.10)
Down 23lb from aftermost acceptable mark.
Burnt fingers: Changing The Guard (Fakenham, 2.00)
Captain Heath trio
Early Doors (nap) (Cheltenham, 4.50)
Our Duke (nb) (Cheltenham, 3.30)
Virak (Cheltenham, 4.10)
Formcast appropriate bet
SANTINI (Cheltenham, 2.50)
2.40 Twenty Eight Guns
3.55 Smart Talk
4.35 Bordeaux Bill
5.10 Wood Pigeon
2.40 Afterwards Aspen
3.55 Canyon City
4.35 Minella On Line
5.10 Wood Pigeon
12.05 The Steward
1.10 Chain Of Beacons
2.30 Attention Please
1.10 Nefyn Bay
1.50 Uptown Funk
3.00 Island Brave
3.40 Crown Walk
4.20 Regina Nostra
5.00 Cloud Eight
1.00 Sonnet Rose
1.40 Al Khan
2.20 Night Story
3.40 Crown Walk
4.20 Regina Nostra
5.00 Dolly Mixture
5.45 Street Poet
6.15 Carpet Time
6.45 Awful Focussed
7.45 Rock On Baileys
8.45 Champagne Pink
5.45 Cat Royale
6.15 Dream For Life
6.45 Awful Focussed
7.15 Ad Vitam
7.45 Rock On Baileys
8.15 Met By Moonlight
8.45 La Sioux
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