Tanya's Blog - Friday 14th December
Apparently there is going to be a heatwave. Temperatures are set to rise to a sweltering nine or 10 degrees. Hopefully it will be enough to defrost Cheltenham’s cross country course in order that Willie Mullins and Patrick Mullins can boost, or just maintain, their already phenomenal strike rate, which is over 40 per cent this season, with Uncle Junior in the Cross Country race.
Before getting carried away, after a closer inspection of the last race over the unique course I thought Outlaw Pete could come on a bundle for his first navigation.
Like birds of prey the bookmakers' PR representatives are sure to be hovering while Cheltenham’s 12.15 is underway. It offers up some novices with real potential.
Broadbackbob is sure to be favourite but Super Duty shouldn’t be ignored. Providing the rain hasn’t really been absorbed into the ground, he could dominate and put others under pressure. Super Duty has only finished out of the first two once in eight starts.
I’m loath to go against a favourite of mine, Midnight Chase in the 1.55pm, but even with my strong sentiments it will be an admirable effort if he can concede 22lb to Bradley, especially if the weather forecast is correct.
After multiple entries at various racecourses At Fishers Cross gets his chance to continue winning in Cheltenham’s 3.05. He really impressed me on Hennessy day, he even still looked very green and inexperienced and it was a surprise to watch him win as easily as he did. AP McCoy has ridden him four times to three victories and a second.
The actual rainfall will have a major bearing on the betting for Saturday’s big contests and it will be intriguing keeping a close eye on the market fluctuations. For now though I am counting down the hours to taking my position in the Cheltenham press room, and the banter which will ensue.
1.55 Cheltenham Bradley (10/3 Paddy Power)
From Nicky Henderson’s last 15 runners he has had seven winners and five seconds
Donald McCain has had five winners and two seconds from his last ten runners
Barry Geraghty has won all three rides on Broadbackbob
Micheal Nolan has a 36% strike rate when riding for Richard Lee, they team up with Simply Wings in the 12.45pm at Cheltenham.
Nine of the last ten winners of Cheltenham’s 1.20 were no older than 6
Nine of the last ten winners of Cheltenham’s 1.20 came from the first four in the betting
Eight of the last ten winners of Cheltenham’s 1.55 came from the first three in the betting
Midnight Chase has run nine times round Cheltenham winning five, finishing second once and third once. He runs in the 1.55pm at Cheltenham
Dougie Costello has ridden Midnight Chase 13 times to seven wins, two seconds and a third
Five of the last seven winners of Cheltenham’s 2.30 were trained by Enda Bolger
When Patrick Mullins is riding for Willie Mullins the strike rate is phenomenal over 40 per cent. They team up with Uncle Junior in the Cross Country contest
Nicky Henderson is attempting a fourth straight win in Cheltenham’s 3.40
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