Monday 6pm WOW!! Rich Ricci walks under another ladder or three!! Min and Faugheen both out of Cheltenham, Willie Mullins has confirmed. He hopes both could still return to the track this season. Faugheen, Mullins says, has suffered a “stress fracture” but he is “hoping that he will be okay for Punchestown. Mullins says that Min “has a bone bruise” but that he hopes he might still make “Fairyhouse and/or Punchestown”.!!
Hell I hate getting facts wrong! Apologies for putting Oscar Sam up as a non-runner in the Feb. 3rd update, got my Oscars in a twist but putting Gavin Cromwell up as the trainer of Baie des Iles was poor! She is of course trained by Ross O’Sullivan and the regular pilot Ms Katie Walsh is of course the trainer’s wife! Which is what I meant to point out. (Walsh married her long-time partner, the race horse trainer Ross O’Sullivan in Kildare in July 2013. Her sister-in-law is the Irish jockey Nina Carberry, who married Walsh’s brother Ted Walsh Junior.) By the way I do really like Gavin Cromwell as a trainer!
Tuesday Lucky 15
Hereford 2.40 GARDINERS HILL 7/4 WH 13/8 general
Market Rasen 2.50 KAYF ADVENTURE 9/2 general
Market Rasen 3.25 AWESOME ROSIE 6/1 general
Hereford 4.20 WILD WEST WIND 7/4 PP 13/8 general
and here’s why
Hereford 2.40 GARDINERS HILL Plenty of weight to carry and up 12lb from last win, although Ceiren Gethings can take 5lbs off but his two main market rivals are in the same boat and Maltrows Lady runs for the second time in a week and Jamhran has won just that once in twelve tries having not raced under rules until he was eight! The rest would be a surprise! We’ll go with the younger horse.
Market Rasen 2.50 KAYF ADVENTURE The Racing Post has a bee in its bonnet that the Hobbs yard are “out of sorts” but Verni did the job yesterday and Richard Johnson will be trying extra hard on this one as he bred it as well. Last time out he was third to Neon Wolf no less, beaten eight lengths at level weights. Going a further two furlongs is another plus.
Market Rasen 3.25 AWESOME ROSIE Highly tried as a novice including running behind Limini at the Festival this looks to be her grade and with no issues with the trip and ground could provide another winner for Wayne Hutchinson and Alan King. She seems to be running into form with a solid second last time out.
Hereford 4.20 WILD WEST WIND Really like this horse and I think this another very clever piece of placement by Tom George. He hacked up at Wincanton when his solid jumping and fierce gallop had the others in all sorts of trouble. He went up 12lbs no less to 135 and this is a 0-135 contest. Clever! I think he could be a 145+ horse chasing at this intermediate trip, 2m4f to 2m6f.
Sunday Lucky 15
Hoorah a profit! At SP to a £1 unit, £15 staked we got £34 back.
Punchestown 2.00 PRESENTING PERCY 8/1 4th
Ridden to get the trip he was staying on nicely despite having travelled three wide throughout. Qualifies for the Pertemps Final at Cheltenham and is currently a 20/1 shot!
Taunton 3.50 VERNI 6/4 1st
Best bet of the day tanks through the race with Richard Johnson desperate to find cover, still green at the last flight, running around but hacks up! More to come.
Punchestown 4.00 BAIE DES ILES 8/1 1st
Thought she was a hold up horse but Ms Walsh made every yard and the 6yo jumped accurately and galloped them into the ground. Up 5lbs to OR146, ran off 143 when 5th in Welsh National, Eider Chase has been mentioned.
Musselburgh 4.10 CLONDAW KAEMPFER 11/2 7th
Not a going day. Travelled well but couldn’t go with them when the pace quickened three out. The winner and fourth, El Bandit and Wotzizname, could be likely lads in the Pertemps Final at the Festival.
Paul Nicholls website Latest News Mon. Feb. 6th Frodon is enjoying a tremendous season with five wins already this winter. He has done so well for a young horse and while he is in the JLT Chase at Cheltenham I might look for other opportunities for him including the Pendil Chase at Kempton. San Benedeto excelled himself back in trip on a flat track on good ground in the Scottish Champion Chase. Although I’ll enter him in the Grand Annual it will probably be too soft for him at Cheltenham. I was surprised and thrilled to see El Bandit land the Pertemps Qualifier as he wasn’t fully wound up after a break of 72 days. I am sure there is improvement to come from this prolific horse who is proving to be a rare money spinner for his three owners and is now qualified for the Pertemps Final. This weekend we are likely to have two runners Movewiththetimes and Zubayr in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury where Le Mercurey is set to start in the Denman Chase.