Welcome to my first preview of the Cheltenham November Meeting, a meeting that is probably my favourite of all the season at Cheltenham. A great 3 day spectacle with some great racing on offer.
I hope everyone enjoyed the Breeders Cup Previews, a fantastic couple of days with my personal highlight being the victory of Monomoy Girl in the Distaff. After having a few days off the site I resumed with the Oil Chase Day at Clonmel, where Bachasson was successfully put at 9/4 for the feature on the Facebook site.
As ever, I hope you enjoy the weekend’s content.
The first race of the day at Cheltenham comes at 1:15 and is a Handicap Hurdle for Conditional Jockeys that’s ridden over a distance of two miles and five furlongs. We’ll see lots of very competitive races over the three days and this is no different, I’ve take a very tentative chance on MAGIC DANCER for Kerry Lee and Richard Patrick. He’s far from the most prolific of winners and was last seen finishing a very distant fifth here in October, he did however meet trouble on that occasion being hampered by a faller two out. He’s dropped back down to a mark which is below his last winning one, with that win coming here, if returning to that sort of form he could run well at a decent price of around 10/1.
The second race of the afternoon comes at 1:50 and this time is a Handicap Chase over two miles. Another extremely competitive affair of which a case could made for the majority of the field, I’m once again taking a tentative alliance and that’s with the Alan King trained BALLYWOOD who’s to be ridden by Tom Cannon. He was last seen finishing sixth here last month, he traveled well for most of that race before tiring up the hill. Naturally he should arrive a lot fitter for that outing and if travelling well again but on this occasion getting up the hill he could play a meaningful role at 13/2.
Moving onto the 2:25 which is a Novices’ Chase over two miles and four furlongs, the market for this particular affair is dominated by Dan Skelton’s Protektorat and Paul Nicholls’ Southfield Stone. Both obvious big players here and both winners last time out, the latter collecting victory here. I’ve tried to take them on though and done that with MOSSY FEN for the Twiston-Davies team. He was disappointing here the last day when fading over three miles as well as putting in some questionable jumping. However, if sharpening his jumping up here the Ballymore fifth has every chance of a big run back down in trip at current odds of 7/2.
Arguably the race of the day comes at 3:00 which is the Cross Country race over three miles and six furlongs. I think this race revolves around The Festival hero EASYSLAND for French trainer David Cottin at the short price of 4/6, still only six-years-old he looks to have a lot more to offer which isn’t the case for many of the others in this aging field. He was mightily impressive back in March and his main rival once more looks to come in the form of dual Grand National hero Tiger Roll. Welsh Grand National winner Potter’s Corner shouldn’t be ruled out either with a weight allowance.
It’s Grade 2 company next up at 3:35 with the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle. I’m siding with market leader DOES HE KNOW here at around 6/4 for trainer Kim Bailey and jockey David Bass. He looked very impressive here when beating Midnight River by over four lengths last month and if progressing again from that effort could prove very tough to beat. His main rival looks to come in the form of Grand Mogul for Nicky Henderson and Nico de Boinville.
Concluding the day’s action is the 4:15 which is a Handicap Hurdle for Novices’ over two miles and half of a furlong. I’m taking a chance here on ONE TRUE KING for the Twiston-Davies team, he was last seen finishing second here in October when running into a potentially smart one who was very well backed. It’s likely that The Bees Knees and Panic Attack will be tough to beat, however, if progressing from that second placed effort here the last day I think the Twiston-Davies charge has every chance at around 11/2.