CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL 2019

 

Day 3 – Thursday 14 March

 

 

 

 

Picture of the Day

 

 

 

Ryanair Chase (Grade 1):

 

The winner – Frodon,

trained by Paul Nicholls and ridden by Bryony Frost;

the first lady to win a Grade 1 race at the Cheltenham Festival

 

 

Once again, my alarm clock sounded just before 06:00 … and I couldn’t be bothered to rise for around 45 minutes.  I’m just so chilled out this year; possibly too chilled out!

 

I showered and washed and dried my hair before heading to the main Hall before 07:30.  Again today, there was a group of what appeared to be ‘service personnel’ sitting in the Library; a testosterone-filled environment.

 

When I went to help myself to the components of a full-English breakfast, another fairly young male guest interacted with me by passing across the serving utensils as I followed him down the line.  That made a nice change for, at my age, I’ve grown accustomed to being ignored by men. 

 

Having returned to my room and applied my make-up, I thought I was ready to go; I then realised I’d forgotten to put my contact lenses in!   This delayed departure time until 09:35!

 

Again the trip to Cheltenham was free from any major holdups, unlike last year, and I arrived at Cheltenham racecourse at 10:40; parking in the lower part of the north public car park once again.  It was another dry weather day.

 

Having passed through the turnstiles and purchased a race-card, I paid a visit to the ladies’ loo, before selecting my toteplacepot and heading to the upper steppings overlooking the Winners’ Enclosure.

 

My selections were:

 

Toteplacepot selections

1st race

4.   Lostintranslation

2nd race

20. Samburu Shujaa

3rd race

7.   Monalee

4th race

10. Paisley Park

5th race

12. Siruh Du Lac

6th race

4.   Sinoria

 

 

The favourite for the first race was Defi Du Seuil, trained by Philip Hobbs and ridden by Barry Geraghty; price 3-1.

 

And the favourite duly obliged; as a former Triumph Hurdle winner, he has a better turn of foot than my selection Lostintranslation.  I didn’t choose Defi Du Seuil as my selection, as he seemed to take a while to warm to the task of steeplechasing earlier in the season.

 

Race 1:

JLT Novices’ Chase (Grade 1)

10 ran

Horse

Trainer

Jockey

1st

Defi Du Seuil

Philip Hobbs

Barry Geraghty

2nd

Lostintranslation

Colin Tizzard

Robbie Power

3rd

Mengli Khan

Gordon Elliott

Jack Kennedy

4th

Kildisart

Ben Pauling

Daryl Jacob

 

The favourite for the Pertemps Handicap Hurdle was the Gordon Elliott-trained Sire Du Berlais, ridden by Barry Geraghty; price 4-1. 

 

Once again, the favourite obliged; the bookies couldn’t have been happy!

 

Race 2:

Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle (Listed)

24 ran

Horse

Trainer

Jockey

1st

Sire Du Berlais

Gordon Elliott

Barry Geraghty

2nd

Tobefair

Debra Hamer

Tom Bellamy

3rd

Not Many Left

Jessica Harrington

Mark Walsh

4th

Cuneo

Henry de Bromhead

Rachael Blackmore

 

The feature race of Day 3, and featured as such on the front of the race-card, was the Ryanair Chase.  The favourite was Footpad, trained by Willie Mullins and ridden by Ruby Walsh; price 7-2.

 

One of my favourites, the grey Terrefort, was running in this race.

 

The race was won by the Frodon, trained by Paul Nicholls and ridden by Bryony Frost.  She became the first lady jockey to ride a Grade 1 winner at the Cheltenham Festival.

 

There were wonderful scenes during Bryony’s journey back to the Winners’ Enclosure and also therein.  It was a joy to be there on the day.  That is what horseracing is all about!!!

 

Race 3:

Ryanair Chase (Grade 1)

12 ran

Horse

Trainer

Jockey

1st

Frodon

Paul Nicholls

Bryony Frost

2nd

Aso

Venetia Williams

Charlie Deutsch

3rd

Road To Respect

Noel Meade

Sean Flanagan

4th

Monalee

Henry de Bromhead

Rachael Blackmore

Additional runner(s) of interest:

Pulled Up

Terrefort

Nicky Henderson

Daryl Jacob

 

The favourite for the Stayers’ Hurdle was Paisley Park, trained Emma Lavelle and ridden by Aidan Coleman; price 11-8.

 

The Alan King-trained Yanworth was taking part too.

 

And Paisley Park duly obliged for owner Andrew Gemmell; Andrew has been blind since birth but this has not stopped him from accomplishing in life and he loves his horses and sports in general.

 

It was Aidan Coleman’s first official Festival winner; Any Currency had won the Cross Country for him in 2016, before an accidental drug-related transgression robbed connections of the race.

 

Last year’s favourite Sam Spinner ran brilliantly too and, with Paisley Park making an error at the final flight, finished as runner-up, just 2¾ lengths behind the winner!  Faugheen ran well to finish 3rd too.

 

Yanworth finished 13th this year.

 

Race 4:

Stayers’ Hurdle (Grade 1)

18 ran

Horse

Trainer

Jockey

1st

Paisley Park

Emma Lavelle

Aidan Coleman

2nd

Sam Spinner

Jedd O’Keeffe

Joe Colliver

3rd

Faugheen

Willie Mullins

Ruby Walsh

4th

Bapaume

Willie Mullins

Paul Townend

Additional runner(s) of interest:

13th

Yanworth

Alan King

Barry Geraghty

 

The favourite for the Plate was Janika, trained by Nicky Henderson and ridden by Daryl Jacob; price 3-1.

 

There was a runner of interest in this race, the Alan King-trained Azzerti ridden by Wayne Hutchinson.

 

However it was my selection, the Nick Williams-trained Siruh Du Lac which won; it was a second Cheltenham Festival winning ride for his step-daughter Lizzie Kelly.  I thought Wednesday was Ladies Day!!!

 

Race 5:

Plate Handicap Chase (Grade 3)

22 ran

Horse

Trainer

Jockey

1st

Siruh Du Lac

Nick Williams

Lizzie Kelly

2nd

Janika

Nicky Henderson

Daryl Jacob

3rd

Spiritofthegames

Dan Skelton

Harry Skelton

4th

Eamon An Cnoic

David Pipe

Tom Scudamore

Additional runner(s) of interest:

7th

Azzerti

Alan King

Wayne Hutchinson

 

The favourite for the next was the Nicky Henderson-trained Epatante, ridden by Barry Geraghty; price 15-8.

 

But it was a 50-1 shot which won, Eglantine Du Seuil, trained by Willie Mullins and ridden by Noel Fehily, for retaining owner Jared Sullivan.

 

The main story of the race was the fact that winning jockey Noel Fehily then announced that he would be retiring, shortly.  

 

I left after the fifth race, keen not to get caught up in the post-race day traffic.

 

Race 6:

Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2)

22 ran

Horse

Trainer

Jockey

1st

Eglantine Du Seuil

Willie Mullins

Noel Fehily

2nd

Concertista

Willie Mullins

Danny Mullins

3rd

Tintangle

Gordon Elliott

Jack Kennedy

4th

Black Tears

Gordon Elliott

Davy Russell

 

The favourite for the final race of the day was Measureofmydreams, trained by Gordon Elliott and ridden by Mr Jamie Codd; price 3-1.

 

But it was Ruby Walsh’s dad Ted who trained the winner, Any Second Now ridden by Mr Derek O’Connor.

 

Race 7:

Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Amateur Riders’ Handicap Chase

23 ran

Horse

Trainer

Jockey

1st

Any Second Now

Ted Walsh

Mr Derek O’Connor

2nd

Kilfilum Cross

Henry Oliver

Mr Alex Edwards

3rd

The Young Master

Neil Mulholland

Mr Sam Waley-Cohen

4th

Crievehill

Nigel Twiston-Davies

Mr Zac Baker

 

 

The day had been slightly better for Team GB, than Ireland; with one day and 7 races still to be run, the home side was just one behind.

 

 

Prestbury Cup

Score at the end of Day 3

GB

Ireland

10

11

 

 

And my placepot results:

 

Toteplacepot selections

Placings

1st race

4.   Lostintranslation

2nd

2nd race

20. Samburu Shujaa

12th

3rd race

7.   Monalee

4th

4th race

10. Paisley Park

Won

5th race

12. Siruh Du Lac

Won

6th race

4.   Sinoria

Last

 

 

Having left just before 17:00 again today, my journey back to my hotel went smoothly, following my usual route.

 

I’d arrived back by 18:00, with Pot Noodle for supper again today!

 

 

*   *   *   *   *   *   *

 

Postscript:

Noel Fehily retired on Saturday 23 March, at Newbury, going out with a winner on his final ever ride.  He won the Goffs UK Spring Sale Bumper (Standard Open NH Flat Race) aboard Get In The Queue for trainer Harry Fry.

The racecourse and colleagues honoured his retirement with a special presentation and guard of honour; he also set aside time to sign autographs for a long queue of punters, prior to racing commencing.

 


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