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Cheltenham Live – Day 4

by Aidan Elder | March 18, 2011

OMG! WTF! It’s the last day of Cheltenham – how did that happen? The last 4 days have flown by – the last 12,000 words of gibberish have passed in the blink of an eye. Anyhoo, the last day should be a cracker with the most open Gold Cup in recent history providing a fitting centrepiece to a quality day of racing. Now that the corporate lick-arsing is out of the way, let me remind you that I’ll be here all day to bring you all the news, views and anything else that comes into my mind. Oh sure, you could just what TV, but TV rots the brain and reading is good for you – even if the words are badly spelled and don’t make much sense.

If you, like me, think you’re ‘down with it’ enough to have a twitter account, you can follow me at @AidanWaffles_PP or if you want to share your tips, anger or anything else that pops into your head then the comments section is also available for comment.

Hell Of A Horse Count

5.28pm: That brings both the Festival and my collection of spell mistakes mixed with random ideas otherwise known as my live blog to end for the week. Thanks a million for reading and contributing. I hope you had a luckier week than me.
Good luck and all the best wherever your betting future takes you.

5.22pm: The final race of the 2011 Festival is some degree of consolation for the bookies with Oiseau Du Nuit upsetting the odds to win at 40/1.

The Result
1st Oiseau du Nuit 40/1
2nd Askthemaster
3rd Leo’s Lucky Star
4th De Boitron

5.16pm: The Grand Annual is underway …

5.13pm: Sorry about the lack of updates for the Grand Annual, but you could probably imagine what’s happening for yourself – one horse is being back, another one isn’t and so on and so forth. You know the drill at this stage.

4.48pm: Another one for the Irish, the Mullins and another one in the eye for Paddy Power. Sir Des Champs storms up the hill in a manner that suggests there’s a bright future ahead for the five year old. Son Of Flicka is beaten in the closing strides with First Point and Indian Daudaie filling the places.

The Result
1st Sir Des Champs 9/2F
2nd Son Of Flicka
3rd First Point
4th Indian Daudaie

4.41pm: They’re off in whatever race this is …

4.33pm: Wow! There’s a potential big story/total bullcrap rumour emerging from Cheltenham courtesy of Niall Cronin at the Evening Herald.

Looks like Grand National winning jockey Timmy Murphy could be retiring this afternoon following the last race at #Cheltenham?

4.25pm: Grand Annual Chase Preview
And in my last nigh-on pointless preview of this year’s Cheltenham Festival, I’m going to go for Oh Crick in the Grand Annual Chase and I’ll tell you why. I’ve looked at the form, the going, the likely weather conditions, the breeding and ratings and decided I haven’t seen enough of Robert Thornton’s wonderful hair this week.
Best of luck with your picks.

– Grand Annual Chase Betting

4.18pm: There’s a lot of sympathy for teenage jockey Willy Twiston Davies on twitter after his fall in the Hunters Chase, but don’t worry about him – it’s character building. It’s really just the jockey equivalent of calling your teacher ‘mum’ in front of the whole class.

4.15pm: A wanky slow-motion montage brings to an end Channel 4’s coverage of the 2011 Festival. It’s over to Racing UK for the last two races of the day or if you want, you can use Paddy Power’s Bet And Watch service if you’re a minimum of a €/£1 bet on each of them. Sorry – them’s the rules.

4.09pm: That really was a great ad for keeping your money in your pocket. Baby Run looked for all the world like the winner for about 90% of the race, but decided to walk through the second last and parted company with whatever Twiston-Davies boy it was this year. That left Zemsky with a tap in which he converted. Mid Div And Creep claims second and Oscar Delta finishes 3rd.

The Result
1st Zemksy 33/1
2nd Mid Div And Creep
3rd Oscar Delta

4.02pm: They’re strung out like a junkie going cold turkey very early on …

4pm: The Foxhunters’ Chase is up and running …

3.48pm: Imperial Commander is reported to be lame. ‘Lamer than setting up a Wikipedia page all about yourself’ isn’t the phrase used by connections.

3.43pm: It must be weird for Sir Alex Ferguson to have a microphone in his face and not have a referee to character assassinate.

3.40pm: Martin Pipe Hurdle Preview
If it hasn’t been your day – and I can only speak for myself on this – and it hasn’t, then the get out of stakes don’t offer much in the way of solace. First up we’ve got a fiercely competitive Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle. Based on the fact I think Paul Nicholls did a fantastic job to get the aging Denman and Kauto Star into the places, I’m going to for King Of The Night who represents the stable’s first string in this race.

– Martin Pipe Hurdle Betting

3.38pm: Denman and Kauto Star get a superb reception in the parade ring after what – in reality – are likely to be their last tilts at the Gold Cup.

3.27pm: And Long Run wins the Gold Cup! Denman runs well to claim second with Kauto Star hanging on for third. What a way to bring up a double for Nicky Henderson. Imperial Commander hit a fence coming up and hill and sank like a stone.

The Result
1st Long Run 7/2F
2nd Denman
3rd Kauto Star

3.20pm: And they’re away for the Gold Cup …

3.10pm: One last shameless plug:
Shameless Plug
If your selection finishes second to Imperial Commander in the Gold Cup, we’ll refund losing single stakes.

3.05pm: We’ve got a very interesting market in the Gold Cup. Long Run has been backed in to favouritism, Denman is on the drift, Kempes has been well backed all day.

2.46pm: Bob’s Worth can do it but he’s pushed all the way by his stablemate, Mossley. It’s a big win for the punters as Barry Geraghty lands a big gamble.

The Result
1st Bob’s Worth 15/8F
2nd Mossley
3rd Court In Motion

2.40pm: Can Bob’s Worth do the business? We’ll knew in about 5 minutes …

2.30pm: Jordan aka Katie Price aka the human succesfully grown from two lumps of plastic is on Channel 4 now. She says she’s backed a few winners today. It must only be in her private life where she regularly backs the wrong horse. WOW! Saucer of milk to the Paddy Power Journalists’ office! Meeeee-ow

2.23pm: It’s all about Bob’s Worth in the betting for the Albert Bartlett Hurdle. He’s into 9/4 from 3/1. Of interest to each way backers and people who base their betting strategy on horses named after Rolling Stones’ songs, Start Me Up is now 80/1 from 50/1.

2.12pm: A great finish provided by the best jockeys in the business. Ruby gets Final Approach up on the line to deny AP on the heavily backed Get Me Out Of Here.

The Result
1st Final Approach 10/1
2nd Get Me Out Of Here
3rd Nearby
4th Cockney Trucker
5th Salden Licht

2.09pm: Gone to a photo …

2.05pm: They’re off in the County Hurdle ….

1.57pm: Get Me Out Of Here has been well backed for the County Hurdle and is now 9/1. Alaivan is moving in the oppostive direction and is now 10s from 8/1.

1.51pm: We’ve just enough time for another round of MY (you reading this David O’?) fantastic game ‘Randy Savage or Randy Sheen’?

Tell us who of Macho Man Randy Savage or Charlie Sheen said this:

“I’m an F18 bro and I will destroy you in the air and I will deploy my ordinates to the ground”

The inflatable sheep is on it’s way to Leinster house, but there’s a Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide 2007 still up for grabs.

1.47pm: Foxhunters Chase Preview
If there wasn’t already enough betting due to gooey sentiment flying around the place for the Gold Cup, then the Foxhunters Chase should make up the difference. It’s another one of those notoriously difficult Cheltenham races to unravel mainly because most of the form is based on what happens in the point to point scene. I backed Amicelli at 50/1 a couple of years ago and he came up trumps so if I don’t back him again and he wins, I will be kicking myself. There’s been a lot of people tipping On The Fringe throughout the day and if I didn’t feel emotionally obliged to back Amicelli, that’s probably where I’d stick my 20 cent each way.
– Foxhunter Chase Betting

1.35pm: If I was the devil, I’d be turning up the heating because there’s a serious danger that hell’s about to freeze over as Paddy Power tips a winner!. Zarkandar leads them home in impressive style to take the Triumph Hurdle. Unaccompanied and Grandouet take the places.

The Result
1st Zarkanadar 13/2
2nd Unaccompanied
3rd Grandouet

1.31pm: Day 4 is underway as the Triumph Hurdle begins …

1.20pm: Sorry I’ve been quiet – I was having lunch. Anyway, it’s in the process of being digested now (you probably didn’t need to know that) so I’ll take a look at the market for the Triumph Hurdle. Sam Winner has been very well backed and is now 9/2. A few of the others have been trimmed slightly, but the big drifter so far has been Smad Place who’s now 10/1 after being 8/1 earlier.

12.43pm: Gold Cup Preview (with Shameless Plug)
Doing a Gold Cup Preview now is about as useful as a pair of drumsticks to that drummer in Def Leopard. Ya know, because he only has one arm. I’ll keep the similes a little more mainstream in future. Plus, a pair of drumsticks would still be useful to him because if he lost one, he could use the other one as a replacement. I’ve got no rhythm, but I still know drumsticks aren’t specifically crafted for right and left hands.

Well, that intro went tits up, but it doesn’t matter because I’m trying to distract you from the fact I don’t know who’ll win the Gold Cup. It’s difficult to see the 6/1 beside Kauto’s name and not get a little tempted, but that’s fuelled more by good memories rather than good betting sense. The same sentiments apply to Denman after all his fantastic successes down through the years. I’m not sure Long Run likes Cheltenham and I don’t think a lot of the others are yet good enough to challenge. I’m going to go with Imperial Commander to defend his title, but I can understand if anyone has virtually any other point of view.

– Gold Cup Betting
Shameless Plug
The shameless plug bit is if your selection finishes second to Imperial Commander in the Gold Cup, we’ll refund losing single stakes.

12.33pm: Play our latest game of Cheltenham Katchphrase for your chance to win a Free €/£50 Bet

12.29pm: It’s over to Channel 4 for the big show where – if it’s possible – Big Mac’s hat looks sillier than the one he was wearing earlier.

12.12pm: Today’s nap from our glorious leader:

Day four! Paddy’s NAP of the day – Zarkandar at 7/1 in the Triumph Hurdle. Anyone else got one to share?

Health warning: Treat all Paddy Power’s tips with caution.

12.04pm: Ruby is being interviewed on Racing UK. He says “Kauto feels great and looks great.” I’m no expert, but he doesn’t sound too convincing. He’s more confident about Sam Winner in the Triumph Hurdle and Bobs Worth in the Albert Bartlett Hurdle.

11.45am: Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle Preview
Bob’s Worth is going take all the beating in this one and no amount of selectively picking out tidbits of information is likely to change that. Still though, for no other reason than I don’t like backing favourites, I’m going to look elsewhere. Originally I was thinking about backing Mossley in a vague homage to the Moseley Shoals – the kickass album by king of the dad-rcokers, Ocean Colour Scene. I’ve since decided that although I like the folk rock sounds of OCS, I’m not willing to lose money for them. I am perfectly willing to lose money on Sybarite. He ran well here last November and – based on precisely zero evidence – I think he may make the improvement to do well in this.

– Albert Bartlett Hurdle Betting

11.22am: Game 1 of ‘Randy Savage or Randy Sheen’:

In all our glitter and in all our glamour and in all our glory let’s go down that aisle. Isn’t she beautiful? Isn’t she stunning?

Answers in the comments section below. It’s just for fun, but anything that gives us a good hearty chuckle might get whatever crap I’ve got on my desk.

11.11am: David O has waded into the great Macho Man Randy Savage debate to make a good point:

David O says:
March 18, 2011 at 10:59 am
Is it possible that Charlie Sheen’s rants aren’t born from border line madness but he is infact just repeating Matcho Man Randy Savage quotes and waiting for people to notice?

“I was on the right side, because I’m going straight to the top, the stars, yeah the stars, one shining star in the night shining brighter than all the others, and I’m talking light years away!”

And on a completely unrelated note, I’d like to announce I’ve come up with a game to play for the rest of the day because I’m so clever and original and that. I’m callling it ‘Randy Savage or Randy Sheen?’ and it involves you telling me if a certain quote is from WWF madman Randy Savage or Two And A Half Men madman, Charlie Sheen. There are no prizes apart from the smugness you feel from getting it right.

11.05am: elflaco has been on to provide us with that lovely combination of a tip for today mixed with an insult. Saving me the hassle, he’s had a go at himself for not quite being on the ball.

elflaco says:
March 18, 2011 at 10:57 am
Being a dope, I only recently realised the result of your missing words competition from a couple of weeks ago! Missed my chance to splash the (free) cash on Big Bucks. Maybe i’ll go with Premier Dane…he must be due!

Premier Dane runs in the County Hurdle and if anyone else has any suggestions about how to waste a free bet, stick them in the comments section below.

Shameless Plug
Oh yeah, I forgot the shameless plug in the last update. Sorry Paddy. Don’t hurt me Paddy. No don’t put me in the stationary cupboard Paddy. Oooooo … Post-Its – result.
Only joking, Paddy Power would never do that (

Anyway that shameless plug I forgot was that we’re paying 1/4 Odds 1-2-3-4-5 Places on the County Hurdle. Damn well needed I’ll say in the manner of John McCririck on his high horse.

10.54am: County Hurdle Preview (and shameless plug)
In the interests of efficiency (not pure laziness) an interview with AP McCoy on Racing UK is going to double up as my preview of the County Hurdle. The champ gives a surprisingly bullish assessment of Get Me Out Of Here. He says he’ll need to improve if he wants to feature, but after a wind operation, it’s certainly not out of the question. For what it’s worth, I won’t be backing him, but only because his name reminds me too much of that sad reflection on modern television that is I’m A Celebrity, Give My Flagging Career A Kick Up The Hole. I had fancied Snap Tie for this, but he’s a non-runner. With course form and the stable in form, I reckon Notus De La Tour is worth a sticking the penny jar on.

– County Hurdle Betting

10.33am: The newspapers all carry stories about the lunatic who ran out onto the track to make a protest in the Ryanair Chase. He was protesting against the way Ryanair treat their staff after his daughter allegedly got a raw deal from the budget airline. The banner he had read “info – google RYANAIR DON’T CARE’. Highly motivated and Search Engine Optimisation skills – sign him up marketing department.

Cheltenham Market Mover
It’s still five hours away, but there’s been plenty of activity in the Gold Cup Betting. We’ve now got joint favourites with Long Run and Imperial Commander shortening and drifting respestively to 9/2. Kauto Star is out to 6/1 from 5/1 and Kempes has been backed into 8/1 from 10/1. Pandorama has drfited from 9/1 out to 11/1, but if this rain doesn’t come, there’s a chance he’ll be a non-runner.

10.10am: Triumph Hurdle Preview
The Triumph is wide open and most of the time nearly all the field are still in with a chance as they approach the last. I’d expect a similar story on this occasion except for New Den – who’s only in the race so his owners get free tickets to Cheltenham. Amidst all the competitiveness, I’m going to go for Local Hero simply because I think he’d be a much shorter price if he had a more fashionable trainer/jockey combo. I’ve nothing else to add really, but that’s not great for the word count so I’ll concoct an elaborate lie by way of explanation. The spirit of Jimi Hendrix visited me during the night and imparted certain truths about the future to me. He told me Rebecca Black is the future of music and Local Hero will win the Triumph Hurdle. I hope only one of those predictions comes to pass.

– Triumph Hurdle Betting

9.58am: CLARIFICATION: I may have been watching this without realising:

9.45am: Willie Mullins is being interviewed on Racing UK now. When asked about his chances today, he rips his shirt off, starts flexing his muscles and shouting “Today is gonna be my day, bitches. I’M A GONNA KICK YO ASS TODAY” down the camera, WWF-style. He’s also insisting on every one calling him Macho Man Willie Mullins for the day.

Eh, no. In fact he gives an honest assesment of all his runners in that mild-mannered and perfectly civil way of his.

9.41am: And now for some decent tips. Pricewise puts up Oscar Delta in the Foxhunter Chase and De Boitron and Keki Buku in the Grand Annual Chase – all at big prices. They may not make you any money, but at least I’ve saved you the £1.80 or (the calculated via a very dubious exchange rate) €2.60.

9.35am: The Morning Line panel’s charity bets for today:

Tayna: is going to put some of it on Local Hero in the Triumph Hurdle and flushing the remainder down the toilet by backing Tidal Bay in the Gold Cup
Sam Waley-Cohen: Not at all betting with his heart, Sam Waley-Cohen is going for Long Run in the Gold Cup and Baby Run in the Foxhunter Chase.
Ted Walsh: Plumps for Unaccompanied in the Triumph Hurdle and Alaivan in the County Hurdle
John Francome: Says Zarkandar will win the Triumph Hurdle and Alarazi will fleece Paddy Power of £75,000 by winning the County Hurdle after winning the Paddy Power Imperial Cup on Saturday.
Jim McGrath: also thinks Alarazi will win the County Hurdle and goes for Bobs Worth in the Albert Bartlett Hurdle
Nick Luck: picks Long Run in the Gold Cup and Soldatino in the County Hurdle

9.22am: Ellen. Big Mac. Flirting. Breakfast back up.

9.13am: Between Big Mac’s furry hat and Ellen Martin’s shawl, it looks like Cheltenham Zoo should check on the well-being of the inhabitants of their bear enclosure this morning.

9.09am: Nina Carberry is also tipping up On The Fringe for the Foxhunter Chase. I’m not enough of an individual to withstand all this peer pressure so I’ll jump on the bandwagon. It’s like my infamous defection from Blur to Oasis in the mid-90s.

8.56am: @pppadcast tipster, Emma-Louise Kerwin is taking the carpet-bombing approach to the big race.

heart says denman, head says kempes, the part of me that should be on a secure ward says what a friend.

8.50am: The real reason I opened up the Sun was for tits …. er … I mean tips. Trainer Tony Martin is tipping up Long Run for the Gold Cup and backing up Tina’s tip by going for On The Fringe in the Foxhunter Chase. I know I’m going to call him On The Fridge at some stage today.

8.47am: Wow – Peaches Geldolf in “5-in-a-bed orgy”

The Irish Sun has decided not to print the orgy snap to spare the blushes of Peaches

How thoughtful, but the damage has probably been done with the picture of her sprawled naked on the bonnet of a car.

8.40am: Simon Claisse, clerk of the course, takes time out of his talking about grass and the weather schedule to tip up Kauto Star in the Gold Cup.

8.38am: The first tip of the day is in via our comments section:

tina crawford says:
March 18, 2011 at 8:36 am
Morning all todays tip is “on the fringe” in the 4.00

But more importantly, what did she think about that episode of Frasier?

8.36am: I’m not the only one spouting non-sense. ‘Gobaloo’ Ted? Really?

8.31am: Frasier thankfully comes to an end and it’s time for the Morning Line.

8.16am: The going is Good at Cheltenham. That’s good in the underfoot sense rather than the morality sense. Ethically the ground could be a dickhead and steal from orphans – we just don’t know or indeed care.

7.56am: I’ve just been told by my boss that on no conceivable metric has this blog exceeded any expectations this week – so I am going to have to make an effort.

7.50am: Well I’ve made it in on time every morning of the Festival so I’ve surpassed my expectations for the week – anything that happens from here on in is a bonus.


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