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Live Cheltenham Updates – Day 2

by Aidan Elder | March 14, 2012

It’s Day 2 of Cheltenham and that means only one thing – it’s time for my Live Festival Blog. If you’re in the office, away from a TV or just don’t like proper news, I’ll keep you up to date with all the latest developments and snarky comments.

We’ll also have the Hell of a Horse Count despite the fact typing ‘count’ repeatedly means I’m only ever one typo away from an instant P45. I’m also doing the Mildly Condescending National Stereotype Count.

– HELL OF A HORSE COUNT: 3
– MILDLY CONDESCENDING NATIONAL STEREOTYPE COUNT: 0

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5.45pm: That’s about all from me. The day belongs to Nicky Henderson and Barry Geraghty. Not only did Henderson become the most successful trainer in the history of the Festival, but he stormed clear at the top of the standings. With the amount of well-backed favourites they turned over, it’s an outcome Paddy will be pretty chuffed with.

Sadly, it wasn’t a good day for the Irish raiders and once again it was left to Willie Mullins to fly the flag. His victory in the Champion Bumper brought the Irish total to 2 winners for the first half of the Festival with the home team racking up an impressive 12 triumphs. Even getting to double figures looks about as likely as Alex ‘Kryptonite For Favourites’ Hammond tipping up a winner on Sky Sports News.

Shameless Plug
There’s just enough time for some Shameless Plugging and tomorrow we’ve got a couple of top class specials. If your horse finishes second to Big Buck’s in the World Hurdle Betting, Paddy Power will refund your losing single stake and we’re also paying 5 Places on the Byrne Group Plate Betting. You can check the conditions for both those great offers on the paddypower.com website, but it’s pretty straightforward stuff so don’t bother if you’ve better things to do.

5.23pm: The market said he didn’t have a stand-out prospect, but Willie Mullins claims another Champion Bumper as his son and mini-me, Patrick Mullins digs it out to keep him out in front on Champagne Fever. The well-backed New Year’s Eve came second and another Mullins horse claimed third with Pique Sous hanging on. The extra place will be a saving grace for plenty of punters as the leading Irish hope, Moscow Mannon, hung on for 4th.

Champion Bumper Result
1st Champagne Fever 16/1
2nd New Year’s Eve
3rd Pique Sous
Super Extra Bonus Place 4th Moscow Mannon

5.15pm: They’re off in the Champion Bumper …

5.12pm: It’s good to see Richard Johnson up, about and wearing a snazzy jacket. That really was a horrible incident involving Wishfull Thinking in the Champion Chase. He’s not riding in the last, but Tom O’Brien has taken the ride on board Village Vic in his place.

5.08pm: Man of the hour (or joint-man of the our), Barry Geraghty proved himself a top tipster with his three winners on day two of the Festival. The Meath man put up Simonsig, Bobs Worth and Finian’s Rainbow to help Paddy Power punters deliver swift kick in the financial nuts. And it mightn’t end there as Barry has put one up for the finale. To find out who it is click here.

Shameless Plug
5pm: Champion Bumper Betting Preview
It’s been a tough day for punters, but there’s still time for one more attempt to find a needle in a haystack in the Champion Bumper. Based on years of watching this race, I wouldn’t rule anything out in this race. Out of the pack, the one that stands out to me is Village Vic. He’s more experienced than a lot of the options in this wide open field. The main point to note is we are paying 4 Places on the Champion Bumper and that’ll come in very handy.

4.48pm: Well, the Geraghty/Henderson partnership didn’t do the business in the Fred Winter, but the McGrath/Henderson did. Une Artiste timed his run perfectly to win at 40/1 with Edeymi, Vendor and Kazlian occupying the places. It has to go down as one of the greatest days any individual has enjoyed at the Festival. Only a semi-naked Angelina Jolie knocking on his door later begging for some no strings attached sex this evening could make it any better at this stage. Not only has Henderson overtaken Fulke Walwyn as the most successful trainer in the history of the Festival, but he’s pulled well clear. Amazing stuff.

Fed Winter Hurdle Result
1st Une Artiste 40/1
2nd Edeymi
3rd Vendor
4th Kazlian

4.43pm: The Fred Winter begins … eventually

4.30pm: Fred Winter Handicap Hurdle Betting Preview
There’s another really tough betting heat to decipher in the Fred Winter Novices’ Hurdle Betting. There’s not much course form to go on and it’s hard to rule out too many of the runners. The blindfold and pin I’m using have landed on the name of Jackies Solitaire and after having a few of my outsiders going close in the last couple of days, I really would appreciate a win.

4.25pm: Clearly our roving reporter, Sarah has been kicked out of the parade ring for bothering celebrities, so she’s has to make do with snapping muggles. Here’s a random lady from Leeds who has a very hairy skirt.
Or an unfortunate medical condition:
Cheltenham Lady

4.15pm: A wanky slow-motion montage brings the curtain down on Channel 4’s coverage of Cheltenham for the day. It’s over to Racing UK before I catch a glimpse of Noel Edmonds’ suspiciously dark-coloured beard. And don’t forget, if you can’t get to a TV or you don’t have Racing UK, you can watch the last couple of races on paddypower.com by having a wee £/€1. That’s as salesman as I get.

4.10pm: That’s a huge gamble landed on Son Of Flicka in a typically competitive Coral Cup. Get Me Out Of Here claims yet another second place at the Festival. Veiled and Silverhand occupied 3rd and 4th with our extra place 5th benefitting backers of Cockney Trucker.

Coral Cup Result
1st Son Of Flicka 16/1
2nd Get Me Out Of Here
3rd Veiled
4th Silverhand
Super Extra Bonus Place 5th Cockney Trucker

4.01pm: Good luck everyone, you’ll need it. The Coral Cup begins …

3.51pm: The Channel 4 coverage really shows what a balls-up they made of that final fence diversion and the guy they have wheeled out to ‘explain’ matters isn’t helping the PR offensive. Even Liverpool Football Club would handle this one better.

3.50pm: Henry De Bromhead reveals Sizing Europe’s jockey, Andrew Lynch said the “last fence cost him the race.” It’s diplomatically vague, but you can see what he’s getting at.

Shameless Plug
3.40pm: Coral Cup Betting Preview
This is a shameless plug masquerading as a preview of the race. We’re paying 1/4 odds 1-2-3-4-5 on the Coral Cup and you’ll need it to pick a winner. It’s hard to rule anyone out. We’ve seen a lot of money for Son Of Flicka today, but the one I’ve ‘eeny-meeny-miny-mowed’ onto is Poole Master. Best of luck with whatever one you go for, you’re going to need it.

3.25pm: It’s Barry Geraghty’s world, the rest of us are just living in it!
Finian’s Rainbow claims an eventful Champion Chase to give Henderson and Geraghty team a treble for the day. It’s hard not to feel a bit sorry for Sizing Europe. He may not have held on, but the poor signage at the final fence didn’t help him. Ted Walsh describes it as a ‘cock-up’ – it’s very hard to disagree. It’s a bitter way to surrender a title. After all the confusion, Big Zeb stays on for third.

Champion Chase Result
1st Finian’s Rainbow 4/1
2nd Sizing Europe
3rd Big Zeb

3.20pm: Can Sizing Europe defend his Champion Chase? We’ll know after two speedy miles of chasing. Away they go …

3.16pm: Judging by how far away Sarah was when she took this photo, security must be on to her. It’s Princess Anne and Zara who are clearly enjoying the benefit of all our Chav tranquilizing.
Zara and Anne

3.15pm: Stop calling him Finnan’s Rainbow! You’re missing a small but important letter.
Unless there’s a horse called ‘One Speed Right-Back’, no-one has ever named a horse after Steve Finnan.

3.10pm: Lads. Drink. Traffic cones. Always a classic.

3.05pm: 15 minutes to go for the championship race of Day 2. There’s been more support for Sizing Europe in the Champion Chase Betting, whilst Big Zeb is proving as popular as income tax. The 2010 Champion Chaser has drifted to 6/1 and it’s now Finian’s Rainbow who is considered most likely to upset Henry de Bromhead’s chasing superstar. There’s also been a bit of support for Gauvain, albeit at a big price.

3pm: Of course it’s a great day for Barry Geraghty, but more importantly, it’s a great day for our Cheltenham Tips Cheat Sheets. Geraghty put Paddy Power punters straight by declaring “I wouldn’t swap Bobs Worth for anything else in the race” on the tipping sheets. That’s on top of telling us Simonsig would win the Neptune. And Aussie Jim McGrath nailed his colours to the mast by putting his “shirt and his wallet” on Bobs Worth. Hopefully both his shirt and wallet have been returned.

2.56pm: Ha ha! That would explain rather a lot:
Chav Tweet

2.47pm: It’s a ‘no’ and rather a resounding ‘no’ for Grand Crus. Barry Geraghty drives Bobs Worth to victory over First Lieutenant and Nicky Henderson stretches his lead at the top of the all time winners list at the first available opportunity. Call The Police stays on for third. Will the Geraghty/Henderson provide a quick fire hat-trick in about half an hours time?

RSA Chase Result
1st Bobs Worth 9/2
2nd First Lieutenant
3rd Call The Police

2.41pm: Will Grands Crus justify the hype? We’ll know in about six minutes.

2.34pm: Our Chav-round-up continues apace:

2.23pm: Shay Given got a lovely new haircut for his day at the races and our roving reporter, Sarah asked it to pose with her for a picture.
Shay Given Cheltenham
The Aston Villa and Ireland keeper laughed when Sarah suggested he might be putting a large chunk of his massive weekly wages on a few bets. “I’m getting tips left, right and centre – but I think I’ll have a punt on Barry Geraghty on New Year’s Eve in the 5.15,” Shay said whilst blowing his nose on a fifty pound note.


2.16pm: And it just gets better! Ted provides us with another ‘Hell Of A Horse.’ Well deserved after a performance like that.

2.11pm: Barry Geraghty’s confidence in Simonsig proves to be very well founded as he powers up the hill to comfortably claim the Neptune. It’s a significant milestone for trainer Nicky Henderson and a future answer in any horse racing based table quizzes of the future. That’s Henderson’s 41st Festival winner, putting him clear of Fulke Walwyn at the top of that illustrious list. The well-backed Cotton Mill refused coming up the hill when he looked to be going well. Felix Younger and Monksland claim second and third.

The Neptune Hurdle Result
1st Simonsig 2/1F
2nd Felix Younger
3rd Monksland

2.05pm: They’re away in the Neptune …

2pm: We have one significant if predictable jockey change. With Batonnier a non-runner, Choc Lemon has kicked Wayne Hutchinson off Secret Edge to take the ride on the interesting outsider.

1.55pm: Not long to go until the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle gets underway and Simonsig is something of an uneasy favourite. The support for Cotton Mill has been constant and he’s in to 8/1.

1.47pm: “You can nearly see if a lad is picking his nose with these pictures,” says Ted Walsh of the high motion shots from Channel 4. That’s exactly what HD was made for – snot.

1.40pm: JT McNamara is no stranger to the Cheltenham Festival winners’ circle and that was a great ride to deliver on the favourite. He guides Teaforthree to victory with Harry The Viking taking second with Four Commanders back in third. JT says something from the saddle, but I have no idea what it was. “Mumble mumble … happy … mumble mumble,” was the gist of it. It wasn’t a good race for the Wilile Mullins string, with both Allee Garde and the well-backed Soll crashing out.

National Hunt Chase Result
1st Teaforthree 5/1F
2nd Harry The Viking
3rd Four Commanders

1.30pm: The National Hunt Chase begins …

1.29pm: Our reporter, Sarah has been busy, this time getting Mrs. McCoy, Chanelle to pose.
This photo has absolutely NO LINK to the Chav tranquilizing that’s been going on so far today.
Chanelle McCoy

1.20pm: Ten minutes to go until the marathon that is the National Hunt Chase. Teaforthree is still favourite, but there’s been support further down the field with Four Commanders, Universal Soldier and Blenheim Brook tightening up in the betting.

12.58pm: Barry Geraghty’s on Channel 4 and if we didn’t already know he was a fan of Simonsig, we really do now. “He’s been very impressive. The ground will suit and I’m very sweet on him. He hasn’t really come off the bridle so far,” he said, reinforcing his admiration for the novice. The endorsement hasn’t been reflected in the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle Betting. He’s now 11/4 after being as short as 9/4 earlier.

12.49pm: Champion Chase Betting Preview
My dislike for backing favourites has led to me looking for any angle to oppose Sizing Europe with in the Champion Chase. It hasn’t happened and really if I’m betting against the defending champion, I’m hoping for an off day or a large dose of bad luck for Henry De Bromhead’s charge. The margin he has in hand over Big Zeb isn’t as big as the Tied Cottage Chase suggested, but it’s still significant and it’s hard to see Colm Murphy’s former Champion Chaser turnaround that form at 11 years of age. Finian’s Rainbow has a bit too much to do to and it would a big surprise if Gauvain got into the frame. Kauto Stone is the youngest horse in the race and arguably the one open to most improvement, but the bulk of that improvement needs to come today if he’s reverse the Tingle Creek form. Realt Dubh is an each way option, but it’s hard to see anyone getting ahead of Sizing Europe.

12.32pm: It’s over to Channel 4 where thankfully Everybody Loves Raymond is long since over. We’re under an hour away from the first race of Ladies’ Day.

12.23pm: Eoin Egan has got in touch with @PaddyPower on Twitter to raise an issue about the more serious side of our Chav Tranquilizer campaign. He says:
Paddy Power Chav

12.17pm: Another two in the bag. Alcopop sales are set to plummet at the on-course bars.
Paddy Power Chavs

12.10pm: Ruby Walsh and his extremely active iPhone were on Racing UK a while back and I’m only getting around to it now. He wasn’t particularly optimistic about any of his rides today, saying place money was the best a couple of them would be hoping for and he’d “be delighted” if he managed one winner today. He did say that Join Together would “jump and stay” in the RSA Chase and I’m taking that flippant comment as proof that my train of thought for the RSA is correct. Interestingly, he tipped up Colin Tizzard’s Royal Guardsman for the Champion Bumper.

12.05pm: Chris ‘will say anything for money’ Kamara is being interviewed now. I think he tipped up Man Utd for the Premier League, but I was still thinking about those 400 Jeremy Kyle Shows, so I may not have been fully paying attention.

12pm: Jeremy Kyle is on Racing UK now. He tips up Jezki in the Champion Bumper and says Grands Crus in the RSA Chase is the bet of the week, but by far the best news to take from that interview is the fact there are another 400 Jeremy Kyle Shows in the pipeline! It’s like all my chavy Christmases and birthdays coming at once.

11.48am: Choc Thornton and his fabulous hair were on Racing UK a few minutes ago. I’m sure he was giving us some useful information, but I couldn’t concentrate because he reminded me too much of someone. Bang tidy.

Choc Lemon

11.36am: Our Chav hunt is going well so far. By my reckoning, Cheltenham is now at least 10% less common thanks to our doctor’s handiwork:

Paddy Power Chavs

Market Movers
11.25am: Racing UK are struggling for decent guests, so it’s the perfect chance for a look at the market movers so far this morning. As is traditional, the Coral Cup has been a very lively betting heat. Balgarry and Get Me Out Of Here have both been tipped up in a lot of places, but he has drifted out to 8/1 from 7/1. There’s not much love for Dare Me who is out to 14/1 from 11/1 whilst Son Of Flicka has been on the receiving end of strong support, being backed in to 20/1 from 33/1 earlier.

In the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle Betting, Mark Your Mark has drifted out to 7/1 from 13/2 and Cotton Mill is in to 9/1 from 10/1. There has been support for Grands Crus who is now 11/8 from 6/4 for the RSA Chase Betting whilst Bobs Worth is heading in the opposite direction and is now 9/2 from 7/2 earlier.

Sizing Europe has gone odds (10/11) after being Evens earlier for the Champion Chase. The Pricewise followers have pounced in the Fred Winter Novices’ Hurdle meaning Gorgeous Sixty is in to 8/1 from 11/1 and in the Champion Bumper Betting, New Years Eve has drifted from 5s out to 6/1

11.11am: Our roving reporter has been busy making celebrities feel mildly uncomfortable and in the latest installment, she collared Sunderland’s Wes Brown and Fraizer Campbell for an awkward looking photo.

Saraha at Cheltenham

11.05am: Ivan has joined the debate on the reason for Hurricane Fly’s failure yesterday via the comments section. He says:

The horse was beat at the home turn, all the hype and only a place. The nag didn’t look fit enough for an egg and spoon race let alone a race of this nature.

I had to clean up the punctuation a bit, but apart from that it’s a good point ; )
I know Willie Mullins has always wrapped him up in cotton wool, but was he a little underdone coming into the race?

10.57am: There’s a very posh man being interviewed on Racing UK. Unless there are any objections. I’m going to make myself a cup of tea. Something I’m guessing this guy has never had to do.

10.54am: RSA Chase Betting Preview
Man, I must have been very sleepy/drunk when I was going through the form last night because going through my notes, it looks like I picked out Mr Moonshine to win the which RSA Chase, in the cold, artificial office light of day, looks like flushing money down the honorary Alex Hammond toilet. I’m calling a mulligan and having another go.

There have been a few doubts being expressed about Grands Crus – namely in relation to the prep he has had for this race, the fact he hasn’t won a race beyond the January of any season and his ability to handle Cheltenham and that’s enough for me to give him the swerve. Bobs Worth and First Lieutenant are tempting options, but I’m plumping for Join Together for the Paul Nicholls and Ruby Walsh combination.

10.42am: My god, Tom Scudamore likes to talk! He says a lot of things, but I’d have to publish it in volumes. The long and the short of it is he’s very happy with Balgarry, current joint favourite for the Coral Cup. He’s 11 pounds well in for this race, so he’s got a great chance.

10.37am: Moments before presumably beating up the camera man, an angry looking Ruby Walsh gave his tips for Day two of Cheltenham:

10.30am: Neptune Investment Management Novices Hurdle Betting Preview
In an advert for not bothering to do your homework and just winging it, Batonnier has been ruled out of the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle. After doing a few seconds hours and hours of painstaking form analysis last night, he has been taken out of the race so I’ve to pick another option. I was talking to Barry Geraghty last week and he only had good things to say about Simonsig, but he’s plenty short in what looks like a very competitive race. I’m going to go for Make Your Mark, mainly because he’s open to improvement and the quicker ground should suit him.

10.13am: Trainer and Meatloaf doppelganer, Mouse Morris has been talking about First Lieutenant who goes for the RSA Chase. Interestingly, he told us that the horse had been struggling with a back problem up until about Christmas, but it’s sorted out now. He’s happy with the ground for his runner. Combined with his mildly confident mumblings and his record of getting his runners primed perfectly for the Festival, he’s an interesting option if you’re looking to oppose Grand Crus.

10am: While we’re on the topic of the Mullins family, the analysis of Hurricane Fly’s flop in yesterday’s Champion Hurdle is underway. Willie Mullins opted for the ‘c’est la vie’ approach by saying “this day would always come“, but Ruby Walsh wasn’t convinced that all was well with his mount. “He was beaten too far out,” said Walsh, which would seem to tally with a performance in which the horse didn’t cruise in the manner we’ve come to expect. Quevega eased the pain, but today will tell us a lot about the state of the Mullins string.

Sous Les Cieux, Make Your Mark and Felix Younger lead a three-pronged assault on the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle Betting. Last year’s County Hurdle winner Final Approach goes for the Coral Cup Betting again ridden by Ruby in a race that Paddy Power are paying 1/4 ODDS 1-2-3-4-5 Places (sorry – that was a shameless, but necessary plug). Pricewise has put Gorgeous Sixty up for the Fred Winter Novices’ Hurdle and Paddy Power punters have taken the hint and backed him into 8/1 from 11/1 already. Mullins has farmed the Bumper over the years and runs Champagne Fever and the improving Pique Sous with Ruby aboard in the finale at 5.15 where we’re paying 1/4 ODDS 1-2-3-4 Places.

9.52am: Patrick Mullins is Willie’s mini-me. He’s talking about his mount, Allee Garde in the National Hunt Chase Betting. Sounding exactly like his old man, Patrick tells us Allee Grade “will go on the ground and stay the trip” and that he opted for his ride as opposed to the stable’s other runner, Soll, on account of a place in a Grade 2 race, which makes sense.

9.45am: There’s news breaking about a significant non-runner. The well-backed Batonnier has been ruled out of the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle with Alan King saying his horse “knocked a joint” – which will mean something totally different to Snoop Dogg.

9.35am: National Hunt Chase Betting Preview
I’ve had a good look at the form for the National Hunt Chase and still I’ve got 4 or 5 selections that I think could go close. I’m opposing the two at the head of the market for no reason other than I want more value in a 4m chase for amateur jockeys. The ones to earn the dubious honour of being on my shortlist are Iron Chancellor, Soll, Teaforthree and the Charlie Longsdon trained duo of Strongbows Legend and Universal Soldier. With Pricewise tipping him up, the value for Soll might be gone and I’m dismissing the others and opting for Universal Soldier. He ticks a lot of the boxes when it comes to the key trends for this race and that’s enough straws for me to clutch at.

9.22am: Pricewise is in form after a big price winner yesterday and as ever, he’s worth listening to. Today his recommendations are as follows:
Soll in the National Hunt Chase Betting
Get Me Out Of Here and Silverhand in the Coral Cup Betting
Gorgeous Sixty in the Fred Winter Novices’ Hurdle

Although at this stage you’ve missed the best of the value, you’ve just got the tips without having to buy the Racing Post. Swings and roundabouts. Previously he also advised us to back Batonnier for the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle, First Lieutenant in the RSA Chase and the aptly named Wishfull Thinking in the Champion Chase

9.08am: Like someone working in Pizza Hut for minimum wage, we’re all about the tips at the moment and we’ve compiled this list of tips from Ruby Walsh, Barry Geraghty, John Parrott, Gary O’Brien and Aussie Jim McGrath for Day 2.

9.05am: A few of my tips went well yesterday; Prospect Wells ran well, A New Story went agonisingly close at a big price and White Star Line was a creditable second in the last race of the day. Still though, no winners and that’s not ideal. I had a dream about winning lots of money last night, which means I’m on course for a load of winners today. I think. Mind you, I also had a dream that the Incredible Hulk was on a pub quiz team with me and he didn’t know any of the answers. He got pissed off and started eating everyone which means I probably shouldn’t eat a kiwi fruit before bedtime.

Stick your tips for Day 2 of Cheltenham in the comments section below so we can have a little chat about them.

8.55am: The canned laughter of the terrible Everybody Loves Raymond is a surefire sign that it’s time to move over to Racing UK.

8.50am: Right, that’s the Morning Line done for this morning, but before the gang clocked out, they gave us their charity bets that they probably wouldn’t back with their own moolah. They are as follows:

Davy Russell: Simonsig in the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle
Ted Walsh: Allee Garde in the National Hunt Chase Betting
John Francome: Being a bit greedy and going for Sizing Europe to defend his Champion Chase and Tenor Nivernais in the Coral Cup Betting
Nick Luck: Simonsig in the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle and Kazlian in the Fred Winter Novices’
Tanya: Batonnier in the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle
Jim McGrath: Grand Crus in the RSA Chase

8.35am: Noel Meade tries to subdue his ‘please just let me get back to my cup of tea’ face to answer a few questions. He says some nice things about Monksland for the Neptune Investments Novices Hurdle who he’s been keeping fresh for the Festival since running in January. He also has a couple in the Fred Winter Novices’ HurdleBat Masterson and Blue Cannon – who he says “both stay very well.”

8.23am: In the space of a couple of minutes, the Morning Line talk to Henry De Bromhead and Colm Murphy, trainers of Champion Chase contenders, Sizing Europe and Big Zeb. There’s nothing ground-breaking, everything’s fine and both trainers like their fancy clothing labels.

8.13am: Fans of Burberry baseball caps and vajazzling, be warned:

8.10am: There’s daily prizes up for grabs in our Cheltenham NAPs competition. Give it a go because you’ve got a good chance of winning. Unless of course you’re Alex Hammond.

8.06am: The going for Day 2 is again Good (good to soft in places) and the weather – well the weather – break out the sun cream and speedos, it’s going to be dry and around 11 degrees.

8am: It’s over to the Morning Line where Davy Russell joins the panel. It’s bad news for Davy as he has to take John McCririck out for dinner after Hurricane Fly didn’t win the Champion Hurdle after a bet they struck prior to the Festival. That could prove more costly than any whip ban.

7.55am: Alex Hammond of Sky Sports News is an expert at tipping up favourites that don’t actually win and that’s pretty much how her tips panned out yesterday. Today she’s tipping up Vendor in the Fred Winter Novices’ and Carlito Brigante in the Coral Cup. Or alternatively you could put your money in a pile and covered it in petrol and set fire to it.

7.45am: Good morning everyone! It’s Day 2 of the Festival. I’ve successfully navigated the Dublin public transport system to get to my desk. The only slight problem was the strong smell of tar (yes, that’s tar) on the bus. Maybe it’s a new-fangled fragrance. Tarmacadam by Dior? Does that exist?

And there was this couple – well, initially I thought it was a mother and son commuting together, but then they started carrying on in a way that parents and children shouldn’t. Not even in the countryside. Anyway, I’m here now to bring you all the latest news, tips and random other crap from the Festival.

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