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Narrow the Field : A 25/1 double that ticks all the boxes at Cheltenham

If you don't have a dream how you going to make a dream come true?

by Sean Goff | December 12, 2014

While not quite an Alexis Sanchez hitting the post against Stoke kind of miss we did hit the woodwork last weekend.

Despite Dunraven Storm (5/1) ending up the meat in the sandwich after the last in the Henry VIII Novice Chase he still finished second while both Somersby (8/1) and Hinterland (12/1) were placed behind Dodging Bullets in the Tingle Creek Chase.

December Fallers 1430

Caid Du Berlais looks to become the first horse since Exotic Dancer in 2006 – and only the fourth in history – to follow up last month’s victory the Paddy Power Gold Cup when he tackles the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup on Saturday.

As always – anything in yellow is all good. Anything outside is mostly good but a bit like Mauricio Pochettino – just needs to prove it.

Caspian Caviar Gold Cup

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Paul Nicholls has won three of the last five renewals of this race and Caid Du Berlais – despite a 5lb penalty – unsurprisingly ticks all the boxes. He finished well ahead of Edguardo Sol (8th), Ericht (10th) and Easter Meteor (p.u.) when winning last month and 2m 5f over Cheltenham’s New Course should suit.

If the threatened weather bomb doesn’t arrive Tatenen could be over-priced once the ground stays on the good side of soft. Although the 10-year-old has few secrets from the handicapper now he was third here at the Festival and tuned up for this with a pleasing sixth at Sandown last month where both No Buts and Barrakilla finished ahead of him.

No Buts then ran out a decent winner over 2m 4f at Newbury on soft ground. Trainer David Bridgwater says he needs a real test of stamina and he’ll need to prove it as he loses his Cheltenham virginity – especially when push comes to more push up Cleeve Hill.

Barrakilla is now at the right end of the handicap against those two rivals and the last three winners have carried under 11 stone while four of the last five winners (bar Poquelin’s back-to-back win in 2010) also came from the first three in the betting.

Attaglance still has some unfinished business after his ‘I’m stuck on the rail get me out of here’ second to Present View last March. If he’s going to land a big ‘un off his present mark he needs to do it quick before he starts paddling in winter ground.

Selection: Barrakilla

Grade 2 Relkeel Hurdle

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Relkeel-Hurdle Narrow the Field

A tricky contest despite just five runners with Lac Fontana taking pride of place in the sweet spot. A three-time course winner including last season’s County Hurdle at the Festival, he went on to win the Grade One Novices’ Hurdle at Aintree with Nicky Henderson’s Volnay de Thaix back in fifth.

Henderson and stable jock Barry Geraghty have won this contest for three of the last five years and Volnay de Thaix will be vying for favouritism overnight with Rock on Ruby who went down by a neck last April to The New One at Aintree over this trip.

The former Champion Hurdler had a spell over fences that didn’t work out and might just be vulnerable to a younger rival despite being so highly rated. These three should dominate the finish but Lac Fontana looks a bit of value at around 3/1 to step up on his third to leading champion hurdle contender Faugheen at Ascot.

Selection: Lac Fontana

Narrow the Field 1024

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