Many thanks to all those people who provided us with feedback from some of the main Cheltenham Preview nights in UK and Ireland.
Please note that the Whiteflagman is republishing what they have received from various people and can not take any liability or responsibility for any errors, misquotes or misinterpretation of what was said on the night by its panel members at any of the fora.


Chelt Preview in Portarlington - panel of Dessie Hughes, Bryan Cooper,
Patrick Mullins, Gordon Elliott & Peter Fahey - Kevin O'Ryan is MC

Supreme Novice - all 5 go for Wicklow Brave

Neptune - PWM says they think Faugheen is special

Neptune - Elliott goes for Red Sherlock, Dessie says it's hard to get
away from Faugheen, thinks Lieutenant Colonel will run big race.

Cooper - says Lieutenant Colonel did nothing wrong lto behind Wicklow
Brave, will run big race. Says take nothing away from Faugheen

Albert Bartlett - Dessie hoping for good run from Apache Jack will relish step up in trip.

AB - Cooper was impressed with Kings Palace. PWM, Briar Hill still
unbeaten, says on home work you wouldn't bring him to a race track

PWM - huge vote of confidence for Briar Hill, says he is his pick of all
their Novices, if he only had one pick it's him, could win any race

AB - Fahey big fan of Kings Palace, Elliott says KP will play into Brair
Hills hands, says his driver might not get the fractions right

Triumph - Guitar Pete is smart, tough, good jumper, done everything well
and keeps improving. Le Rocher & Calipto have impressed Dessie

Triumph - Tiger Roll a big contender. GP a different horse to Our Conor
but keeps improving every time. Jumping his biggest asset.

Triumph - Dessie keeps talking about Tiger Roll, Cooper says he a grand
horse. Very very happy with last run, sure to improve, not afraid to take on Guitar Pete - tough horse, will relish the hustle and bustle of Triumph as hardy sort if horse

Triumph - Cooper,Royal Irish Hussar saved for better ground, BJG loves
him. Gordon, Tiger Roll plenty of schooling & imp from Leopardstown

Triumph - Gordon thinks Dessie's horse is the one to beat & says WPM doesn't give a shit about race

Arkle - Cooper, Trifolium better ground no problem, done for his wind
twice, jumps super. High cruising speed and can quicken off it, can't have Dodging Bullets, says ROR as a Champion Hurdle winner is a quality horse and a live one.

Arkle - PWM, Fever a bad prep, typically jumps excellent, big neg on DodgBull, PWM Trifolium one to beat, says The Fly "broke" RORuby

Arkle - Fahey thinks Fever a "certainty". Dessie says CFever ok when he
gets his own way and won't get that in Arkle. Picks Trifolium

JLT - PWM, Djakadam might stay at home for Powers Fold Cup. Thinks Felix
has best form, wants good ground, stays distance. Thinks 8/1 is big

Dessie says Bright New Dawn is just a proper horse, 3m no problem, unsure if goes to Chelt but thinks JLT is ideal race for him, big fan of Oscar Whiskey, good ground horse, last day ground was Unraceable and forgives jumping

JLT - Gordon says DonC runs in RSA. Hasn't got a clue about rest of them.

RSA - Cooper says Ballycasey showed a turn of foot he didn't think he
had. DC still a chance, MAssembley done no wrong. CLough a big chance, Cooper big fan of Ballycasey, PWM says riding him is like driving an Aston Martin.

RSA - PWM says a race to watch and not to have a bet in. Thinks Irish have upper hand

RSA - Dessie likes Don Cossack, big fan of Morning Assembley

RSA - Gordon says Ballycasey the horse to beat. Best horse won Moriarty, hopes bigger field and true test will suit DonC.

World Hurdle - PWM on the defence over Annie Power etc says WH the race for her to go in. Best chance, easiest race.

WH - Dessie says he would run her in Champion, never ran 3m. says BBucks not finished with - staying is name of game!

WH - Cooper, RTW going with his chance, Mouse a genius. says Ruby a huge asset for AnnieP.

WH - Gordon says Paul Nicholls will have the shite frightened out of SamTD. Says Mala Beech will run big race, more so if soft.

Champion Hurdle - PWM, last year said he would bare his arse on the bridge in Carlow if The Fly was beat but would not make the same offer, saysThe Fly has to defy the age stat to win, says he has to play on there home turf which is always a challenge, says he thinks and hopes The Fly can win. Says if MTOY orJezki couldnt beat Champagne Fever over 2m in Chelt that they have no chance against The Fly.

Dessie - very happy with Our Conor, says was very straight fitness wise lto but can still come on from the race. Says OC the first horse in years to be last off the bridle in Leop v The Fly. I think he feels Cheltenham will suit him. Jumps, stays, turn of foot - very hopeful
Cooper says he felt that OC was the horse to take from Leop. Says that given choice of riding OC or Fly he would pick OC

Elliott said that The Fly has Our Conor to beat - thinks between them

Under starters orders here in The Stables, Carrigaline for #Cheltenham Preview.


Andrew Lynch - Jockey

Paul Nolan - Trainer

Jimmy Mangan - Trainer

Kevin O'Ryan - Jockeys Agent / ATR

Champion Hurdle

Jimmy Mangan with the first of many pearls of wisdom, "Leopardstown and
Cheltenham are two different places", glad that's been cleared up.

Paul Nolan on The Fly, "greatest hurdler of all time, will have statues built in his honour" #TheFly #Champion

Champion Chase

Jimmy Mangan had BJ Geraghty on the blower earlier, the Sprinter is said to be working like a beast at home!

Andrew Lynch says Sizing Europe still has it in him to go + win the Champion Chase, worked well up the Old Vic this morning

Gold Cup

Panel agreed on Last Installment posing biggest threat to Bobs Worths Gold Cup double bid #Cheltenham

Other Races

Jimmy Mangan, breeder of Deputy Dan, not sure Oliver Sherwoods star will
have enough to beat the Irish contenders in the Neptune #Cheltenham

Davy Russel, absent from the panel, asks to have it made known, Morning
Assembly in the RSA may be his best chance of a winner. #Cheltenham

Andrew Lynch reckons Hidden Cyclone represents value in the Ryanair #Cheltenham

Paul Nolan speaking today to Gordon Elliott who reckons Tiger Roll in the Triumph is his best chance at #Cheltenham

Tips/Charity Bets

Charity Bets in Aid Of Irish injured Jockeys Fund

Andrew Lynch Sizing Gold-JLT Novices Chase #Cheltenham

Paul Nolan - The Tullow Tank - Neptune #Cheltenham

Jimmy Mangan-Oscar Delta e/w-Foxhunter Chase + Hurricane Fly-Champion Hurdle

Kevin O'Ryan-Ted Veale e/w-Grand Annual #Cheltenham

Full report of Cheltenham Festival preview evening at Exeter Racecourse - Febuary 21st 2014

Tonight saw the annual Cheltenham preview evening at Exeter Racecourse with guests including trainers Paul Nicholls, David Pipe and Phillip Hobbs, jockey Nick Scholfield and Racing Post reporter Andrew King.



Andrew King: Vautour is a very smart house who comes into race well. Irving has done little wrong and I think at the moment is each way value.

Paul Nicholls: (on Irving) I hope he can win. He is four from six on the flat and three from three in jumps and is in good shape. A fast run race would suit him better.

Nick Scholfield: The horse with the best English form is Irving, who has done nothing wrong. The horse is better on better ground but has won on soft ground before.

David Pipe: (on The Liquidator) He is back on good form. You could call him the forgotten horse. He has had one bad run but was vying for favouritism before that. If we can get him back to his best he will have a chance.

Wicklow Brave needs to brush up on his jumping and I have a sneaky feeling the top two (Irving and Vautour) will take all the beating.

Phillip Hobbs: Vautour looks very good but Irving offers better each way value.


Paul Nicholls: Hinterland would like to see it dry out. He is still in the Champion Chase and we will see what the ground does. But Hinterland and Dodging Bullets are both in good order. I am thrilled with Dodging Bullets.

Andrew King: I think Rock on Ruby has a sound chance if the ground dries out.

Nick Schofield: Champagne Fever is much better if he gets an easy lead. If he gets taken on that might let him down. I have been impressed by Valdez and he might offer good each way value.

David Pipe: I think Champagne Fever will take all the beating. Valdez gave a good performance at Doncaster, can travel and has an each way chance but Champagne Fever is the one for me.

Phillip Hobbs: Champagne Fever has won twice previously at the festival and can come back and do it again.


Andrew King: The obvious is Hurricane Fly but I have always thought the Our Connor has been trained with one race only in mind and will be better than ever on faster ground if it dries out. I don’t think My Tent Or Yours or The New One is good enough to compete with these. If Annie Power shows up that could change everything but for me it is Hurricane Fly or Our Connor.

David Pipe: Even though Hurricane Fly is not getting any younger, I am not convinced My Tent Or Yours will get up the hill so I will go with Hurricane Fly.

Nick Schofield: (On Melodic Rendezvous) He has no pressure going into the race and deserves his chance. It will be a very tactical race with no real pace.

Phillip Hobbs and Paul Nicholls both said The New One had a decent chance.



David Pipe: I have been very impressed with Faugheen. But Red Sherlock has done nothing wrong and will run a massive race. The betting is right and Faugheen is the one to beat. (On Un Temps Pour Tout) Whichever race he goes in he will have a good chance.

Phillip Hobbs: Champagne West is only in the Neptune if the ground comes up heavy.

Paul Nicholls: We will probably aim Port Melon at the three miler.

Andrew King: I have been very impressed with Red Sherlock in his bumpers and hurdles so far and he will take all the beating. He has a massive chance in this race and is going to be a top class horse.


David Pipe: It looks an open RSA if not the best. But it is not easy. I might still be taking a chance with Gevrey Chambertin. He is a good horse on his day and I am inclined to take the chance.

Paul Nicholls: Sam Winner can reverse the form with Smad Place and better ground will suit. The quicker they go the better and he has got a great chance.

Nick Scholfield: There is not much between Sam Winner and Smad Place but SW is a much bigger price.


David Pipe: Sprinter Sacre is a concern but hopefully they have had time to put him right. The race is all around this house but I would expect him to get him back and probably win.

Phillip Hobbs: Sprinter Sacre is a fantastic horse if he is right. Sire De Grugy is in decent form but I cannot see him beating Sprinter Sacre if he turns up.

Andrew King: I am very interested in Benefficient. He is a very nice horse and if Sprinter Sacre does not run I think they might try him in this. Personally I don’t think Sprinter Sacre will get there.

Paul Nicholls I think Nicky is sounding a bit negative with Sprinter Sacre saying they will make a decision in the next ten days. They won’t really know until they race him though. It just seemed a little negative. If he is back in good form we might take him on with Hinterland. If he turned up we might be positive and have a crack with him.



Paul Nicholls: Wonderful Charm goes well fresh and was three from four over fences in the Autumn. He is in good shape but would not want the ground too soft. Vukovar is a decent horse but Wonderful Charm has shown enough to be the one to beat.

Nick Scholfield also liked Wonderful Charm: If he gets ground he will be very hard to beat.

David Pipe: Vukovar is the one I will go for in that race.

Andrew King: Taquin Du Seuil has a good each way chance. He will stay on up the hill.


David Pipe: If Sprinter Sacre does not turn up for the Champion Chase it will take a lot of horses away from the Ryanair. With Dynaste we are keeping the options open. He has not been right for a long time but is in great form at present. If he continues we will get him to Cheltenham in top form. We will leave it late to see what happens with Sprinter Sacre and the ground.

Paul Nicholls: The Ryanair for Al Ferof was always my A-plan. He ran very well in the King George but does not stay. This is the obvious race for him and the ideal race for him. Wishfull Thinking could be the one to beat. I would run Cue Card in the Ryanair. He is not going to get three and a half miles at Cheltenham in an end to end gallop in the Gold Cup. If he is in the Ryanair he is a favourite and hard to beat.

Phillip Hobbs said: I am more likely to run Menorah. Wishfull Thinking might end up in the Byrne Group Plate. Cue Card has a big chance in the Ryanair but won’t win the Gold Cup.

Andrew King: Dynaste.


Paul Nicholls: Big Bucks has got as good a chance as any other time he has been in the race. He needed his previous run and it was on very heavy ground that we would not normally run him in. But we had to go somewhere with him and he has tightened up since then. He must have a leading chance.

Phillip Hobbs: Big Bucks has been a fantastic horse for so long and must have a good chance.

Andrew King: I had reservations about his comeback run. But seeing the way he was today (in a racecourse gallop at Exeter) he looked back to his best and will take all the beating. He looked a picture and still got such quality.

David Pipe: I hope Annie Power does turn up as it will make it a great race for everyone to watch.



Paul Nicholls: I am confident of a big run from Calipto but he prefers softer ground.


David Pipe: King’s Palace has done nothing wrong, handles the track, stays well and is in ground form. All roads lead to the Albert Bartlett. Briar Hill is the main danger but I don’t fancy Captain Cutter.

Andrew King: Kings Palace is a very nice young horse and is the obvious choice in the race. He is got to go close but I would not take 3/1.


Paul Nicholls: Silviniaco Conti is stronger than last year and stays as we saw at Kempton. He was travelling extremely well and I have never had any doubt he can stay up that hill. He will need a bit of luck in running but is in very good shape.

Phillip Hobbs: Captain Chris will run. That is the plan. He is not as good left handed but has won the Arkle and a novice hurdle at Cheltenham. There is no other race to run him in. We have nothing to lose by running.

David Pipe: It looks a strong renewal and Bob’s Worth will take all the beating. He is not flashy but is workmanlike. Silviniaco Conti has got a great chance but Bob’s Worth will take all the beating,

Nick Scholfield: Silviniaco Conti looked really fresh and well today (in the Exeter gallop) and Noel struggled to hold him. Harry Topper could be a good each way bet. At 20/1 he may run into a place.

Andrew King: Silviniaco Conti is one of the best bets of the meeting.

Handicap choices

Phillip Hobbs: Fingal Bay in the Pertemps.

Paul Nicholls: Far West in the Coral Cup

David Pipe: Edmund Kean in the Kim Muir.

Nick Scholfield: Regal Encore in the Coral Cup.

Andrew King: Cheltenian in the County Hurdle.

Reply With Quote

Goat Cheltenham preview night, Kevin O' Ryan, Paddy Mullins, Tony Martin and Barry G on the panel.

Supreme: Paddy says Ruby likely to attempt similar tactics to last year in the opener on Vatour.

Wicklow Brave the better bet at 9s for Patrick however, will be in first three.

Barry says Vautour far too short, had the run of the race the last day.
Josses good EW chance as does Western Boy in a weak Supreme.

Tony goes for Barry's horse. General consensus is Vautour far too short, doubts re Irving's stamina.
Tony Martin has a gut feeling re Irving 'Just doesn't like him'

Neptune: Paddy backed Briar Hill for this but looks a losing bet now.
Faugheen =
✈✈ Reckon Faugheen is a deal better than Rathvinden.
Paddy says they will be very disappointed if Faugheen is beat. Faster pace will bring improvement in jumping department.
Paddy reckons Briar would win any of the three novice hurdles, his banker.

Barry says Faugheen will take beating in Neptune. In the AB big Barry
says Captain Cutter may struggle, Briar is the one to have on side.

Tony very sweet on Rathvinden for Neptune if he goes, big field will
suit, under the radar, appreciate better ground. Upset Faugheen!

Barry would be confident of Rathvinden reversing form with Red Sherlock given better ground.

Paddy Power likely to go NRNB towards end of week.

Triumph: Barry hoping Royal Irish can return to form and good EW bet at
big prices. La Rocher the one to beat, best horse Nick Williams has.

Paddy says the Triumph is the perfect opportunity to go get a cup of tea, hates it. For poor flat horses.
Paddy surprised if Abbysial runs in Triumph, hopes he doesn't, one for the future, maybe Punchestown.

Tony a big fan of Le Rocher also, Nick Williams a very underrated
trainer. Says Paddy wouldn't mind his daddy buying this one haha

Paddy says Champ Fever hasn't had the ideal prep, loves Cheltenham but Trifolium the one to beat, very impressive.

Good ground would bring out the best in Felix come the JLT, Djackadam may not go, do not back until see him line up.

Barry says Oscar Whiskey has surprised him, jumps brilliantly. Fatter
than anything first time out when beaten. Rock solid. One to beat.
Barry thought Grandouet would win the Arkle at the start of the season, disappointed but still a chance. Champagne vulnerable.

Tony Martin says they've made a balls of Ted Veale's campaign, wouldn't trust a word out of his mouth. Won't give any info.

Barry reckons Balleycasey one to beat in RSA, caught his eye. Will probably ride O'Faolins with a little chance.

Patrick says massive performance from Balleycasey last time out. Like driving a Rolls Royce.

Carlingford Lough's experience a huge benefit for whole panel, big EW value for all.

Paddy says Balleycasey was bought as a Gold Cup horse and that's the plan long term.
Paddy says Willie won't make the decision re Annie till last minute, Paddy does though reckon that the World looks the best option for Annie.
Bucks the vulnerable Fav out of the three races. No problem re 3m.

At Fishers could improve for Barry. More of That too for big Barry, says
he went by b4 him very easily with a great turn of foot. Dark one.Big Bucks of old could have been ridden anyway and won the last day says
Barry, just watch the race, beaten fair and square, not v unfit.

Tony would run Annie against Quevega, wouldn't subject her to 3m at Cheltenham. While future ahead of her, big ask.

Open world hurdle for all, Big Bucks opposable. Mala Beach a cheeky outsider for KOR.

Barry firmly says Big Bucks will not win the World Hurdle, was fit last time out, 95% at least.

Paddy: All great with the Fly, knows where the winning line is, aggression sets him apart. A true champion. Age the only concern put stronger than ever after this Summer. Good as ever if not better. Potential V Proven in the Champion. Paddy most worried about The New One. If Champagne beats MTOY over 2mile, so does the Fly.

Willie leaning away from Champion for Un De Sceaux. Paddy says Dads placed him fantastically. I reckon he's placed him uncompetitively.

Barry is waiting for the phone call re Jezki. If Fly turns up like the last day he won't be beaten but not convinced will hold form at Chelt
Our Conor strolls around Cheltenham like Larry the Lamb says Barry, one I give Fly most to so. Jezki better than this season too at 10/1

Barry says MTOY had The New One covered at Kempton. The New One might be forced to make it come Cheltenham, not ideal.
Barry says key to Jezki is getting him to switch off, doesn't seeam convinced should make it like AP has been sprouting.

Tony Martin has it between Our Conor and The New One, Hurricane well beatable at his age

Paddy admits that the Fly is the one the Mullins camp want the most to win 'He's always been the one'

QMCC: Barry disappointed but he's in one piece that's the main thing, he's the best he's ridden.

Tony says heavy ground Benifficent goes QMCC, yielding he goes RyanAir

Kid Casiddy the EW value for Barry, Sizing Europe looks to be fading in his old age. Maybe if Henry can work a miracle.

Tony actually keen to go RyanAir with Benificient, thinks he has a right chance in this race.

Tony not mad on Sire de Grugy, Arvika a majestic horse he says but can't put it together. Aeroplane if puts it together.

Panel joking re Barry getting on Bennificient. Literally can't ever tell if Tony Martin is telling the truth.

Paddy would avoid the QMCC, concerns re Arvika's jumping left handed.

GC: Barry says Haydock was too sharp for Bobs Worth and wasn't fit enough. Leop far more his cup of tea.Better the ground the better the chance for Bobs says Barry. Softer ground plays to Last Instalment and he's the one BG fears most. If Last Instalment hadn't have missed last season, he could have been last years Gold Cup winner - Barry

As far as the rest of them, Barry reckons he has Silvi, Cue Card etc covered. Silvi was bollocksed when fell last year.

Paddy says Bobs will take the beating, reckons this is the best horse Barry is riding, not Sacre. Thought they'd win with SDC last year.

Tony says Last Instalment a PROPER HORSE, comparing to all time greats.

Paddy says all bumper horses very different, Hard to split but he's likes Black Hercules the most. Temperament huge asset. Wants to ride Black Hercules as things stand

Tony says Golantilla emptied yesterday, little short and Paddy gave great ride. Needed the run and wouldn't write him off 'if he turns up' Golantilla won't go unless he's 100% happy and if he does go he would be disappointed if didn't place.

Tony very sweet on Living Next Door he says, disappointed if not in first three wherever he goes. Entered in everything, likes him.

Paddy likely to ride Suntiep in the four miler. Noble Inn in the Fred Winter worth keeping an eye on Paddy says too.

Paddy says Mossey Joe runs within a stone of best he wins, he turns up he wins. Barry warns ground key, needs better ground.

Tony charity bet Living Next Door. Barry Josses and More of That. Paddy Briar Hill. KOR Tiger Roll.

Cheltenham Preview tonight at the Cill Dara Golf Club. Full Panel includes Dessie Hughes, Kevin O’Ryan, Conor O’Dwyer ,Noel O’Brien ,Frank Berry, Darragh Fiztpatrick and Des Scahil.

Noel O’Brien has Vautour rated 152 and Iriving at 150, Wicklow brave 142. Two horse race fancies Vautour
Frank Berry not sure if Gilgamboa! Reckons tullow tank not at best losing to Vatour
Dessie very sweet on Wicklow Brave thinks he’s better than Vautour! Plenty of speed
Conor o Dwyer goes for Irving and Western boy each way
Darragh Fitzpatrick bookmaker says Patrick mullins did an each way treble last week, Horses were briar hill , Wicklow brave and the fly! Suggests Wicklow brave is fancied so he puts Wicklow brave up

Frank reckons champagne fever has massive question mark over him. Goes rock on ruby
Noel thinks Cheltenham form massive for fever. On plain form goes Trifolioum
Dessie thinks fever mistake could affect him long term and goes Trifolioum
Conor thinks champagne fever needs a step up in trip and doesn’t jump quick and puts up Trifolioum as a great each way shot
Darragh the bookmaker has seen money for Valdez and offers the room champagne fever 4/1.

Replay of the Irish Hurdle played , Dessie Shake of the head while watching it says it all
Noel thinks Hurricane is an outstanding champion and will do them all
Frank confirms Ap will ride my tent on yours ! Thinks jezki will run up the hill and is good value
Nicky happy with my tent or yours and frank thinks will take all the beating
Kevin Ryan goes for Hurricane Fly to beat Ourconor as does Conor O’Dwyer
Our Conor and Jezki put up by Darragh as great each way shots
Dessie says no way OurConor will make it ! Reckons he has the speed horse

Noel says Red Sherlock 151 , Faugheen 154! Faugheen put up
Dessie goes Red Sherlock! Not impressed by Faugheen. Dessie runs lieutenant coronal and reckons oh way shot
Kevin and Conor go Red Sherlock!

The RSA now, Noel thinks they are a decent bunch! Not much between them.
Small fields make ratings false. Thinks irish will win , ballcasey
Franks confirms Carlingford lough will go and has every chance
Dessie puts up Don Cossack! Thinks they are a good bunch of novices
Conor O’Dwyer Gold Cup winning jockey thinks experience makes Carlingford Lough the best bet of week.
Darragh thinks Don Cossack is a tripless rough and has no chance. Irish to win the race and Carlingford Lough to do it

CC - Noel thinks Sire De Grugy a worthy favourite. Gives sizing Europe a squeak
Frank doesn’t think alderwood will make the race. Reckon Sire De Grugy is best bet of the meeting.
Dessie and Kevin reckon Sire De Grugy will win all day long. Fight
breaks out with Noël and Kevin and the chances of Sizing Europe
Kevin tells us Nicky rang Barry to tell him about Sprinter and told him not to worry as Captain Conan will it win it anyways
Darragh mentions the two loses of Sire De Grugy over fences came at Cheltenham . Offers the room 9/4 on him.

CB- Kevin confirms willie to run 4 horses , two on sat and black Hercules and shaneshil. Paddy to ride Hercules.
Kevin sticks with shaneshill , liked him all along
Dessie drops the bombshell that Willie Mullins will win the bumper and leaves it at that
Noel fancied Golantilla until Killultagh Vic walked all over him. Conor reckons Killutagh Vic is a machine

Ryanair- Noël thinks drop back in trip will help Al Ferof. Kevin goes Beneficent and Al Ferof against the field. Al Ferof for Darragh
Dessie not sure about Ryanair for lyreen legend , thinks trip too short and thinks good ground in gold cup could run a big race
World Hurdle first up Noel thinks big bucks entitled to get tired but would very worried on last run. Annie Power could be anything and will go for the race by default and reckons Annie power has never looked like stopping. 7lb to prove massive
More of that and fishers cross likely to take there chance according to Fran. Thinks what ever beats Fishers Cross will win
Dessie’s plugs for Annie Power , says never seen a hole in her and is a hell of a mare
Conor thinks Rule the world has a great shout , mouse reckons he’s one of the best he has ever had.
Conor thinks Rule the world has a great shout , mouse reckons he’s one of the best he has ever had.

Triumph hurdle , Dessie thinks Guitar Pete probably the best. But Tigar roll has great chance at Cheltenham.

Albert Barlett up now. Dessie impressed with Briar Hill. Fran confirms Captain Cutter to go for the AB.
Noel has King Palace 7 to 10 pounds ahead of the rest of them and is the best bet of the meeting!!
Darragh tells us Ruby told him don’t leave briar hill behind at Cheltenham.
Conor O Dwyer puts up Briar Hill as most likely winner.

GC- Noel thinks Last Instalment form from the last day is questionable. Bobs worth around Cheltenham is one to beat.
Dessie agains points towards the gold cup for lyreen legend seems convinced the horse will improve and will run into a place.
However Bobs Worth for Dessie , Kevin and Conor. The one they all have to beat.
6/6 from the panel for bobs worth as Darragh follows the boy.


Frank-If in doubt each/way in the Pretemps.
Noel-Kings Palace AB
Dessie-Wicklow Brave
Kevin- Ted Velave in Grand Annual and Tiger Roll each way for at Triumph
Darragh goes for Ted veale as well
Conor O’Dwyer- Carlingford Lough

London on Wednesday 25 February.

GC: GRAHAM CUNNINGHAM (Channel 4 Racing)
BE: BILL ESDAILE (City AM Racing Editor)
LT: LUKE TARR (Head of PR, Star Sports)

Tuesday 11 March

GC and DJ both keen on VAUTOUR
BE sweet on WILDE BLUE YONDER at a decent price

Panel agreed that IRVING is now plenty short enough.

LT and GC both supporters of TRIFOLIUM

The panel were collectively against ROCK ON RUBY

DJ keen on his ride DODGING BULLETS

Star Sports prices showed THE NEW ONE and HURRICANE FLY as 3/1 joint favs with MY TENT OR YOURS and OUR CONOR as the 9/2 joint second favs.

Both GC and LT both thought the betting was the wrong way round and the 9/2 joint second favs should in fact be the 3/1 joint favs !



GC was of the belief that ANNIE POWER would in fact run here in the Champion Hurdle to which LT added that she would be 9/2 not the current 7/1 if that was confirmed.

Wednesday 12 March

The panel were all agreed that this totally revolves around the front two in the market FAUGHEEN and RED SHERLOCK especially as there are likely to be several non runners behind them.

The panel were united behind the chances of FAUGHEEN.

BE was keen to remind everyone that he is on a 5 timer in this race !! MORNING ASSEMBLY is Bill’s chosen one this year.

All the panel though the current market leaders BALLYCASEY and SMAD PLACE were very short.

LT and GC nominated MANY CLOUDS as their best each way bets of the week.

DJ SAM WINNER a sound each way chance and ‘overpriced’ at 14/1

The panel agreed that whilst SIRE DE GRUGY deserved to be favourite the current price is skinny. GC however was quite happy with 5/2 SIRE DE GRUGY as a bet.

All also agreed that ARVIKA LIGEONNIERE is not only the hardest horse name in training to spell correctly but also doesn’t go left handed and were sceptical as to whether the promised ‘special’ head gear will make a difference and thought it was a massive lay.

DJ rides DIAMOND HARRY and thought it had an each way chance.

LT and GC both respected chances of favourite BIG SHU and if anything thought it should be shorter.

It was thought that DAWALAN would go off a lot shorter than the current 10/1

Thursday 13 March

DJ closely connected with WONDERFUL CHARM who he is keen on.

LT Thought OSCAR WHISKEY and TAQUIN DU SEUIL would be 1-2 again as they were earlier in the season.

GC a fan of WONDERFUL CHARM and also VUKOVAR who has been well backed with Star Sports.


So, that’s the top of the market covered between the panel !! May the best man win.

LT main bet of the week AL FEROF at 5/1. He’s convinced it won’t go off bigger than 3/1.

DJ aother AL FEROF supporter.

Only other one likely to be backed is GC selection DYNASTE

BE Keen on FIRST LIEUTENANT (with a run)

DJ obviously close to BIG BUCK’S and feels he has come on lot after his defeat in the Cleeve Hurdle. He rides CELESTIAL HALO who he considers very much has each way claims.

GC keen to be against BIG BUCK’S

BE One of his ‘bets of the week’ RULE THE WORLD

LT No idea !! But SALUBRIOUS ew at 20/1 offered up.

Friday 14 March

The panel were all keen on CALIPTO

DJ Thinks LE ROCHER wants ground on the soft side

A strong vibe that ACTIVIAL will not run.

Similar shape to the Neptune. Front two solid with loads of non runners likely.

LT and BE are big KINGS PALACE fans

GC favouring BRIAR HILL

Majority opinion it’s between top two in market- the 2013 winner BOBS WORTH and SILVINIACO CONTI who fell 12 months ago when still travelling very well.

DJ in doubt – would pick SILVINIACO CONTI ‘every day of the week’ if he could pick a ride. He DOES ride ROCKY CREEK and he is convinced he has a real ew chance with the likely non runners.


LT and BE FIRST LIEUTENANT NRNB interesting but conceded most likely winner is BOBS WORTH

DJ rides LAC FONTANA who he puts in good word for.





(* who clearly wants to sleep with Mouse Morris !)


IrishStarSport from Cheltenham preview in aid of Pieta House at Carnegie Court, Swords, Co Dublin.


@_Davy_Russel_ Davy Russell DR

@bhdflanagan Brian Flanagan BF

@mr_andy_mc Andy McNamara AMN

Mark Winstanley aka the couch MW

Andrew Lynch AL

@deniskirwan DK

Ado McGuinness AMG


MW Couch doesn't like Irving.

DR Doesnt like Irving. Track will catch him out. Picks Valseur Lido.
Davy will work on Western Boy in coming days and a decision will be
made. He rides if he runs.

BF Questions the form, but likes Vautour

AMN Can't have Irving. Likes Vautour


Andy Mc loving Faugheen

Flanagan points to Red Sherlock form with Rathvinden as a pointer.
Faugheen could be an even money shot if Willie has a good day Tuesday

Andrew Lynch would love Briar Hill in this, but likes Oliver Sherwood's Deputy Dan as a bit of a flyer

Davy has issues with Faugheen's jumping. 'I've fierce respect for Red Sherlock.' He can't have Royal Boy

MW: Couch all over Faugheen! 'One of the bets of the Festival'


MW: Couch thinks the Briar Hill/Faugheen ew double is the way to go

Andrew Lynch can't see past Kings Palace. Need a stayer to win this and as a former winner of the race he rates KP

Flanagan agrees with Lynch. Davy loving Briar Hill. Stays very well and jumps very well. They're loving Mullins so far

Briar Hill for Andy Mc. But not as convinced as the others


Russell hates the Triumph, but points to Le Rocher's sire as top class NH sire

Couch likes Broughton. Worked 'marvellously' the other day

Brian Flanagan reckons Tiger Roll will be Ireland's best - definitely will reverse form with Guitar Pete. 14/1 great value

Andy Mc poo poos Davy's anti-Triumph theorys. Likes Broughton too

Andrew Lynch is a big Le Rocher fan. Tough horse, and that's what you need to win a Triumph


Andy Mc likes Champagne Fever, can't have Rock on Ruby. Champagne on his A game is unbeatable in this

Couch not sure if Valdez is good enough. English not good enough. As much chance as England winning WC in Brazil.

Couch backing Trifolium and CF 1-2.

Davy says CF is extremely tough to get fit, 'according to the lads'

Lynch likes Rock on Ruby, Champagne Fever to get pipped by ROR. Couch says 9yo horses don't win arkles

Brian Flanagan v impressed by Trifolium at Leop. Points to Byrnes record at #Cheltenham as a positive.

JLT Novices Chase

Couch can't see past Oscar Whiskey.

Flanagan loves Djakadam if he runs,

Lynch puts Sizing Gold up ew, but panel generally in favour of Oscar Whiskey


Andy Mac likes Morning Assembly. Battler and that's what's needed in the RSA

Couch; I don't like three runner races. Don't know what Carlingford Lough's jockey was at? He'll never make it.

Couch: Annacotty wouldn't win if it started now. Think Many Clouds will run a big race at a big price.

BF: If its soft I fancy Morning Assembly. If good Smad Place. Ted Walsh
said Ballycasey travelled over badly last year, so wait til day.


BF: A half fit Big Buck's should have beaten Knockara Beau. Big Bucks looks past his best. Losing Ruby is a big negative.

COUCH: Celestial Halo will go fast. Big Bucks will come on a stone for last run. Salubrious is 20s, he'll run a big race.

DAVY: I couldn't believe Rule The World was beaten last year, he's definitely good enough

Andy Mc: I take it Annie power doesn't run, Big Buck's is a good thing.


Couch can't have The New One, or 'The Can't Jump One' MY Tent or Yours is the one. Easily best. Reminds him of Binocular

Davy: After New One won the Neptune I thought he was a class act. Our
Conor is an exceptional jumper and that is key.Hurricane is unbeatable
in Ireland. Not the same in UK. between New One and Our Conor.

PP's Rob won't hear of defeat for the Hurricane

BF: The New One

Lynch: The New One will give Hurricane Fly biggest problem. Ruby will
prob follow The New One and win.Our Conor could be next year's Champion
Hurdle winner, but this time it's Hurricane Fly

Andy Mac: went ridiculous slow pace in Irish Champion, you can't give Hurricane Fly a sprint finish.

Crown Inn pub in Pishill.

The panel comprised of Channel 4 Racing’s Richard Hoiles (RH), Stan James representative Rory Jiwani (RW), former Gold Cup winning jockey Andrew Thornton (AT), former assistant to Alan King and now first-season trainer Noel Williams (NW) and local trainer Lawney Hill (LH). M.C. for the evening was Sky News Sports Outside Broadcaster, Paul Kelso.

Supreme Novices’ Hurdle

RH: There is not much value left in Irving. He is almost the finished article so I don’t expect him to improve much whereas others racing on better ground will. He is a typical tough German-bred and I see him being placed but don’t know what will win. Vautour has been very weak on the exchanges over the last two days.

RJ: We will be top price on everything on this race on the day of the race. Irving is our biggest loser by some way and the right favourite. Wilde Blue Yonder is each-way value, he’s just a bit dopey and lost concentration when falling the last twice. Henderson said Vaniteux could run here in his media day after previously stating he would wait for Aintree.
AT: Not all of Willie Mullins’ horses will travel over perfectly this week, he has a massive job getting them all over 100% as has so many. Irving looks as hard as nails and the ground won’t be a problem whatever it is. He travels and quickens and is rock solid.

NW: Irving is the most likely winner and his tactical speed is a huge positive and is a slick hurdler. He is also battle hardened from the Flat unlike his main rivals. Wilde Blue Yonder isn’t a bad jumper despite falling at the last flight the last twice and has an each-way chance for my old boss.

LH: Wilde Blue Yonder might not be a bad jumper but he is a good faller. Nicholls’ horses weren’t right going into last season’s Festival but I think he will have a good meeting this time and he is very bullish about Irving.

Arkle Trophy

RH: I’m a huge general fan of Rock On Ruby but putting on a pair of blinkers in last year’s Champion Hurdle was a major mistake as he used up his speed too early. If it comes up soft, given his breathing problems, he might struggle to get up the hill. He’s had three breathing operations and can’t have any more. I thought Dodging Bullets got worried out of it by Module so he doesn’t entirely convince me. It’s between Champagne Fever and Trifolium and as the Supreme is working out fantastically well I side with CF.

RJ: I think it’s a weak Arkle and won’t take much winning. For some reason our traders don’t like Rock On Ruby so he’s our biggest loser but I do, maybe because it is me that does the weekly blog with Harry Fry on our website. Henderson was very positive about Grandouet at his media day yesterday.

AT: Champagne Fever loves the course but has not had an ideal preparation and I don’t think Rock On Ruby jumps well enough. He won’t have 1m4f to warm up here. Valdez loves jumping and toughed it out well last time when he needed the run. I like him a lot but CF will take the beating if it’s genuine soft ground.

NW: I just don’t think Dodging Bullets is quite good enough. Champagne Fever and Rock On Ruby are priced up on hurdling form. That said, I like course form so Champagne Fever.

LH: No real view.

Champion Hurdle

RH: I like My Tent Or Yours and 9/2 is clearly overpriced. He was beaten an unusually fast pace in last year’s Supreme which was 4 seconds quicker than the Champion Hurdle so maybe leave a lay of Evens in-running in case he curls up in the last 50 yards. I do think it’s between the Kempton 1-2 so rate The New One as the danger and I’m very tempted to lay Hurricane Fly for a place.

RJ: We sponsor the race and will be top price on every horse on the morning of the race. My Tent Or Yours would be a dream result for us and I think he would have won at Kempton even if The New One didn’t make a mistake. He was too headstrong last season but calmer now. If it is a combination of a fast pace and quicker ground than last year will make it tough for Hurricane Fly.

AT: The softer the ground the better Hurricane Fly’s chance as genuine soft also wouldn’t be ideal for The New One or My Tent Or Yours and the latter is a flat track horse. I’d like to see Jezki front run as he just gallops and stays and Geraghty is unbeaten on him so he could be each-way value.

NW: I would love to see Hurricane Fly win but he is there to be shot at and fancy he will get beat. I like My Tent Or Yours who is a year older than when outstayed by Champagne Fever will which will help him see it out.

LH: I don’t agree that Our Conor is improving as his owner thinks, I think he has plateaued. The New One for me and Melodic Rendezvous each-way if it’s soft.

Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle

RH: Ballyalton was progressive before getting stuck giving weight away in really bad ground and had previously shown more speed than expected so he is quite interesting for a 20/1 shot for each-way purposes.

RJ: Faugheen could be overhyped and needs to jump better for a 3/1 favourite. Red Sherlock is unbeaten and could be very good and represents better value at double his price.

AT: I’ll be surprised if Pipe ran both Red Sherlock and Un Temps Pour Tout. Timmy Murphy told me earlier in the season he was worried whether Red Sherlock would be ready for a race like this but he has since impressed under Tom Scudamore at Cheltenham. Faugheen for me.

NW: I’ve been most impressed with Red Sherlock. He beat a good horse in Rathvinden fair and square and ticks all the right boxes.

LH: No real view.

RSA Chase

RH: Annacotty went off too fast last time, it was not Ian Popham’s finest hour, but he kept on well and is very genuine. Corrin Wood is a fantastically accurate jumper but I can’t help thinking he should be in the NH Chase but still respect him here.

RJ: You need a certain type for this race and Carlingford Lough fits it. I’d be very interested in Sizing Gold if he ran here on decent ground but he looks like going for the JLT. I’ll be hoping to lay Ballycasey.

AT: Smad Place stays well and jumps well so has to be a contender but I fancy Sam Winner to reverse Newbury on 3lb better terms and 14/1 is good each-way value. I’m told he’s in wonderful nick.

NW: Not out of loyalty to my old boss or the horse but I do like Smad Place who comes alive at Cheltenham and jumps well and beat a good horse last time.

LH: I’m going for Corrin Wood. I know Donald McCain likes him a lot.

Queen Mother Champion Chase

RH: Sire De Grugy’s left-hand course form is not as good as the other way but he has taken his opportunities very well. He does hit the ground very hard though so I will be concerned if it dries up. Somersby is an each-way possibility as will be ridden for a place so 20/1 is a little overpriced. Walsh is trying to convince everyone that left-handed is no longer a problem for Arvika Ligeonneire but it was so marked before. Baily Green has good course form and likes better ground so is more interesting than most if he runs here.

RJ: Benefficient at 10/1 each-way on the proviso of non-runner no bet is one of the bets of the meeting. He has to start a lot shorter if he runs here rather than the Ryanair.

AT: The big crowd could be a factor against Sire De Grugy as he is a buzzy type. If Hinterland runs he has a great chance having won at Sandown the same day as Sire De Grugy in a much faster time and I rode in the Tingle Creek which was run at a good pace.

NW: Arvika Ligeonneire will end up in the Arkle Bar.

LH: Jamie won’t allow anyone else to ride Sire De Grugy in his homework. He has made this horse and given him so much confidence. I hope he wins.

Ryanair Chase

RH: I like the way Module stayed on in the JLT last year so this has to be his race rather than the Champion Chase. He has more to offer and don’t forget Medermit who was third two years ago and hardly run since.

RJ: Hard race to weigh up with not knowing what is running. Dynaste is a cracking horse but Baily Green appeals at a price.

AT: Module is an interesting horse but he likes cut. He is solid but unspectacular and can outrun his price, especially if Dodging Bullets runs well in the Arkle.

NW: No real view.

LH: No real view.

World Hurdle

RH: I do think Big Buck’s attacked too early in the Cleeve as the winner dropped back from first to last. No strong opinion on the race though.

RJ: Big Buck’s is our biggest loser of the Festival by far. Nicholls said he was fit enough to win the Cleeve beforehand but he didn’t, in fact he got beat a horse rated 145 and Curtis’ horses couldn’t win an argument at the time (had At Fishers Cross in second). He would have won that race hands down if he was anywhere near the same horse. Annie Power should win if she runs though Zarkandar each-way is interesting.

AT: I didn’t think Sam and Big Buck’s really clicked. After a horse has had a long layoff the first run is often better than the second and you also have to factor in he is 11 now. I think he’ll get beaten. Salubrious could surprise a few.

NW: Big Buck’s still sets the standard, the Cleeve was only a stepping stone and I thought he ran very well. Sam was told to be positive on him to give him a real race. I am loathed to take him on.

LH: Big Buck’s had lots of white snot pouring out of his nose after the Cleeve so he will come on hugely. The pressure is also off Sam a little now that he has been beaten. He’ll do for me.

Triumph Hurdle

RH: When doing a NH Season preview back in the autumn, Nicholls said Calipto was his dark horse for the season and I like the fact his form is strong and working out well and he beat older horses last time.

RJ: I don’t fancy the Irish much. Nicholls wasn’t hugely bullish about Calipto at his media day as said he is worried about NH-breds in a race like the Triumph if it comes up decent ground. Rutherglen is interesting having won on the Flat last time and has a great attitude.

AT: Le Rocher looks ready made for this race, especially if there is plenty of cut and Johnson suits him well as will keep working away on him before giving him the kitchen sink.

NW: I like Rutherglen who is now too exposed for the Fred Winter and battle hardened from the Flat.

LH: No real view.

Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle

Time was ticking on so whizzed through it and general consensus was hard to see it not being won by Kings Palace or Briar Hill.

Gold Cup

RH: Whatever way you look at it, a win for First Instalment won’t be a good result for racing. The reason this year’s race is so weak is the lack of quality second-season chasers so I am considering The Giant Bolster each-way as don’t like the front of the market.

RJ: Hard to find a chink in Bobs Worth’s armour. I doubt Silviniaco Conti would have beaten him last year and see no reason why Bobs Worth won’t win it again.

AT: Last Instalment is so fragile I would be very worried about him running downhill. You have to go up the hill three times so Bobs Worth is made for this. I wasn’t sure Silviniaco Conti wasn’t tired when he fell last year and worry about the trip for him as you need a horse that stays all day. Rocky Creek could therefore be interesting each-way as he was as big as a bull last time when he tired late on in the Argento and will come on plenty for that.

NW: It was just one of those things when Silviniaco Conti fell last year but I was impressed by him at Kempton and think he can win it this time.

LH: Henderson keeps saying Bobs Worth is small but he doesn’t look it to me. Perhaps he has a lot of big horses. He also says he will die for you and you need guts and class in spades in the Gold Cup and he has it all.

The Ladbrokes Cheltenham Panel is made up of J.Francome, Corky Brown, Segal, Davy Russell, McGrath, J Harrington, Luck, Hayley O'Connor, O'Brien and Fitz

Corky talks up Josses Hill for the Supreme. Mentions Vaniteux who Russell says would be a cert for the Martin Pipe
Segal likes Wicklow Brave. Russell says Valseur Lido is an exceptional
horse but likes Wicklow Brave. Takes on Vautour. He rides Western Boy
McGrath very negative on Irving. Harrington spoofs about Mullins horses. But does say Barry really likes Josses Hill
Nick Luck highlights the strength of Pipes contenders but would be surprised if Vautour didn't win.
Nick says Ruby was delighted with Vautour LTO. Russell says "Ruby was delighted because he got an easy lead!"
John Francome labels Russell a "TART" for highlighting paddy power are non runner no bet on the Supreme!
Noel O'Brien really like Gilgamboa

Tom Segal jumps on this and recommends backing him @ 25/1
Francome asks Corky "How's Sprinter Sacre? Has he been over to JP's... is he going to run?!"
Audience bursts out laughing!
Josses Hill, Wicklow Brave and Vautour get the most positive mentions. Russell asks NOB "what's Valseur Lido rated?"
"Not good enough"

Arkle .. Russell says Trifolium is the best horse to jump a
fence that he has ever sat on. Doesn't think English are good enough.
Russell thinks it's between Trifolium and Champagne Fever.
McGrath and Segal very strong on Trifolium "Best horse in the race"
Mick Fitz says CF is the one to beat but like Rock On Ruby. But Nick Luck says Harry Fry has said he's difficult to train.
McGrath and Russell are very negative on Rock On Ruby. McGrath suggests he should have stayed Hurdling.
Noel O'Brien says Trifolium is the best horse in the race
Russell with a STAT ATTACK "The highest rated Hurdler always wins the Arkle"
"Except when they fall!" says Framcome
Corky is clutching at straws, talking up Grandouet. Harrington & Francome are strong on Champagne Fever.
Russell talks up Trifolium again. Francome "You'll be saying Thank ????

you got that sack last Christmas when he faces that hill!"

CH.. Francome says Hurricane Fly is amazing. He asks Harrington is Jezki is a Pacemaker for MTOY! He says MTOY is better than TNO.
Corky talks up MTOY. Very sweet on him but is concerned about the pace. Francome "we just told you Jezki is a pacemaker!"
Hayley says the time of last years Triumph was slow. Francome "did the
owner pay a million quid because he said '???  me that's slow'!
Davy Russell says Hurricane Fly is a superstar. Can't understand why is not shown the same respect as Istabraq.
Nick Luck says "Davy you know Hurricane Fly well, having ridden against him so many time"
"Yeah, looking at his hole!" - Russell
Davy drops a BOMBSHELL!

He takes on Hurricane Fly!
Davy shakes his head after Jim McGrath says Annie Power should run in, and will win, the World Hurdle. "Best since Dawn Run".
Davy Russell drops another BOMBSHELL

He says "IMO Annie Power either runs in the Champion or will wait for Punchestown".
Davy says UDS is a non-runner and will win the Arkle next year
Harrington says if Annie Power was hers, she would run in the Champion Hurdle.
Henry De Bromhead says Ricci told him he wants to run Annie Power in the Champion.
Noel O'Brien suggests Big Bucks current form means Willie could be tempted to go for the WH. "I think she could win".
Mick Fitz "Hurricane Fly is a Legend and will win his third Champion. AP will run in the WH and will win".

Neptune- Segal likes Red Sherlock, but talks up Royal Boy. Corky tips yet another Hendo Horse Francome "that's four Henderson winners so far!".
Russell really likes Red Sherlock. McGrath thinks he had a hard race LTO and sees that as a negative. He talks up Briar Hill.

RSA: Nick Luck is not really a fan of anything but Smad Place is a fair price. NOB likes Ballycasey "Top rated". Carlingford Lough e/w
Fitz thinks the Irish dominate. Likes Carlingford Lough. Says Smad Place is best of the English. Harrington like CL.
Russell rides Morning Assembly and is really looking forward to him. Says Carlingford Lough is the biggest danger.
McGrath goes for Morning Assembly and Russell says he worked well yesterday "Jumped the best he ever has".

Champion Chase Francome - "Big test for Jamie Moore. Special horse. Like to see him win".
Corky says it took 7 weeks to get Captain Conan back after the Tingle Creek. Had a back injury. Likes him.
Tom Segal - "Don't tell me... Corky likes Nicky's horse and John is on the favourite!"
Henry says Sizing Europe and Special Tiara are in good form. Russell rides ST. Segal says SE has a big chance in an awful race.
McGrath says The favourite doesn't set a high standard. Tips Sizing Europe @ 12/1
Harrington says Barry is keen on Captain Conan. Likes Sizing Europe. Nick goes for Captain Conan "Corky has told us he's working well".
Corky mad about captain Conan.

CB- Gleeson - "who will win the Bumper Davy?" Russell - "Ireland!"
Bumper - Nick Luck says Seven Nation Army is rated very highly by David Pipe and is a bet @ 25/1
McGrath "Not one horse in the race is within 10lbs of the last five winners of the Champion Bumper." Davy says that's a load of nonsense.
Russell - "How did Killultagh Vic hammer last years 3rd Golantilla LTO so?" McGrath silenced.

McGrath is very sweet on Dynaste for the Ryanair. Nick Luck agrees "he's the most likely winner".
Francome, Segal, McGrath and Nick Luck all go for Dyanste, Fitz go for Benefficient
For the first time tonight Corky tips a non Henderson Horse! He goes for First Lieutenant as does Davy Russell.

WH- Nick Luck says JP will win the WH but with what? "It's a hard choice for AP. They are an incredibly potent duo". Negative AP for WH.
McGrath is very negative on Big Bucks. Says STD showed immaturity on TNO at Kempton and BB at Cheltenham.
Russell asks if Ruby would get the leg up on Big Bucks if AP is a non-runner. But seems to be suggesting he will.
Russell talks up Rule The World for the WH. Mick shouts "Mouse won't speak to you!" The crowd laugh and Davy falls silent!
Tom Segal asks the panel if anyone would back BB at 2/1 after that race? Francome "Yeah" Segal "Oh I forgot he's the favourite!"
Segal "I wouldn't back Big Bucks with anyone's money"
Segal "Does anyone know where AFC went, Did he go to Martinstown?" Someone in the crowd yells "he went to Philip Fentons!" Everyone laughs
Quote of the night goes to Noel O'Brien "When it comes to Mouse's horses, ratings go out the window! Impossible" Russell "Tell me about it!"
O'Brien and Harrington are very strong on Annie Power. Fitz "She runs and she wins". Segal shakes his head "she should run".
Fitz "Ruby told me he thinks no gelding can give AP 7lbs and a beating." Justin "She'll run and she'll be 9/4 fav on the day"

Russell says "we've spent 30 minutes talking about this... Move on!" Segal again argues AP for the Champion. It's getting out of control!
World Hurdle selections Francome - BB Cork - AP Segal - RTW Russell - RTW McGrath - AP O'Connor - AP Luck - MOT O'Brien - AP Fitz - AP

Truimph- Davy Russell "I've puke in my mouth from talking about the Triumph Hurdle, and I won't talk about it. He throws down the mic."
Russell "These Triumph Hurdle horses have a choice in life... Run in the Triumph or go to Tesco Burgers! Disgusting horses".
Fitz likes Calipto , Nick Luck is very strong on Rutherglen

AB- Segal and Russell are very keen on Briar Hill. Noel O'Brien questions his form and talks up Kings Palace.

GC- Francome "Don't know anyone who doesn't want Bobs Worth to win." Corky "He could be better than last year. In great form".
Tom Segal "With Cue Card out, he won't be taken on, so I think Silviniaco Conti is a certainty."
Russell "Last Instalment is a better horse than Sir Des Champs." He suggests he could be one of the greats. Needs it soft. Very strong word.
Nick Luck "I think Last Instalment could be a superstar, I think he's going to win the Gold Cup."
Noel O'Brien, hayley, Francome and Fitz go for Bobs Worth. Russell says Last Instalment is it rains, BW if not.
Francome makes a case for Harry Topper. Russell says "will there be any birch left in the fences if he wins?!"

Handicaps McGrath - If In Doubt and Never Enough Time Segal - Cantlow and Dunguib
Segal turns to Russell "Davy what's wrong with Cantlow?" Russell "Webber!"
Handicaps Fitz - Cheltenain and Champagne West O'Brien - Seabeat and Gilgamboa Luck - Blood Cotil and Indian Castle
Handicaps Harrington - Jetson and Seabeat "Arthur really fancies it", HayleyLiving Next Door and Blood Cotil
Handicaps Russell - Vaniteux Corky - Erict Francome - Colour Squadron

Charity Bets
Fitz - FoxRock
O'Brien - AP (WH)
Luck - Last Instalment
Harrington - Jezki e/w
hayley- Jezki win
McGrath - Taquin DS
Russell - Briar Hill
Segal - Trifolium
Corky - Oscar Whisky
Francome – Ballycasey

Kanturk Point To Point Cheltenham Preview.

Friday 28 Feb

Panel: Jim Culloty, Patrick Wilmott, Patrick Mullins, Jane Mangan, Lad from Boylesports.

Day 1. Hurricane Fly Our Conor 1/2 likely in Champion Hurdle.
Danny Mullins the liability for the latter despite PM doing his best to prove that "blood runs thicker than vodka!"
PM had no surprises re Annie Power except that she was most likely to run in World Hurdle.
Trifolium the consensus in Arkle.
Hugely varied opinion in Supreme Novice.
Foxrock considered a good thing in NH Chase esp as Danny wont be riding him!

Day 2
PM very keen on Faugheen on better ground
JC would fancy Red Sherlock with Timmy Murphy riding not with Tom Scu though.
PM likes Ballycasey ew saying Barry G thought he would reverse places with Red Sherlock

JC keen on Smad Place ew
PM Ballycasey to win
All keen on Carlingford Lough to place
Many Clouds liked ew also.

Coral Cup
PM thinks Sure Reef has a nice racing weight 10/12 but stressed that WPM has "only" won 2 or 3 handicaps.

2 Mile Chase
A poor renewal was the consensus with Baily Green and Sizing Europe the ew value

Cross Country

A Carberry 1-2 Love Rory /Big Shu

PM cannot separate Black Hercules, Shaneshill or Killultagh Vic
As BH was bought by Emmet and himself and won p2p maiden at Dromahane he is more attached to him. Given their last 2 Champion Bumper winners came from p2p route he prefers the strength and stamina of these types over flat bred types for the race.
JM amazed at the speed of the Naas race with Killultagh Vic keeping up an impossibly quick gallop.
JC informs that Robbie Mc p****d that Pat Smullen has first choice of Weld horse for the race and would most likely pick Silver Concorde, a horse named to be the aeroplane he is !

Day 3

JLT NOv Chase

PM and PW very sweet on Faugheen.
Both agree he would prefer good ground
JM likes Wonderful Charm and dislikes Oscar Whisky
Vukovar on soft ground would keep all the little Vookers very happy according to PW !

PW Dynaste
JM Benefficient ew
JC First Lieutenant

World Hurdle
JC Big Bucks by a street.

Others Annie Power

Day 4
Albert Bartlett
PM all over Briar Hill. his Nap of the week . Believes he could win any of the Novice Hurdles there and is the Stable Nap ( even Danny could win on him)
Triumph Hurdle
PM wondered aloud why his father bought flat horses to try teach them jump for this race when he could buy p2p horses that would have a future !
PW Soft ground Calipto or LE Rocher
Good ground Royal Irish Huzzar ew
Guitar Pete his bismarck.
JC Guitar Pete ew
JM Tiger Roll ew
ANO Lindenhurst ew a steal at 50/1 !

Gold Cup
Bobsworth unanimous
JC hoping for a fast pace for Lord Windemere to be ridden for a place.

JM Oscar Delta lights up at Cheltenham so is hopeful again!
PM Mossey Joe doubtful to run.
Believes it is Enda Bolger's race to lose with On The Fringe

NAP Bismarck
PM Briar Hill Irving
JC Carlingford Lough ew
PW On The Fringe / Annie Power Irving
JM Faugheen Oscar Whiskey