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    Thomas Mor Runs Cheltenham Today

The week has flown by and we have reached Gold Cup day already.  We have the one runner at Cheltenham today, Thomas Mor in the Albert Bartlett novices hurdle at 2.50pm and Adam Wedge rides.  Our gelding is a big price but he has won three of his four starts for the yard this season and looks well worth a crack at the top level.  He was the impressive winner of an Ascot handicap last time off top weight and the runner up as won again since.  He still has a bit to find on official ratings with a few of these today but the truth is we still don't really know how good he could be.  He is such a laid back character at home but seems to save his best for the racecourse which is all you can ask.  His one blip came in the Challow hurdle at Newbury when he pulled up but he hated the heavy ground that day and the run was too bad to be true.  The ground is a slight concern today but it will be nowhere near as bad as it was that day so hopefully he will handle conditions.  He likes to race prominently so fingers crossed he can put up a good show and stay on well up the hill.

I know I mentioned this yesterday but you can't get away from past Festival form when you are trying to find the winners for these races.  Sire Du Berlais won the Stayers hurdle at a big price but that was his third Festival win and he has also finished runner up before as well.  Envoi Allen won the Ryanair - his third win at the Festival and he has now won the Champion Bumper, Ballymore novices hurdle and a big one over fences.  It is quite remarkable some of these horses turn up year in year out, let alone win these races.  It is both testament to the trainer and the horse themselves.  Buena Vista was one of ours in years gone by that was fantastic every Festival for many years.  Maybe one of the horses running in the Triumph hurdle today will be the next Tiger Roll?  I am not sure which one but there are a few that can win it, probably Irish trained!  When looking at the Gold Cup, two horses stand out for me, the two at the head of the market, Galopin Des Champs and A Plus Tard.  Galopin Des Champs won the Martin Pipe two years ago and then fell at the last when going to win the Turners novices chase last year.  A Plus Tard has only had one run this season and he pulled up at Haydock but he is a horse who saves his best for Prestbury Park in March.  He was runner up in the Gold Cup two years ago and won last year and I think I would just have to side with him as the Henry De Bromhead team are in fine form this week.  It promises to be a cracking race whatever happens and at the end of the day I just hope that racing is the winner in what has been a great week for the sport so far.

I love the Foxhunters, the amateurs Gold Cup and at 7/1 you would have to think that Billaway would have a great chance of a repeat success.  He left it late last year, only just getting there but I think he can do it again.  Best of luck to our amateur Martin McIntyre who is riding Moratorium in this race and best of luck to Fergus Gillard who rides Molly Olly's Wishes for the Skelton team in the Martin Pipe race.

Yesterday at Cheltenham there was obvious disappointment for our team with Thanksforthehelp in the Pertemps.  We held high hoped for our grey but sadly it was not to be.  I don't think he had the smoothest passage throughout the race and I am sure jockey Mark Walsh might do things a little differently if he could ride the race again but having said that he still had every chance approaching the last but could not quite do it. He finished twelfth, beaten eight lengths but if you take the winner out there was only five lengths covering the next eleven horses home so he was really not beaten very far.  It is the toughest most competitive races you can get and you really do just need everything to go right.

There is lots more fantastic racing to look forward to today with the Irish looking set to dominate once again but hopefully the British can grab a winner or two.  There is also jumps racing at Fakenham and Doncaster today.  They race over jumps in Ireland at Down Royal and there is all-weather action at Wolverhampton and Newcastle.  Enjoy the final day of Cheltenham everyone.