Dan Skelton looks ahead to Cheltenham and Southwell
We have a very busy day at Cheltenham tomorrow with Harry Skelton riding most. We start with Langer Dan (12.10).
He has got to give away a little penalty to these but that’s because he won a listed race. He is a remarkably tough little horse and I am really looking forward to running him around Cheltenham.
He is in great form at home and although this is another step up in grade for him, he always puts his best foot forward.
The ground is nice for Beakstown (12.45). It’s a pretty good race but we have got some chasing experience and that should count towards us. I have been looking forward to running him and dropping him back in trip a little.
Destrier (1.20) has got top weight but that doesn’t worry me. His form from Exeter is good. The other two who finished ahead of him went and ran in a Grade 1 and weren’t disgraced. I think we have a big chance here. Going left-handed is going to suit him more as well.
We have two runners in the big race, the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup (1.55); Spiritofthegames and Not That Fuisse.
Bridget Andrews will ride Spiritofthegames. She rode him two weeks ago at Newbury and he never really got going. For whatever reason, this horse hasn’t fired this autumn and winter like I thought he would after a very good springtime.
He has got to come back to form at some point and if he did, he would be dangerous to anyone. He is good around the track and I hope there is a good day in him.
Not That Fuisse has got 10’2lbs. He has had three runs in novice chases without winning but he has held good company every time. I would give him a definite chance here. There is no more rain due which is perfect.
The Mulcair (2.30) takes a big step up in grade. He’s five, he is strong, and I am looking forward to seeing how he fairs. He is a galloper at home, an honest horse, and jumps well. I can see him acquitting himself well here.
In the International Hurdle (3.05), we have Ch’tibello and that has always been the plan since the spring. It’s the track where he won the County Hurdle.
It is a deep looking race but I am not afraid to say that I think we have a massive chance. He is in good form and although he has to take on the unbeaten juvenile from last year, I am very happy to start him here.
Vision Du Puy is our last runner on Saturday (3.40). She is only four but I think she is ready for the step up in trip. She has come from France and she won a 2m2f race out there and I just think she is crying out for the step up. It is a very competitive race.
Our only other meeting over the weekend is Southwell on Sunday. We run three in the maiden hurdle (1.10).
Aheadfullofdreams and Call me Chris will be better down the line in handicaps. They don’t look weight for age horses at this stage but Shan Blue stands out on figures. I think he was going to go very close at Newbury at the Ladbrokes Winter Carnival so I will be expecting a big run here from him.
Getariver (2.15) won last time but wants to go left-handed so this plays into her hands quite well. I would be disappointed if she didn’t go very close.
Silk Or Satin (2.50) is bred to jump. She was going very well in an Irish point until two out. I don’t know what happened to her at Carlisle but it was nothing like you see at home.
She has to go and put a good run in and has the form to prove. On her homework, she goes nicely and we’re putting a line through Carlisle