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Dublin: 5 °C Monday 14 October, 2019
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Liveblog

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Hello and welcome to today’s Cheltenham liveblog, your one-stop shop to keep on track of all the action at Prestbury Park.

The premise is simple. If your stuck in work or college or just not near a TV to watch the racing, we’ve got you covered.

Just subscribe to our results service using the button below (for mobile devices only) and we’ll send you on the results of each race as they land.

Yesterday was an incredible day for the Irish, saddling six of the seven winners but it might be too much to ask today as a tricky Thursday of races are ahead of us.

Today’s big race is, of course, the Sun Bets Stayers’ Hurdle, formerly known as the World Hurdle.

Sam Spinner is the 10/3 favourite but Yanworth (11/2) and Unowhatimeanharry (8/1) would be popular winners for JP McManus. Keep an eye on Supasundae (8/1) though as undoubtedly a class horse, Jessica Harrington’s charge looks a winner if — and it’s a big if — he handles the three mile trip.

Here’s a reminder of today’s full schedule, with the Grade Ones highlighted in bold.

  • 1.30pm: JLT Novices’ Chase
  • 2.10pm: Pretempts Network Final Handicap Hurdle
  • 2.50pm: Ryanair Chase
  • 3.30pm: Sun Bets Stayers’ Hurdle
  • 4.10pm: Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate Handicap Chase
  • 4.50pm: Trull House Stud Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle
  • 5.30pm: Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase

If you’re looking for a preview of today’s action, you’ll find it here:

The first race of the day is the JLT Novices’ Chase with previous winners including the likes of Sir des Champs, Vautour and Black Hercules.

There’s a decent amount of money coming in for Shattered Love (5/1) after Gordon Elliott’s success yesterday. Terrefort will go off your 3/1 favourite while Invitation Only (4/1) will go off in the colours of Graham Wylie — winner of this race the last two years. 

Shattered Love wins the JLT

She gave punters a fright with a mistake at the last but Shattered Love takes the opener on day three at Cheltenham for Gordon Elliott and a third winner for Jack Kennedy

Jack Kennedy gave Shattered Love the perfect ride there and, but for a small mistake at the last, his mount would have won even more handily than she did, easing away from the favourite up the hill.

Source: James Crombie/INPHO

Full results:

1. Shattered Love (4/1)
2. Terrefort (3/1F)
3. Benatar (10/1)

Next up is the Pretemps Network Final, one of the most competitive handicaps at the festival.

Unsurprisingly, it’s Gordon Elliott’s Glenloe (7/2) who tops the market with Sort It Out (8/1) and Delta Work (8/1) also to the fore.

Though running off a 13lb higher mark than at Aintree last time out, Louis Vac Pouch (10/1) has proven distance and going form.

Delta Work wins the Pretemps in a photo finish

Delta Work and Glenlone were neck and neck coming to the line but it’s the former who came out on top ahead of the favourite by a nostril.

The only thing that was certain at the end of that race was that was Gordon Elliott was going to have his fifth winner as both Delta Work and Glenloe come from his yard.

But look how close it was:

Full results:

1. Delta Work (6/1)
2. Glenloe (9/2F)
3. Connetable (33/1)
4. Taj Badalandabad (40/1)

Coming up in 20 minutes, we have the second Grade One of the day, the Ryanair Chase.

Un De Sceaux is the 4/6 favourite but the 12-year-old Cue Card (5/1) would be the fairytale of the week if he was to win.

Frodon (8/1) is the best of the young contenders while Balko Des Flos (11/1), Cloudy Dream (12/1) and Sub Lieutenant (16/1) make up the rest of the six-horse field.

Balko Des Flos wins the Ryanair Chase

Davy Russell does it again, but this time for Henry de Bromhead finishing well clear of Un De Sceaux on Balko Des Flos.

It’s the first time Michael O’Leary has won the race his airline sponsors.

What a brilliant performance from Russell and Balko Des Flos.

Source: James Crombie/INPHO

 

Un De Sceaux just had nothing in the tank at the end. Spare a thought for Cue Card who pulled up too. It might be the last time we see him on a racecourse.

Full results:

1. Balko Des Flos (8/1
2. Un De Sceaux (8/11F)
3. Cloudy Dream (10/1)

What the 2018 renewal of the Sunbets Stayers’ Hurdle lacks in quality, it certainly makes up for in competitiveness with no fewer than six horses separated by three pounds at the top of the ratings.

Sam Spinner (7/2) is the favourite because of his form on heavy ground but he tends to need a lead from early on which is The New One‘s (16/1) modus operandi too and that battle could cost them both.

Unowhatimeanharry (5/1) and Yanworth (5/1) will attract interest but don’t sleep on Supadsundae (8/1).

They’re off in 10 minutes.

Penhill wins the Stayers' Hurdle

Willie Mullins adds another championship race to his CV with Paul Townend guiding his 12/1 shot home ahead of Supasundae in what was a cracking race.

That was one of the races of the festival so far with Penhill becoming the first horse to win both and Albert Bartlett and a Stayers’ Hurdle.

Source: James Crombie/INPHO

Supasundae gave his all in second place but came up just short while Wholestone ran on well into third.

Full results:

1. Penhill (12/1)
2. Supasundae (6/1)
3. Wholestone (14/1)

Brian Cooper has ridden the last two winners of the Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate Handicap Chase — or the Festival Plate in old money – and he’s on board the 14/1 shot Willie Boy today.

Davy Russell’s mount The Storyteller is the 5/1 favourite but David Pipe — winner of this race three times this decade — saddles Kings Socks at 6/1.

In a big field, there’s some money coming in for Romain De Senam (20/1) further down the card as Paul Nicholls looks to saddle his first winner at this year’s festival.

The Storyteller wins the Festival Plate

Another race, another win for Gordon Elliott and Davy Russell as The Storyteller waits until the last to make his move and take the Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate Handicap Chase.

You’d have to feel sorry for Splash Of Ginge there after making all the running but what a patient ride from Davy Russell to secure his third win of the day and continue Ireland’s clean sweep of Thursday’s action through five races.

Gordon Elliott’s having another great day.

Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Full results:

1. The Storyteller (5/1F)
2. Splash of Ginge (25/1)
3. King’s Odyssey (14/1)
4. Ballyalton (16/1)

The penultimate race of the day is the Trull House Stud Mares Novices’ Hurdle a race that’s just two year’s old.

Willie Mullins has had short-priced favourites for both runnings so far and Willie Mullins has had short-priced winners for both runnings so far too.

Laurina (1/2) is the banker this year for Mullins and looks the class act of the field.

However, don’t rule out the front-running Maria’s Benefit (11/2) for an upset especially as we tipped the favourite as our NAP last night.

Laurina romps home in the Mares' Novices' Hurdle

They should just rename this race the Willie Mullins’ Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle as Laurina romps home to make it 15 winners for Ireland at the festival this year.

Was that the easiest win of the festival? It’s certainly close:


The win also puts Willie Mullins into the lead with 61 all-time winners at the Cheltenham festival, one ahead of Nicky Henderson.

Full results:

1. Laurina (4/7F)
2. Cap Soleil (10/1)
3. Champayne Lady (80/1)

We’re on to the Lucky Last — the catchily titled Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Amateur Riders’ Handicap Chase — which, as the name suggests, is limited to amateur riders.

Given the going, this one is a just a matter of throwing a dart at a page. Our selection is the Nicky Henderson-trained Sugar Baron (10/1) with Katie Walsh on board but it’s Mall Dini (9/2) who heads the market.

Where’s your money going?

Missed Approach wins the Kim Muir to deny Ireland a clean sweep

Missed Approach takes Britain’s first win of the day, out-staying Mall Dini up the hill to win the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Amateur Riders’ Handicap Chase.

That was a very close run race but Missed Approach just held off the favourite Mall Dini to take the win.

Source: PA Archive/PA Images

Full results:

1. Missed Approach (8/1)
2. Mall Dini (4/1)
3. Squouateur (5/1)
4. Double Ross (40/1)

And that’s it from us.

Thanks as always for joining us. We’ll be back tomorrow for Gold Cup day so make sure you check in.

About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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