Today's racecards

Cheltenham

  • 15:45 Byrne Group Cleeve Hurdle 3m

  • Winner: £
  • Going: Heavy, Soft in places
  • Surface: Turf

Result

  • Weighed In

  • Winning time: 6m 39.10s
  • Off time: 15:47:50
15:45 Cheltenham Racecards
No Draw Dist
1st Big Buck's (FR) 7/2
2nd Punchestowns (FR) 10/11
3rd Fair Along (GER) 8/1

Racecard

No Form Silk Horse A Wgt Trainer Jockey OR SP
1 2411-44 Royal Blue, Yellow chevrons, Yellow sleeves, Royal Blue spots, Yellow cap Blazing Bailey 35
Nag meCourse WinnerDistance WinnerCourse and Distance Winner
7 11-8 b A King R Thornton 161 6/17.00
2 9-66611 Emerald Green and White (quartered), Orange and White halved sleeves, Orange cap, White star Lough Derg (FR) 7
Nag meCourse WinnerDistance Winner
9 11-8 v D Pipe T Scudamore 153 16/117.00
3 111-135 Yellow, Black Cross of Lorraine, Black sleeves, Yellow armlets, Yellow cap, Black star Pettifour (IRE) 35
Nag meDistance Winner
7 11-8 N A Twiston-Davies P J Brennan 160 33/134.00
4 113-11 Dark blue, emerald green hoop, quartered cap Punchestowns (FR) 35
Nag meCourse Winner
6 11-8 N J Henderson B J Geraghty 171 10/111.91
5 437-211 Black and Light Blue (quartered), Black sleeves, White cap Fair Along (GER) 43
Nag meCourse WinnerCourse and Distance Winner
7 11-4 P J Hobbs R Johnson 160 8/19.00
6 1371-U1 BLACK and WHITE (halved), RED sleeves and cap Big Buck's (FR) 23
Nag meCourse and Distance Winner
6 11-0 P F Nicholls R Walsh 151 7/24.50
7 45/15-32 Black and Beige (halved), chevrons on sleeves, Beige cap No Refuge (IRE) 23
Nag meCourse Winner
9 11-0 J Howard Johnson D F O'Regan 151 28/129.00
8 35/41-UP EMERALD GREEN and YELLOW (quartered), WHITE sleeves and cap Turpin Green (IRE) 62
Nag me
10 11-0 N G Richards B Harding 145 66/167.00

Verdict

This looks a good renewal and it will have an impact on the World Hurdle market; BIG BUCK'S is fancied to make the most of the weight he receives from favourite Punchestowns and cause a mini-upset. The selection was perhaps a tad fortunate to win at the track last time as his main market rival Ballydub tipped up whilst still in with every chance. The bare form needs improving on but he was an exciting Novice chaser last season and still had every chance when falling in this year's renewal of the Hennessey. Stamina is perhaps his strongpoint and proven on the ground, it is not unrealistic to think that he may find the necessary 4lb improvement on official ratings to challenge Punchestowns. Nicky Henderson's gelding was all the rage for the World Hurdle before his run at Ascot in the Long Walk and even more so after an 11 length trouncing of Duc De Regniere. That proved his stamina on goodish ground however it will be interesting to see how he gets on in this type of mud (won on heavy in France mind you). Fair Along is a fine advert for the yard; the former Arkle second has been rejuvenated recently and he holds the selection on a strict form line through Don't Push It. Richard Johnson takes over in the saddle due to Rhys Flint being unable to claim in this Grade Two contest. Pettifour has come up short recently, including behind Punchestowns, but his trainer excels here, whilst the consistent and game Lough Derg is unlikely to hold off this calibre of rival late on. Blazing Bailey, a regular feature at the track and in these staying hurdles races is yet to shine this season but with the Festival on the horizon more will be expected from him today. A thrilling race, and Big Buck's can further enhance his reputation.