CHELTENHAM 2015 FESTIVAL DIARY: DAY 2

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Updated: March 13, 2015

1.30 Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle: (Grade 1, Class 1): Distance 2m 5f: Fences 10: 10 R

Warrantor made a bright eager start whilst Parlour Games was initially detached from the running. The first three horses to meet the second fence were Windsor Park, Warrantor and Beast of Burden. By the fifth flight Beast of Burden was around two lengths clear of Windsor Park with Vyta Du Roc, Warrantor, Nicholas Canyon, Outlander following closely behind.   Anteros at this point was the back marker. A jump later and Parlour Games began the steady creep up the inside getting ever closer with every stride. At two from home Nicholas Canyon began to see daylight in the field and going into the last flight Windsor Park held advantage over Vyta Du Roc who made a bad jumping error, allowing Parlour Games to sneak into second place in the home straight. Victory by 3 ¾ lengths went to 9-2 Windsor Park, Parlour Games at 13-2 odds took second 1 ¼ lengths ahead of Nicholas Canyon the 7-2 favourite.

Victorious Windsor Park. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Victorious Windsor Park. Image credit @Channel4Racing

2.05 RSA Chase: (Grade 1, Class 1): Distance 3m ½ f: Fences 19: 8 R NR The Ould Lad

With five to jump Kings Palace was around two lengths clear of Southfield Theatre and Don Poli was pushing along. Kings Palace landed awkwardly at the next hurdle allowing three horses to begin challenging, with Don Poli moving into second and Southfield Theatre and Wounded Warrior just behind. Don Poli put the pressure on leader Kings Palace and two from home Don Poli forged clear in a winning move, forcing the other contenders to fight for a place. Don Poli at 13-8f odds won by a considerable six lengths with Southfield Theatre in second at 13-2 just 1 ½ lengths clear of Wounded Warrior in third place at 12-1 odds by a head over Adriana Des Mottes.

2.40 Coral Cup (Handicap Hurdle): (Grade 3, Class 1): Distance 2m 5f: Fences 10: 25 R

Three from home at the top of the hill the race was wide open with the field evenly spread across the course and tightly packed. Zabana was just in front with two to go and Taglietelle made a move from the back before the last hurdle. The race was contested right to the wire with Aux Ptits Soins at 9-1 2f odds winning by a neck over Zabana 25-1 just a neck in front of third placed Activial 17-2f. Fourth placed Taglietelle at 14-1 wasn’t far off either with a ½ length separation from Activial.

3.20 Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase: (Grade 1, Class 1): Distance 2m: Fences 13: 9R NR Clarcam & Champagne Fever

Dodging Bullets standing proudly. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Dodging Bullets standing proudly. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Special Tiara went ahead going over the first hurdle and remained in pole position for much of the race. At fence three Special Tiara was making all the running around six to seven lengths clear of Dodging Bullets, followed by Sizing Europe, Somersby, Mr Mole, Sire de Grugy, Sprinter Sacre, Simply Ned and the back marker Savello. Special Tiara’s advantage increased to about eight to ten lengths with Dodging Bullets keeping a steady paced second spot and Sizing Europe and Sprinter Sacre in third and fourth position at the top of the hill. Then Dodging Bullets made a move and Somersby went with him, and two from home Dodging Bullets had caught Special Tiara with Somersby keeping pace with both of them. Having taken the last flight together it was a three way run to the line, and Dodging Bullets in the middle surged ahead to take victory by 1 ¼ lengths at 9-2 odds. Somersby put in a valiant run to take second place at 33-1 and 1 ¾ lengths behind Special Tiara took a brave third spot at 18-1. Sire de Grugy came in fourth languishing seven lengths behind Special Tiara and Sprinter Sacre didn’t manage to finish the race.

Winning Dodging Bullets enjoys a victory drink. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Winning Dodging Bullets enjoys a victory drink. Image credit @Channel4Racing

4.00 Glenfarclas Handicap Chase (Cross Country): Class 2: Distance 3m 7f: Fences 32: 16R

After a false start the race commenced although Chicago Grey was a reluctant starter and was ten lengths off the pace at the first hurdle. Any Currency was in the lead with 22 fences to go and ten fences later was still in pole position. Three from home and Any Currency remained in front with Quantitativeeasing and Toutancarmont pressing the leader. Then as Toutancarmont jumped he blundered into the rails on landing and took Quantitativeeasing with him, colliding with a solitary photographer in the process (who I believe suffered a broken ankle). This left Rivage d’Or to challenge Any Currency with Uncle Junior pressing hard too. Any Currency went to third but fought back hard. At the line 16-1 Rivage d’Or took victory by 2 ¼ lengths over 7-1 Any Currency a length in front of Uncle Junior at 20-1 odds. Two lengths further back, Dogora also at 20-1 odds took fourth place.

Checking out the first Glenfarclas hurdle. Image credit @Channel4Racing

Checking out the first Glenfarclas hurdle. Image credit @Channel4Racing

4.40 Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle: (Grade 3, Class 1): Distance 2m ½ f: 22 R

Winner: Qualando 25-1 by 1 ½ lengths over Second: Bouvreuil 14-1 by 2 ¾ lengths over Third: The Saint James 33-1 in front by a head over Fourth: Starchitect 16-1

5.15 Weatherbys Champion Bumper: (Grade 1, Class 1): Distance 2m ½ f: 23R NR Pylonthepressure

Winner: Moon Racer 9-2f by 1 ½ lengths over Second: Modus 33-1 again 1 ½ lengths ahead of Third: Wait For Me 9-1 just a neck over Fourth: Yanworth 16-1

The official ground conditions for the day were Good.

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