I have to say, I wasn’t blown away by Chacun Pour Soi in the Hilly Way at Cork.
I mean, he got the job done and he’d have been nowhere near cooked to perfection as he’ll be working back from Cheltenham, but he was a bit workmanlike throughout.
He put the race to bed easily, but he’s still got to improve to win a Betway Champion Chase. He’ll next be seen at Leopardstown at Christmas – where he was beaten last season – but he needs to put up a much better performance if I am to consider him for his big target in March.
We didn’t see a great deal of the John Durkan, but what we obviously did see is that Min won it again.
To win this race for three years on the bounce is a huge achievement and I was delighted for all of his connections that he did it. He’s been a bit underrated in his career, but you can’t fault his record. He’s never too far away and always gives his best.
Tornado Flyer was one to take out of the race, too. He looked to have it all to do on paper but is clearly improving and no doubt Willie will find a race for him before the season is out.
Cheltenham on Saturday
Adagio will surely take all of the beating in the opener.
He looked very good on his debut at Warwick and then backed that run with a good second at Cheltenham just eight days later. It doesn’t look the strongest race on paper, so he’d only have to reproduce the same level of form from his last run.
He won’t be a big price, but you can’t help but be excited to see Chantry House again in the 12:40. He was a good third in the Supreme last season and got off the mark on his first try over fences at Ascot last month.
He’s probably the most exciting novice chaser in England and he’ll be looking to get another win under his belt before no doubt going up in class next time.
It’s not often Gary Moore opens says a horse is the ‘best he’s ever trained’, but he’s convinced about Goshen in the 15:00.
Everyone is fully aware of what happened in the Triumph Hurdle and a win here to keep the Champion Hurdle dream alive would serve justice for the Moore’s. I hope they do it.
You know how he’ll be ridden – there are plenty of stayers in the race – so you can imagine it’ll be a tactical affair for those coming in behind.
Doncaster on Saturday
There was plenty of talk about Monmiral before he made his British debut.
He was very good that day but now has a penalty to carry. I’d be keen to put a line through the performance of Glorious Zoff last time out. He was beaten at a very short price, but he was mad keen and if he learns to settle, I think he’ll run a very big race.
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