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Cheltenham Pageant 2022: Champion Hurdle day – stay! | Sport









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Structure Hill wins the Supreme Novices Hurdle!

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2.10 Arkle Trophy preview

One other stay probability for the house staff in a Grade One – the final one for a while, fairly presumably – as Edwardstone makes an attempt to shift his dominance of the two-mile novice chasers on this facet of the Irish Sea up a gear by beating one of the best from the opposite facet too. He has been impressively constant this season, operating to nearly precisely the identical, very excessive, ranking for every of his final three wins, a Grade One and a pair of Grade Twos. He’s buying and selling at round 11-4 to provide Alan King his first Pageant winner since Uxizandre took the Champion Chase in 2015, with Riviere D’Etel and Blue Lord, runner-up and winner respectively within the Irish model of this race at Leopardstown in February, subsequent within the record at 4-1 and 5-1. Blue Lord seemed like a barely lucky winner final time, as Riviere D’Etel made a foul mistake on the final and nonetheless went down by simply half a size having rallied all the way in which up the run-in. As a mare, she will get a really helpful 7lb from Blue Lord and Edwardstone too. All three are robust contenders, however I’m taking an opportunity right here on Haut En Couleurs, a steady companion of Blue Lord on the Willie Mullins yard. He lacks the expertise of the principals, having just one accomplished begin within the ebook, however that was in a robust newbies’ chase at Leopardstown’s Christmas assembly and he beat Gents De Mee, a powerful winner of his subsequent two begins by an mixture of 40 lengths, with some ease. He didn’t get any additional than the third behind Blue Lord and Riviere D’Etel final time, however was outstanding within the betting beforehand and might be value chancing each-way at round 8-1.















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1.30 Supreme Novice Hurdle Preview

A small(ish) however choose discipline for the opening race of the assembly will probably be despatched on their means by the standard roar from the heaving grandstands. A couple of dozen of us tried our greatest to match it final 12 months, by the way in which, however it simply wasn’t the identical. Anyway, the 2022 renewal has all of the strands you’ll hope for within the opening race, together with an early probability for the Brits to get a winner on the board, as Structure Hill, from the Nicky Henderson yard, is considered one of not more than three home-trained horses that might begin favorite for a Grade One race this week. It’s “might” fairly than will, as Dysart Dynamo has changed him because the slim favorite this morning, although it’s nonetheless very tight – 9-4 versus 5-2 – and both or each might head the market at 1.30pm. Jonbon, a steady companion of Structure Hill, can also be in with a giant shout – all three horses are unbeaten to this point – whereas Mighty Potter (Gordon Elliott) and Mullins’s second-string Kilcruit, runner-up when odds-on for the Bumper right here final 12 months, are additionally priced up at single-figure odds. For me, it got here all the way down to a straight alternative between Structure Hill and Dysart Dynamo, and the latter made barely extra enchantment as a) the Irish Grade Two type might be on a barely larger stage than Structure Hill’s Grade One win on heavy floor in January, and b) the time of Dysart Dynamo’s wide-margin success final time lends a bit weight to that concept. It’s an enchanting contest although, and victory for any of the highest 5 out there couldn’t be classed as a shock.

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Good morning from Cheltenham

The gates have been flung open at 10.30am and one fortunate particular person turned the primary paying punter to set foot on the hallowed tarmac resulting in the bar because the final one left in 2020.

Round 69,000 extra are anticipated to observe her or him by way of the door at present, and what a day awaits them within the pure amphitheatre of Cheltenham racecourse, a venue which gathers up the noise and sends it swirling round and inside your head like nowhere else.

Greg Wooden
(@Greg_Wood_)

Keen punters on the entrance of the queue to get again into #cheltenham. The gates open in 5 minutes. pic.twitter.com/02Lb6cmb7g


March 15, 2022

The official attendance on every of the 4 days 12 months in the past was round 41, and with out wishing to sound in any means ungrateful, watching it out of your couch was very a lot the way in which to go. The Pageant will not be the Pageant with out the environment, and it felt as if historic achievements – like Rachael Blackmore lifting the prize for the assembly’s high jockey for the primary time – successfully went unacknowledged. The race, you realised, is simply part of the expertise. The reception afterwards is what makes it full.

I can nonetheless bear in mind the bedlam as Like-A-Butterfly and Charlie Swan got here up the hill within the Supreme Novice Hurdle 20 years ago nearly to the day, within the first Pageant race after the 2001 assembly was misplaced to foot-and-mouth. The pent-up vitality and frustration of 24 months away exploded from the stands, and we are able to anticipate one thing related shortly after 1.30 at present, not least if Dysart Dynamo and Structure Hill, the massive hopes for Eire and Britain respectively, leap the final collectively.

Greg Wooden
(@Greg_Wood_)

There was a mad sprint to bagsy one of the best seats within the bars when the doorways opened at 10.30 at #Cheltenham. By my reckoning Mike Hesketh and William Mort have been first to get their fingers on a Guinness, however they’re right here to work within the betting ring so that they presumably had a head begin. pic.twitter.com/y0VtoEXepX


March 15, 2022

Honeysuckle and Rachael Blackmore can even get the massive ovation they deserved 12 months in the past if they will repeat their success within the Champion Hurdle. The British runners’ try to hold at the least inside shouting distance of their Irish counterparts will probably be one other theme of the day, as Alan King’s Edwardstone goes to submit as favorite for the Arkle Trophy (2.10) in opposition to a number of Irish challengers, whereas the 2 handicaps on the cardboard, at 2.50 and 4.50, each have full fields and supply the form of problem that few punters can resist.

The primary race – and the standard roar to ship them on their means – is at 1.30, picks for all seven races are here and all of the information, outcomes and gossip will probably be right here on the stay weblog as quickly because it drops. Completely satisfied Pageant!

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