1 30 Triumph.

Abbyssial : Unbeaten in Irelabd in three starts but has it all to do and I will be surprised if he does it but plenty of others will not.

Achtung : If this horse started Thursday he would not still win.

Amoruccio : Little or no chance.

Ballyglasheen : Little or no chance.

Broughton : Was in and out on the flat while talented but looks as if he loves this new discipline and a big player here. Will love the ground and should handle the course.

Calipto : Really tough ,strong, staying, classy juvenile who loves soft ground and in the absence of Le Rocher and Activial has the best form on offer but the poor stable form is a huge worry as much as the lightning fast ground. Still he is the one to beat.

Cherry Tiger : Should set off with Achtung !!

Guitar Pete : Fancied by a lot here in Ireland and trained by Dessie Hughes. I wonder can a horse that only reached a rating of 64 on the flat can be good enough to win a Triumph ? It can be done and he will love the fast ground but I doubt it.

Kentucky Hyden : Consistent type and has form with Le Rocher, albeit at a distance. Hard to forgive his defeat by Ballyglasheen at this course earlier in the year on ground that should have suited but I have a sneaking suspicion for this lad.

Lindenhurst : Genuine tough front runner who loves good ground and going left handed. Has a decision over Guitar Pete and can confirm that form with him. A good outsider.

Pearl Castle : Fancied coming in here by shrewd connections who target this race always. Nothing wrong at all and will love the ground.

Plinth : Might struggle a bit when the taps are turned on at the op of the hill but will stay forever, however I cant see him doing it.

Royal Irish Huzzar : Won well from Guitar Pete here in November and will like the ground but plenty to find in my book.

Rutherglen : Like Pearl Castle is trained by John Quinn who loves to have a right go at this prize and this wayward and quirky hard puller could go close. Won on the flat a month ago to prep for here and if can settle here and handle these undulations [ there is a question mark ] then he will go close on ground he will love. Big Player.

Tiger Roll : I feel he needs to step up a bit on what he has done in just the two runs and inexperience a big problem.

Adriana Des Mottes : The only filly in the race . She is huge and has an engine to boot. I feel she is Ireland’s best chance and by some and will be powering up this hill when many have cried enough. Big player.

SUMMARY : I have this down to , Calipto, Kentucky Hyden, Rutherglen, Broughton and Adriana Des Mottes. I will reluctantly leave out Calipto on the basis of the poor form of the Nicholls yard and go with Rutherglen 12/1 with Paddy Power and Adriana Des Mottes 20/1 with Bet Victor and suggest a half point win on both.

2 05. County Hurdle.

Just the 28 runners !! My long shortlist is Diakali, Lac Fontana, Cheltenian, Alaivan, Cash N Go,Thomas Edison and Dunraven Storm. I am going to contradict myself here a bit as regards the wellbeing of the Nicholls stable and unaccountably tip LAC FONTANA who is deadly when fresh and loves this course and is still favourably handicapped. 1 pt win at 12/1 with Paddy Power.

2 40. The Albert Bartlett.

A terrific renewal and a very short priced favourite in BRIAR HILL. He stands out as one of the bankers of the meeting. He hacked up in the Bumper here last year and in my opinion is superior to Faugheen and should have been allowed to run in and win the Neptune. However he drew the short straw and was rerouted here instead. The only weakness in Briar Hill one might argue is his close family ties to Boston Bob who has wind issues and has failed to come up this hill before but to be honest that is clutching at straws. This is a fierce bull of a horse and I will not know where to turn if he is beaten.I hate tipping short priced horses but he is a nap and a huge 3 points win at 13/8 with Paddy Power.

3 20. The Gold Cup.

Bobs Worth : Reigning champion and will be spot on to retain his crown. Looked better than ever in the Lexus and will take all the beating. He will love the ground.

Cloudy Too : No chance.

First Lieutenant : Hard to predict and has good course form. A small stamina doubt but will run well I say on this good surface.

Houblon Des Obeaux : Impossible to imagine.

Katenko : Again impossible to entertain.

Knockara Beau : No.

Last Instalment : The controversial horse of the race with the upcoming trial of his trainer but a huge worry for this horse now is the fast ground and I will be surprised if they run and if they do then I hope he comes home sound. I have to overlook on soundness issues.

Lord Windemere : The dark horse of the race and overlooked by many but not me. The season has not gone to plan and the misfortune in the English Hennessey was a setback for this talented individual. Won the RSA here last year and loves a stiff course and good ground. Everything in order for a huge run.

Lyreen Legend : Another undulating specialist who will love it here today. Second to Lord Windemere in the RSA last year he will love the fast ground and will be staying on strongly up the hill when many will have cried enough. I expect a huge run.

On His Own : Needs soft ground and he must go right handed these days. Ruled out confidently.

Silviniaco Conti : King George winner and a huge fancy but I am not so sure. Fell going well last year but this light framed type will need everything to fall right and coupled with a stamina doubt , I am going to oppose him .

Teaforthree : Genuine sort who is National bound and I will be shocked if he wins.

The Giant Bolster : Has finished second and fourth this race twice. Loves this course and always performs here and will do so again today.If he was traind by a bigger trainer he would be half his current odds. Most certainly on the shortlist.

Trio D’Alene : Hennessey winner but will not be suited to this race. Hammered on two previous course attempts he seems a flat track specialist and I feel the big gamble will come unstuck.

SUMMARY : Bobs Worth is a deserved hot favourite and would be the most obvious and worthy winner if he does prevail. I will be hunting value though and the three dangers to him in my opinion are The Giant Bolster, Lord Windemere and Lyreen Legend. I will plump for the two Irish horses and bet them both and without Bobs Worth. I suggest a half point win on LORD WINDERMERE at 33/1 with Bet Victor and LYREEN LEGEND at 50/1 with Boylesports and those prices are available. Also a half pt win on LORD WINDERMERE w/o the fav at 18/1 with PP and a half point win on LYREEN LEGEND w/o the fav at 22/1 PP.

4 00. Foxhunters.

They tell me that OSCAR DELTA is in the form of his life and what a story it would make if he and Jane Mangan could atone for last year’s disastrous misfortune. 1 pt win at 10/1 with Stan James or Boylesports.

4 40. Martin Pipe Conditional.

Another 24 runner impossible puzzle to solve but I will narrow it down to Full Shift 7/1,The Skyfarmer 16/1,Royal Regatta 12/1,Junction Fourteen 16/1 and Thomas Crapper 25/1. Michael Nolan is great value for his three pound claim so I will risk a one point win at 11/1 on ROYAL REGATTA with Paddy Power.

5 15 .Johnny Henderson Chase.

Just the 24 runners again to pick from and another potential bloodbath and if you are trying to get out on this event then good luck to you. Maybe the winner might come from this bunch, Mr Mole 10/1, Eastlake 20/1, Astracad 33/1, Claret Cloak 10/1 and Ned Buntline 10/1. I will chance NED BUNTLINE at 10/1 with Boylesports/ Bet Victor /Stan James and hope for once that we get a clean round of jumping.

I am on tenterhooks over my bet on John Joe O’ Neill in the trainers championship betting w/o market at 8/1. Come on JJ.

Best of luck to you all and I hope we can stay ahead and show another profit at this great but difficult festival.

Bernard Cullinane of Fourmileracing.


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