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Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Meeting - The Open, Cheltenham Racecourse
Dates - Friday, November 14, Saturday, November 15 & Sunday, November 16
First race - 1.15pm Friday, 12.50pm Saturday, 1.10pm Sunday
Admission prices - from £9; accompanied children under 16 admitted FREE to all enclosures. Tickets available from www.cheltenham.co.uk or by calling 08445 793 003.

Roll Along, runner-up in the Grade One Royal & SunAlliance Chase at The Festival in March, is among a healthy 56-strong entry for the Grade Three Paddy Power Gold Cup (2.35pm) at The Open on Saturday, November 15, which carries record prize money this year of £150,000.

The extended two and a half-mile handicap chase is the highlight of three fantastic days at The Open, which runs from Friday, November 14 to Sunday, November 16, at Cheltenham.

Roll Along, a 20/1 shot with sponsor Paddy Power, finished four and a half lengths second to Albertas Run in the Royal & SunAlliance Chase, run over an extended three miles at Prestbury Park in March, but trainer Carl Llewellyn has no qualms about a drop in trip for the eight-year-old.

Llewellyn revealed today: “Roll Along was only beaten a short-head at Taunton over two miles and three furlongs in the race before the Royal & SunAlliance Chase. It’s a sharp two miles and three there, so we all feel that he’s got enough speed for the Paddy Power Gold Cup. I’d be happy putting him in a fast-run race over two and a half miles around Cheltenham.

“He’s done well over the summer and is in very good form. I’m very happy with him, we’ve had a clear run and haven’t missed a day since he came back in training. I’m hoping there’s more improvement in him because he’ll struggle off that handicap mark if there isn’t.”

Roll Along has a pair of engagements this coming weekend at Ascot on Saturday and Carlisle the following day.

Llewellyn revealed: “The going at Carlisle is heavy and Ascot is good, good to firm in places, so we’ll have a look before committing and then consider the Paddy Power Gold Cup.

“He’s won on heavy but that’s not ideal for him and while he goes on fast, I wouldn’t run him on anything approaching firm, so really he wants something in-between. Good to soft would be perfect for him.”

Champion trainer Paul Nicholls, still seeking a first win in the contest, has his usual strong hand, with six entries. The Ditcheat handler could saddle Grade One winner Silverburn, the current 7/2 favourite with sponsor Paddy Power, Galway Plate hero Oslot, Grade One Ryanair Chase third Turko, 8/1 joint second-favourite Noland, third in the Grade One Irish Independent Arkle Trophy at The Festival at March and the progressive pair of Nozic and Predateur.

Il Duce (20/1) filled the runner-up berth, a neck behind L’Antartique, in last year’s Paddy Power Gold Cup and the Alan King-trained eight-year-old could line up alongside stablemate Ouzbeck, winner of the Dick Francis Silks Handicap Chase over the course and distance at The Showcase on October 18. The Barbury Castle trainer may also saddle Pur De Sivola and Howle Hill.

Last year’s winning trainer Ferdy Murphy could bid for back-to-back victories in the Grade Three contest. Murphy has entered Three Mirrors who was a disappointing 12th in the race last year but returned to form in April with a promising victory at Ayr.

The first four home in the Listed Jewson Novices’ Handicap Chase over the course and distance at the Festival in March have all been entered. The Tom Taaffe-trained Finger Onthe Pulse triumphed that day from Barbers Shop, trained for The Queen by Nicky Henderson. The Henry Daly-trained Possol clinched third, while Henderson saddled the fourth, Fleet Street.

Daly has also entered Billyvoddan, third in the 2007 Ryanair Chase, while Henderson’s quartet is completed by current 8/1 joint second-favourite Jack The Giant and Boomshakalaka.

No Irish trained horse has carried off the Paddy Power Gold Cup since Bright Highway in 1980 and Finger Onthe Pulse, the Noel Meade-trained Watson Lake, Merry Cowboy, trained by Eamon Sheehy, the Edward O’Grady-trained Sky’s The Limit, Willie Mullins’ charge Scotsirish and Reisk Superman from the Tony Martin stable could all bid to rewrite the record book.

David Pipe is seeking a first victory in the Paddy Power Gold Cup (his father Martin won the race a record eight times) and has entered six horses - Vodka Bleu, Piraya, I’m So Lucky, Acambo, Abragante and Pauillac.

Nigel Twiston-Davies has his string in scintillating form and the Gloucestershire trainer has entered last year’s Paddy Power Gold Cup fifth and boylesports.com Gold Cup third Patman du Charmil, as well as recent Aintree winner Tramantano, dual course and distance winner Imperial Commander and Mahogany Blaze, successful in the Champagne Lanson Novices’ Chase at Cheltenham in April.

Philip Hobbs has a trio of horses entered consisting of Private Be, Lord Henry and Ocaeanos Des Obeaux, while Jonjo O’Neill has engaged Don’t Push It and Charlie Mann may saddle Moon Over Miami.

The Nicky Richards-trained Monet’s Garden defeated Kauto Star in the 2007 renewal of the Grade Two Old Roan Chase at Aintree but failed to reproduce that effort on his seasonal return in the corresponding race on October 26.

Mister McGoldrick, trained by Sue Smith, was fifth in that recent contest. The 11-year-old gained the biggest triumph of his career at The Festival in March when storming to victory in the Grade Three Racing Post Plate over the course and distance.

Among other possible runners, Kevin Bishop could saddle Ashley Brook, while Stan may represent trainer Venetia Williams, Peter Bowen has entered Snoopy Loopy, Colin Tizzard could bid for glory with Mister Quasimodo and Nick Williams has engaged Maljimar, winner of the Grade Three betchronicle.com Trophy over half a furlong further on Festival Trials Day at Cheltenham in January.

Weights for the Paddy Power Gold Cup will be revealed on Wednesday, November 5.

The three days of The Open offer fantastic sport. Sunday’s six-race card features the £100,000 Grade Three Greatwood Hurdle (2.20pm) over an extended two miles, while the sextet of classy races on Friday includes the popular £25,000 Glenfarclas Cross Country Steeple Chase (3pm) over three miles, seven furlongs.

Paddy Power Gold Cup - Paddy Power odds
7-2 Silverburn, 8-1 Jack the Giant, 8-1 Noland (doubtful), 10-1 Imperial Commander, Don't Push It, Finger Onthe Pulse, 12-1 Piraya, Barbers Shop, Mahogany Blaze, 14-1 Maljimar, Oslot, Abragante, 16-1 Sky's the Limit, Scotsirish, Vodka Bleu, I'm So Lucky, Bible Lord, Turko, Ouzbeck, 20-1 Roll Along, Moon Over Miami, Three Mirrors, Private Be, Patman du charmil, Il Duce, Fleet Street, Snoopy Loopy, Nozic, Tramantano, 25-1 Ashley Brook, Pur de Sivola, Predateur, Mister McGoldrick, Santa's Son, The Wicketkeeper, Possol, Acambo, 33-1 Howle Hill, Mister Quasimodo, Monet's Garden, Lord Henry, Oceaonos des Obeaux, Ruairi, 40-1 Stan, Billyvoddan, 50-1 Endless Power, Bill's Echo, Watson Lake, Yes Sir, Newman Des Plages, Boomshakalaka, Reisk Superman, Pauillac, 66-1 Merry Cowboy, Nation State, Sir Bathwick

Class 1, Grade 3, £150,000 Total Prize Fund. 2.35pm, Cheltenham, Saturday, November 15, 2008. For four year olds and upwards, two miles, four and a half furlongs. Penalties: after November 1, a winner of a chase 5lb. No penalty to increase a horse’s weight above 11st 12lb. Entries closed October 28, entries revealed October 29 (56 entries), weights revealed November 5, five-day confirmation stage November 10, final declaration stage 10.00am, November 13. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including the racing of Monday, October 27.

Form Horse Age Owner Trainer
110P56- ABRAGANTE (IRE) 7 David Johnson David Pipe
1P6/1F6- ACAMBO (GER) 7 David Johnson David Pipe
2F/F5PP- ASHLEY BROOK (IRE) 10 Mrs E K Ellis Kevin Bishop
124121- BARBERS SHOP 6 The Queen Nicky Henderson
06140-3 BIBLE LORD (IRE) 7 M Tedham Andrew Turnell
0P0311 BILL'S ECHO 9 Burns Partnership Alistair Whillans
13P/P40- BILLYVODDAN (IRE) 9 Trevor Hemmings Henry Daly
1114PP- BOOMSHAKALAKA (IRE) 8 The Cigar Bar Partnership Nicky Henderson
1F5/1F0- DON'T PUSH IT (IRE) 8 J P McManus Jonjo O'Neill
452134- ENDLESS POWER (IRE) 8 Fyffees Jim Goldie
F2215-1 FINGER ONTHE PULSE (IRE) 7 Conor Clarkson Tom Taaffe IRE
0/13042- FLEET STREET 9 Henry Ponsonby Nicky Henderson
14160P- HOWLE HILL (IRE) 8 The Brown Family, R Benton & R Lucas Alan King
22-2F11 I'M SO LUCKY 6 Mrs S J Brookhouse David Pipe
12PP2-P IL DUCE (IRE) 8 Mrs Peter Prowting Alan King
103/114- IMPERIAL COMMANDER (IRE) 7 Our Friends in the North Nigel Twiston-Davies
136/111- JACK THE GIANT (IRE) 6 Hanbury Syndicate Nicky Henderson
421P32- LORD HENRY (IRE) 9 Karola Vann Philip Hobbs
235F15- MAHOGANY BLAZE (FR) 6 Lorna Berryman Nigel Twiston-Davies
3/2U41U- MALJIMAR (IRE) 8 Jane Williams Nick Williams
6050-01 MERRY COWBOY (IRE) 7 Sailors Bar Syndicate Eamon Sheehy IRE
0U515-5 MISTER MCGOLDRICK 11 Richard Longley Sue Smith
13P103- MISTER QUASIMODO 8 J M Dare, T Hamlin, J W Snook Colin Tizzard
13246-0 MONET'S GARDEN (IRE) 10 David Wesley Yates Nicky Richards
5141P6- MOON OVER MIAMI (GER) 7 Anne Fulton & Mr M T Lynch Charlie Mann
P3651-0 NATION STATE 7 J D Brownrigg Gary Moore
4P0/0P-F NEWMAN DES PLAGES (FR) 7 Sir Robert Ogden Martin Todhunter
11//1132- NOLAND 7 John Hales Paul Nicholls
22112/-U NOZIC (FR) 7 S Mcvie Paul Nicholls
134123- OCEANOS DES OBEAUX (FR) 6 Mike Tuckey Philip Hobbs
1121-16 OSLOT (FR) 6 The Stewart Family Paul Nicholls
1-111U1 OUZBECK (FR) 6 Axom VII Alan King
32620-P PATMAN DU CHARMIL (FR) 6 Raymond Mould Nigel Twiston-Davies
P/14330- PAUILLAC (FR) 5 David Johnson David Pipe
1133-4F PIRAYA (FR) 5 Terry Neill David Pipe
22321-0 POSSOL (FR) 5 Neville Statham Henry Daly
44/2424- PREDATEUR (FR) 5 T Kilduff, C Donlon L Scott-Macdonald Paul Nicholls
31/B0P-4 PRIVATE BE 9 David and Daphne Walsh Philip Hobbs
2121F4- PUR DE SIVOLA (FR) 5 Thurloe 50 Alan King
10-311U REISK SUPERMAN (IRE) 10 Seamus Ross Tony Martin IRE
30/1225- ROLL ALONG (IRE) 8 Bryan & Philippa Burrough Carl Llewellyn
621421- RUAIRI (IRE) 7 C Bennett Suzy Smith
1P0-105 SANTA'S SON (IRE) 8 Andrea & Graham Wylie Howard Johnson
1F301-0 SCOTSIRISH (IRE) 7 Double R Stables LLP Syndicate Willie Mullins IRE
46/2314- SILVERBURN (IRE) 7 Paul Green Paul Nicholls
413P2-0 SIR BATHWICK (IRE) 9 Mrs S Clifford Brendan Powell
111544- SKY'S THE LIMIT (FR) 7 Raymond Rooney Edward O'Grady IRE
12B113 SNOOPY LOOPY (IRE) 10 Walters Plant Hire Ltd Egan Waste Ltd Peter Bowen
025114- STAN (NZ) 9 Paul Beck Venetia Williams
P63111- THE WICKETKEEPER (IRE) 6 The Yes No Wait Sorries Michael Scudamore
406P21- THREE MIRRORS 8 Sean Murphy Ferdy Murphy
2003-21 TRAMANTANO 9 Raymond Mould Nigel Twiston-Davies
P/P123F- TURKO (FR) 6 The Stewart Family Paul Nicholls
105P00- VODKA BLEU (FR) 9 David Johnson David Pipe
41P40/-3 WATSON LAKE (IRE) 10 John Corr Noel Meade IRE
60-P632 YES SIR (IRE) 9 Ms Y Hill & T Healy Peter Bowen

56 entries
6 Irish-trained



Trainer Peter Bowen has high hopes that Snoopy Loopy can gain the biggest victory of his career in the £90,000 Grade Two bet365 Charlie Hall Chase (3.35pm), at Wetherby this Saturday, November 1.

The 10-year-old chaser comes into the race, run over three miles and a furlong on the second day of the prestigious bet365 Charlie Hall Meeting, on the back of a fine staying on third in the two and a half mile Grade Two Old Roan Chase at Aintree on October 26.

Prior to that excellent effort, Snoopy Loopy had enjoyed superb summer campaign, winning the Listed Summer Plate Handicap at Market Rasen in July and following up with success in the Listed Lord Mildmay Memorial Handicap Chase at Newton Abbot at the end of August.

Bowen revealed today: “Snoopy Loopy has been entered in the bet365 Charlie Hall Chase and he’s all set to take his chance in the race. I was delighted with his performance in the Old Roan Chase on Sunday and he has come out of the race in good shape.

“I would prefer it if they had a drop of rain but he will definitely take his chance and he’s run some sound races on faster ground anyway. He would have won at Wetherby on good to firm ground in March but he hit a fence which cost him the race.

“I couldn’t have been more pleased with the progress he’s shown over the past year, especially with his Listed wins in the summer. He was rated 108 in January and now he’s rated 157, which is the second highest rating in the entries for the bet365 Charlie Hall Chase.

“Seamus Durack will take the ride and I am looking forward to seeing if he can continue to make his mark in Graded races on Saturday.”

Snoopy Loopy, currently rated a 7/1 chance by the race sponsor, looks set to face some top-quality opposition in the bet365 Charlie Hall Chase, with last season’s Grade One Royal & SunAlliance Chase winner Albertas Run among the 13 entries. Ollie Magern, State Of Play, and Monkerhostin, who finished first, second and third respectively in last year’s race, are all set to run again this season, while multiple Grade Two scorer Turko could also take his chance.

Saturday’s superb seven-race card also includes the £42,500 Grade Two John Smith’s Hurdle (3.00pm), which has attracted a strong entry of 13. Grade One winners Lough Derg and Pettifour could both make their seasonal debuts in the three mile, one furlong, contest while last year’s runner-up Faasel may return and bid to go one place better. The 2007 Triumph Hurdle second Liberate could return to hurdles following some excellent races on the Flat, and he may meet the Paul Nicholls-trained pair of Mobaasher and dual Grade Two scorer Elusive Dream.

Also on Saturday is the £40,000 bet365 Best Odds Guaranteed Mares’ Hurdle (2.20pm), an extended two mile contest designed to increase the opportunities available for mares in training. An entry of 15 includes the Nicky Henderson-trained pair of Grade Three chase runner-up My Petra and Chomba Womba, who won a Grade Two mares only hurdle at Doncaster in January. Irish trainer Jessica Harrington could send over Cabin Point, while the Alan Swinbank-trained Programme Girl may bid for a fifth consecutive victory over hurdles on her first start for over 16 months.

Trainer Emma Lavelle hopes that Blaeberry can get her head in front in the race following a good fourth under top-weight in the Listed Silver Trophy Handicap Hurdle at Chepstow on October 25. The versatile performer rattled off a sequence of four victories over hurdles and fences last season and looks set to run another big race on the forecast good to firm ground.

Lavelle commented: “Blaeberry holds an entry in the bet365 Best Odds Guaranteed Mares’ Hurdle and it’s definitely the plan for her to run in the race. She’s in really, really good form and she came out of her Chepstow race very well.

“It was just a little bit soft for her on that occasion and she is much better on faster ground. She’s not a big filly and we didn’t want to keep running her under top-weight in handicaps so a conditions race seemed to make sense.

“I don’t think she will be inconvenienced with the drop back down to two miles. She’s got plenty of pace and, while three miles would probably be her best trip, she has won over shorter before and I don’t think that it will be a problem.

“She’s a pretty versatile mare and I would hope that she could go on and contest some more of these mares’ hurdles, but we will hopefully start her off at Wetherby on Saturday and take it from there.”

The first day of the bet365 Charlie Hall Meeting on Friday, October 31, plays host to a brace of Listed races, including the £18,000 Weatherbys Bank Wensleydale Juvenile Novices’ Hurdle (2.10pm). The extended two-mile contest has attracted 17 entries including Indian Groom, Gulf Coast, Resounding Glory, Silk Drum and Cosmea, who are all unbeaten.

Peter Bowen is looking forward to seeing Yes Sir run in the £25,000 Listed bet365.com Handicap Chase (2.45pm), run over an extended two and a half miles. The talented nine-year-old finished third over the same course and distance in skybet.com Supporting Spinal Research Bobby Renton Handicap Chase on October 15, and was runner-up in a valuable handicap chase at Cheltenham on his latest appearance three days later.

Bowen said: “Yes Sir will take his chance in the bet365.com Handicap Chase on Friday. He ran alright when he finished third at Wetherby two weeks ago but I thought he posted a far better effort on his latest start at Cheltenham.

“He’s gone up 4lb for that run but he’s won off a mark of 153 over fences in May last year and he’s rated 133 at the moment. He’ll love the fast ground and he goes into the race with every chance.”

Dual Grade Two scorer Moon Over Miami is also among the 18 entries, while Wetherby course specialist Manbow could bid for a fifth victory at his favourite course. Listed winner Strawberry may also take her chance along with the Howard Johnson-trained trio of Irish Grade Three scorer Santa’s Son, Frankie Figg and Top Dressing


The ground at Wetherby is currently described as Good to Firm, Good in Places in the back straight and Good to Firm, Firm in Places in the home straight (watered), with a GoingStick reading of 9.7.

Clerk of the Course and Chief Executive Jonjo Sanderson commented: “We have concluded our watering cycle this afternoon and could expect up to 4mm of rainfall on Thursday, which shouldn’t alter the going materially, should it arrive. I am very hopeful that the home straight will ride easier than it walks, which was the case at our opening fixture on October 15.

Sanderson continued: “Our Premier Enclosure tickets have outsold the number we sold last year which is extremely promising and we are hopeful of a good crowd to enjoy a fantastic afternoon’s racing.”

Advance tickets can still be purchased by calling the course on 01937 582035 or online at www.wetherbyracing.co.uk

Latest prices from bet365 on the bet365 Charlie Hall Chase
State of Play 7/2, Ollie Magern 7/2, Turko 4/1, Albertas Run 5/1, Monkerhostin 5/1, Snoopy Loopy 7/1, Madison Du Berlais 8/1, Hard Act To Follow 66/1, Top Dressing 66/1, Love That Benny 66/1, Canada Street 66/1

Each-way 1/5 1-2-3

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