- Il Ridoto won the same race last year and is well poised after a strong Gold Cup
- Sans Bruit will finally get a run out after a number of cancelled meetings
- Monmiral is tipped for improvement after disappointing showing last year
Trainer Paul Nicholls has ten horses at Cheltenham and Doncaster on Saturday afternoon.
Among the pack is the promising Ginny’s Destiny, plus Sans Bruit, Rubaud, and Stay Away Far.
Here, Betfair ambassador Nicholls shares his thoughts on his runners at Cheltenham and Doncaster.
12.40 – Ginny’s Destiny
He has progressed nicely this season, winning twice at this track and the form of his last victory has been well boosted by Grey Dawning. He now returns to Cheltenham with plenty to do under top weight in this competitive novice handicap.
I’m very pleased with Ginny’s Destiny whose work at home just gets better and better. He gives every indication that he is still improving.
Ginny’s Destiny has been getting better and better and will have plenty to do at Cheltenham
13.15 – Hitman
We cauterised his palate after he ran below par at Aintree late in October. He is in great shape now at home and if he runs like he did in the Ryanair Chase in March he must have a live chance of a mark of 156 with Freddie a Gingell taking off a valuable 5lbs.
But I have a feeling he might just improve a bit for the run.
13.15 – Il Ridoto
He seems to reserve his best for Cheltenham and won this race a year ago off a mark of 138. He is now 10lbs higher after a career best when he was just in the last stride by Fugitif in the December Gold Cup after looking like the winner landing over the last fence with a clear lead.
Il Ridoto has been working beautifully at home, looks great and must have a strong chance.
13.50 – Stay Away Fay
He won the Albert Bartlett with a brilliant performance at this track in March and I’ve been thrilled with his progress as a chaser this season. He has taken really well to fences, winning both times and is a strong stayer who will gallop all day.
He is schooling smartly, looks fab and worked great on Thursday morning but I appreciate that he is in at in the deep end in this and has it all to do.
I’d rather run him this weekend than wait three weeks for Ascot which is a bit close to Cheltenham.
Stay Away Fay is racing this weekend to ensure freshness for the Cheltenham Festival
15.00 – Rubaud
Rubaud is a gorgeous horse who keeps improving and won four on the bounce before he was put in his place by Constitution Hill at Kempton over Christmas. He still kept on well to finish second that day and is in calmer waters now.
Rubaud has to give weight to all his rivals and the drier the ground the better he will run though he is slightly better racing right handed.
16.10 – Isaac Des Obeaux
He is taking on stronger opposition after bolting up twice in ordinary races at Chepstow. Positive tactics seems to suit Isaac Des Obeaux who stays well, is a decent prospect and should run another tidy race. He will a lovely chaser in time.
12.55 – Sans Bruit
I’ve lost count of the times he has been declared to run in the last month and every time the meeting has been called off. So it’s good to get Sans Bruit out at last.
He’s an interesting recruit who won six times in France and had a wind op after joining us this season. He’s has been working tidily at home, and I’m keen to see what he can do.
He might well be going chasing next.
14.40 – Welcom to Catries
He won his only Point-to-Point in Eire and has shown plenty of promise in his first two starts for us over hurdles at Ascot. The experience he gained when narrowly beaten on his hurdles debut was put to good use as he won handsomely next time just before Christmas.
He worked stylishly on Thursday morning, will relish the step up to three miles and has a chance in a tough race.
15.15 – Kandoo Kid
He has been making up for lost time this season after a couple of setbacks and has been very consistent. He won well at Newbury, and ran another solid race when second to Djelo at Ascot.
Kandoo Kid is crying out for three miles, is better left handed, remains in top shape and has a lovely chance in a really competitive handicap. He has a lot in his favour.
Monmiral was outpaced in his last outing but will give just shy of three miles a try on Saturday
15.50 – Monmiral
I was expecting a decent show from him at Cheltenham three months ago on his first start since a wind op. But he was outpaced the whole way and Harry Cobden came back in suggesting we upped him in trip.
So we are giving him a go at just shy of three miles. He ran very well against smart opposition as a novice last season and I’d like to see improvement from him off a mark of 142.
It’s a tough call but I just favour Il Ridoto who excels at Cheltenham.