Yesterday Crockford gave punters three big priced winner; Benefficient WON 20/1, Holywell WON 25/1 (via Twitter) and Solwhit WON 17/2 and Crockford’s Whisper Shakervilz finished second at 20/1. Who will be Crockford’s Dead Cert and Whisper be on the final day of Cheltenham Festival 2013?
The Triumph Hurdle will kick off the final day of the Festival and will provide another Irish banker with the Dessie Hughes trained Our Connor. Far West and Rolling Star go to the race unbeaten and with big reputations, but Bryan Cooper’s mount has a turn of foot that exudes exceptional talent.
In the second (The County Hurdle) John Ferguson’s Cotton Mill will look to make up for running out at the 2012 Festival. His return run at Newbury showed that all the talent remained and he looks well placed to pick up the valuable prize today. In the same race Punjabi is an interesting entry especially given his low weight. Being priced at 25/1 an each way punt is suggested by Crockford. At Fishers Cross will be a warm order in the Albert Bartlett after the withdrawal of Ballycasey.
The Irish have a strong hand in the Foxhunters with Backstage, Oscar Delta and the favourite Salsify. Amongst the British contenders Paul Nicholls has Tricky Trickster who is favoured over the Barber’s grey Chapoturgeon. Gevrey Chambertin held many entries in the run up for the Festival but the Pipe’s have gambled on him winning the race named after Martin Pipe. In what is a competitive renewal he will face stiff oppostition from the Irish horse Edeymi and the highly regarded Village Vic.
Benefficient after his 20/1 victory in the Jewson yesterday lines up today in the final Festival contest, the Grand Annual. It would take some feat for him to do the double especially given the array of Henderson horses who will be determined to stop him. Out of the Henderson team Crockford prefers the value available with Petit Robin who has done nothing wrong this season over hurdles and looks primed for this now returning to fences.
Crockford’s Dead Cert – Our Connor (Triumph Hurdle 1.30)
Impressive this season Ireland and with an excellent turn off foot, many Irish punters believe this horse to be the banker of the Festival. The rumours from the course over the last two days have made Crockford certain that this Dessie Hughes horse is a Dead Cert for the winners enclosure.
Crockford’s Whisper – Petit Robin e/w (Grand Annual 5.15)
Revived over hurdles this season in competitive handicaps (including an excellent run in the Betfair at Newbury). The booking of Nico de Boinville who claims seven pounds off his back makes this each way Whisper even more attractive. Expect a big run in a race that means so much to the Hendersons.
Crockford’s gambles on the final day of the Cheltenham Festival 2013:
Truimph (1.30) – Our Connor, Gassin Golf e/w and Swynmor e/w
County Hurdle (2.05) – Cotton Mill, Punjabi e/w and Hisaabaat e/w
Albert Bartlett (2.40) – At Fishers Cross, Our Vinnie e/w and Utopie Des Bordes e/w
Gold Cup (3.20) – Long Run and Captain Chris e/w
Foxhunters (4.00) – Tricky Trickster e/w and Backstage e/w
Martin Pipe (4.40) – Gevrey Chambertin, Edeymi e/w and Village Vic e/w
Grand Annual (5.15) – Petit Robin e/w and Viva Colonia e/w
(Featured Photograph – Cotton Mill at Newbury by Stuart Rice)
(Photograph – Swing Bowler and Village Vic at Newbury by Stuart Rice)