The Last Instalment in the Cheltenham Festival 2014 story is yet to come with the final day and the running of the Gold Cup
Ever since the stories broke surrounding the Fenton yard connections and punters have been uncertain whether or not the impressive Hennessy Gold Cup winner Last Instalment will take up his place in the Gold Cup field. The world of the turf stands ready for the decision of his owner and trainer, and what may come from it. The Last Instalment is yet to come of this story.
If the Fenton horse lines up he stands an excellent chance of being in the frame. Bobs Worth the current champion is a worthy favourite and will be at the top of punters lists alongside the King George victor Silviniaco Conti. The improving Triolo D’Alene has to be respected after his Hennessy win at Newbury and The Giant Bolster is certain to perform well.
Briar Hill in the Albert Bartlett is the strongest Irish fancy of the meeting but he will have to bring down the colours of Kings Palace (who comes from the in-form Pipe yard). Not to be overlooked in the race is the unbeaten hurdler Captain Cutter for Nicky Henderson.
The Fox Hunters has had a long list of favourites in the ante post market that haven’t made it to the race. With the likes of Beshabar, Salsify and Mossey Joe absent expect Alan Hill’s Harbour Court to lift the prize with Made In Time as the danger.
John Ferguson heads to the Triumph with a strong team, both Broughton and Rutherglen are highly regarded and should beat the favourite Calipto for the out of form Nicholls’ yard. However, Guitar Pete sets the standard in the contest and may Triumph.
Handicap plotters will see their plans come off or falter in the County Hurdle, Martin Pipe and Grand Annual. The whispers are that the County will go to Ireland with Minella Foru, the Martin Pipe to Pond House with Vieux Lion Rouge and the final race of the Cheltenham Festival 2014 the Grand Annual to the Meade horse Ned Buntline.
Crockford’s Dead Cert – Harbour Court (Fox Hunters 4.00)
The confidence surrounding this hunter chaser is palpable. Harbour Court has two wins under rules and a recent point-to-point victory as preparation. He should have no problem with the field and the support he has received must be respected.
Crockford’s Whisper – Vieux Lion Rouge e/w (Martin Pipe 4.40)
The Pond House team have been in brilliant form this week and would love to add this prize to their haul. The impressive Vieux Lion Rouge has a strong whisper surrounding him and looks to be the quality act in this field. His only career defeat so far was in last year’s Champion Bumper; expect a bold show.
Crockford’s Cheltenham Festival 2014 Gold Cup day Gambles:
Triumph (1.30) – Rutherglen e/w and Guitar Pete e/w
County Hurdle (2.05) – Minella Foru e/w, Cheltenian e/w and Cash and Go e/w
Albert Bartlett (2.40) – Captain Cutter e/w
Gold Cup (3.20) – Last Instalment e/w
Fox Hunters (4.00) – Harbour Court and Made In Time e/w
Martin Pipe (4.40) – Vieux Lion Rouge e/w and Une Artiste e/w
Grand Annual (5.15) – Ned Buntline e/w and French Opera e/w
(Featured Photograph – Cheltenham Festival 2014 by Stuart Rice)