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Cheltenham Festival 2011 

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By Billy Blakeman ValueChecker

Knight Pass Stakes Champion Bumper Claim

Knight Pass was undoubtedly impressive when winning the bumper at Southwell on Wednesday and the Warren Greatrex trained 4-y-o has become all the rage for the Champion Bumper at the Cheltenham Festival in March.

Cue Card
2010 Champion Bumper winner

Cue Card

Jockey Wayne Hutchinson had this to say about the horse on his blog for;

“He is a horse I have liked at home and he has shown a lot and obviously won well first time at Sandown. He gave me a fantastic feel this time and I am sure on the back of this win Warren (Greatrex) will try and find a Listed bumper for him to run in and then maybe look towards Cheltenham in March as the long-term goal. He is very professional for a four-year-old and he has a bright future. I think he would have the class for a Cheltenham bumper as he stays, has a gear or two and his biggest asset is he has a great attitude for a young horse. He put the race to bed at Southwell in a couple of strides and I could not speak highly enough of the horse. He has carried on to the track everything that he has shown at home.”

My personal view is that quotes into single figures are very poor value as despite Cue Card being an English trained 4-y-o last year, in general Irish trained older horses have very much held sway.

On to Thursday and the weather looks set to disrupt racing once again, with Ludlow already being lost and Huntingdon calling an inspection. Best to stick with the AW then and in the 12.50 at Southwell, Itwasonlyakiss could be a blot on the handicap. As a juvenile, she was far better than this mark and this lightly-raced 4-y-o is a rare fibresand runner for the stable of John Hills. Market confidence would be a welcome sign but as I write, 10/1 is available on the exchanges.

Today's Recommendation: Southwell 12.50 - Itwasonlyakiss


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