Yesterday's victory

The credit for my win in the Pertemps has to go to Pat Kelly - he is the master.

Presenting Percy seemed to improve for the better ground and I'd like to apologise to Phil Smith, the BHA handicapper - maybe he was right to give him that weight.

Almost always the handicapper does a good job, but I thought my horse had been treated a little harshly initially.

I held him up and rode my luck, but he settled nicely and it all went well.

I've been to a lot of sporting occasions, but this is the ultimate.


1.30pm: I kick off with Mega Fortune ( ) in the Triumph Hurdle for Gordon Elliott.

He won the Spring Juvenile Hurdle at Leopardstown when last seen in action and continues to improve.

As I have said before in this blog, he just seems to handle bad ground better than other horses, so I’d be a bit happier with some rain for him.

Having said that, he’ll be okay on the ground and as he stays well, I’m sure he will be competitive. The obvious dangers look to be the JP McManus-owned pair Defi Du Seuil ( ) and Charli Parcs ( ).

I know that Dicky Johnson is sweet on the chances of Defi Du Seuil, while I keep hearing that Charli Parcs has been working the house down at Seven Barrows.

2.10pm: I’ve no ride in the 26-runner County Hurdle, but my eye is drawn to two interesting Irish raiders.

Last year’s Triumph Hurdle winner Ivanovich Gorbatov ( ) slips in here off a mark of 150 and with another 5lbs off his back can be very competitive.

With the week that Gordon Elliott is having, you couldn’t rule out Mick Jazz ( ), who continues to improve.

2.50pm: Once again I’ll be watching rather than riding when it comes to the Albert Bartlett and I cannot wait to see Death Duty ( ) back in action.

He has looked top class in four runs this season and it will take a good one to beat him.

If there is to be an upset, look out for Henry De Bromhead’s Monalee ( ) who will relish the trip and better ground.


3.30pm Cheltenham Gold Cup: It’s a shame not to have a ride in the big race, but I’m intrigued to see who comes out on top.

Plenty are billing it as a three-way match between Cue Card ( ), Native River ( )and Djakadam ( ), but I’m not so sure.

I’ve heard plenty of good arguments for all three over the last couple of weeks, but just have a sneaky feeling that Sizing John ( ) could spoil the party.

He seemed to stay the trip nicely last time in the Irish Gold Cup and has that bit of speed and class required.

4.10pm: If there is such a thing as a banker this week then it has to be On The Fringe ( ) in the Foxhunter.

He is bidding to win the race for a third consecutive year and I’d be very surprised if there was something in there good enough to stop him.

4.50pm: The Martin Pipe looks as wide open as you might expect and it’s hard to be confident.

Gordon Elliott had lined up The Storyteller for this, but sadly injury has prevented him from making it.

The stable have found a decent replacement for him in Runfordave ( ) who is ridden by the very good Donagh Meyler.

The pair shouldn’t be too far away.

5.30pm: Last but not least, my final ride of the meeting comes aboard Dandridge ( ) for Arthur Moore in the Grand Annual.

He ran a blinder to finish second in this last year, having smashed through the first fence.

It’s competitive again, as you might expect, and my fellow will have to step up again from a 6lb higher mark.

I’m hoping if he can avoid making any silly errors he can put up a really bold showing.