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Kayley Woollacott blog: Lalor in Cheltenham Arkle on Tuesday

11 Mar | BY Kayley Woollacott | MIN READ TIME |
Kayley Woollacott blog: Lalor in Cheltenham Arkle on Tuesday

The Betway ambassador is confident that Lalor is in the best possible shape ahead of the Arkle Challenge Trophy at Cheltenham on Tuesday.

It’s obviously a very nervous time for everyone at the yard, but Lalor {ODDS:390443455:11/2} seems really well ahead of the Arkle Challenge Trophy on Tuesday (14.10).

He galloped on Wednesday and then schooled at home on Thursday. We were pleased with him.

He did a little pipe-opener on Saturday and he seems in good form. He’s nice and chirpy at the minute.

Obviously we’ve been waiting all winter for the rain that never really came and that was why we had to miss Doncaster.

We’ve probably had a little bit more than we’d have ideally wanted, but the Arkle is the first race run on the chase course during the whole week and it’s going to be lovely fresh ground.

He won on soft at Aintree and that was a Grade One. They said at the time that it wasn’t a great race, but the form has worked out well.

There looks like there will be plenty of pace in the race and I’d have thought we’d sit in behind the leaders.

We’ve always tried to do that at Aintree in the past and it’s worked, so there’s no reason to change things on Tuesday.

He always looks like he stays well, so I’m not too worried about stamina. If he can reproduce his run from Aintree last April or here in November, hopefully he’ll go very close.

It would be unreal if he could win it. I’m trying not to imagine it too much.

My nerves will definitely be jangling on the day, they already are!

I’m terrible on the big day. I wasn’t great in November and we weren’t even among the favourites. I’m not sure what I’ll be like on Tuesday.

Thoughts on the championship races

I would like to see Apple’s Jade {ODDS:390443467:15/8} win the Champion Hurdle on Tuesday (15:30). She’s been brilliant this season and it would be great if she could go and do it at Cheltenham against the boys.

It’s obviously going to be difficult taking on Buveur D’Air {ODDS:390443446:11/4}, who is going for a hat-trick. He is a very slick hurdler and perhaps hasn’t been given the credit he deserves so far in his career.

Laurina has plenty to find on the form book, although we don’t know how good she is.

It’s sure to be a great race. It would be lovely if we were watching it with the Arkle trophy in the bag!

I can’t see Altior {ODDS:390908667:2/5} being beaten in the Betway Champion Chase on Wednesday (15:30), he’s one of the greats.

Whenever he looks in trouble he finds another gear and he’ll surely have too much for the rest.

Min will probably chase him home again as he’s a very good horse, but I don’t think he’ll be able to beat Altior.

Paisley Park {ODDS:390634283:6/4} should take all the beating in the Stayers’ Hurdle on Thursday (15:30). He’s been fantastic this season, and it would be a lovely story with Emma Lavelle and owner Andrew Gemmell.

It would be another great story if Faugheen was to bounce back at Cheltenham.

The Gold Cup looks fairly open this year. I suppose if all the forecast rain arrives, it’s going to massively help Native River {ODDS:390651022:4/1}.

He did it really well last year and we’ll definitely be cheering on him for the Tizzards and Dickie Johnson.

Presenting Percy {ODDS:390651021:7/2} is a very good horse with some fantastic form at Cheltenham. It would be an incredible achievement if he was to win it having not raced over fences this season.

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Kayley Woollacott

National Hunt trainer who took over her late husband Richard's licence in January 2018 before winning her first Grade One four months later.

Kayley Woollacott

National Hunt trainer who took over her late husband Richard's licence in January 2018 before winning her first Grade One four months later.