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SIMON NOTT: The Thursday Review

Published On March 16, 2017 | Cheltenham 2017

JLT Novices’ Chase

There was plenty of business in the JLT Ben got a call from the office, we’d laid £100,000 – £20,000 each-way Disko and £60,000 – £40,000 Yorkhill. We had the jolly for £11,000 in the book. The result was a disaster with Yorkhill winning and Disko placed. It was also the first leg of the daily treble priced at 16/1. Nasty.

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Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle

It was heads down and get to work on the big handicap. Star is all about offering value to the punters but it seemed some of the cheeky rascals had worked out that having £2.50 each-way on one and then blagging a free cigar was the best value on the track. Fiver each-way minimum it was. At the off we had Presenting Percy a loser for £22,000 in the book. Watching it win wasn’t pleasant.

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Ryanair Chase

It was hard to get Un De Sceaux into the book, the punters just wanted to be on Empire Of Dirt, so much so that we had it for £33,000 just before the off. Then the phone went, the office had laid the bogie £30,000 each-way at 11/4. 7/4 Jolly Un De Sceaux’s victory would have been a bad result normally but was a good winner We had the double bump, Empire Of Dirt finished fourth, Aye Aye. The only drawback was that was the second leg of the treble landed.

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Sun Bets Stayers’ Hurdle

Bit between the teeth again Ben got up onto the stool, stuck his chest out and waded into Unowhatimeanharry giving it a stripe along with Jezki who was also the only one they wanted to be on each-way. At the off we were ‘up the front two’ and desperately need a result, or rather a miracle. The Gambling Gods were smiling on us, Nichols Canyon winning at 10/1 and Jezki out of the frame was cracking with the added bonus that the treble went down too.

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Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate Handicap Chase

Starchitect was red for almost £20,000 at the off, most of that each-way so we got out of jail free when that one was badly hampered two out, especially as the office had laid £20,000 each-way at 7/1. Nobody was going to complain about middle-pin winner 14/1 winner Road To Respect and another nice cop.

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Trull House Stud Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle

Let’s Dance was quite hard to get in the book so we were probably fortunate to lay a £10,000 – £8000. We still only had the mare for £11,000 at the off despite giving it a tug. Turning for home, loyal staff member Ian otherwise known as Ricky uttered the immortal words, ‘the jolly can’t win from there’. That was seconds before she went through the gears and hosed in. Lucky Ben didn’t hear you Ricky or you’d have been uninvited to the curry tonight.

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Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Amateur Riders’ Handicap Chase

We got to work in the lucky last just trying to field as much as possible and hope the punters couldn’t find the winner. A late lump each way meant that we had What’s Happening a loser for £12,000. The office laid £25,000 each-way Squouateur at 5/1 which made things interesting. Domesday Book winning at 40/1 was the sort of result the layers dream off, especially the last. ‘Pay Pay’ oh hang on nobody backed it. Best get to the Curry House to celebrate a winning day then.

Bring on the Gold Cup tomorrow.

Simon Nott


SIMON NOTT is a freelance racing blogger and author of The Skint Mob. More details at simonnott.co.uk

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