David Bridgwater targets Denman Chase for The Giant Bolster
David Bridgwater was glad to have sidestepped a gruelling renewal of the Argento Chase at Cheltenham last Saturday with The Giant Bolster.
Last year’s Gold Cup runner-up has had an interrupted season due to the weather with several plans falling by the wayside, but Gloucestershire trainer Bridgwater decided to skip Cheltenham and head for the Denman Chase on February 9 at Newbury instead.
With Grands Crus doing little to enhance his Gold Cup claims when pulled up in the Argento, Bridgwater is hoping regular pilot Tom Scudamore could now be available for his stable star.
“I don’t think many people learned much from Cheltenham on Saturday regarding March as the ground was so bad – although it was great racing,” said Bridgwater.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
“I can’t understand the price of Imperial Commander. He was as good as Kauto Star and Denman and looked as good as ever to me on Saturday – he’ll be in the mix that’s for sure.
“The Giant Bolster will head for the Denman Chase providing the ground isn’t too bad. It wouldn’t bother me if he didn’t run again, though, he won’t want for fitness.
“He’s always been a spring horse and next year I may bring him back in later as it’s been a nightmare this year.
“It would just be nice for everyone to see him in action as the King George at Kempton was a complete waste of everyone’s time. As soon as AP McCoy got on his back, his ears went back as if he was saying: ‘Who’s this’?”
“We could just do with him having a clear round and getting some confidence.
“While it wasn’t nice to see Grands Crus pulled up, I think it means we’ll have our jockey [Scudamore] back in the Gold Cup. He knows him very well.”
The prospect of quicker ground at Cheltenham in March holds no particular fears for Rebecca Curtis and her star novice At Fishers Cross.
The JP McManus-owned six-year-old won his fourth race of the season in the Grade Two Neptune Novices’ Hurdle over two miles and five furlongs at Cheltenham last Saturday, beating the highly-touted The New One in a thrilling finish.
At Fishers Cross will now step back up to three miles for the Albert Bartlett at the Festival, for which he is a best-priced 6-1 favourite with Ladbrokes.
“He’s been great. He had a couple of problems which affected his jumping early on but we seem to have them sorted now and he’s progressing the right way,” Curtis told At The Races. “I’d say he’ll definitely run over three miles. He was meant to go to Doncaster over three miles for the Albert Bartlett trial but with that called off Cheltenham was the only graded race left.”
Puffin Billy is likely to run in the William Hill Supreme Novices’ Hurdle over two miles at the Cheltenham Festival if the ground remains on the soft side. Trainer Oliver Sherwood had previously stated he was favouring the longer Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle for his unbeaten youngster, but the prevailing conditions have seen him have a change of heart.
Puffin Billy was entered last weekend in the race won by Rebecca Curtis’s At Fishers Cross, but Sherwood decided to swerve it as he did not fancy running him over two miles and five furlongs for the first time in heavy ground.
“I was perturbed about running over that trip for the first time on very tiring ground,” Sherwood told At The Races. “If it had been two miles I would have taken those horses on but, as everyone knows, Billy can be quite keen over two miles.”