The calm before the storm that is the Cheltenham Festival subsequent week and champion teacher Nicky Henderson has an extraordinary risk of landing Saturday’s characteristic Imperial Cup (2.25pm) at Sandown courtesy of Dream Du Grand Val (7/1).

The choice has a super racing weight of 10st 5lb way to the participation of strong accomplice and class horse within the contest Call Me Lord who has been allotted a stone greater than any of the opposite 15 combatants.

Dream Du Grand Val is asking to complete a hat-trick, having hacked up by means of 10 lengths in a handicap hurdle at Fontwell at the quit of January before scoring by means of a slightly lesser margin ultimate time in a beginners’ hurdle at Kelso remaining month.

Admittedly, he is now on a handicap mark a stone higher than securing that first fulfillment, however the ease of his win on the Sussex sweat bowl is a purpose for that and he’d in reality been showing signs of expertise at domestic as he changed into a closely backed favorite on simply his second trip for Henderson.

The fancy remains not a big price for both next week’s County Hurdle and Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle and if he wins this, he’ll qualify for a £one hundred,000 bonus for triumphing both of these contests.

The helping EBF Novices’ Handicap Hurdle Final (1.50pm) can pass the manner of Hughie Morrison’s Third Wind (8/1).

This horse didn’t display plenty last season, however produced a 40-1 shocker on his hurdling bow at Plumpton in December while belying the ones insulting odds to strike via four lengths.

Anyone who considered that a fluke become proved absolutely incorrect when he completed second to Phoenix Way at the same venue the following month.

The winner, who only prevailed by using a duration, had formerly finished runner-up to I Can’t Explain who in the end filled the same function in a Listed heat at Cheltenham so the form looks very strong.

Punters had with the aid of now latched directly to the reality that the selection is first rate and there has been no 40-1 around while he struck at odds-on last time at Taunton ultimate month, whilst he beat a pleasant horse of Paul Nicholls called My Way.

Backing a horse on its first run in a handicap is usually a piece of a guessing sport, but wily Morrison seems like he would possibly have were given his price in off a pleasant mark of simply 131.


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