IT has been a good week for horse owner Tomás Singleton as he looks forward to another wonderful day on the Cotswolds.
Following his good start to the week we were keen to get the thoughts of the northside businessman on how the biggest day in horseracing will pan out.
The Gold Cup is the premier race of the meeting and Singleton has swayed with an 8/1 outsider in the shape of Royal Pagaille.
“As we know Rich Ricci has put so much into the game and he rarely has a horse in training outside of Ireland and I think at 8/1 this horse is great value.
“I heard a story that Venetia Williams was in his company at a race meeting and he told her if she could get him a horse that could win the Gold Cup, he would buy it.”
The class and personality of Williams was praised by Singleton.
“Venetia Williams is the most decent and honest trainer in the UK and I honestly believe she has a serious chance of winning with this horse.”
The closing day of the festival is always a special one and Tomás feels the Irish will get the day off to a winning start.
“We call this day the get out day as you are either chasing your losses or have a good bank balance and I think the Triumph Hurdle will be won by Quilixious who is from the Elliott stable who will now come under the stewardship of Henry De Bromhead.”
Cork trainer Eugene O’Sullivan is a personal friend of Tomás and his 66/1 winner in 2020 ‘It Came to Pass’ will be going all out to retain the Foxhunters Chase.
“Although he unseated his regular pilot Maxine O’Sullivan in the last race the ground was really against him and looking at him in recent days, he looks a million dollars.
“Eugene knows how to handle horses and it would be no great surprise to me to see him having a serious go at retaining his title.”
The new rules that Irish amateur jockeys cannot compete at the festival has hampered the plans of Maxine O’Sullivan but Singleton believes they have an adequate replacement in Ritchie McClernon.
“I have the greatest admiration for Maxine and I know how disappointed she is but this is a sport you have to move in on and I have no doubt Ritchie will give It Came to Pass a wonderful ride.
"In the County Hurdle is a very competitive Handicap I’m going for a low weight in You Raised Me Up this could be a winner for the talented rider in Darragh O’Keeffe for trainer Martin Brassil.
"You Raised Me Up was third in a big Leopardstown Handicap and having won twice since should go well with his 130 rating."
In the Albert Bartlett this looks like one for the English as Barbados Bucks has improved with each run this year and could be a winner for Paul Nichols and Harry Cobden.
"A mare that I’m looking forward to seeing is Elimay who runs in the Paddy Powers Mares Chase for JP McManus.
"Elimay was very impressive on her last run at Naas in beating today’s rival shattered Love by an eased down 5.5 lengths and to me is banker material."
The McManus ace will be ridden by Mark Walsh who showed when given the mare an inch of rein in her last race she is class personified.
"The most competitive race of the Day is the Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle and one I think Langer Dan is thrown in at the weights."
Langer Dan will be produced very late and hopefully will send punters back to work in a positive mood and pockets full.
Triumph Hurdle 1.20pm: Quixilous.
County Hurdle Handicap 1.55pm: You Raised Me Up.
Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle 2.30pm: Barbados Bucks.
Cheltenham Gold Cup 3.05pm: Royal Pagaille.
Open Hunters Chase 3.40pm: It Came to Pass.
Paddy Power Mares Chase 4.15pm: Elimay.
Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys Handicap 4.50pm: Langer Dan.
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