Irish Champion Hurdle Day – an either or situation

The either being Solwhit, the or being Celestial Halo.

It’s a shame the ground is on the heavy side today but of all the trainers’ remarks I have seen Paul Nicholls seems the most laid back, feeling the track will suit CH.  The Irish trainers on the other hand, including Donna’s Palm’s Noel Meade, seem to think they “will know where they are” with their horses after the race.  With Punjabi beaten yesterday there’s everything to play for.

I have had my fingers burnt by both the either and the or in the past.  Solwhit’s disappointing (to me anyway) display at Newcastle last autumn and Celestial Halo’s agonising miss in March.

*At this point the laptop crashed and I lost a paragraph! – so from memory it went something like this

The form book says Solwhit should win (and I am discounting Celestial Halo’s lacklustre performance @ Aintree last April over 2 and half miles) having beaten Punjabi himself which Celestial Halo couldn’t quite manage.  I wonder though.  I wonder if Celestial Halo has just that bit more tactical speed.  It seems silly to mention it on the heavy going.  Yes, it’s a definite either or.

From left, Binocular, Punjabi, Celestial Halo (I hope)

Ok – it’s going to be the Halo…

Posted on January 24, 2010, in Horse racing, Jump racing and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.

  1. or not…

    Of course, the formbook is always right – ignore it at your peril.

  2. i would like it to be punjabi…heart ruling over head as usual! 😉

    • Hi Jan, Punjabi is a very attractive horse so I don’t blame you. He is not at his best now, but you just never know what might happen!

  3. The reason I like Punjabi so much, Diva, is that my family and I first noticed him at Kempton, liked his name, and he went on to win my daughter and son in law quite a bit of money, and I won a little too. ( which is an unusual thing in itself!)
    We decided from then on to follow his progress on the track and he has not disappointed us. The icing on the cake was when he won the Champion Hurdle of course.
    We have also met him twice at Lambourn Open Day and he has a lovely, soft nature, which is just how I like ’em! The funny thing is, it is always my son in law who comments on what a lovely looking horse he is.
    I would love it if he could manage to win at Cheltenham again this year, but it won’t be the end of the world if he doesn’t, as long as he comes back safe and sound. 🙂

  4. He is a fetching sort to look at. I would be very happy if he won the CH – I think he doesn’t get enough respect for his victory.

    I backed Fair Along and Katchit yesterday, the problem is I never felt I saw the horses properly, so I will watch it all again on catch-up.

    I was very taken with Restless Harry yesterday and my one to follow is Aachen who has some good races in him.

  5. I thought the Punjab didnt get enough respect for his CH win as well. John McCririck called him ‘that thing’ on the Morning Line a few weeks ago. How dare he!!! Hope he gets to eat his words this year!
    I like Fair Along and Katchit too. 🙂

    • I was in spitting distance of McCririck yesterday – I could have poked him with a sharp stick if I’d known!

      You just never know with Nicky Henderson. Solwhit has to be the main danger. I need to check out Go Native again too.

  6. I’ve gota photo here of John McCririck with his arm round me, taken at Sandown a few years ago!!! I squirm when I look at it now!

  7. I’ll be looking at that after work and reporting back later Jan 🙂

  8. Oh dear!! haha! It was about 12 years ago, i believe. 🙂

  9. You look lovely in it Jan and he looks like he normally does!

  10. It’s that open mouthed gormless expression I love so much!!! He seemed a nice man at the time!! And thank you for saying I look lovely. 🙂

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