Katie Walsh blog: Cheltenham, Punchestown Sunday 16 11 20

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Punchestown

The card at Punchestown on Sunday is cracking! I can’t wait for it.

A horse I love is Latest Exhibition . He was brilliant over hurdles last season and ran a corker at the Festival in the Albert Bartlett. He won on his debut over fences last month and, although he was a bit hairy over the first few, he grew into it. The further they went, the better he was.

He’s going to be a cracking staying chaser and should be winning this en-route to bigger things this season.

Elimay found her form last season and, with race conditions set to suit, should be really tough to beat under Mark Walsh.

She has won her last four starts and has won a grade two and grade three and gets weight from her rivals in this Listed race.

I’m glad they’re keeping Fury Road over hurdles this season. That staying division looks wide-open and his route to the Stayers’ Hurdle (13:40) begins in this race.

He’ll be short, but he’ll have to be winning if he’s going to be able to win at the top level. He’s a strong traveller in his race, so shouldn’t have a problem with this slightly short trip.

A horse everyone knows I love is Saint Roi . I thought he was outstanding in the Country Hurdle last season. He bolted up with his head in his chest and looked right out of the top drawer.

He’s being campaigned a Champion Hurdle horse and if he’s to be seriously considered, he’s going to have to be winning this (14:10). He was very good at Tipperary on his first run back this season and looked as though he’d improved again.

Cheltenham

The Big Breakaway was one of the best novice hurdlers in England last season and despite his yard being way out of form at the Festival, this horse still ran a blinder to finish fourth behind Envoi Allen in the Ballymore.

He’s making his debut over fences and although Cheltenham is a really tough place to start, they think the world of him and I’m exciting to see him run.

Discorama never runs a bad race at Cheltenham. He’s finished second twice and third once in three runs at the course and it’s actually surprising that Paul Nolan is sending this horse over.

Paul rarely sends horses over to England outside of the festival and even then, he’d only go if the thought they had a real chance. He’s a good jumper and stays all day, so I think he’ll go very well under Robbie ‘Puppy’ Power (13:50).

The Greatwood Hurdle (15:00) looks a super renewal. I’ve looked at this race so much and I’ve landed on last years’ winner Harambe , who might still be well treated.

He won the race very well last year and was in the process of running a huge race at Newbury in February when he was brought down. If he’d have stayed upright that day, I’d have expected him to have finished in the first four and he could well have been rated nearer 150 now.

Off his mark off 143, he could be well in. I like that he has course form as there is no substitute for experience at Cheltenham.

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