Cooldine has stamina for National

It is still possible to profit from last week's Cheltenham Festival. Chris McGrath pinpoints some eye-catching horses to follow


SOMERSBY

Third, William Hill Supreme Novices' Hurdle. Trainer: Henrietta Knight.

Built for fences, he has made excellent progress during a light career to date and here stayed on best of all up the hill after an untimely error three out. Impressive winner of a bumper last season, he has travelled strongly in all his races and it is easy to envisage him returning to the Festival next year as one of the best novice chasers around.

CORNAS

Seventh, Irish Independent Arkle Trophy. Trainer: Nick Williams.

Still going well among the leaders when slipping over the second last, and losing all momentum. He finished pretty tired anyway, but the stiff finish always promised to raise questions for a horse whose stamina appears limited. His maiden success over fences in January had confirmed him very much at home round the sharp, flat track at Ludlow, and he looks an ideal type for Aintree.

WIND INSTRUMENT

Ninth, William Hill Handicap Chase. Trainer: Alan King.

Making only his fourth start over fences, and his first for this trainer, he was holding his own among some very experienced handicappers when misjudging the second last. That was that, but he had shown enough to revive the promise of his successful debut over fences at Chepstow over Christmas. Eighth in the champion bumper here in his youth, he has long had the physical look of a chaser and perhaps belated fulfilment awaits.

COOLDINE

Winner, RSA Chase.

Trainer: Willie Mullins.

The immediate reaction to this performance was that he should be backed on the spot for next year's Totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup. We might, after all, have proved ready for a changing of the guard by the end of last week, but a new pinnacle from Kauto Star put that idea in sober context. This time next year, however, the John Smith's Grand National could be another story. Cooldine had this sewn up a long way out, and if Willie Mullins doubts whether he quite has the class of Florida Pearl – who won him this prize in 1998 – then he seems to have a great deal more stamina.

ALEXANDER SEVERUS

Fourth, Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle. Trainer: Edward O'Grady

Must have traded at microscopic odds in running as he cantered into the lead two out, but faltered on the climb to the post and only just salvaged the each-way money from what had been the gamble of the week. As a son of Montjeu he is entitled to quirks as well as class, but the raw ability is undeniable. Ridden with more restraint he may prove comfortable with any gallop, in any company – including the very best.

THE SLIOTAR

Fourth, Pertemps Final.

Trainer: David Pipe.

A tough week for his new stable, but definite signs of life on only his second start since changing hands last summer. He had shown nothing at the November meeting here, but that was true of many others in the yard at that time, and this time he charged home from off the pace under an amateur rider. He goes well on faster ground and, with more aggressive tactics, could pick up a decent prize this spring.

STARLUCK

Fourth, JCB Triumph Hurdle.

Trainer: Alan Fleming.

Having been kept to sharp tracks – Huntingdon, Fakenham and Kempton – when impressive winner of all three previous starts, he cruised into contention two out only to fade on the punishing climb to the post. As such he looks tailor-made for Aintree. Already a fine advertisement for his emerging trainer, he could also prove interesting on the Flat, maybe round Chester.

KANDARI

Fifth, Vincent O'Brien County Hurdle. Trainer: Noel Meade.

A very peculiar race, one horse already in total control by the time many rivals finally seemed to find their stride, but one way or another this was a fine effort from one making only his fourth start over hurdles. Having closed with menacing ease, he ran out of gas on the hill, and will perhaps improve again on faster ground.

MAMLOOK

14th, Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Hurdle. Trainer: David Pipe.

A smart handicapper on the Flat, he will surely pick up a good prize over hurdles sooner or later – not least given his proficiency on spring ground. Having been stifled previously this season by a quiet spell for his yard and then bad ground, he lost his footing when hampered at a critical stage and tired himself out trying to recover the lost ground.

BEGGARS CAP

Unseated rider, Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase. Trainer: Ferdy Murphy.

From a stable that has had great success at the Festival but experienced wretched luck at the meeting this time. His mishap in its final race just about summed things up – making headway from the rear when ejecting his rider three out. Quite where he would have finished is hard to say, but he is clearly dangerously handicapped, having been 5lb out of the weights here. He relishes fast ground and can surely win a race this spring.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Junior Artworker / Junior Mac Artworker

£18 - 23k + Bonus + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Junior Artworker / Junior Mac Ar...

Guru Careers: Trainee Installation Engineer / Field Service Engineer / Customer Support Exec

£16 - 18k: Guru Careers: A Trainee Installation Engineer / Field Service Engin...

Recruitment Genius: Software Programmer / Developer

£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This ambitious and friendly sof...

Recruitment Genius: Software Sales Executive - OTE £80,000

£50000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This software company has been ...

Day In a Page

A groundbreaking study of 'Britain's Atlantis' long buried at the bottom of the North Sea could revolutionise how we see our prehistoric past

Britain's Atlantis

Scientific study beneath North Sea could revolutionise how we see the past
The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember,' says Starkey

The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember'

David Starkey's assessment
Oliver Sacks said his life has been 'an enormous privilege and adventure'

'An enormous privilege and adventure'

Oliver Sacks writing about his life
'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

'Gibraltar is British, and it is going to stay British forever'

The Rock's Chief Minister hits back at Spanish government's 'lies'
Britain is still addicted to 'dirty coal'

Britain still addicted to 'dirty' coal

Biggest energy suppliers are more dependent on fossil fuel than a decade ago
Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests
Mexico: A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life

The dark side of Mexico

A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life
Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde. Don't tell other victims it was theirs

Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde

Please don't tell other victims it was theirs
A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935