Barry Geraghty Sporting Insights 22/11/2019

Barry Geraghty’s Sporting Index blog: No comparison between Altior and Cyrname

Cheltenham’s November Meeting

Defi Du Seuil was brilliant in the Shloer Chase last Sunday. It was a good, solid race where Politologue set a nice pace.

Defi jumped brilliantly throughout and travelled really well. Before we turned in he gave a bit of a blow, and then he picked up nicely in the straight. I thought it was a very good performance.

He was very good at the second last when I needed him most and his jumping will only get slicker for the run as well.

His technique and fitness will both come on for the run and all being well he goes for the Tingle Creek.

Brelan D’As ran a great race to finish second in the feature. He seemed to cope with the soft ground better than I expected him to and he seemed to enjoy the step up in trip.

The winner, Happy Diva, was very brave and I just couldn’t peg her back. The only real issue with Brelan D’As is that the handicapper has a good grip on him now as we’ve been running consistently in good races, but hopefully the right race will pop up.

Time Flies By ran another good race but had to settle for second in the bumper.

I turned in with every chance and I thought I’d get the winner, Israel Champ, but he was very good in the end.

I know that Israel Champ was an expensive purchase and he certainly lived up to expectations.

Mick Pastor could only finish sixth in the Triumph Hurdle Trial. He was keen early on, but only for about the first three or four furlongs, so we didn’t have too many excuses for the performance.

He jumped really well and I thought we were going to win at the top of the hill, but halfway down it I knew that we wouldn’t!

Paul [Nicholls] was expecting a big run and overall he was disappointing.

Dame De Compagnie ran well after a long time off the track in the Greatwood.

It may not have been the strongest renewal of the race, but she put in a good effort and should improve for that given her previous run was back in April 2018.

Haydock – Saturday

Project Bluebook in the 2m3f handicap hurdle (1:50pm) is my only ride on Saturday.

He bypassed the third last instead of the second last when he had a healthy lead at Wetherby last time and was disqualified.

He was going very well that day and I think he’ll be involved again if he can reproduce that run.

The last time I rode him we won a Grade 2 Hurdle at Fairyhouse, so hopefully we can keep up the strike-rate!

In the feature race I can see Lostintranslation putting it up to Bristol De Mai.

Bristol De Mai is very good at Haydock and he thrives on soft ground, but I don’t believe conditions are as bad as they have been in previous years and that will suit Lostintranslation, who I think is a real star of the future.

Altior v Cyrname

Altior has won every jump race he’s lined up in and that doesn’t happen by accident.

Cyrname has that very strong piece of Ascot form, but Altior has been winning at the highest level for a long time and he’s still not an old horse.

If the spare ride came up you’d have to go with Altior as he has the strongest form in the book. There’s no comparison between the strength and depth of Altior’s form to that of Cyrname’s.

Navan – Sunday

It’s the Troytown Chase on Sunday and I’ve got a nice ride in that as well as in the third race on the card (1:30pm) with Spruced Up.

He’s put in a couple of decent performances in maiden hurdles and is hopefully still progressing.

His reappearance at Naas last time was disappointing but you can always forgive a horse their first run back and hopefully he’ll come on for it.

In the Troytown Chase (2:30pm) I’m on Fitzhenry who is a nice staying type. The forecast is for a lot of rain over the weekend and that will suit him.

He’s a proper old-fashioned staying chaser and just the sort of horse who could run well in this.

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