Joe Tizzard: “Kilbricken Storm has to be competitive off his current mark”
Coral ambassador previews the Tizzard stables’ Cheltenham Day Three runners
Cheltenham 13.30 – Reserve Tank
Reserve Tank was a dual Grade 1-winning novice hurdler, and he’s not done an awful lot wrong over fences this season, finishing second at Chepstow first time up, winning a Grade 2, and then finishing second in another Grade 2 when he didn’t run his race.
He’s not a horse who likes the winter months. He’s not easy to train at that time of year, but he’s just coming right.
Ideally, we’d have liked a bit more spring-like weather in recent weeks, so we could have got a run into him, in which case I’d have fancied him strongly, but we are where we are and I think he can still run a big race.
That said, he will improve for this run, with the other big festivals to look forward to, although that doesn’t mean he should be underestimated here.
He’s a very, very good horse, I just wish we could have got that extra run into him, at Exeter, or Kempton, but the wintry weather was just against us.
I can see him running into a place here, and then he could stake some beating at Aintree or Punchestown.
Cheltenham 14.10 – Kilbricken Storm
The owners were keen to run him in the Stayers’ Hurdle, but as an Albert Bartlett winner running off a mark of 140, we thought this was the better option for Kilbricken Storm.
That said, it took a few goes to get him qualified for this Pertemps Final, we lost a couple of Exeter meetings, a Chepstow, so we ended up taking him to Haydock, where third place sealed his spot here.
Off his current mark I’m sure he has to be competitive here, he’s in good form at home, and his best run came at the Cheltenham Festival, so he clearly likes it here.
As you’d expect it’s an ultra-competitive race, but if he runs to somewhere near his best form, he could be right in the mix. Harry [Cobden] rides, he’s his ride when he’s available, he knows the horse inside out, so it’s a simple decision.
Cheltenham 15.30 – West Approach
Paisley Park is going to be very hard to beat in the Stayers’ Hurdle, but we run West Approach in the race. He is fully exposed, but he runs well at Cheltenham, and if we could pick up some prize money, it would be a job well done.
Cheltenham 16.10 – Vision Des Flos
Vision Des Flos is a classy horse on his day, although he just falls short of that proper Grade 1 standard, and we did make several entries for him here, before deciding that although he might lack a bit of chasing experience for a handicap of this nature, he was better off running here than in a Grade 1 like the Marsh or Arkle.
He’ll love the ground, and our Cheltenham record reminded us that we can have big-priced winners here, so he’s not without a chance, we do hold him in high regard at home, and if he can show that here, he could outrun his odds.