16:40 Cheltenham: Well-in Bordoni can run away with Fred Winter
Denis O’Regan has earmarked Bordoni as his best chance of a Cheltenham Festival winner this year and given the ease of his latest success, 8/1 is a price worth taking that the horse takes the Fred Winter Hurdle.
The horse could not have won any easier last time, albeit against seemingly moderate opposition, but he is quietly fancied, not only by O’Regan, but also trainer John Ferguson, who has indicated that the horse is thrown in off a mark of 134.
Interestingly, seven of the eight ever winners of this race had been beaten in their first two starts over hurdles and this is something that is true of Bordoni.
He was second on debut when way off fluent over the hurdles, but was much improved on his second start, when running out when having the race at his mercy.
Paul Nicholls is responsible for the two of the leaders in the Fred Winter betting, with Saphir Du Rheu leading the way at 6/1.
However, bigger interest is in Ptit Zig at 12/1, who has a profile that almost mirrors that of 2010 winner Sanctuaire.
He has only been raised 4lb for a smart victory last time and it would be no surprise if he was capable of progressing some way beyond his current mark.
Furthermore, he was triumphant on his only previous start on soft ground and his only run over 2m.
Zamdy Man appears to be one of the forgotten horses of the Fred Winter and could prove the each-way steal at 25/1.
The fact that he was thrown straight into Grade One company by connections is an indication to how highly he is rated in the yard and it should be remembered that he is the son of a former Epsom Derby winner in Authorized.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.