Dan Skelton talks us through his runners on Day Two at Cheltenham

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We are looking forward to day two of the festival when we will have four runners, starting with Shan Blue (1.30) in the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle. It is a hot race and we have a few pounds to find on ratings. 

We are not going here full of expectations about winning but he is a nice horse who is going to make a fine chaser so a bit of experience of the big stage will stand him in good stead. We do rate him highly and I think he can run well. 

Protektorat (2.50) is one of the fancied horses in the Coral Cup and we have been very happy with him coming into this. He looks fantastic. This race has always been the plan since Trials day.

I don’t think the hustle and bustle of a race like this will inconvenience him as now I think he has a good head on him. He runs his own race and doesn’t worry about the others around him. 

He has been to the track a couple of times so hopefully we can expect a decent run. He is going to need plenty of luck in running, as everybody knows.

Langer Dan (4.50) runs in the Boodles. He went up for his run in a Grade 2 at Cheltenham but I am very happy with him. He had a run at Ludlow the other day that will have put him straight.

He is a tough horse who stays this trip very well and I would be thinking he can run well. Of course 11st 5lb is more weight than is ideal but you need to be rated 129 to even get in this race and he is only 6lb higher than that. It’s not a massive inconvenience.

In the bumper we run Third Time Lucki (5.30). I think this is a very good horse and I think he has a fair chance.

I have a lot of respect for the others in there because this is always a hotly contested, high quality race and this year will be no exception.

Nevertheless I think this horse has a fair chance. He has it all really and the preliminaries won’t concern him, which is very important for the bumper horses.

Let’s hope we get a bit of luck.

Dan.

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Dan Skelton

Since starting out on his own, Warwickshire trainer Dan Skelton has assembled one of the most exciting stables in National Hunt racing. Having enjoyed their first Cheltenham Festival success with Superb Story in 2016, Skelton and the team are hungry for more. Get the latest from the Lodge Hill maestro exclusively at Ladbrokes News.