Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

The Punter: Don’t dance around Cossack’s cracking 10/1 quote for Cheltenham

Cheltenham is over three months away but already thoughts are turning towards potential winners and grabbing a bit of ante-post value.

Don’t dance around Cossack’s cracking 10/1 quote for Cheltenham

CHELTENHAM is over three months away but already thoughts are turning towards potential winners and grabbing a bit of ante-post value.

One that stands out is Don Cossack after a very smooth start to his hurdles career at Navan last Sunday.

He was never going to be beaten at 3/10 but the way in which he won and handled the flights, in very testing ground, augurs extremely well for the future.

In fact, he is a potential Gold Cup winner in the years ahead as he'll really come into his own when going over the bigger obstacles.

Most of the major firms have quoted him at 8/1 for the Festival's Supreme Novices Hurdle which opens the four-day meeting but that is to be swerved.

The trip of two miles, which he won over on Sunday, is on the short side for last year's top bumper horse and his next outing is likely be back at Navan on December 16 over 2m 4f in the Grade One Novice Hurdle which trainer Gordon Elliott (pictured) won last year with Mount Benbulben.

That indicates Elliott will look to the Neptune Hurdle over two and a half miles for which the horse gets a quote of 10/1 as he never got out of second gear in beating the useful Sizing Gold last week, leaving jockey Davy Russell purring about the future.

“His jumping was almost faultless,” said Russell.

“He doesn't spend much time in the air and gets from one side of the hurdle to the other very quickly.

“He's hugely, hugely exciting,” Russell added.

Already he looks a banker in what will be a strong Gigginstown Cheltenham raid — so snap up that 10/1 before he reappears next month.