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2019 Cheltenham Festival eyecatchers - Five vanquished Festival runners who should be winning before long

We pick out five Cheltenham Festival eyecatchers to keep onside in future races.

We highlight five beaten horses at the recent Cheltenham Festival who ought to win races before too much longer.

The Cheltenham Festival is now very much in the rear-view mirror, but while there were a few shocks throughout the four days there were also plenty of eye-catching runs from both winners and the vanquished alike.

With several impressive performances from various winners, there were also many horses who failed to win but turned in eye-catching performances of their own and who ought to be winning before too much longer.

We look back on four fantastic days’ horse racing action at the ‘greatest show on turf’ and pick out five beaten horses who should be worth keeping onside as future winners.

VINTAGE CLOUDS seems best when he’s had time between his races, and it ought not to be long before Sue Smith’s charge gets back on the scoresheet judging on his gallant second behind Beware The Bear in the Ultima Handicap.

The Cloudings gelding was making his first start since December having had wind surgery, and he turned in another gutsy performance to find only Nicky Henderson’s emerging stayer too strong. Having took up the running three out, he was headed at the last by the winner but battled back tenaciously to be closing again at the line.

He has won twice over fences, scoring at Aintree and Haydock, and he could well go to Aintree for the Grand National; while another crack at the Scottish Grand National - where he finished third twelve months ago - could also be on the cards for the Trevor Hemmings-owned nine-year old who has stamina in abundance. 

Vintage Clouds (right) chased home improving Beware The Bear in the Ultima Handicap Chase.


SANTINI emerged with great credit in the RSA Chase, making winner Topofthegame pull out all the stops to land the success.

Nicky Henderson’s charge was clearly more at home faced with this test rather than his earlier run at Kempton behind the same rival, and the pair along with third-placed Delta Work pulled well clear of the rest.

There probably isn’t a great deal between the front three all things considered; but given Santini’s troubled preparation in the days and weeks leading up to his Cheltenham appearance, and having stumbled badly during the RSA Chase then his finishing position is all the more creditable.

Santini finished a gallant second in the RSA Chase despite having a troubled preparation and stumbling during the race.


LOSTINTRANSLATION came off worst in his duel with old foe Defi Du Seuil in the JLT Novices’ Chase, but Colin Tizzard’s charge looks one to note next season over a longer trip.

The latter was confirming earlier Sandown form with the Tizzard runner, having been beaten previously at this venue in the Dipper Novices’ Chase. While Lostintranslation couldn’t muster the finishing speed of the victor, the pair had pulled seven lengths clear of the third and he looked every inch a staying type who could well make his mark next season over three miles ago.

Big-race jockey Robbie Power did everything right on the trailblazing runner-up who jumped from fence to fence, and earlier jumping frailties seem to have been quickly ironed out; and afterwards the rider suggested that staying trips will be his forte.

Lostintranslation (right) could improve for a step up in trip.


SEMPO was one of a number of horses sent across the Irish Sea by trainer Joseph O’Brien, and while the front two came to the forefront of proceedings with Envoi Allen getting the better of runner-up Blue Sari.

However, it was the Oscar gelding who caught the eye, and there is sure to be races won with him next season.

He has looked progressive in bumpers in Ireland, posting an impressive success at Thurles prior to coming here, and he steadily crept into the race under a quiet ride from Derek O’Connor. Sneaking up the inside as the field turned in, he couldn’t quite go with the front pair; but he kept on well to finish sixth, clear of the remainder and he looks every inch a horse who should make his mark over hurdles.


MR ADJUDICATOR came into the race with some very solid form to his name, including when chasing home subsequent Champion Hurdle winner Espoir D’allen back in November.

A Grade One winner as a juvenile last term, the County Hurdle was his first run since that more recent Naas outing, and it is possible the break may just have left him a little short of fitness for what was a fiercely-run race.

Paul Townend brought the son of Camacho steadily into the race having held him up early; but he started hanging left after turning in and making progress through the field, and he probably got tired on his first run back in more than four months.

Mr Adjudicator (white cap) may have got tired in the County Hurdle on his first start for four months.




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2019 Cheltenham Festival eyecatchers - Five vanquished Festival runners who should be winning before long

We highlight five beaten horses at the recent Cheltenham Festival who ought to win races before too much longer.

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