Daryl Jacob: Power Serge
After a Grade One win on Saturday, columnist Daryl Jacob is hoping for more big-race success at Cheltenham on Sunday.
L'Ami Serge is back over hurdles at Cheltenham on Sunday
The going at Cheltenham is good at the moment which is remarkable for the time of year and in an ideal world it might be a bit softer for Vyta Du Roc, though I personally feel he's a very versatile operator.
He's got some strong form around Cheltenham, winning a Grade Two novice hurdle a couple of years ago, and we've decided to declare him with a first-time tongue tie in the Watch Live Racing On Betbright.com Handicap Chase.
He's worked with a tongue strap since finishing a creditable sixth in the Hennessy and he seems to have moved much better with it on, so hopefully it's a positive addition for him and may prevent him hitting such a flat spot in his races.
L'Ami Serge is another interesting ride for me on New Year's Day as he returns to the smaller obstacles in the Dornan Engineering Relkeel Hurdle.
It's quite an open Grade Two with Lil Rockerfeller the top-rated in the field but L'Ami Serge gets 8lb from him and in fairness he looks favoured by the overall conditions of the race carrying just 11-0.
He was a good chaser last season and made a very pleasing return over fences when second to Le Prezien at Exeter. He jumped out to his left there, as he always does, so we'll be sticking to left-handed tracks with him now and the Relkeel is obviously a very good race which may just open up a few options regarding what we can do with him for both the rest of the season and the rest of his career.
I won't be getting carried away with the New Year celebrations as I'm getting down to 10-5 for the ride on Daphne Du Clos in the EBF Stallions & Cheltenham Pony Club NH Flat Race.
It's a Listed contest and Nicky has obviously done very well with his fillies and mares in these type of races over many years so she's a great ride to have.
It's a learning curve with the filly, who won a small race in France before joining the yard, but she's been working nicely and it'd be fantastic to ride another winner for Potensis Bloodstick Limited, with whom I've enjoyed some high-profile success in the past.
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