Daryl Jacob: Whole lot to enjoy

Daryl Jacob reflects on Festival Trials Day at Cheltenham and looks ahead to his weekend rides.

Wholestone impresses at Cheltenham Trials Day

Wholestone was great at Cheltenham on Festival Trials Day and it was lovely to see him go out and do that. He has done incredibly well all year and I am very lucky to have him to ride.

He coped well with the drop back to two-and-a-half miles last Saturday and will head straight to the Festival now where he has entries in the Albert Bartlett and the Neptune. I just hope he arrives there in top form as he'd have a big chance wherever he runs.

Kotkikova ran well to a point in the Cleeve Hurdle. She travelled and jumped well to two out but then the tank emptied. She ran a lovely race to that point though and gave me a great feel.

On Sunday I rode Footpad to finish second behind Petit Mouchoir in the BHP Insurance Irish Champion Hurdle a Leopardstown. They went very, very quick and I was delighted with his performance. He stayed on really well.

He has improved with every run this season and has plenty of nice targets to look forward to in the spring.

I've three rides at Sandown on Saturday starting with Top Notch in the Betfred TV Scilly Isles Novices' Chase. As you'd expect for a Grade One this is a warm heat and will realistically tell us where to go for the rest of the season.

My fellow has done nothing wrong all year and has improved with every run. I thought he was particularly good at Ascot last time. You wouldn't have seen much in the thick fog but he did it very well. This is a massive step up for him but he has earned it.

El Terremoto is another I'm looking forward to in the Betfred Mobile Heroes Handicap Hurdle. He's going the right way and his form is rock solid. He finished third in a good race at Haydock last time and the second, Le Rocher, has won since and the winner, Clyne, chased home The New One in the Champion Hurdle Trial back there.

I've not ridden him in a race for a while and I'm looking forward to getting back on him at Sandown.

My final ride on the card is Butney Island in the Betfred Super League Novices' Handicap Hurdle. He has been a bit disappointing and Nick Mitchell has changed a few things at home as we try to get him back on track. I hope he runs a better race here.

On Sunday I go to Taunton for one ride, Caid Du Lin, in the Bathwick Tyres Taunton Handicap Hurdle. He pulled up under Richard Johnson on his British debut which was disappointing as Dr Newland thinks a bit of him. I hope he leaves that form behind him here.

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