Cheltenham Festival 2019

Cheltenham Festival 2019

Cross Country Chase Tiger Roll’s to lose?

The 2019 Cheltenham festival is fast approaching as anticipation continues to build ahead of the marquee fixture of the national hunt season. There are many races to get excited about and one that draws mix views is the Cross Country Chase. The 2018 Grand National winner Tiger Roll, will be returning to defend his title in the race, in which he is a general 3/1 favourite, which you can find on So is he a banker for this year’s meeting?

The nine year old is trained by Gordon Elliott who will certainly have him ready for the race. He is coming into the festival looking to win for the third year in succession and fourth in all, which would be an incredible feat. His first success came back in 2014, when he ran away with the Triumph hurdle, powering clear up the hill to win by just over three lengths. The following season he was then well beaten in the World hurdle (now known as the Stayers hurdle).

Tiger Roll then returned to the Cheltenham festival in 2017 following failing to make the 2016 meeting. He contested the National hunt Chase over four miles, in which he came in to his own over an extreme test. He led from three out and eased clear to win very impressively from the staying on Missed Approach. This was another indication of the horse showing his liking to the testing Cheltenham track.

Last season was the year the horse really took his form to a new level. He kicked off with his usual underwhelming early season performances, before being given a break prior to the Cheltenham festival. He was sent to contest the Cross Country Chase and was very well fancied with connections echoing how well he was training.

However with the ground going soft he drifted heavily on the day. This did not matter as he travelled ominously well throughout before taking up the running five out, and staying on gamely to win by two lengths. With the race now not being a handicap it brings the classy horses to the fore and this certainly was the case here.

Tiger Roll really does seem to come alive at the latter stages of the season and following this victory he of course went on to land the Grand National. Again showing an extreme test plays to his strengths. He was six lengths clear at the Elbow and looked a class above before Pleasant Company rallied very gamely up the run in to get to within a head. It is going to be a huge ask of Tiger Roll to win the National again as he is a small horse and would need to now carry a big weight in comparison to last season’s 10 stone 13lb.

However looking to the Cross Country Chase he is going to take the world of beating in the 2019 edition. He seems to always bring his A game to the Cheltenham festival, and is a very classy horse for the race. He rates a strong selection to go on and defend his title.

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