Cheltenham Festival 2022: Massive British boost as monster horse too big to measure gets green light to run

BRITISH hopes at the Cheltenham Festival have been given a huge boost with Hillcrest confirmed to run by trainer Henry Daly.

The giant horse – who his trainer says is too big to measure and weighs 109st – is the general 3-1 favourite for the Albert Bartlett.

Daly had been teasing punters by saying the huge runner might swerve the Festival in favour of Aintree next month.

But speaking on the Nick Luck Daily podcast, Daly confirmed Hillcrest, owned by the family of late billionaire Trevor Hemmings, is all go.

He said: "We came to the conclusion if the horse is well, which I think he is, the plan is to run in the Albert Bartlett.

"We know we get the trip, we know we don't mind the track, the ground is fine, anything good through to heavy.

"Why wouldn't we have a crack if we know he's OK? Which he is.

"We schooled him recently and he jumped nicely."

Most read in Horse Racing

FIVER FLUTTER

Bash the bookies with these longshots including 16-1 chance at Wincanton

TEMPLEGATE'S TIPS

Templegate NAPs course winner to strike again in modest race at Southwell

WHOLE LOTTE LOVE

Meet Charlotte Jones, jockey who stunned Love Island star with amazing win

FIVER FLUTTER

Bash the bookies with these longshots at Kempton and Lingfield

OFFERS OF THE DAY

William Hill: Bet £10 get £30 in free sports bets CLAIM HERE

Betfair Get A £20 Free Bet when you place £50 worth of bets. Repeat up to 5 times for £100 Free Bets CLAIM HERE

Paddy Power: Bet £20 and get it back as Cash if it LosesCLAIM HERE

Sky Bet £5 FREE BET EVERY DAY AT CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL + AN ADDITIONAL £5 FREE BET TODAY WHEN YOU PLACE A £5 BETCLAIM HERE

William Hill: 18+. Play Safe. New customers using Promo code H30 only, Min £10/€10 stake, min odds 1/2, free bets paid as 2 x £15/€15, free bets credited after settlement of first qualifying bet, free bets will expire 30 days after the qualifying bet is placed, payment method/player/country restrictions apply. Begambleaware.org

Betfair – New customers place £50 worth of bets to receive £20 in free bets. Repeat up to 5 times to receive maximum £100. Min odds 1.2 (1/5). Multiple bets included. Exchange bets excluded. Payment restrictions apply. T&Cs apply. 18+ BeGambleAware.Org

Paddy Power: New customers only. Place your FIRST bet on any sportsbook market and if it loses we will refund your stake in CASH. Max refund for this offer is £/€20. Only deposits made using Cards or Apple Pay will qualify for this promotion. T&Cs apply. Paddy's Rewards Club: Get a £/€10 free bet when you place 5x bets of £/€10+. T&Cs apply. 18+ Begambleaware.org

Sky Bet: NEW CUSTOMERS ONLY. FIRST SINGLE & E/W BET ONLY. ODDS OF 1/1 OR GREATER. 5 x £5 BET TOKENS. FIRST £5 FREE BET CREDITED ON BET PLACEMENT. FREE BET STAKES NOT INCLUDED IN RETURNS. FREE BETS ARE NON WITHDRAWABLE. NO FREE BET EXPIRY. ELIGIBILITY RESTRICTIONS AND FURTHER T&CS APPLY. 18+. BEGAMBLEAWARE.ORG

However, Daly, who has four Cheltenham Festival winners, did fire off a word of warning about his stable star's jumping.

He said: "I think he will miss one. I can't get over that. But if we can only miss one and not three that will be a bonus.

"I haven't discussed who will be riding him."

Daly said Fortescue could be declared for the Ultima and, rain dependant, Rapper will go in one of the Ultima or Kim Muir.

But really it is all about Hillcrest.

The beastly horse nicknamed Rodney has raced five times over hurdles, winning four of them and unseating in the other.

That mishap came at Cheltenham in January, but in his run prior to that he was a convincing winner at the same track over the highly fancied I Am Maximus, trained by Nicky Henderson.

Hillcrest was given a quote of 16-1 for next Friday's Albert Bartlett then, but is around 3-1 now.

He is vying for favouritism with Gordon Elliott's Ginto after Minella Crooner, the ante post fav, was ruled out yesterday through injury.

FREE BETS GET OVER £2,000 IN SIGN UP OFFERS HERE

Commercial content notice: Taking one of the bookmaker offers featured in this article may result in a payment to The Sun. 18+. T&Cs apply. Begambleaware.org

Remember to gamble responsibly

A responsible gambler is someone who:

  • Establishes time and monetary limits before playing
  • Only gambles with money they can afford to lose
  • Never chases their losses
  • Doesn’t gamble if they’re upset, angry or depressed
  • Gamcare – www.gamcare.org.uk
  • Gamble Aware – www.begambleaware.org

    Source: Read Full Article