Tote Win: £0.00 Tote Place: ££2.00,£1.70
Straight Forecast: £0.00 Exacta: £0.00
Jackpot: £48,362.50, Pool: £68116.26, 1.0 winning tickets
Placepot: £268.60, Pool: £222021.02, 603.2 winning tickets
Quadpot: £29.40, Pool: £16978.21, 426.47 winning tickets
Poetry in motion here from AP McCoy and NEPTUNE COLLONGES as the duo set out to make all the running and their rivals never got a sniff of them. Fired into nearly every fence by his jockey, the gallant grey responded with perfect jumps, bar the fence at the top of the hill on the final circuit. With McCoy having a couple of looks back coming down the hill, and his charge galloping on remorselessly, the result was easy to call from a fair way out. Tidal Bay is admirably consistent in his finishing positions; however the problem once again was that by the time he consented to run on for Brian Hughes, the race was all but over. To be fair he travelled with more fluency than he has in the past, but he had so much ground to make up that even fluent jumps at the last couple of fences couldn't get him close enough to the leader. Hot favourite Punchestowns was a big disappointment. He jumped well enough in the early stages but around halfway he started to get in the habit of tightening up into his obstacles. Slow, stuttering jumps at the water and several later fences curtailed his chance, robbing him of any momentum he was trying to build up as he chased the winner. Barry Geraghty wasn't hard on him once he hit the hill, and had The Tother One or Madison Du Berlais ran on with nay purpose then he may have been caught for third, however neither could raise a leg in the closing stages. This isn't a performance that puts the winner in the Gold Cup spotlight, after all he was gifted an easy lead; however it was a sign that the fire still burns bright. Quotes suggested that a trip to Aintree in April may be in the offing; however his trainer wasn't willing to commit him to any race at this stage. Tidal Bay is an enigma; his head carriage makes him look like a nodding dog, but given his talent it would be no surprise to see him gain place money in whatever race he heads for, including something like the totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup.