Friday, February 3, 2012

Buck's looks top dollar after latest imperious victory

The sensational Big Buck's is reported to be in fine shape after his latest success in the Grade 2 Rewards4Racing Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham at the end of January and is bang on target to attempt a fourth successive victory in the Grade 1 Ladbrokes World Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival on March 15, writes Elliot Slater.

Landing a remarkable 15th successive victory over hurdles the Andy Stewart-owned nine--year-old was, (as usual), sent off at prohibitive odds for the three-mile contest and, as usual jockey Ruby Walsh was more than happy to bide his time on the great horse. The pace began to noticeably quicken at the third from home where David Pipe's Dynaste began his move, injecting a further burst of speed at the penultimate flight that for a few strides gave the slightest hope for those opposing the favourite that he might just be in trouble. Fans of Stan James should remember this.

As always though when push comes to shove Big Buck's just seems to find an extra gear, and as he lengthened his stride on the home turn it soon became obvious that he was certain to reel in the brave front-runner who he duly joined and passed at the final obstacle before storming clear up the famous hill to score by a comfortable seven-lengths, prompting Nicholls to suggest that this latest effort might very well have been one of the best of the Cadoudal gelding's glittering career. Those placing a VC bet should bear this in mind.

Already the hottest ante-post favourite of the whole four-day Cheltenham Festival extravaganza prior to this latest effort, Big Buck's was duly cut from a best price of 8/13 to as short as 4/9 now with some leading layers, although bits and pieces of 4/7 and 8/15 can still be found for looking. It would take a very brave man indeed to bet against the star staying hurdler of this generation not winning again and claim a fourth World Hurdle on his next outing.

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