A week that had it all: why this Cheltenham Festival will become part of racing legend

Peter Thomas looks back at a magical week of festival action

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Peter ThomasRacing Writer of the Year


That's it. Stop the meeting. Please finish your drinks and leave in an orderly fashion.

We're five races in and whatever happens in the next 23 won't come close to matching what we've already seen, no matter how hard it tries. In fact, most of festival history will struggle to live up to what we've just seen (with apologies to Dawn Run, Arkle and Desert Orchid).

First there was Constitution Hill. Now, you might think that fielding a 4-11 favourite for a championship race at the biggest jumps meeting in the world would be a pleasurable experience for those involved, but any trainer (even the ones who would jump at the chance to be in Nicky Henderson's shoes) will tell you that handling a potential great is the kind of task that can bring otherwise well-balanced individuals to their knees.

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Published on 18 March 2023Last updated 18:20, 18 March 2023