“The most exciting hurdle prospect for many years”. Check out Timeform’s report on Constitution Hill’s Sky Bet Supreme win.
With the Covid pandemic having been displaced from the headlines by a shockingly brutal war, an event acknowledged in the NH Chase headline, something like normality has returned to the Cheltenham Festival, although there is nothing of normal in the performance of Constitution Hill.
He produced a stunning effort that looks as good at this point as any novice hurdler in Timeform’s experience, his initial rating ahead of those given to both the ill-fated Golden Cygnet in that race in 1978 and Alderbrook. by winning the 1995 Champion Hurdle. as a novice this view of form supported by both time and the closing section, this race faster at all stages than the much more consistent Champion Hurdle, this strong race, with 2 high quality novices giving the winner a lead, nothing else in the second consecutive single digit field for this ever involved race, the winner’s foot lap in the final electric turn, his performance that of a future winner Champion Hurdle for sure; with a record crowd on day one after last season’s ghostly staging behind closed doors, Cheltenham’s roar returned, as did the false starts, 3 in the afternoon, although the one here had less of an impact as the last, runners here and in the Ultima did not violate guidelines, however, due to Covid restrictions still in place in the weigh room, there was no social distancing naughty step enough big for the riders who were involved in Fred Winter’s false start and the matter was referred to BHA headquarters.
Cheltenham Festival 2022 | Festival review
CONSTITUTION HILL produced what at first glance appears to be the best performance by a novice hurdler in Timeform’s long experience, albeit in a heavily organized race for an exceptional horse to run at a very high figure, capable of s’ sit comfortably behind the gallop and find a nice turn of foot away from the mud, strong at the finish too; rhythm followed, covered strongly, emerged from 2 outings, led shortly after, clearly accelerated, well established, impressive; on paper this performance would have been good enough to have won the Champion Hurdle later on the card and it poses a very real threat to Honeysuckle with a meeting between the pair possibly occurring as early as Punchestown, it almost goes without saying that it is the most exciting hurdle prospect for many years.
JOBON (FR) lost his undefeated record, although he emerged with plenty of credit against an outcast, surely their paths are now likely to diverge, with the Arkle 2023 surely the long-term plan, while suggesting a better hunter than even the clever horse he is over hurdles; close up, well traveled, led 3 outings, rocked shortly after, led shortly after 2 outings, no game for winner.
KILCRUIT (IRE) runner-up to last season’s Champion Bumper, ran honorably on his first graded company attempt over hurdles, kept to 2m, although never really looking likely to get involved, his performance suggesting that ‘another try further might be worthwhile; waited with, error first, effort before 3 outs, stayed straight, never in terms; he has the physique to make a hunter.
BRING THE NIGHT the only ex-Flat interpreter in the field, lacked the experience to make any impact in this field, less than 3 weeks after his hurdles debut, in a tongue strap this time; in the back, not always fluid, jerked before fifth gear, plugged in straight, never threatening; he’s not the big type, certainly not by those show jumping horses, but he’s still capable of better in calmer waters.
JPR ONE (IRE) had left the impression that he was not ready for a test like the Betfair Hurdle last time out and that he was certainly not up to this demanding task, whether in terms of ability or knowledge -do, ran away; ran out of rhythm, smooth third step, working before 3 outings, embarrassed there.
DYNAMO DYSART (IRE) in less trying conditions, was strong in the bets and still roughly ahead when he went down, although he wouldn’t have come close to the winner and, given the distance, it’s hard to say where he would have finished relative to the runner-up; led, held tight, not fluent in first, second, up when down 3; a strong guy, who looked dull in his coat before, he has the makings of a top novice hunter next season.
SHALLWEHAVEONEMORE (EN) met a sad end; restrained, out of the bridle when embarrassed 3, fell fatally last.
MIGHTY POTTER (FR) was in a stronger Grade 1 than the one he had won at Christmas and could not cope, although it is likely that he would have benefited from more testing conditions; waited with, hanging on the right, fourth fluid step, fifth blunder, place lost shortly after, shot before 2 out.
SILENT REVOLUTION (IRE) had a lot to find in this elated company after just one run in a small novice and lacked both class and experience to cope after 4 months out; ran out of rhythm, working early on final circuit, behind when blundered fifth, stopped.