I love watching the English steeplechase races. Cheltenham doesn’t have the same amount of carnage as Ainstree (thank goodness) but there’s plenty of drama in this race.
What amazes me is the length of the course, the number of jumping efforts and the rolling terrain. That race is grueling. Not the least of it is the final uphill gallop to the finish line. Trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies is known for conditioning his horses really well and it showed.
Imperial Commander wasn’t the favorite in the race. It was expected to be a battle between Kauto Star and Denman. However, Kauto Star came in really wrong to a fence, almost falling. Rallied and then fell. Denman just couldn’t catch Imperial Commander coming up the hill and finished seven lengths behind.
This was the fourth time that the 9-year old Imperial Commander won at Cheltenham. So maybe he likes the course?