Venetia Williams Set for Busy Cheltenham Festival - The Droitwich Standard

Venetia Williams Set for Busy Cheltenham Festival

Droitwich Editorial 23rd Feb, 2024 Updated: 27th Feb, 2024   0

Local trainer Venetia Williams is preparing for a busy Cheltenham Festival this year. She has made six entries at the meeting across the four days, as she bids for more success at the sport’s marquee event.

Williams won the Brown Advisory Novices’ Chase at the meeting in 2022, while in 2009, she famously had a double at the Festival in the Freddie Williams Festival Plate and Pertemps Final, two victories that came within hours of each other.

L’Homme Presse Gives Williams a Lively Shot in Gold Cup

The former Grand National winning trainer’s leading hope at this year’s meeting is L’Homme Presse in the Cheltenham Gold Cup. He is 8/1 to come out on top in the Blue Riband contest of the week. Those looking to bet on Williams’ talented chaser should consider the best Cheltenham Festival offers ahead of the race, as they could pick up a £30 free bet to use with bet365 and Tote.

With seven wins from nine appearances over fences, L’Homme Presse has one of the best records of all the runners entered for this year’s Gold Cup field. The chaser is also a former Cheltenham Festival winner, as he landed one of the leading novice races in 2022.

The nine-year-old made a return to action back in January in what was his first appearance on the track in 13 months. He prevailed in the Fleur De Lys Chase at Lingfield, beating Protektorat, a horse who had finished in the frame in the Gold Cup before.

Williams is set to give L’Homme Presse one final appearance at Ascot before he features in the Cheltenham Gold Cup on the final day of this year’s meeting.

Djelo Has Options Across the Week

Grade Two winning novice chaser Djelo has been entered in two races at the Festival to give him options on the eve of the meeting. He could feature in the Arkle Challenge Trophy over 2m or the Turners Novices’ Chase over the longer distance of 2m4f.

The six-year-old was successful in his opening three races over fences this season, with victories coming at Aintree, Newbury, and Ascot respectively. The latter was in the Howden Noel Novices’ Chase.

Williams will have been pleased with her horse’s recent effort in the Grade One Scilly Isles Novices’ Chase at Sandown. He found just one rival better than him on the day in that race. That was his final prep run before the Cheltenham Festival.

Funambule Sivola Outsider for Champion Chase

Funambule Sivola is set for a third shot at the Queen Mother Champion Chase this year. He finished second in the Championship contest in 2022 behind Energumeme.

The nine-year-old is looking for his first success of the season. His best performance in the campaign so far came at Newbury last time out where he was second behind Edwardstone in the Game Spirit Chase.

Williams is on course for one of her best-ever seasons and any success at Cheltenham will be a big boost towards her total prize money for the campaign.

Article written by Oli Hoyer

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