FESTIVAL FEVER: Sportsmail’s Chris Sutton and footballer-turned-pundit Peter Crouch reveal why they LOVE Cheltenham, what their favourite race is… and their banker bets for the final day of action
- Chris Sutton and Peter Crouch told Sportsmail about their love of Cheltenham
- CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL TIPS – DAY FOUR:xxxx
- Click here for the latest Cheltenham Festival news, schedule and race results
Chris Sutton and Peter Crouch are both big fans of horse-racing, with the Cheltenham Festival having been a key part of their adult lives.
Crouch was pictured enjoying a day at the races on Thursday and he even enjoyed some success as he watched his 9-1 bet Good Time Jonny romp to victory in the the 2.10 Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle.
Here they reveals what the iconic festival means to them, their favourite race of the four-day event and his banker bet.
What does Cheltenham mean to you?
CHRIS SUTTON: I’ve got 11 horses in stables at home. None will ever trouble the field at the Cheltenham Festival, but that tells you this is an animal, and a sport, that I’m rather fond of. My hard-working son, James, recently got on the Scottish apprenticeship shoemaking team, too, so I’m very proud to say we’ve got a farrier in the family!
PETER CROUCH: It’s just the best! I always enjoyed it when we had team days out. It took off when I was at Spurs — Jonathan Woodgate and Harry Redknapp were right into their horses — and we kept it going at Stoke. The buzz of the place is what sport is all about.
Chris Sutton (left) and Peter Crouch (right) spoke to Sportsmail about their love of Cheltenham
What is your best memory of the Festival and which winner did you celebrate the most?
CS: Now this may not compare to Tony Bloom’s big win on Wednesday (Energumene, £830,000), but I once won £30,000 at Cheltenham without placing a bet. Six newspapers had written stories saying I was at the races, drunk, doing this and that and being rude to other racegoers. I wasn’t even at Cheltenham. I was busy moving house! It was a pack of lies, so a few cheques were written to acknowledge that fact.
Gold Cup odds
Galopin Des Champs – 11/8
A Plus Tard – 4/1
Bravemansgame – 17/2
Noble Yeats – 10/1
Stattler – 10/1
Conflated – 14/1
Minella Indo – 14/1
Ahoy Senor – 18/1
Protektorat – 18/1
Sounds Russian – 28/1
Hewick – 40/1
Royale Pagaille – 80/1
Eldorado Allen – 100/1
Odds provided by Paddy Power
Which is your favourite race of the four days?
CS: You cannot beat the Champion Hurdle. Visitors to Cheltenham were desperate to see if Constitution Hill could live up to the hype. He did and his elegant victory showed he could indeed go down as the horse of a generation. Now everyone who was at Cheltenham that day can say, ‘I was there’.
PC: It’s difficult to pick one, as I love them all, but the Gold Cup is what it’s all about. I went in 2018 and we were all in on Native River. He had this epic battle with Might Bite when it was toing and froing up the run-in. Thankfully we were on the right side of the argument! What a day it turned out to be.
Are you at the Festival? If not, where will you be watching?
CS: I’m afraid not. My schedule doesn’t allow for a sneaky trip to the races. As I write this, I’ve had two hours’ sleep having just returned from watching Liverpool lose to Real Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday night. I’m following the Festival on my phone, sadly!
PC: I was there on Thursday with my friends at Paddy Power. I had worked on Wednesday night doing the Real Madrid-Liverpool game but was up bright and early to get ready. A big group of us went and, yes, a good day was had by all.
Chris Sutton was delighted Constitution Hill secured a stunning win in the Champion Hurdle
Peter Crouch insisted he wants to see Galopin Des Champs win the Gold Cup on the final day
Your banker bet for the last day?
CS: I asked a friend for a tip and he texted back ‘Langer Dan, Coral Cup’. Good shout. Too bad he’s a day late. Langer Dan won on Wednesday! Friday is all about the Gold Cup, and can we really look beyond Galopin Des Champs?
PC: Glen Johnson is my first port of call when it comes to selections but I’m going to be brave tomorrow and trust my own judgment. I want to see Galopin Des Champs win the Gold Cup because he could be a superstar, and I would expect Allegorie De Vassy to comfortably win the Mrs Paddy Power Mares’ Chase.
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