Champion Jockey AP McCoy Outlines Festival Plans

Tagged under: 3.20 Ladbrokes World Hurdle 3m (Grade1)

With the massive firepower of the Willie Mullins stable at his disposal it is not surprising that leading Irish rider Ruby Walsh is as short as 4-9 to finish as the leading jockey at the 2014 Cheltenham Festival but champion jockey Tony McCoy, speaking in his column in The Telegraph, revealed his significant mounts for the week, in particular his decision to partner At Fishers Cross in Thursday's Ladbrokes World Hurdle in preference to the hugely promising Jonjo O'Neill-trained More Of That.

An 8-1 chance with most bookmakers including Bet365 and William Hill to finish the week as top jockey McCoy is, among others, looking forward to riding Kid Cassidy in the Queen Mother Champion Chase, Taquin Du Seuil in the JLT Novices Chase as well as current Crabbies Grand National favourite Teaforthree in the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup, for which the horse is a standout 66-1 with Betbright. McCoy expects the two-mile championship contest, sponsored by Betvictor on the Wednesday of the 4-day extravaganza, to develop into a wide-open affair after the news that Sprinter Sacre will not be defending his crown, saying: " With Sprinter Sacre coming out everyone now thinks they have a chance and I suspect there will be one of the biggest fields in the past 10 years.

" Sire De Grugy has the best form and is unquestionably the one to beat. Kid Cassidy is the only horse to have beaten him this season and that was at Cheltenham, but we were getting 10lb and I consider that a lot of weight." Kid Cassidy travelled well when taken as part of a 14-strong team by Nicky Henderson to work at Kempton on Thursday and can be backed at a general 10-1 for the race won by his illustrious stablemate 12 months ago, although Seven Barrows are also responsible for Captain Conan who is shorter in the betting at a best price 13-2.

Owner JP McManus has given his blessing for McCoy to partner Taquin Du Seuil in the JLT despite having a possible runner in the race while Noel Fehily will keep the ride in the Grand National aboard Teaforthree as he appears to have a better chance of Gold Cup glory by renewing his partnership with King George winner and second favourite Silviniaco Conti.

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