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Unbeaten Envoi Allen heads up Cheveley Park Stud's entries in the Cheltenham Festival next week




Cheveley Park Stud will be hoping for another memorable week at the Cheltenham Festival, with the unbeaten Envoi Allen their leading runner in the famous meeting, writes Alex Moss.

David and Patricia Thompson, owners of Newmarket’s oldest stud farm, enjoyed success at the famous Gloucestershire meeting 12 months ago, with Envoi Allen and A Plus Tard both victorious.

The duo are among their four listed entries for the four-day event, which starts on Tuesday, along with Allaho and Ferny Hollow. But it is Envoi Allen who is drawing the most attention.

Cheveley Park Stud’s managing director Chris Richardson (left) and stud owner Patricia Thompson (right) are eyeing up success at Cheltenham next week
Cheveley Park Stud’s managing director Chris Richardson (left) and stud owner Patricia Thompson (right) are eyeing up success at Cheltenham next week

Boasting an unblemished record of seven wins from seven runs, the Gordon Elliott-trained six-year-old is an 11/8 favourite with the bookmakers to win the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle on Wednesday (1.30pm).

“All being well we’ve got four running at Cheltenham at the moment,” Chris Richardson, Cheveley Park Stud’s managing director said.

“It’s exciting. Mr and Mrs Thompson decided to run at Cheltenham last year, and to have two winners exceeded all expectations, and gave them a lot of pleasure. Envoi Allen is seven from seven and he’s done nothing wrong. He’s done all the things right, but it’s a step up going into the Ballymore.

“There’s always nerves when you go to a festival with an unbeaten horse, but he’s the clear favourite and the one to beat.”

A Plus Tard, a winner in the Close Brothers Novices’ Handicap Chase at Cheltenham last year, is the current 9/4 favourite for the Ryanair Chase on Thursday (2.50pm), while Allaho (9/2) is set for Wednesday’s RSA Insurance Novices’ Chase, and Ferny Hollow (8/1) for the Weatherbys Champion Bumper on the same day.

“It’s exciting for Cheveley Park Stud,” Richardson said. “We hope it will be a good start to the year, like it was last year, and then we’ll progress to the flat with some exciting horses.”

Newmarket trainer Richard Spencer has two entries at the Cheltenham Festival next week, with Outlander (25/1) in Wednesday’s Glenfarclas Chase, and Red Archangel (100/1) in the Daylesford Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle.