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Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Another Cheltenham Festival, another step towards bankruptcy. And it all started so well. I backed Brave Inca this morning at great odds, whereupon the rest of the world followed my lead, and his price had halved by the off. So when he romped home in the opener, I knew I was at the beginning of a lengthy winning streak. A winning streak which lasted all the way to the start of the second race.

Thisthatandtother is undoubtedly the finest jumper of a fence we've seen all season, so having made him my banker of the week, and passport to untold riches, I was naturally delighted to see him plough through the first fence like a lethargic hippo, and then roll around on the floor the other side of the second. Because as they say, the one thing you're guaranteed with Thisthatandtother is a good run for your money. At least as far as the second fence.

Still, I clawed my way back into things with Rooster Booster, who's got into the habit of losing narrowly this season, meaning I was the only person in Britain who'd resisted the temptation to back him on the nose. Odds of 1-2 to place was a complete steal. Especially when, predictably enough, he finished second.

So by the final race I was back to breaking even. Meaning my last choice was running for an all or nothing chance at a glorious first day profit. Which would indeed be a first for me at Cheltenham. The race finished 90 minutes ago. Unfortunately I think my horse is still running.