Enigmatic talent aims for Cheltenham Triumph

Chris Pea Green, ridden by Joshua Moore, walks through the last flight on his way to success in the 32Red Juvenile Hurdle
Chris Pea Green, ridden by Joshua Moore, walks through the last flight on his way to success in the 32Red Juvenile Hurdle
Megan Nicholls (left of picture) was the Silk Series trophy winner last year / Picture by Dan Abraham-racingfotos.com

Silk Series is coming to Goodwood racecourse

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Gary Moore is hoping for another Chris Pea Green surprise.

The West Sussex trainer will saddle his four-year-old talent in the Grade 1 JCB Triumph Hurdle (1.30pm) – the opening race on the final day of the Cheltenham Festival.

The son of Proclamation is not one of the leading fancies for the juvenile silverware – priced at just 33/1.

But he has proved to be an unpredictable character in his brief career to date.

And Moore would not bet against the gelding turning in another jaw-dropping display this afternoon.

Chris Pea Green made his debut in a Huntingdon bumper in November – and bolted up by 17 lengths.

He then flopped when sent to the all-weather at Lingfield – a move Moore now regrets.

The talent was as disappointing that day as he was scintillating back at the same track on his hurdles bow in January.

A 20-length rout of King Arthur was then backed up by a bloodless win in the competitive 32Red Juvenile Hurdle at Huntingdon.

‘He keeps on surprising us,’ said the Lower Beeding handler.

‘He went and made the biggest idiot ever out of me that day.

‘He won a bumper there I thought was a donkey race.

‘I should never have run him on the all-weather.

‘I was amazed how easily he won his maiden at Lingfield but thought the race no good.

‘And then I was worried about his jumping on better ground.’

Moore need not have worried. But just when it appeared the sky was the limit, Chris Pea Green came crashing back down to earth.

He finished a distant seventh in the Grade 2 Adonis Hurdle at Kempton last month – leaving connections to wonder just which Chris Pea Green will turn up at Cheltenham this afternoon.

The other West Sussex contender in action on day four is Tatenen.

Trained by Richard Rowe near Storrington, the son of Lost World goes in the Grand Annual Chase (5.15pm), where he is a 50/1-shot.

Nestling in the middle of the seven-race card, however, is the prestigious Gold Cup (3.20pm).

And it promises to be a thriller, with the likes of Bob’s Worth, Silviniaco Conti, Sir Des Champs and 2011 winner Long Run all holding major claims.