Twiston-Davies makes Al Dancer Supreme claim
Nigel Twiston-Davies has admitted that his best chance of Cheltenham success is through Al Dancer in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle.
The Gloucestershire handler has not tasted success at the Prestbury Park event since 1994 through Arctic Kinsman, while he missed out three years ago when Ballyandy failed to follow up his Betfair Hurdle win in the Supreme.
Twiston-Davies will try again with his six-year-old grey, who also tasted victory in the Betfair Hurdle at Ascot earlier this month.
The atmosphere at Cheltenham is something Twiston-Davies feels could work against Al Dancer, but he is confident that if the horse can settle he will be in with a great chance of securing the win in the opening race on March 12.
He said: "When we were watching the race at Ascot he was very free and it was a relief to see him finish off his race so strongly.
"My initial reaction was that he might not get away with it at Cheltenham.
"In the Supreme a truly-run race is essential, but it's one in which they rarely hang about and the quicker they go, the better it will be for our horse.
"He's in really good form, and after winning nicely at Ascot doesn't appear to have taken anything out of himself at all. If he gets top of the ground or some cut, it won't bother him.
"Furthermore he's already been to Cheltenham this season and on that day he appeared to relish coming up the hill. He travelled and quickened, and never looked like stopping.
"If he gets the fast pace and a bit of cover he requires he should run very well. He certainly looks our best chance of a winner at the Festival."
Craig Smithson is a journalist with over two decades of experience at the keyboard. A life-long Middlesbrough fan, Craig has an in-depth knowledge of all football and is also a keen fan of boxing amongst other sports.