Michael Scudamore has trained a litany of Cheltenham Racecourse winners over the course of the early stages of his career, including Monbeg Dude, Next Sensation, Kingswell Theatre, and Northern Beau. Next Sensation provided a breakthrough for Scudamore at Cheltenham Festival by winning the Grand Annual Chase Challenge Cup in 2015, but success at the ultimate racing event has been thin on the ground since then.
Scudamore has had talented horses at his disposal, but they have failed to get over the line amid the quality of the competition at the festival. The 2022 Cheltenham Festival appears to be following a similar story, although there could be hope for the 37-year-old if his charges can rise to the occasions, notably on the first day of action where two of his best are scheduled to compete.
Do Your Job
Do Your Job is arguably the most talented horse in Scudamore’s yard and he will likely be competing at the Arkle Chase, where he is backed at 100/1 in the 2022 Cheltenham Festival odds to win the event. The high level of competition is why the bookmakers believe that a triumph for Do Your Job is unlikely, although his performances over the course of the season have not been terrible. The Irish thoroughbred beat Edwardstone in his first race of the campaign after his rival was brought down after For Pleasure fell at the fourth fence at Warwick.
Scudamore’s charge capitalised and ran home a comfortable victory in the Stan Mellor Memorial Novices’ Chase. He was on course to compete down the stretch in the Close Brothers Henry VIII Novices’ Chase at Sandown Park, but fell at the eighth fence as Edwardstone claimed the win.
The brilliance of Edwardstone was again on display at the Wayward Lad Novices’ Chase at Kempton Park, although Do Your Job did place second 10 lengths off the pace of the winner. It was a similar story in his last outing at the Lightning Novices’ Chase, finishing well behind another quality competitor, Third Time Lucki. Do Your Job has talent, but it will take something special to overcome Edwardstone, Third Time Lucki and the Arkle Chase favourite Blue Lord.
Lewbowski was transferred into Scudamore’s yard during the summer of 2021, and he enjoyed an outstanding start to life over hurdles for his new trainer. Top jockey Richard Patrick took his place in the saddle of Ffos Las and guided his charge to victory by a dominant margin in the Novices’ Hurdle in November. He followed up his performance with an equally impressive display at the Join Racing TV Now Novices’ Hurdle at Ayr in December. The Irish thoroughbred was the favourite for the event, but had to overcome a stuttering start to the race.
He eventually found his rhythm towards the end of the race, and just had the speed at the right moment to pull away from the field to claim the victory by three lengths. With confidence in his charge building, Scudamore placed him into a contest with horses of the highest calibre, including Jonbon, at Haydock Park in the Supreme Trial Rossington Main Novices’ Hurdle.
However, the pace of the leading group proved to be too much for Lebowski to handle, forcing Patrick to pull him up before the end of the contest. At 66/1, he is an outsider for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle where Jonbon, Constitution Hill and Dysart Dynamo are primed for a run at glory. The odds are against Scudamore and company once more.