Can Tiger Roll Roar for the Final Time at Cheltenham?

In the aftermath of the Grand National weights being released, Tiger Roll’s owner Michael O’Leary has announced that the horse will not be running in the race after he disagreed with the weight given to his runner.

Winner of two Grand Nationals, now Tiger Roll will fully focus on the Cheltenham Festival, where he will go looking to win at the meeting again, and is likely to be retired straight after, win, lose or draw.

The Cross Country is the race he will aim at, one that he won in sensational style last season. With the latest betting on horse racing, Tiger Roll is 3/1 favourite to win the Cross Country in 2022, a race which is run on the Wednesday of the meeting, day two of four. Prengarde, an exciting French recruit, is the second favourite at 4/1, while Easysland, who won the race in 2020, is the 6/1 third favourite.

With each year, the field for this race appears to get stronger, but can Tiger Roll withhold the challengers and lift the roof off Cheltenham by winning again?

Tiger Roll’s Legendary Cheltenham Record

No other horse can match what Tiger Roll has done at Cheltenham over the years when you consider the number of race wins he has, and also the variety of races he’s won. Going into 2022, Tiger Roll has won five times at Cheltenham, with his 2021 Cross Country win being the most recent of those.

That race was his third Cross Country win and he has dominated this race, winning it in 2018, 2019 and 2021, with only Easysland getting his hands on the title during that period, winning in 2020. For most horses, winning three races at the Cheltenham Festival would be incredible, never mind the same race three times, but Tiger Roll has not just done that, he’s done even more.

He’s also won two novice races at the meeting, giving him five festival wins in total. The first came way back in 2014 when Tiger Roll won the Triumph Hurdle, a sharp, four-year-old only race over two miles, the complete opposite of what we see this horse doing now.

Three years later, at the 2017 festival, Tiger Roll was back in the winners’ enclosure again. This time it was the National Hunt Chase, a race for novice chasers, ran over four miles at the time, and much more like what we see from him now.

It seems like we have just one more run ahead of us for Tiger Roll and, fittingly, this will come at the Cheltenham Festival. Regardless of the outcome, something to commemorate him at the venue is highly likely, but a sixth festival win would more than likely cement that, as he would go down as one of the all-time greats of the meeting.

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