This year’s 127th running of the Velka Pardubicka with Česká pojišťovna attracted 700 000 more television viewers than last year’s race. The highpoint of the Czech steeplechasing season was watched by 3 000 000 viewers on Czech Television’s ČT1 and ČT Sport channels. Others watched the transmission on foreign channels and in PMU betting offices in 24 countries. Twenty-two thousand spectators watched the race at the course.
Somehow, there has always been something more pressing to do, throughout the last three weeks, than to write an October newsletter.
The 127th running of the Velka Pardubicka was a muddy event. The turf was only on the soft side of good, after good amounts of rain in the weeks, days, hours and minutes before the race. However, the ploughed fields had pools of water on them, and by the end of the afternoon they were muddy rather than very deep. Be that as it may, these were tough conditions.
The Tipařův palec (Tipster’s Thumb) website has put together the odds offered on the Velka Pardubicka by the three main Czech betting companies, Tipsport, Fortuna, and Synottip. These odds are for win bets, and include the stake. For example, if you were to stake 100 crowns on Charme Look, you would receive 280 crowns plus your stake of 100 crowns if he wins, a total of 380 crowns.
The three French horses declared for the Velka are the most serious foreign-trained candidates that we have had for a few years. Presumably Virtus d’Estruval is the best of them. He has a good crosscountry racing record in France, including good recent form. His trainer, Guillaume Macaire is a top jumps trainer in France, and he will be ridden by Czech jockey Jan Faltejsek, who spent two years working for Macaire a few years ago. Jan Faltejsek has won 4 of the last 5 VPs, riding Orphée des Blins (2012/2014) and Charme Look (2016).
The Czech St Leger was run at Prague Velká Chuchle on Sunday October 1st. Since the Czech Derby, which provided a stunningly unexpected result at the end of a very strange race, we have been waiting to see which, if any, can claim to be our best 3-y-o staying colt of 2017. Derby winner Joseph ran down the field again, as he had in his only race since the Derby.
Sunday, October 8th, 2017
127th running of the Velka Pardubicka, with Česká pojišťovna