Many eyes were on a Henry De Bromhead-trained horse during the Arkle, but it wasn’t until they began the downhill run, did any interested observer feel that Put The Kettle On was that horse. Notebook was a long-term favourite for the race, but failed to handle everything that goes with a festival race.
Put The Kettle On meanwhile, was sparkling in her Arkle chase victory. Comparing times on different days is always fraught with complications, but the ground was officially described as the same on the Old Course for days one and two, and time calculations suggested it rode very similar on both days also. So, the fact that Put The Kettle On ran a time 1.89 seconds quicker than Politologue did in winning the Champion Chase, makes the performance all the more notable. She was taken on up front everywhere by the free going Cash Back, and then when Fakir D’Oudaries came to challenge, she had every right to wilt, but so tough, determined and classy is she, that she went again and charged away up the hill.
Paul Nicholls felt that Politologue ran a career best in the Champion Chase, so indirectly Put The Kettle On has the beating of that field already. Obviously Altior and Chacun Pour Soi loom large, due to their eleventh-hour defections from this year’s Champion Chase. But Altior has just started to show fallibilities – in ability and soundness, and Chacun Pour Soi is yet to be tested at Cheltenham.
Put The Kettle On is now two from two at Cheltenham, is trained by a master of two mile chasers, and would have been a good winner of this year’s Champion Chase had she ran in it. How she is 25/1 for the 2021 Champion Chase is beyond me.