Noel Fehily looks to 'unbelievable' Love Envoi for Cheltenham glory
The Noel Fehily Racing Syndicate enjoyed an unforgettable afternoon last season when Love Envoi landed the Ryanair Mares' Novices' Hurdle on the Thursday of the meeting. That success was followed by a second place behind Brandy Love at Fairyhouse and this season the mare stepped up to open company with two impressive wins at Sandown - the latter of which was a 13-length victory in a Listed event. She will now line up for the Grade One Close Brothers Mares' Hurdle, a highly-competitive race that includes former winner Marie's Rock and Champion Hurdle heroines Epatante and Honeysuckle. Broadly considered to be one of the races of the meeting, Love Envoi will be supported by a band of syndicate members as she tries to recreate the jubilation of last year. "She's unbelievable, every question we've asked her, she's answered and more," Fehily said of the mare. "She just keeps on getting better, I thought her last run at Sandown was probably her best. "She looks like she's improving and she'll need to, it's an unbelievably tough Mares' Hurdle but it's very exciting to be a part of it."
Of the members of his syndicate, which he runs with fellow former jockey David Crosse, Fehily added: "They're all very realistic and they've joined the syndicate to have a bit of fun and have some winners, but the dream is always to go to the Cheltenham Festival. "We all know that doesn't happen very often, to get a winner last season with Love Envoi and go there this season with a real chance, and with a few others, is great and the members are so excited." The other key hope for the partnership is Tahmuras, a 10-1 chance at present for the Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle. Unbeaten this season in three runs over hurdles, including a Listed race and the Grade One Tolworth, Tahmuras has seen his stock rise as the form from the latter race has proved solid with Nemean Lion and Colonel Harry, third and fourth, subsequently finishing first and second in the Grade Two Premier Novices' Hurdle at Kelso. Fehily said: "The third and fourth ran well at Kelso the other day and were first and second, the form is working out well. He's had a great preparation so we're really looking forward to getting him out. "He'll definitely stay, he has that stamina and he'll probably end up being a three-mile chaser one day. Staying is his thing and he's got a bit of quality as well, hopefully he can travel early and be coming home well." The night before the Cheltenham Festival begins has something of a Christmas Eve atmosphere and that is particularly true for Noel Fehily Racing Syndicates, whose key chances are both on the opening day of the meeting. "We're really looking forward to it, to me Cheltenham is the Olympics of our sport. To have a few horses good enough to go there, hopefully with live chances, it's pretty exciting for everybody involved," he said. "It's great to see, they've all been absolutely buzzing for the last week or so. "Hopefully they can all have a good day out and the horses will run well. It's such a tough place to have winners but we'll certainly be giving it a good go." READ MORE: Cheltenham day one tips: Best each-way bets for all seven races
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