Double Burghley winner Blyth Tait — who took the title in 2001 with Ready Teddy and 1998 with Chesterfield — takes a look at three key fences on Mark Phillips' 2015 track
Fence 9 & 10: Capability’s Cutting
“There are two alternatives through this year. I don’t think either of them are faster than the other. On the right hand side we have a house on the way in which is a stride back from the bank. On the left hand side it’s a slightly smaller house but it’s right on the lip of the bank.
“And then Capability’s Cutting — very steep down and then up — and a difficult corner on either option out.
“To me this is a difficult fence. I think there’s going to be some really disappointed riders and plenty of 20s here.
“We have an alternative that they can take, I guess as a first option if they don’t want to tackle the corners, or certainly in preference to having a second attempt at the corners, which to me are pretty tough.”
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Fences 20abcd & 21: Land Rover Trout Hatchery
“This is a very busy complex. It’s a brush in which I don’t reckon you’d want to take it with too much pace because there’s a tight turn and a downhill approach to b. [B] is not too difficult in itself, but then there’s another tight turn on the opposite rein to quite an athletic exercise of a bounce, which is tall enough, under a roof, and then a commited three strides to a brush on the way out.
“Each element is very jumpable, but the whole thing put together I think is quite a test. You’ve got lines to consider, you’ve got control, you’ve got pace and you’ve got accuracy, so I don’t think it’s going to be an easy fence.”
Fence 24ab: Discovery Valley
“So the good news this year at Discovery Valley is that the ditch isn’t included in the fence, but the bad news is that it makes the approach to the fence very awkward. There’s really only one line through here, and it’s going to be a bit tricky to get on that line. We have two Land Rovers where we want to jump the bonnets and a very acute angle in between the two.
“For me at this late stage in the course, it’s asking a real question. I think there’s going to be a few disappointed riders and hopefully there’ll be some happy ones as well. But a difficult fence coming so late — awkward to get at and a very commited, tight line in between the two fences.”