Paisley Park is back at Cheltenham this weekend as he heads into the Grade Two Cleeve Hurdle again before the festival and hopefully he can reproduce his superb performance from last season.
He came onto the scene last season at Aintree when he took a Class 2 Handicap over two and a half miles, from there it was unthinkable of what progression he could of actually produced but he stepped up in trip to three miles and took to it like a duck to water.
Arguably one of his greatest runs during the season was on his second start when he landed the Grade Three Handicap Hurdle at Haydock, somehow getting up late in the day to see off two other horses.
Ascot was next on the agenda in the Grade 1 Long Walk Hurdle and this was the geldings biggest test to date and he did what he does best coming from off the pace and off the bridle early to steam up by the leaders late in the day and land the contest.
Paisley Park landing the Grade One was the yards first ever black type victory which was huge for Emma Lavelle as she is a fairly small yard compared to others in the sport and it was a huge occasion for connections also, with his owner Andrew Gemmell being blind.
Cheltenham was next up in the Grade 2 Cleeve Hurdle with the overall goal being the Stayers Hurdle at the festival with this being seen as a prep run and he bolted up again, leaving his odds for the four-day meeting slashed massively.
March came around quickly and Paisley Park was being labelled one of the bankers of the week, which is unheard of in a big fielded race like the Stayers Hurdle but like he had done all season he hacked up and it turned out to be one of the fairy-tale moments of the 2019 Cheltenham festival.
Now a fan favourite, many punters were very apprehensive about where he would start off his campaign this season with the big aim again being to defend his Stayers Hurdle title.
He started this season in the same form as last term by extending his unbeaten run to six races after seeing off some top horses including Thistlecrack when landing the Grade Two Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury.