Saturday's Welsh National was an agonising case of what could have been for Teaforthree and his legion of supporters and it is always galling to see a sustained ante-post gamble come unstuck by the slimmest of margins.

I hope plenty of punters took the insurance of an each-way position on the Rebecca Curtis-trained gelding. I took a hefty each-way position myself at 6-1, and was always confident that the nine-year-old was a cast-iron certainty to reach a place at least.

What I, and many others had not bargained upon, was the sheer brilliance of Paul Carberry's winning ride on Monbeg Dude. The latter is not a horse I have a lot of time for as a chaser. He has been an inconsistent type over fences, he jumps badly and is not a horse to back with much confidence.

Talking of confidence, I wish Tony McCoy had not been so downbeat about Teaforthree's chances before the race. I always like jockeys to express conviction in a big-race ride and it is often the case that when a rider starts voicing negatives about a horse's prospects, it turns into a self-fulfilling prophecy and defeat inevitably follows.

Sticking with staying chasers it was good to see Katenko and Johns Spirit fight out the finish of Sandown's £50,000 chase on Saturday. As I predicted, this pair held the race in their grip and at odds of 5-1 and 6-1 respectively, both represented terrific value in a race where the short-priced favourite, Alfie Spinner, again justified his professional loser's tag.