Only 7 runners in the opener for day 2 but it looks a great renewal of the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle.
The betting is dominated by the Irish, led by Bob Olinger for the Henry De Bromhead team. He was very impressive when winning at Naas and is certainly a leading contender.
Our pick is Bravesmansgame who looks like a potential superstar. He won the Grade 1 Challow in great style and can do the same again here.
Monkfish is the banker of the week for many and it will be a surprise if he gets beat in this. He looks a future Gold Cup winner and has scared off most of the opposition.
If you are looking for something at bigger odds, Sporting John is a classy horse on his day but would not want the ground to be too quick.
Potentially the most competitive race of the week, each way bets are advised, and you will get 6 places at RaceBets.
Thomas Darby has to give weight away to all of his rivals but is classy and consistent and should be in the places.
At the opposite end of the weights Witness Protection has won 2 and finished 2nd on his other run. This is a considerable step up in grade but is improving all the time and shouldn’t be discounted.
The feature race on Day 1 of the Cheltenham Festival, the Champion Chase and Chacun Pour Soi is the one they all have to beat. He last tasted defeat in 2019 and the only real negative is he has yet to run at Cheltenham.
Last years winner Politologue is back to defend his crown but this looks a much hotter race than 12 months ago. He rarely runs a bad race but will likely find one or two too good.
If there was a crowd there would not be a dry eye in the house if Tiger Roll wins this and claims a 5th win at the Cheltenham Festival. His best days are certainly behind him but shouldn’t be discounted.
Easyland deserves to be favourite after landing this is superb style last year but was poor when last seen.
Alpha Des Obeaux is a very interesting contender. He has been out of form for a long time now but he would not be the first horse to be galvanized by the Cross Country Course.
This can go the way of Sky Pirate who landed two Handicaps with ease before struggling in Grade 2 last time. He looks on a good Handicap mark and looks to have conditions in his favour. He has the all-important course form having won here in December.
At bigger odds, Glen Forsa could cause a shock. He was a classy novice but has not won since 2019. We’ve seen very little of him since and has his first run since wind surgery which could bring out the necessary improvement.
Willie Mullins holds an excellent record in the race and can extend that with new recruit Sir Gerhard. He looks the best of the Irish Bumper horses with the only negative is moving from Gordon Elliott’s so close to this race.
With little form to go on, it could be worth siding with an outsider and our pick at bigger odds is Super Six. Unbeaten from two starts, he has a lot to find on form but is open to a lot of progress and receives weight from most in the field.