Cheltenham Festival Day 1

The Cheltenham Festival gets underway on Tuesday with the best day’s racing of the year. With the deepest renewal of the Champion Hurdle for many years the highlight among 4 Grade 1s - we cannot wait! The RB Tipster has rolled the tanks out on to the lawn and is ready to fire the heavy artillery.  

Copy of Cheltenham Festival Champion Parade.jpg

1.30 - SkyBet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 1)

The race that gets the biggest roar of the week when the tapes go up. This year’s race is an open looking Supreme compared to recent years but the selection is for Klassical Dream (NAP) which represents the combination of Mullins and Walsh who have a fantastic record in this. Look to horses with proven Grade 1 form over handicap form in this. Klassical Dream has already proven himself in the highest company at the Dublin Racing Festival, compared to his rivals at the top of the market - Al Dancer and Angels Breath. Moreover, it is likely that the ground will come in his favour to get us off to a good start.

Klassical Dream - 9/2 (Ladbrokes)

2.10 Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy (Grade 1)

Unlike in previous year’s there is no odds on favourite in the market for the Arkle. The front of the market looks very opposable and the preference goes to Us And Them who was last seen coming 2nd to Le Richebourg in the Irish Arkle. Le Richebourg would have been very warm order so it may pay to follow that form with a horse that came 2nd to him in his last two starts.

Us And Them - 16/1 (Paddy Power)

2.50 Ultima Handicap Chase
A full field of 24 go to post for the first handicap of the festival and it normally pays to follow previous festival form especially in the handicaps. Coo Star Sivola is the selection to repeat the feat of last year’s win in this race, especially with the ground likely to be soft, to give Lizzie Kelly her 2nd Festival winner.

Coo Star Sivola - 10/1 (Paddy Power)

3.30 Unibet Champion Hurdle (Grade 1)

One of the best renewals of Champion Hurdle in years as reigning two-time champion Buveur D’Air takes on two top class Irish trained mares in Apple’s Jade and Laurina. Apple’s Jade is the horse with the best form this season following her demolition job in the Irish Champion Hurdle, smashing solid yardstick Supasundae. Buveur D’Air has not been in the same form this season as his previous two and Laurina could be anything but her form does not stack up in the fact she has not raced any highly rated opposition. Apple’s Jade is the RB Tipster’s selection in the Champion Hurdle

Apple’s Jade - 2/1 (Ladbrokes)

4.10 OLBG Mares Hurdle (Grade 1)
Mullins and Walsh have a fantastic record in this having won 9 of the last 10 renewals of this with the brilliant mares Quaveaga and Vroom Vroom Mag. Benie Des Dieux is the red hot favourite to repeat her win last year. However, one of Mullins’ other runners is the choice here in Limini. A repeat of her 3rd to Apple’s Jade will see her go very close.

Limini - 9/1 (William Hill)

4.50 Close Brothers Novices’ Handicap Chase

Another very competitive renewal of this race and the form of the Timeform Novices Chase run at the course on Festival Trials Day looks strong. Highway One O One came second to Kildistart in that race with a bold front running display. If putting in the same performance he will go close in this.

Highway One O One - 12/1 (Bet365)

5.30 National Hunt Challenge Cup Chase
It goes without saying that Gordon Elliott has a fantastic record at the Cheltenham Festival but what is more eye opening is his record with runners in first-time tongue-ties. Gun Digger looks to improve his record in this race which currently stands at 3 winners from just 6 runners. Lisa O’Neill, who won on Tiger Roll, is booked and looks a cracking bet at the current odds.

Gun Digger - 20/1 (Paddy Power)

Prices accurate at time of writing (11/03/19)