Day Three Cheltenham Festival Preview 2021

Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 13:20
6
Jack Kennedy

Envoi Allen

J:
 
Jack Kennedy
T:
 
Henry De Bromhead
Age: 7
Weight: 11-4
OR: 164
Days: -40

The first race of the day on Thursday is the Grade One Marsh Novices' Chase and we can't look past the strong favourite Envoi Allen.

Envoi Allen has been one of the leading jumps horses in the sport over the last two years and now stepping up to go over fences this term, everyone just wants to know how good he can truly be.

The Cheveley Park owned stud is a dual Cheltenham festival winner having taken the Champion Bumper and Ballymore Novices hurdle in consecutive years and is gearing his season towards a third straight win at the event in the Marsh Novices' Chase.

The six year old has gone from strength to strength under Elliott landing all 12 of his races to date, winning one point to point, four bumpers, four hurdle contests and also extended his winning run last time out in his first Grade One win over fences.

Stepping over the bigger obstacles this season, he was very impressive at Down Royal, jumping his fences superbly and showing his classy travelling ability as he has throughout his career.

Elliott then stepped him up to Grade One company at Fairyhouse in the Drinmore Novice Chase and gave another standout performance to take the event by close to nine lengths.

At Punchestown earlier this month he was looking to make it three from three over fences a Grade Three event and was giving serious weight away to the rest of the field, but with Asterion Forlonge falling at the first it made for an easier ride round and again he was foot perfect.

He is the one to beat if on song.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
26/04/22PUN16Gd/Y11-123
16/03/22CHL16Sft11-103
27/12/21LEO17Gd/Y12-01
05/12/21PUN20.5Y/Sft11-126
30/10/21DRO19.5Sft12-01
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 13:55
1
Jordan Gainford

The Bosses Oscar

J:
 
Jordan Gainford
T:
 
Mrs Denise Foster
Age: 6
Weight: 11-12
OR: 151
Days: -18

The second event of the day is the big fielded Grade Three Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle over three miles and we have two decent priced shouts for the event.

The first is the Denise Foster trained The Bosses Oscar who has been primed for this event for the last year and with handy 7lb claimer taking the ride it sees him weighted to go well.

Having finished a good fifth in the Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle last season, he was then put away and returned in October at Thurles where he was a very easy winner.

He then went to Navan in December where he was a good second behind Flooring Porter for Gavin Cromwell and that gelding has since gone and franked the form by landing a Grade One event over three miles at Christmas.

The Bosses Oscar was last seen at Leopardstown over Christmas in a Pertemps Handicap Hurdle qualifier and he just did enough to get second, to qualify him for the race.

He was given a hefty 8lb rise by the British handicapper, but with Jordan Gainford taking 7lb off, he looks tough to beat.

Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 13:55
18
Jonathan Burke

Come On Teddy

J:
 
Jonathan Burke
T:
 
Tom George
Age: 7
Weight: 10-9
OR: 134
Days: -23

At a bigger price is our each way selection for the race with Come On Teddy for trainer Tom George looking to use his weight allowance to go close.

The unexposed seven year old son of Fame And Glory is certainly one to keep an eye on in this event being near the bottom of the weights and holding plenty of ability.

The gelding was smart over hurdles last term winning and placing in some nice events and having made his seasonal debut at Uttoxeter on November and finished a good fourth of 13 runners, it would have set him up perfectly for the season.

He then went to Cheltenham in December and in good style landed a decent Handicap Hurdle over three miles seeing off On The Blind Side, who has since gone on to frank the form.

Last time out Come On Teddy was a good third behind Imperial Alcazar in a Pertemps Qualifier and off a mark of 134 he is a dangerous player.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
17/03/22CHL26Sft11-4PU
18/01/22NCS23.5GS11-82
01/01/22CHL20.5Sft11-05
07/12/21UTT20Sft10-111
10/04/21AIN24.5GS11-06
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 14:30
6
David Bass

Imperial Aura

J:
 
David Bass
T:
 
Kim Bailey
Age: 8
Weight: 11-10
OR: 163

One of the minefield races of the entire festival is the Grade One Ryanair Chase over 2m4f and this year we believe it is staying in the UK with the Kim Bailey trained Imperial Aura.

The eight year old last season rose through the chasing ranks, racing four times at Cheltenham placing in two smart events before going on to win another two.

One of those wins came at the festival in the 20 runner Listed Novices' Handicap Chase and the form line he holds has been franked by many horses throughout last season.

The superstar stepped up for his seasonal debut at Carlisle last week in the Colin Parker Memorial Intermediate Listed Chase up against some proven chasers.

However, the gelding showed massive improvement to land the event and his handler stepped up him up next time out to the Grade Two 1965 Chase at Ascot.

Imperial Aura is quickly becoming one of the most improved chasers throughout the season after going on to land the event with ease.

However, he showed his first blip of the season last time out when falling at the second fence in the Grade Two Silviniaco Conti Chase and for a horse that is primed on his jumping it was strange to see.

Apart from that run he has done nothing wrong this season and having course and distance form at the track makes him one to watch.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
12/02/22NBY23.5GS11-6PU
04/12/21AIN25Sft11-6PU
20/11/21HAY25.5GS11-7F
18/03/21CHL20.5GS11-10PU
09/01/21KEM20.5GS11-6UR
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 15:05
12
Mark Walsh

Sire Du Berlais

J:
 
Mark Walsh
T:
 
Mrs Denise Foster
Age: 9
Weight: 11-10
OR: 160

The feature race on Thursday is the Grade One Stayers' Hurdle over three miles and we have two nice priced selections that we think will be in the frame.

Sire Du Berlais for trainer Denise Foster looks to have a superb chance in this event having won at back to back Cheltenham festivals and now stepping into Grade One company could be a big player.

Having landed the 2019 and 2020 Pertemps Final Handicap Hurdle, this season he made his seasonal debut at Navan over 2m4f winning the Grade Two Lismullen Hurdle, with second placed French Dynamite since going on to frank the form.

The nine year old has only been seen once since then and he finished a good third behind Flooring Porter in the Grade One Christmas Hurdle.

That race was won from the front and he did well to grab third, but back at a track he loves could see him go well, having been saved since December for this event.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
28/04/22PUN23.5Gd/Y11-104
09/04/22AIN24.5GS11-71
17/03/22CHL24Sft11-511
15/01/22WAR25Sft11-124
28/12/21LEO24Sft11-12PU
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 15:05
4
Jack Kennedy

Fury Road

J:
 
Jack Kennedy
T:
 
Mrs Denise Foster
Age: 7
Weight: 11-10
OR: 156
Days: -42

At a bigger price for the same yard is Fury Road and at a double figure price this gelding looks overpriced if returning to the form that saw him finish a narrow third in the Albert Bartlett at last year's festival.

This season he has been seen three times, getting off the mark at the first time of asking at Punchestown in a Grade Two Hurdle event.

He then stepped up to three miles and finished in behind Flooring Porter, The Storyteller and Sire Du Berlais in the Grade One Christmas Hurdle.

On his last run he was a narrow second to Beacon Edge in the Grade Two Boyne Hurdle at Navan and that should have got him spot on for this event.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
26/04/22PUN24.5Gd/Y11-103
08/04/22AIN25GS11-42
06/02/22LEO21.5Y11-105
29/12/21LEO24Y11-121
28/11/21FAI20Gd11-123
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 15:40
7
Jack Kennedy

Farclas

J:
 
Jack Kennedy
T:
 
Mrs Denise Foster
Age: 7
Weight: 11-4
OR: 146
Days: -23

Another tough event on the Thursday is the Grade Three Paddy Power Plate over 2m4f and with a big field heading to post, we again have two each way selections.

Farclas for Denise Foster is a Cheltenham festival winner taking the Grade One Triumph Hurdle back in 2018 and having not been a superb horse over hurdles, he has taken to chasing in good style.

The gelding in May 2019 made his chase debut at Down Royal and having landed that went onto complete a hat-trick having won at Punchestown and Roscommon.

This season he has been seen three times, finishing fifth of 17 in a big Handicap Chase at Punchestown and he backed that up next time out when third in the Paddy Power Handicap Chase at Christmas.

Last time out he headed into another big fielded event at Leopardstown and was another close fourth over 2m5f, showing he has good experience in these sorts of races.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
21/11/21NAV24Gd11-42
22/09/21LIS24Gd10-13UR
10/04/21AIN34.5GS10-35
18/03/21CHL20.5GS11-42
07/02/21LEO21.5Sft10-114
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 15:40
8
Richard Patrick

Happy Diva

J:
 
Richard Patrick
T:
 
Kerry Lee
Age: 10
Weight: 11-3
OR: 145

At a bigger price in the race, is the British challenger Happy Diva and this mare has a great record at Cheltenham and at a huge price could cause a big surprise.

The 10 year old is vastly experienced in these types of events and Cheltenham form is why we like the look of this horse with three seconds and a win across her six runs over fences at the track.

She heads into this race off a mark 145, which sees her much lower than what she has recently been running at only 2lb higher than the last time she won at the course.

Each way chance.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
18/03/21CHL20.5GS11-311
03/02/21WAR20Sft11-43
29/11/20CRL20Sft11-43
14/11/20CHL20Sft11-2F
30/10/20WET19.5GS11-95
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 16:15
7
Danny Mullins

Hook Up

J:
 
Danny Mullins
T:
 
W P Mullins
Age: 5
Weight: 11-2
OR: 136
Days: -42

The penultimate event on day three is the Grade Two Mares' Novices' Hurdle and with Willie Mullins landing every renewal since its existence in 2016, we have gone with Hook Up to keep the trend going.

Hook Up looks an extremely smart mare for the Closutton handler having had three starts this term and running to a high level in all of them.

On debut the five year old landed a Maiden Hurdle at Fairyhouse, seeing off the exciting Gars De Sceaux for Gordon Elliott who went on to frank the form next time out.

Off the back of that run, the mare was stepped up slightly in trip back at Fairyhouse and was a good second behind the Peter Fahey trained Royal Kahala.

Last time out she was pitched into the Grade One Chanelle Pharma Novice Hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival and was a staying on fourth behind stablemate Appreciate It.

What was eye-catching about her run was the ground she made up in the final furlongs and being dropped back into a lesser race against her own sex makes her very interesting.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
01/10/21GOW16Gd11-18
11/09/21LEO13Gd9-016
26/07/21GAL17Y/Sft11-14
11/05/21KLN14Sft9-43
29/04/21PUN16Y11-66
Cheltenham - March 18 2021
Cheltenham 16:50
6
Richard Johnson

Deise Aba

J:
 
Richard Johnson
T:
 
Philip Hobbs
Age: 8
Weight: 11-9
OR: 142

The final event on the Thursday is the Kim Muir Handicap Chase over 3m2f and with the race falling it apart it has left Deise Aba for Philip Hobbs with a huge chance.

The eight year old this season had showed little form in his first two events, being pulled up at both Haydock and Chepstow.

However, the gelding bounced back to form at Sandown over three miles last time out on heavy ground when beating a decent field of seven with ease.

He has only been raised 5lb for that win which is very reasonable and he should build on that performance.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
09/04/22AIN34.5GS10-8PU
05/02/22SAN24GS11-92
27/12/21CHP30.5Sft10-0PU
04/12/21SAN29GS11-72
06/11/21AIN24.5GS10-122

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