Who to follow at Cheltenham on New Year's Day

Horse To Follow - Champ

The Grade Two Dipper Novices Chase is the highlight of the New Year's Day meeting at jumps racing HQ and Nicky Henderson's superstar Champ will be very hard to pass.

Although a short price this should be a formality for this talented eight year old who was a superstar over hurdles landing two Group Ones in the Challow Hurdle and Sefton Novices Hurdle at Aintree.

He was always bought to be a chaser and this season he has tackled the bigger obstacles brilliantly winning both his events at Newbury with the first in a Beginners Chase and second in a tough Grade Two contest.

He is the favourite for the RSA and can only extend his favouritism if going on to win this contest at a course he seemed to handle at the festival.

Trainer To Follow - Nicky Henderson

Nicky Henderson aswell as Champ in the big one has some really big chances on the day and we fancy three of them to really go well.

The 10 year old Ok Corral can go very close having been a superb hurdles horse especially at Cheltenham finishing second in the Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle back in 2018.

Last season he made a lovely start to life over fences when winning nicely at both Plumpton and Warwick before being hit by the Equine Flu and never looking like the same horse all season.

Having already had a first run of the season in a competitive Ladbrokes Trophy at Newbury he should be right at it for this.

Next he has William Henry in the Grade Two Relkeel Hurdle and this year's renewal looks an absolute cracker and William Henry holds the ability to see the challengers off with his win in the Coral Cup being some of the best hurdle form on offer.

He then went on to finish a smart fourth at Aintree in the Grade One Stayers Hurdle and having performed well fresh in past seasons he should be in the mix.

Finally in the bumper he has a really interesting runner in Grand Roi who having raced twice in France to a modest standard the son of Spanish Moon was moved over to England with Henderson and on his bumper debut at Wincanton went on to win nicely.

The three year old looks a really smart gelding for a top yard and although stepping up in class he should go well and be competitive.

Jockey To Follow - David Bass

Jockey David Bass is a very esteemed and well equip jockey who only has one ride at Prestbury Park tomorrow and we think it has a great chance.

In the Class 2 Handicap Chase Over 3 miles 2 furlongs sees plenty of familiar faces in this sphere going at it again and the Ben Pauling trained Equus Secretus looks an interesting entry.

Last season the eight year old ran nicely in easier events with two nice seconds at Huntingdon and Ludlow but this season on his reappearance he showed signs of progression.

He finished third behind a superb gelding for Venetia Williams and in the weights looks one of the more likelier winners of the contest.

MPU

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