Day Two Cheltenham Festival Preview


The first race of day two of the Cheltenham Festival see's the Grade 1 Ballymore Novices Hurdle over 2 mile 5 furlongs and we have gone for Brewin'upastorm and Easy Game.

This Olly Murphy trained six year old has every chance in this very open contest with some good runs to his name this year but will have to improv from his last run.

He started the season with a nice win at Huntingdon in a Class 4 event but then finished fourth behind the favourite today Champ in the Grade 1 Challow Novices Hurdle.

His next run was much more impressive at Cheltenham in the Grade 2 Ballymore Novices Trial where he was just leading jumping the last but unfortunately went on to fall.

If improving his jumping and travelling like he did in his last contest he has every chance.

Easy Game is another selection we have looked at for trainer Willie Mullins who looks to have a great outside chance coming into this contest off the back of Grade 3 and Grade 2 wins at Navan and if sticking to the task up the hill will be in the mix.

Ruby Walsh set to ride is a huge plus.


The Grade 1 RSA Chase over 3 miles comes next and this race in the past has thrown up some excellent winners and is sure to do the same this time around.

We have selected the Paul Nicholls trained Topifthegame. Nicholls stated at his stable tour that this huge horse was his best chance of the week, which should automatically be something to take note of.

This season he has finishd second on both his starts, the first at Exeter when he missed the start and 25 lengths behind the leaders but only finished 1/2 length down at the finish.

The next came at Kempton over Christmas in the Grade 1 Kauto Star Novices Chase again finishing second, but this time behind La Bague Au Roi who is unbeaten this season.

He looks to have a great chance in this contest and he has the added bonus of good Cheltenham form when finishing a narrow second last year in the Coral Cup.


That brings us nicely on the Grade 3 Coral Cup over 2 mile 5 furlongs and in this contest we have gone for the Willie Mullins trained Uradel and Wicklow Brave.

Mullins landed this renewal with a similar type last year and seems to have another fine opportunity with Uradel. Solid return to action after a break last time and looks well-handicapped to go close.

Top-weight Wicklow Brave has ran some mighty races in-behind a few handy sorts. Eye-catching run in-behind Espoir D’allen last time out and holding a festival success could put him forward as a likely contender here.

Both these Mullins trained runners have a great chance of entering the frame with both of them at each way prices in the market and many bookmakers paying extra places.

15:30 - ALTIOR

This next selection needs no explanation but we are going with Altior to land back to back Queen Mother Champion Chases.

This Nicky Henderson trained nine year old is for us one of the greatest horses to grace the sport and is currently 17 unbeaten over obstacles and will be looking to extend that at a course she has made her own.

This season she has landed all three races comfortably and even with the rain coming the soft ground will suit him even more.

His Cheltenham form speaks for himself winning the Supreme Novices Hurdle, Arkle Trophy and the Champion Chase. It will be the shock of the week if he gets beat.


The Cross Country Chase is next on the agenda and in a race where the incredible Tiger Roll has made it his own we are searching for each way value with Amazing Comedy and Urgent De Gregaine.

This nine year old gelding has been raced frequently abroad this season staying on throughout the spring and now onto Cheltenham, putting in some good staying performances along the way.

The more rain that falls the more chance he has of being in the frame after doing a lot of his racing in France on soft ground and not being out the top two in his last four races when finishing the race.

He raced at Cheltenham in December finishing a good fourth in the Cross Country trial and if improving on that won't be far away.

Urgent De Gregaine for trainer Emmanuel Clayeux was a staying-on second in this race last year and thrives over Cross Country fences which could be key.

Got up on Trial Day back in 2017 and though that was a fair-way below his mark here he has developed into a smart jumper since and may go one better this time around.


The penultimate race on the second day of the festival is the Fred Winter Handicap Hurdle and in this Grade 3 contest we are going for the Joesph O'Brien pairing of Band Of Outlaws and Fine Brunello.

Band Of Outlaws made a highly-promising start as a hurdler, who made a mockery of his opposition at Naas last month. Will relish the underfoot conditions and appears the type to go on improving.

Fine Brunello represents a strong Joseph O’Brien team in this race, who is yet to get his head in front, though his latest second at the track in-behind Supreme fancy Fakir D’ourdairies reads well. Slight ease in Grade and is another who holds strong claims.


The last race of the day is one of the most competitive contests of the four days with the Grade 1 Champion Bumper over 2 miles and we have gone with the Colin Tizzard trained Master Debonair and Joseph O'Brien trained Meticulous .

Again another horse at a big price in the race that has a Listed win at Cheltenham to his name and on his three runs to date has not finished out of the top two.

He looks to have a steep task in competing against some of these bumper runners at the top of the market but has definite each way claims.

Meticulous took his form to a new level when second in Grade 2 company, after a solid run in behind the highly-promising Envoi Allen.

Wasn’t beaten that far then and meets his rival on better terms; convinced this Joseph O’Brien runner is capable of turning the form around with his brother Donnacha aboard.


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