Cheltenham Festival: Day 2

March 16, 2021

Day two of the prestigious Cheltenham Festival, the highlight of the British jumps season, takes place on Wednesday. Here’s a rundown of the seven races carded.

3.20pm: Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle (4200m)

Irish trainers have dominated this Grade 1 for novice hurdlers, with 7 wins in the last 10 years. Willie Mullins is the leading trainer in the race’s history with 4 wins. Six-year-olds have excelled with 9 of the winners in the last 10. There are only seven runners in this year’s race: Bear Ghylls, Bob Olinger, Bravemansgame, Does He Know, Galliard Du Mesnil, Keskonrisk, Optimise Prime.

Betting guide: 18-10 Bob Olinger, 28-10 Bravemansgame, Gaillard Du Mesnil, 10-1 Bear Ghylls, 16-1 Keskonrisk, 50-1 others

Our selection: Galliard Du Mesnil, Bravemansgame, Bob Olinger

3.55pm: Festival Novices’ Chase (4880m)

The race provides a stern test of a novice chaser, with 9 of the past 10 winners having had 6 to 12 starts over hurdles and fences. Trainers Nicky Henderson and Willie Mullins have each had 4 wins in this race. There are 6 runners this year: Dickie Diver, Eklat De Rire, Fiddlerontheroof, Monkfish, Sporting John, The Big Breakaway.

Betting guide: 5-10 Monkfish, 7-1 The Big Breakaway, 8-1 Eklat De Rire, 11-1 Sporting John, 18-1 Dickie Diver, 28-1 Fiddlerontheroof

Our selection: Monkfish, Dickie Diver, The Big Breakaway

4.30pm: Coral Cup Hurdle (4200m)

Always a tricky race. A big-field handicap hurdle and last year’s winner Dame De Compagnie was the only winning favourite in the last 10 years. There 28 runners in this year’s race!

Betting guide: 7-1 Grand Roi, 17-2 Koshari, 10-1 Craigneiche, 11-1 Blue Sari, 12-1 Guard Your Dreams, 14-1 Thomas Darby, Monte Cristo, 16-1 Birchdale, Botox Has, 25-1 Heaven Help Us, Dysart Diamond, Sneaky Getaway, Witness Protection, 28-1 Tea Clipper, Boreham Bill, Shang Tang, Encore Champs, 33-1 Janika, Saint Sonnet, Palmers Hill, Shakem Up’Arry, 40-1 upwards others

Our selection: Guard Your Dreams, Birchdale, Boreham Bill

5.05pm: Champion Chase (3200m)

The Queen Mother Champion Chase is one of the most prestigious races of the season and has been won by some of jump racing’s most celebrated stars. Trainer Nicky Henderson has had 5 wins. There are 10 runners this year. 

Betting guide: 1-1 Chacun Pour Soi, 8-1 Nube Negra, 10-1 Put The Kettle On, 11-1 Politologue, 14-1 First Flow, 18-1 Cilaos Emery, Sceau Royal, 22-1 Rouge Vif, 33-1 Notebook, 40-1 Greaneteen

Our selection: Chacun Pour Soi, First Flow, Put The Kettle On

5.40pm: Cross Country Chase (6000m)

The runners have 32 obstacles, including banks, ditches, hedges. Seven of the last 10 winners were trained in Ireland. The winners of the last 3 Grand Nationals are here – Easyland and Tiger Roll (twice).

Betting guide: 11-10 Easyland, 11-2 Tiger Roll, 6-1 Potters Corner, 14-1 Some Neck, 16-1 Balko Des Flos, 20-1 Alpha Des Obeaux, Le Breuil, 33-1 Kingswell Theatre, Out Sam, 40-1 upwards others

Our selection: Le Breuil, Easyland, Potters Corner

6.15pm: Grand Annual Chase (3200m)

A tough and strongly-contested race over an extended two miles, with a maximum field of 20. Seven of the last ten winners had not won that season.

Betting guide: 6-1 Embittered, 13-2 Sky Pirate, Entoucas, 7-1 Zanza, 12-1 Chosen Mate, Ibleo, 16-1 Us And Them, 18-1 Moonlighter, 20-1 Amoola Gold, 22-1 Duc Des Genievres, Sizing Pottsie, 22-1 On The Slopes, 25-1 Glen Forsa, Ashutor, Not That Fuisse, 28-1 upwards others

Our selection: Zanza, Sky Pirate, Moonlighter

6.50pm: Champion Bumper (3300m)

Willie Mullins has had 10 winners and his last 4 winners have been at 11-1, 25-1, 25-1 and 16-1. Ireland has won 7 of the last 10 runnings. The last ten winners were aged five or six. 

Betting guide: 18-10 Kilcruit, 5-2 Sir Gerhard, 6-1 Three Stripe Life, 14-1 Ramillies, Elle Est Belle, 22-1 Grangee, 25-1 upwards others

Our selection: Sir Gerhard, Ramillies, Three Stripe Life

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