Check out our Cheltenham Day 3 tips here
We are set for a tremendous third day at the Cheltenham Festival as the Stayers’ Hurdle and Ryanair Chase are the two feature races of the day. You can check out all our Cheltenham tips on our dedicated section. However, we take a look at all Thursday’s races here and pick out our best bet in each race…
#AD New customer offer. Place a £10 Sportsbook bet on any Cheltenham Festival race at min. odds 1/2 (1.5) — get £50 in free bets. SMS verification required. Free bets awarded on qualifying bet settlement and can be used on any Cheltenham race or UEFA Champions League game. Only deposits via Cards will qualify (Apple Pay deposits excluded)
#AD New Customers only. Bet £10 & Get £30 in Free Bets. Sign up, deposit between £5 and £10 to your account and bet365 will give you three times that value in Free Bets when you place qualifying bets to the same value and they are settled. Free Bets are paid as Bet Credits. Min odds/bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. T&Cs, time limits & exclusions apply.
There’s no doubting Mighty Potter has been the star middle distance novice chaser this season and he’s entitled to be a warm order for the Turners Novices’ Chase on Thursday, but Gordon Elliott’s raider will face some lively opposition and one of those will be Joseph O’Brien’s Banbridge, who was a fine winner of the Martin Pipe last season and should be in the vicinity here.
Appreciate It will spearhead the Willie Mullins charge, but it’s another Closutton inmate JAMES DU BERLAIS that catches the eye as he is a really classy performer on his day and he could grab the each-way money. He won on his chasing debut, but was well beaten by Mighty Potter in Grade 1 company last time out, as his jumping caused major problems. He is sure to have improved for that experience and with a notable engine he could well ruffle a few feathers here at big odds.
#AD 18+ New Customers Only – Place a £10 Sportsbook bet on Horse racing between the 13th and 17th March, at min. odds 1.5 (1/2) — get £45 in free bets. Only deposits via cards will qualify, Apple pay not valid on this promotion. T&Cs apply, BeGambleaware.org
A hugely competitive renewal of the Pertemps Final will see a huge field go to post and the trio of Thanksforthehelp, Maxxum and Walking On Air all appear to have a terrific chance and dominate the betting, at the time of writing. The middle one of that trio, Maxxum makes the most appeal, but he disappointed at Leopardstown last time out, so has to bounce back here.
Maxxum won a qualifier at Leopardstown back in December in fine fashion, but back in third that day was GOOD TIME JONNY, who lines up here on significantly better terms and Tony Martin’s charge can reverse the form and claim Pertemps glory. He was seen over an inadequate two miles last time out at Leopardstown in early February, but will relish the step back up to three miles here. With Liam McKenna taking a valuable 5lbs off his back for this event, the Irish raider looks to have a superb chance if he can produce his best on Thursday.
If Shishkin can deliver his A game then the top-class chaser can storm to Ryanair Chase glory, as he showed when winning the Ascot Chase over 2m 5f that he will have no issues with the Ryanair trip. However, at near odds-on the Nicky Henderson-trained runner is worth taking on with an each-way alternative in a race that lacks significant strength in depth.
Blue Lord and Janidil are two prominent figures for Willie Mullins and both have to be respected, but the one that could run a huge race is Gordon Elliott’s FURY ROAD, who is available at double-figured odds at the moment and he looks tailor-made for the test of a Ryanair. A winner of a Grade 2 at Down Royal over 2m 3f at the start of the campaign, he then finished an excellent third behind Cheltenham Gold Cup favourite Galopin Des Champs in the Irish Gold Cup at Leopardstown, while he also finished in the same position in the Savills Chase over Christmas. Both those runs were over three miles and that may just have stretched him a little, so a drop back in trip and with a patient Davy Russell in the saddle, Fury Road could go very close here.
#AD 18+. Play Safe. New customers using Promo code R30 only, Min £10/€10 stake, min odds 1/2, free bets paid as 3 x £10/€10, free bets credited after settlement of first qualifying bet, free bets will expire 30 days after the qualifying bet is placed, payment method/player/country restrictions apply.
Dual Stayers’ Hurdle hero Flooring Porter is aiming to emulate the mighty Big Buck’s by winning three renewals on the bounce, but Gavin Cromwell’s stable star has struggled to flourish this season and it’s hard to see him land the hat-trick on Thursday. Teahupoo is one of the form horses lining up here, but he could be outclassed by BLAZING KHAL, who heads the betting at the moment and has shaped like he could be the next star staying hurdler on the scene.
The Charles Byrnes-trained seven-year-old has won all four starts over hurdles, including two at Cheltenham last season, but he’s had his career plagued by injuries so we may not have seen the best of him yet. He returned after a lengthy absence to grab Grade 2 victory in the Boyne Hurdle, and while he picked up another slight niggle after that success Byrnes will unleash him here and the relentless galloper can bound to glory in the Thursday feature.
Emmet Mullins will look to warm up for the Cheltenham Gold Cup with Noble Yeats by banging in a winner on day three of the Cheltenham Festival. He will saddle the red-hot favourite So Scottish in the Plate Handicap Chase at 16:10 and he looks attractively handicapped to go well here. The Willie Mullins-trained Haut En Couleurs is the class act in the race, but off top weight could have it all to do, so it’s worth sticking with a performer with tried and tested form around Cheltenham and that is IL RIDOTO, who can run a cracker.
A classy novice chaser, the Paul Nicholls-trained raider kicked off his campaign with a fine fourth in the Paddy Power Gold Cup, while he followed that up with another fourth placed finish in a competitive Cheltenham handicap chase on New Year’s Day. However, he got his name in lights on Festival Trials Day as he stormed to an impressive victory in January and he will look to deliver the goods again on Thursday. He’s been handed an 8 pound rise for that impressive success, so he will find it a big ask, but he’s shown he is a tough nut to crack in these sort of races and being only six he could be open to some more improvement.
#AD 18+ begambleaware.org Only valid for new registrations to Grosvenor Existing members do not qualify, Bet must be placed using real money in combination with the Odds Boost Token, Offer applies to Sport bets only. Max stake is £10. Each way bets are a maximum of £5 each way (£10 total). Customers have 60 days after registration to use the Odds Boost token. T&Cs apply.
Dominant at the head of the betting, Nicky Henderson’s Luccia looks a real classy mare and with four wins out of four on record she will head into the penultimate race on Thursday as the one to beat as she looks to build on facile hurdle wins this season at Newbury and Exeter. This will be much tougher as she locks horns with the best of Ireland, but from what we have seen so far on the track she is rightly heading the betting and looks a real class act for the Seven Barrows team.
Nevertheless, you can’t discount Willie Mullins in this race as he has trained six of the eight winners of this event and the spearhead of the Closutton team appears to be the second favourite LOT OF JOY, who could be the value alternative to the market leader. Very useful on the Flat, which saw her finish third in the Irish Cesarewitch last season, Lot Of Joy was second on hurdling debut, but was more impressive last time out when winning at Fairyhouse by 12 lengths and she can continue on an upward curve here and go very close in a race full of potential.
We end day three with a hugely competitive renewal of the Kim Muir Handicap Chase and Gavin Cromwell’s hat-trick-seeking Stumptown appears the one to beat, as he was impressive at Sandown Park last time out and could still be ahead of the handicapper. Mr Incredible ran a fine race in the Classic Chase at Warwick, but off top weight here could find it tough work, while Angels Dawn at the other end of the weights warrants respect.
One at a big price that could run well is Neil Mulholland’s LORD ACCORD, who was seen over fences three starts ago finishing second to the legendary Frodon in the Badger Beer at Wincanton, and having only been handed a 2lbs rise could be of interest here. He pulled well clear of Cap Du Nord in that event and that contender has gone on to win at Ascot impressively, and while Lord Accord failed to fire in Coral Gold Cup at Newbury next time out, this test is much easier than that. He had a spin over hurdles in the Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham on his last start which should keep him ticking over and he could run a massive race at big odds in the finale.