Supreme Novices Hurdle
One of the biggest events in the horse racing calendar it here. Let’s check out the best Cheltenham Festival day one betting tips. The opening race of day one at Prestbury Park and the off will be greeted by the famous Cheltenham roar from the packed stands. Punters will be eager to land an early blow on the bookies and the money men will feel the pinch at the earliest opportunity if ante-post favourite Angels Breath does as expected. The five-year-old grey out of Nicky Henderson’s yard is 4/1 jolly with a host of firms, including Bet365 and he’ll feature on the bet slips of many, having won on debut at Ascot in a trial for this contest.
There’s more to come from Angels Breath but he still has a lot of learning to do so we’ll take a chance on stablemate Mister Fisher at 10/1 with Bet365, each-way backers getting 1/4 the odds a place 1-2-3. The five-year-old has won three of five previous runs, finishing second in one of the spares. He was last seen winning at Haydock in a trial when going off even money fav and we think he carries more value than Henderson’s other hope.
Nicky Henderson is the most successful trainer in this race with six previous champions – Remittance Man (1991), Travado (1993), Tiutchev (2000), Sprinter Sacre (2012), Simonsig (2013) and Altior (2017). Rugby Walsh and Barry Geraghty are the most successful jockeys, tied at four wins each. Glen Forsa dominated the early betting for this year’s renewal for Mick Channon with backers able to make use of the 4/1 that’s generally available, 888sport also giving that quote.
Again, we’re taking on the fav with a lively outsider and the one to carry our stake money here is Kalashnikov at 10/1 with Coral. Amy Murphy’s runner has never finished outside of the top-two in 10 outings, six wins included in his form. He has finished second in each of his last two, including behind Glen Forsa in the UK Kingmaker Novices Chase at Sandown, but he will improve for that. Kalashnikov has the form and is much easier to back at the price.
Handicap Steeple Chase
A wide-open market for this race and the fact the shortest price runner in the ante-post betting was Give Me A Copper at 13/2 with Unibet tells us traders are struggling to nail down a horse worth having. We’ve made a better job of it and advise getting your stake money on Mister Whittaker at 8/1 with Bet365. A horse that has done us a favour in the past, the Irish-bred gelding, another from the Channon string, was fourth in the Cheltenham Gold Cup late last year in a Grade 3 race won by Baron Alco.
Each Way Safety Net
A bit of a let-down, considering he was sent off as favourite, but followers are sure to get a run for their money and this race will play to his strengths. Knows the track well, with three of his last five runs at Prestbury Park. Those wanting the safety of an each-way bet will get 1/4 the first five at Unibet, most firms paying only four places.
A Grade 1 run over two miles, the Champion Hurdle is one of the standout races of the day one schedule and a star-studded field is expected to contest the £450,000 prize money, over £250,000 of that paid to the winner. Apples Jade is 9/4 favourite and you’ll get best price on her at Bet365, some firms stuck at 2/1.
Go with the Favourite
A real punter’s friend, it doesn’t pay to oppose Apples Jade too often and she appears to have a few big races left in her yet. On her day she is more than capable of putting this pack to the sword and although she’s 9/4, we think there’s enough of a price in that quote to make it worthwhile. It’s no surprise to see traders support her as she has won each of her last four, including the Irish Champion Hurdle last month when smashing the field, runner-up Supasundae crossing the line 16 lengths off the pace. That was a real statement of intent going to Cheltenham.
Limini is second favourite to come out on top in this battle of the mares, but there’s still value to be had if looking in the right places. There is bits of pieces of 9/1 around when most of the field chance her around the 6/1 mark. That’s quite a difference, so it’s worth shopping around to ensure you get the most for your money.
Willie Mullins’ eight-year-old hasn’t been seen in the winner’s enclosure for a while now – last scoring in the Petingo Handicap at Leopardstown back in the summer, but she’s no stranger to Cheltenham and will run better than her price suggests. Won here back in 2016 and we’re confident she has a bit more to give on the big occasion.
National Hunt Chase
Impulsive Star is the horse for us in this race as traders appear to have taken him lightly when pricing the contender at a chunky 14/1, market best price available to Coral customers. The nine-year-old has finished outside of the first three just four times during his career and started the year with a win when claiming a Grade 3 handicap chase at Warwick. He’s fit, confident and will apply pressure to the prize places at a nice price. Could be worth an each-way poke.
Novices Handicap Chase
The final race of Tuesday and we hope that, by this stage of the afternoon, you’re sitting on a decent profit and are looking to knock the bookies one last time before turning your attention towards Wednesday’s delights. Another open race, Riders On the Storm is our play at 7/1, best with Bet365. He arrives with confidence on side having won over two miles at Punchestown last time out, holding SP favourite Impact Factor by 1 ¼ lengths. A step up here but he’s more than capable of improving to deal with that and the odds, again, look to be generous.