Cheltenham Festival 2020 Tips & Preview | Wednesday 11 March

Our second day of Cheltenham Festival tips, after an impressive start – landing the one-two in the opening race of Cheltenham Festival 2020, an otherwise middling day was saved by some long-priced extra places on Tuesday; but what a fine day of racing it was!

Wednesday is always a trappy day at the Festival, and this year is no different. We’ll be seeing Tiger Roll back onto the Cross Country looking for a monumental success, plus some other favourites. We’ll also see some live outsiders line up too.

Tips and previews for each of Wednesday’s Festival fare are below.

Cheltenham Festival Tips – Each Race of Day Two

Race 1 13:30 – Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle 2m5f

  1. Mossy Fen (IRE)
  2. Decor Irlandais (FR)
  3. Sporting John (IRE)

The likely hotpot facourite in this is the well connected Envoi Allen (5/4 Bet365), who, in fairness to the horse, has done absolutely nothing wrong, and looks everything like a top top grade hurdler. But… this is 2m5f, and a stiff 2m5f, around Cheltenham, on soft ground, at a good clip.

For this reason, we prefer to ignore the skinny odds and look to Mossy Fen (50/1 Bet365) and Decor Irlandais (100/1 Bet365) for extra places each-way money.

A shorter, more orthodox fancy is Sporting John (4/1 Bet365), under Barry Geraghty for Philip Hobbs. This one is unexposed, and clocked a great time on all three starts, including last time at Ascot, on bottomless ground, when looking like today’s trip would suit. 4/1 looks like a great price overnight.

Race 2 14:10 – RSA Insurance Novices’ Chase 3m1/2f

  1. Battleoverdoyen (IRE)
  2. Copperhead (GB)
  3. Allaho (FR)

This race is a pretty close call, though we really like the look of Battleoverdoyen (11/1 Bet365) at a nice price under Davy Russell for Henry De Bromhead. Needs forgiving for a so-so performance last time out, when a beaten faller at the last.

Copperhead (9/2) and Allaho (5/1) just get the nod ahead of De Bromhead’s Minella Indo (7/2), which is also a live chance in a very deep and open contest. It’s possible to make a good case for all but two or three of these.

Race 3 14:50 – Coral Cup Handicap Hurdle 2m5f

  1. Stratum (GB)
  2. Eglantine Du Seuil (FR)
  3. Traffic Fluide (FR)
  4. Alfa Mix (GB)

With most bookmakers paying 5 or more places in the Coral Cup – a 26 horse charge – we’ve added an extra selection because it’s almost impossible to split Traffic Fluide (28/1) and Alfa Mix (9/1) at these weights.

Willie Mullins’ Stratum (11/1) is the best handicapped of the lot, while his first choice jockey Paul Townend has chosen Eglantine Du Seuil (16/1) has the talent to land this, under 11-7.

Race 4 15:30 – Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase 2m


Head and shoulders the best chance of the day, Defi Du Seuil on a going day will take some stopping in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. Imperious last time out at Ascot, this 7 year old is at the peak of his powers. Anything else which beats this one here will need to produce better than we’ve ever seen on course. Of course, that can happen.

Race 5 16:10 – Glenfarclas Chase (Cross Country) 3m6f

  1. Sumkindofking (IRE)
  2. Tiger Roll (IRE)
  3. Neverushacon (IRE)

Tiger Roll (10/11) at level weights, at Cheltenham, in the cross country. Well, you’d need to be plain crazy to bet heavily against it. However, Sumkindofking (66/1) over around this distance, under these conditions, consistently puts in performances good enough to make the frame here. At 66/1, with extra places showing 18/1 (quarter of the odds down to 8 eight places!), this represents better value than the shade-of-odds-on about Tiger Roll.

Neverushacon (20/1) showed good form last time out, and has a race like this within his grasp. Produced right, could make the frame here.

Race 6 16:50 – Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle 2m1/2f

  1. Zoffee (GB)
  2. Blacko (FR)
  3. Mick Pastor (FR)

Zoffee looks a great each-way chance at 25/1 for Philip Hobbs and Richard Johnson, having three excellent performances under the belt, topped with an impressive win last time out.

Blacko (10/1) for Alan King under Thomas Bellamy also has a similar profile, with two impressive hurdles wins on the board already.

But probably Paul Nicholls’ Mick Pastor (13/2) is the one with the most obviously eye-catching form, and a building profile. Improvement seems likely, in which case, look out for this one under Barry Geraghty.

Race 7 17:30 – Weatherbys Champion Bumper 2m1/2f

  1. Third Time Lucki (IRE)
  2. Can You Call (GB)
  3. Panic Attack (IRE)

Willie Mullins’ Appreciate It is not mentioned above. It is next best for us, and we have to make a best guess as to how good these juvemiles are based on some scant evidence on course. The 15/8 price about a slightly more exposed one is the reasoning for this. It would not be a surprise if Mullins won this… but, we really, really liked Panic Attack‘s debut for Mullins. Now trained by David Pipe and ridden by Brian Hughes, that one gets the nod for lack of exposure.

Dan and Harry Skelton send Third Time Lucki (14/1) which we consider, each way, to be the best value in this race, closely followed by Can You Call for Andrew Martin under Mr J Martin. This is a 200/1 show with Bet365 – the suggestion is the 70/1 you can get for ten (count them) places, at 1/5 the odds for a place, because this is 14/1 to finish in the first ten for your place money.

Can You Call got going late when the penny dropped in the bumper Third Time Lucki won at Market Rasen in impressive style. Panic Attack also hit the afterburners at Market Rasen. Those runs are better than anything we’ve seen here, and speed over a sharp 2 miles will matter most of all in this bumper.

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