Cheltenham Day One Preview

By Luke

Racing gets underway at 1:30 everyday. The runners will be met by the famous Cheltenham roar as the first Race on day one gets underway. The first race is the Supreme Novice’s Hurlde over two miles. I like Fakir D’oudairies receiving all the weight because he is a four year old. He has lots of experience for a four year old who has came from France. He ran over hurdles twice in France and even has two runs over fences in France.

He is unbeaten since joining Joseph O’Brien. He won at Cork and also has won at Cheltenham back in January. He was very impressive when winning by thirteen lengths at Cheltenham. He will enjoy the softer ground and I think he can run a good race.

Felix Desjy has been seem to better effect since taking up front running tactics. Last time out when making the running he won impressively in Punchestown. He will still need to improve more but I think he can and outrun his odds.

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Felix Desjy 

The Racing Post Arkle off at 2:10

I like Hardline. I think he has the best form coming into the race. His ten length win over Us And Them at Navan looks very good form. Last time out he ran a strange race. He looked like finishing detached but he really came back into the race turning in. He has to make up a lot of ground to latch back onto the ground and I think he payed for that late on.

He is also a Grade 1 winner. He won his Grade 1 at Limerick giving himself and Keith Donoghue their first Grade 1s. That form looks very good, Riders Onthe Storm has came out and won and is currently joint favourite for the Close Brothers later in the card. Jetz was fourth and has came out and won a Grade 3. I think he has the best form and will be hard to beat.

The Ultima Handicap Chase off at 2:50

Beware The Bear has not been seen since New Years Day when he won at Cheltenham. Prior to that run he finished fourth in the Ladbrokes Trophy at Newbury where he didn’t jump great. He finished fourth in this race last year and if he can brush up on his jumping he could run a good race off a mark of 151.

The Champion Hurdle off at 3:30

Apple’s Jade brings the best form into the race. She is a wonderful mare, she has won three Grade 1s this season all over different distances. To beat Supasundae by 16 lengths over two mile is better than anything Buveur D’Air has ever done in my opinion. She is versatile when it comes to riding her she can lead or be handy and still be as effective. I don’t think Buveur D’Air can give her 7lbs and beat her.

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Apple’s Jade

The Mares Hurdle off at 4:10 

Benie Des Dieux looks very hard to oppose. She won last years renewal in what’s was a more competitive field than this years. Roksana could be the one to follow her home. At a mad price of 40/1, Slowmotion could sneak a place. She will be suited by a stiff finish up the hill and could run into a place at a mad price if they’d go hard infront.

The Close Brothers Novices’ Handicap Chase off at 4:50

Cubomania just sneaks into this race off a mark of 145. He was in the process of winning a good race in the Grade 1 Drinmore at Fairyhouse in December. Since then he has been running with credit in open handicaps. He has won at Cheltenham, he won back in October in a Novices’ Chase over a similar distance to this distance. I think he is lucky to qualify for this race and I think he can win this off joint top weight.

The Nationals Hunt Chase off at 5:30

Hopefully Ballyward can bring the day to an end with a winner. He hasn’t got much experience over fences, this will be his third start over fences and I would ideally like if he had another one or two but I think he will be hard to beat. Last time out he bet Chris’s Dream by eleven lengths at Naas. I think this is strong form and he can bring the day to an end with a winner.

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