Punters at Cheltenham. Picture: Barry Cregg / SPORTSFILE
Tuesday at Cheltenham is traditionally the day that sees punters pocket the money they’ll go onto lose during the remainder of the week, but are this year’s hotpots sure-fire? I wouldn’t want to punt these shorties at some of the quoted prices, that’s for sure.
The place value far outweighs the pressure on favourites’ backs on the opening day at the Cotswolds and I’ve got some decent-priced alternatives for you to get stuck into.
13:30 - Supreme Novice Hurdle:
Getabird represents the ever-powerful Willie Mullins stable in this opener, but just like Melon and Min, the price is far too short given how the race may pan out. MENGLI KHAN was useful on the flat and can pick up the pieces of a gung-ho battle between the favourite and Amy Murphy’s handicap graduate Kalashnikov.
14:10 – Arkle Trophy:
The second leg of the likely accumulator from opening day will present itself in the shape of Footpad. Indeed, no Irish horse has been as impressive this year over larger obstacles – but one quick glance over the Irish Sea leads you to SAINT CALVADOS – a strong-galloping front-runner who takes no nonsense. Petit Mouchoir’s hurdle mark won’t help him here.
15:30 – Champion Hurdle Trophy:
There’s nobody left on the planet who thinks anything can beat JP McManus’ principle charge in this race, so we may as well look for alternatives. Faugheen wears cheekpieces for the first time in his career and only a fairytale has him within ten lengths of the winner. It may be wise so, to look to the wily veteran MY TENT OR YOURS who’s the most reliable alternative in this field.
16:10 – Mares’ Hurdle:
There isn’t a more durable horse in this country than Apple’s Jade, but at 4/6, she’s out of most people’s punting range. Ben Pauling revealed that he had a conversation with Warren Greatrex recently – and he believed LA BAGUE AU ROI is the best horse he’s ever trained. That sounds good enough to finish in behind Gigginstown’s prize mare to me.
13:30 – Mengli Khan E/W (12/1)
14:10 – Saint Calvados (3/1)
14:50 – Minella Daddy E/W (14/1)
15:30 – My Tent Or Yours E/W (16/1)
16:10 – La Bague Au Roi E/W (8/1)
16:50 – Rathvinden E/W (7/1)
17:30 – De Plotting Shed E/W (13/2)