The four day racing extravaganza that is the Cheltenham Festival is all set to get underway today with the famous Cheltenham Roar.
As always it promises to be an exhilarating spectacle and here’s hoping we can guide you in the direction of some winners. Here are my picks for today’s races:
Supreme Novices Hurdle –
Willie Mullins often targets this race, with winners including Champagne Fever and Douvan in recent years. I think he could be celebrating another success today with Ruby Walsh ridden Klassical Dream.
The Arkle –
Gordon Elliott’s Hardline is one of the big Irish hopes this week and brings strong form to the table ahead of the Arkle Trophy. I fancy him as an each way shot along with US And Them who ran second to the powerful Le Richebourg in last two outings.
Ultima Handicap Chase –
Last year’s winner Coo Star Sivola is my pick again for the Ultima, despite some lingering concerns over a lack of action this season. The Nick William’s trained horse has only raced four times since last year’s Cheltenham success but at a very tempting price because of the fitness doubts, I think Coo Star Sivola has the class to do it again.
Champion Hurdle –
She’s won 10 Grade One races and can confirm herself as one of the great mares of all time with victory at this year’s Cheltenham Festival, and Apples Jade is my pick for the Champion Hurdle.
After a superb showing at the Irish Champion Hurdle she’s in prime form to follow that with another headline making display here.
Mares Hurdle –
Another strong contender from Willie Mullins, Benie Des Deaux has been well fancied for some time and I won’t be looking anywhere else for this one.
National Hunt Novices’ Chase –
Over hurdles last season, Paul Nolan’s Discorama finished second to Blow By Blow in the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockey’s Handicap but Nolan has targeted the four-miler at this year’s festival.
Soft ground wont be a problem for Discorama and he could be one to follow on Day One.