Cheltenham Festival 2016
With less than a week to go and with all kinds of offers from the bookies I thought I would post my Festival bets and fancies for next week, the Cheltenham Festival holds a special place for me as I’m sure it does with most punters, but it’s so hard to back winners as we know “they are all trying” I tend to look at the graded races for my main bets as the handicaps can be even more difficult as the numerous “plot” horses that will run? as we all know the pleasure of getting it right here is like nowhere else.
Supreme Novice – ALTIOR @ 9/2
I fancy ALTIOR this is a lovely big son of High Chaparral who is unbeaten over hurdles and showed plenty of potential in his bumper days, he looked good when putting the Mullins horse Open Eagle in its place, but for me his C&D form is the most appealing. He won grade 2 in November beating Maputo, and then as I’ve said beat a decent field at Kempton. The vibes are strong for this one and the jockey is very confident although the head lad at the yard I’m told likes the other runner BUVEUR D’AIR; he has looked impressive also and has very good form but has not won in graded company, the Irish won’t have MIN beat he was very impressive last time out and I can see why the hype is so strong but for me he races very keen and I’m not sure he’ll have enough left to beat my selection.
Triumph Hurdle – SCEAU ROYAL (NAP) @7/1
Alan King has a fine record in this race with his juveniles and this one is no exception, I’ve liked him from the first time I saw him win at Chepstow and lost the race in the stewards room; he then went to Wetherby and got beat a nose but his jumping is slick, he has a engine and he likes a fight, all the attributes you want for a race like this also put in a C&D win in the trial race and he stands out for the British. The yard are very sweet on him of that I know, the trainer said he’s come on since his last run – I cannot get over to you how much I think this horse is a good thing.
The Irish have a big shout with the Mullins’ runners but I’m not sure which one is their best maybe FOOTPAD but all the talk and money is for IVANOVICH GORBATOV and he was impressive when winning at Leopardstown and the form has held up, there was fortunes for this horse, he then run poor nto and was beaten, he drifted then got backed again! I cannot have him on my mind after his last run or the price.
Albert Bartlett – BARTERS HILL @ 11/4
What can you say about this fella, he just does not know when he’s beaten, last seasons bumper win at Aintree was the day he was taken as a proper grade 1 horse; he takes his unbeaten run to this race over 3m and his trainer is very happy with him. He has been schooled again as his win lto at Doncaster was the poorest he has jumped so far but he still won and beat a Mullins horse that the Irish champion trainer thought was a good thing. The form I understand some saying it may not be great but to me Barters and Up For Review cut each others’ throats up front and still Barters found again to keep his unbeaten record. SHANTOU VILLAGE could be a danger after his fine run lto to Yanworth, but Barters for me will remain unbeaten.
I really like VILLAGE VIC @ 12/1 his jumping is superb and I think he’ll go from the front and is worth a decent bet.
VELVET MAKER @ 16/1 has been seeing DOUVANS backside all winter in Ireland, dropped into this company he’ll be fancied. His owner put him up as his best chance of the week in a preview night
So there are my fancies for the week as we stand – I hope you have a great punting week, my advice to you is to remember it’s a long 4 days, stick with what you fancy and trust, may the best horse win.