It’s Bookies 1-0 Punters after the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival but as the old cliche goes – it’s a marathon, not a sprint. And we’re leading the fightback with some rock solid selections.
Ladies Day is likely to be dominated by the machine that is Douvan but away from Willie Mullins’ star there are plenty of others waiting to shine brightly.
Neon Wolf may have to play second fiddle to the Queen Mother Champion Chase jolly. But if fulfilling his promise, he may give Douvan a run for his money in so far as attracting headlines goes.
The Neptune Novices’ Hurdle fancy is arguably the most exciting juvenile in Britain but he’ll have a very game Irish challenger for company in Deloitte Novice Hurdle winner, Bacardys.
While there are questions to ponder in the Neptune, the RSA Chase is even trickier to decipher.
Market leader Might Bite had the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase at his mercy on Boxing Day before a heavy fall and his recent form at Prestbury Park isn’t really worth writing home about.
In that regard, former Coral Cup hero and perennial Festival performer Whisper is worth backing to complete a Cheltenham hat-trick following wins here on New Year’s Day and last December.
Onto this year’s Coral Cup and surprise entry Tombstone and a number of the JP McManus-owned contingent (Consul De Thaix, Modus, Bleu Et Rouge) make appeal.
But 2014 JLT Novices’ Chase winner Taquin Du Seuil is the one being talked up as a potential winner and we’re inclined to agree with those who fancy the 10-year-old over the smaller obstacles.
The Queen Mother Champion Chase looks an open goal for Douvan but stranger things have happened and multiple Prestbury Park winner Fox Norton can at least chase his old rival down and bag some place money.
In the Cross Country Chase, the green and gold hoops are likely to be prominent again with Cause of Causes our pick to serve it up to Cantlow.
Divin Bere is one to watch in the Fred Winter Handicap Hurdle while, in the absence of Daphne Du Clos, the Warren Greatrex-trained Western Ryder gets the nod in the Champion Bumper.
Here’s our full list of tips for day two of the 2017 Cheltenham Festival:
13:30 – Neon Wolf
14:10 – Whisper EW
14:50 – Taquin Du Seuil EW
15:30 – Fox Norton (Betting w/o the favourite/Douvan)
16:10 – Cause of Causes
16:50 – Divin Bere
17:30 – Western Ryder
Check out today’s NAP, Lucky 15, find our top offers and get the Festival buzz straight from The Horse’s Mouth team by visiting our main Cheltenham page.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing