Cheltenham Festival16-19 March

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The finale of Cheltenham is here. Day 4 and often the most dramatic day with the festival’s showpiece the Gold Cup taking center stage.

Can our very own Rachael Blackmore take the spoils back to Ireland on A Plus Tard?

We certainly hope so, but whoever you think is the good thing, we’ve teamed up again with Timeform to give you a few pointers.

Get your Cheltenham Festival Day 4 tips here, which as always includes the Big-race view, Banker of the day and a Handicap Hotshot to help you unearth a winner or two.

If you’re still not sure who to back for the big one, why not leave it to the gods of fate and try the Gold Cup Horse Generator?

 

Hear from Rachael Blackmore on this week’s special edition of the BetVictor Podcast. Live from Cheltenham, she gives us her thoughts on the week so far and her ride on A Plus Tard in the Gold Cup.

Big-race verdict

15:05 Cheltenham - Friday

Native River

Veteran chaser set to regain his crown

12/1

Native River

Veteran chaser set to regain his crown

Native River displayed an excellent attitude to fend off Might Bite and win the 2018 Cheltenham Gold Cup, and he also hit the frame in the 2017 and 2019 editions, showing how well suited he is by the stiff test of stamina.

Native River may be an 11-year-old now but is seemingly as good as ever based on his impressive display in the rescheduled Cotswold Chase at Sandown last month.

Native River shaped as if he would come on for the run when third in the Many Clouds Chase at Aintree on his reappearance, and he duly posted a much better effort at Sandown.

He put in a spectacular round of jumping on that occasion and kept on powerfully to beat Bristol de Mai by nine and a half lengths, highlighting that he remains a force in high-quality staying chasers.

That form isn’t far behind what Al Boum Photo has achieved so Native River looks like good each-way value at double-figure odds to become just the second horse after Kauto Star to regain the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

The Banker

16:15 Cheltenham - Friday

Elimay

Mullins set to continue superb record in mares' races

11/10

Elimay

Mullins set to continue superb record in mares' races

Willie Mullins has a phenomenal record in mares’ races at the Cheltenham Festival and it would be a surprise if he failed to win the inaugural running of the Mares’ Chase. Mullins has four representatives, including the two market leaders, and his best chance is with Elimay.

Elimay won her two outings over fences last season and ran a cracker when runner-up to stablemate Allaho in a Grade 2 at Thurles in January. The strong pace Allaho set proved too much for most of the field who were readily left behind, but Elimay impressed with how she travelled and was still in with a chance at the final fence before the winner found extra.

She was impressive when taking a listed event at Naas last month, coping well with the drop in trip to comfortably beat Shattered Love and book her ticket to Cheltenham. She sets the standard on form and should prove difficult to beat.

Handicap Hotshot

16:50 Cheltenham - Friday

Langer Dan

Skelton hotpot looks well in

7/1

Langer Dan

Skelton hotpot looks well in

Langer Dan was a useful juvenile last term and won at listed level before finishing sixth in the Fred Winter at the Cheltenham Festival.

He made a slow start to this campaign but took a step in the right direction when fourth at Market Rasen last month and confirmed that promise when running out a decisive winner of the Imperial Cup at Sandown on Saturday, producing a career-best performance.

Langer Dan impressed with how stylishly he cut through the pack, and he was immediately in command when Harry Skelton pushed the button. Langer Dan won with plenty in hand at Sandown so looks well-in under a 5 lb penalty, and he can follow up here to claim a £50,000 bonus.

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