Wednesday, March 17
Three short-priced favourites hacked up on day one of the Cheltenham Festival yet the bookies were still left breathing a big sigh of relief as Black Tears chinned Concertista on the line in the Mares' Hurdle.
That spared a pay out on the four-timer with Appreciate It, Shishkin and Honeysuckle but day two presents a similar scenario as Monkfish, Chacun Pour Soi and Easysland should all oblige barring accidents on all known form and ratings.
Day two begins with the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle (1.20pm) in which Bob Olinger is fancied for yesterday's Champion Hurdle-winning team of Henry De Bromhead and Rachael Blackmore at around 15-8 although Gaillard Du Mensil and Bravemansgame look big dangers.
At 18-1, Keskonrisk could also be a live outsider given his lightly-raced profile for Joseph O'Brien.
Then it's the first of the 'big three' via the monstrous Monkfish in the Brown Advisory Novices Chase (1.55pm) and his price of 3-10 says it all - impossible to oppose.
But chucking Monkfish in a treble with Chacun Pour Soi and Easysland pays around 7-2 and that looks the way to go on day two.
The top-rated Chacun Poir Soi looks like being another star for the Willie Mullins yard and ought to collect in the Queen Mother Champion Chase (3.05pm) at odds of around 5-6 if navigating the fences on his first trip to Cheltenham and there's no reason why he shouldn't.
French raider Easysland then runs in the unique Glenfarclas (Cross Country) Chase (3.40pm), a race he took apart last year.
He just looks a different class to his rivals including Tiger Roll unless the former Grand National-hero can return to his best and odds of 10-11 on Easysland look fair enough.
Day two also presents two fiercely competitive handicaps and it's worth noting that the Nicky Henderson-trained Craigneiche has been very well backed in the Coral Cup (2.30pm) into around 13-2 favourite.
He warrants a saver but Grand Roi has very strong Graded form and might be too good at around 8s for Denise Foster and Jack Kennedy whilst Heaven Help Us could also be a live outsider at 33s.
The Johnny Henderson Grand Annual (4.15pm) looks a minefield which could be cherry ripe for an outsider and perhaps something like the classy Duc Des Genievres at 25-1 on what is his handicap debut.
The second day then finishes with the Champion Bumper (4.50pm) which looks a toss up between Mullins-trained duo Kilcruit and Sir Gerhard.
Both look hugely promising but at the odds, a slightly bigger 2-1, Sir Gerhard is narrowly preferred.
Good luck, happy punting and bring on the treble.
CHELTENHAM TIPS DAY TWO: 1.20 Bob Olinger, 1.55 Monkfish, 2.30 Grand Roi, 3.05 Chacun Pour Soi (NAP), 3.40 Easysland, 4.15 Amoola Gold, 4.50 Sir Gerhard.
Long shot: Duc Des Genievres, 4.15pm (25-1).
Lucky 31: Bob Olinger, Monkfish, Chacun Pour Soi, Easysland, Sir Gerhard.
Notable marker mover: Craigneiche, 2.30pm.
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