As we scoot into day two at the Cheltenham Festival there are several more ‘Cheltenham Bankers’ to either be with or against. With that in mind – let’s take a look at the second day’s Cheltenham Bankers
You can back our three bankers on Wednesday – Sir Gerhard, Shishkin and Tiger Roll – in a treble with ThePools @7/1
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Cheltenham Bankers – Day Two
SIR GERHARD @ 4/6 with ThePools
Race: 1:30 – Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle
Trainer: Willie Mullins
Connections opted for this race instead of Tuesday’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle and it’s easy to see why. This looks the weaker contest and this 7 year-old has looked as if the step up in trip will bring out more. He’s 2-from-2 over hurdles to date and was last seen winning again in Ireland at the Dublin Racing Festival. He’s also a proven Festival winner – having landed the Champion Bumper here 12 months ago. Looks to have a rock solid chance to get favourite backers off to a flying start of day two.
SHISHKIN @ 5/6 with ThePools
Race: 3:30 – Champion Chase
Trainer: Nicky Henderson
Has been all the rage for this race since winning the Arkle Chase at the 2021 Festival and prior to that took the 2000 Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. Heads here 7-from-7 over fences and knuckled down well to beat his main rival here – Energumene – in the Clarence House Chase at Ascot last time out. It’s another fascinating renewal, but if in the same sort as form as last time, this Nicky Henderson-trained 8 year-old can remain unbeaten over fences.
TIGER ROLL @ 13/8 with ThePools
Race: 4.10 – Cross Country Chase
Trainer: Gordon Elliott
Having his eighth run in a Festival race and is a five-time winner at this meeting. Three of those wins have come in this race and at the age of 12 he’s back for more. He’s also famed as having won the Grand National twice and win, lose or draw here has already etched his name in the horse racing hall of fame. He’s reported in flying form at home though and with previous experience over these Cross Country fences a big plus, then if those reports are correct he will be hard to beat again.
FACILE VEGA @ 11/8 with ThePools
Race: 5:30 – Champion Bumper
Trainer: Willie Mullins
The Willie Mullins yard love to win this race – they’ve done just that 11 times in the past.
They will again have a strong hand in the race but it’s Facile Vega that’s been propping up the head of the market for the Mullins camp since bolting up at the Dublin Racing Festival last month.
He clearly looks a smart horse in the making, but these young bumper horses can improve a lot between their opening few starts so there could easily be something else in the race. The Mullins runner is little value in the betting and there is a decent word from the Gordon Elliott yard for their American Mike too.
Overall, he’s worth taking on as Mullins is also no stranger to picking up this race with one of his other runners too – and this year he’s got six more in the race!
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