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Cheltenham Festival Antepost

See the latest antepost betting tips ahead of the 2019 Festival.
Champion Hurdle Tuesday, 12th March 3:30 Sharjah Bet Now
Champion Chase Wednesday, 13th March 3:30 Altior Bet Now
Stayers' Hurdle Thursday, 14th March 3:30 Penhill Bet Now
Gold Cup Friday, 15th March 3:30 Presenting Percy Bet Now

Three handicappers primed to strike

As we head towards February, the Cheltenham Festival handicap markets will start to really take shape. We all know everything about the grade 1 prospects by now and it’s time to turn our attention to the dark horses; those that have been laid out for success at Prestbury Park. Here’s three to have on your radar.

Sky Pirate – Kim Muir Challenge Cup (20/1 Paddy Power)

Loyal readers of the GG eyecatcher column will know this is a horse I’ve been keeping an eye on for a while and he’s a horse whose absence makes the heart grow stronger. Jonjo O’Neill’s young chaser was running a fine race at the track at the November meeting when last seen, coming to grief at the second last fence when looking likely to mount a serious challenge to the eventual winner. Previous to that Sky Pirate had some strong form finishing 2nd in his previous two races to in-form rivals and this six-year-old looks to have plenty left in the locker. Intriguingly the fall at Cheltenham was in an amateur riders race and one wonders if they’re saving him for a similar race at the Cheltenham Festival, namely the Kim Muir where hopefully he would have the assistance of Patrick Mullins again. Back Sky Pirate at 20/1 with Paddy Power.

Coo Star Sivola – Ultima Handicap Steeple Chase (25/1 Bet365)

The 3-mile handicap chase on day one of the Festival has had many different guises in recent years, but one thing that has remained a constant is horses coming back to run well in it year-after-year. The likes of Holywell and Un Temps Pour Tout have 3 wins and a second between them in recent years and it suggests that it’s a race that’s demands suit a certain type of horse and I fancy last year’s winner to go back-to-back at very tempting odds. Nick Williams’ charge won the race off 142 last season and won very well, travelling strongly through the race and jumping superbly and it looks like this season has been geared towards another crack at it. He’s down to a mark of 145, just three pounds higher and he’s worth backing to strike again. Back Coo Star Sivola at 25/1 with Bet365.

Sire Du Berlais – Pertemps Final (12/1 BetVictor)

JP McManus was a nose away from winning the Pertemps last season, but expect him to go one better this year with the lightly-raced Sire Du Berlais. Trained by Gordon Elliot, this unexposed French-bred has yet to win in the UK but has run a number of promising races and the challenge of a race like the Pertemps promises to be right up his street. He ran a good race finishing fourth in the Martin Pipe last season when finding the lack of a strong gallop against him and the step up in trip for the Pertemps will suit him down to the ground. He ran an eye-catching trial to qualify for this race at Leopardstown over Christmas and this race looks very much the plan for his shrewd connections. Back Sire Du Berlais at 12/1 with BetVictor.

GG Tips for the Festival

It’s the best four days of the year and we’ve got tipping to match here at GG! We’ll have expert tipster selections at the Cheltenham Festival from the likes of Andrew Mount, Kevin O’Malley and Sam Turner leading up to the event and throughout the week itself. Last year the guys banged in plenty of winners and hopefully you’ve already followed Kev’s antepost advice in the Tips Den throughout the National Hunt season as you’ll be sitting pretty with some tasty antepost slips.

Cheltenham Festival 2019

The Cheltenham Festival is the pinnacle of the Jumps season where the best horses from the UK and Ireland take each other on for the chance to etch themselves into racing history. From Tuesday 12th to Friday 15th March there’s a total of 14 Grade One races across the four days at Prestbury Park including the championship races; the Champion Hurdle, Champion Chase, Stayers' Hurdle and Gold Cup.

Get ready for the roar!

For more great bets make sure to check out our horse racing tips for betting advice on all the races taking place today.