Cheltenham Festival day three is upon us and we have been witness plenty of drama this week already.
Tiger Roll produced a wonderful performance which will leave many horse racing fanatics seething knowing we will not see the Grand National winner at Aintree next month.
Meanwhile, Put The Kettle On produced a brilliant finale in the Queen Mother Champion Chase to beat favourite Chacun Pour Soi on St Patrick's Day which saw the Irish dominate the Brits once again.
Today, we could see a very happy punter who could be in the chance to win more than £500,000 if Envoi Allen wins the opening race – who is exactly who our tipster is backing along with six other horses.
Here are Jason Heavey's tips on all seven races:
1.20 Marsh Novices’ Chase
ON paper this should be a stroll for hotpot ENVOI ALLEN .
He bids for his third straight victory at the Festival after winning the bumper in 2019 and the Ballymore last season.
He has looked like a natural in three chasing victories although he has yet to be extended.
The only negative was the recent switch to Henry De Bromhead’s yard, which may have disrupted his routine.
But he is a wonderful horse and remains impossible to oppose.
His jumping will be put to the test by Shan Blue, who is a strong candidate to follow him home.
Dan Skelton’s novice is a Grade One winner and a terrific jumper.
In fact, the way he attacks his fences could put the others under pressure.
With the magical eight runners, Fusil Raffles at 18-1 appeals as the each-way play.
His chance of reaching the podium will increase the more the ground dries out.
ENVOI ALLEN – 1/2
1.55 Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle
THIS is a conundrum and a half, especially as so many of these would have been laid out for the race after qualifying.
I loved the way IMPERIAL ALCAZAR put the race to bed at Warwick on just his second attempt at three miles.
He was switched off by Paddy Brennan as he can race a bit keenly and then had to come wide into the straight.
But he was well on top by the final flight and won with plenty in hand, so expect similar tactics today.
Champagne Platinum and Spiritofthegames have run well at the Festival before, which augurs well for their chance.
But there is plenty of each-way value and the 16/1 about Southfield Harvest stands out. He ran a blinder at Newbury last time and the drying ground will play to his strengths.
Selection: IMPERIAL ALCAZAR – 5/1
Each-way: Southfield Harvest
2.30 Ryanair Chase
IMPERIAL AURA looks the real deal in today’s Ryanair Chase.
Previous form at the four-day meeting counts for so much – as results this week have shown.
And last year Imperial Aura beat Galvin in the Northern Trust Novices’ Handicap Chase and that form was boosted on Tuesday with Galvin’s victory in the National Hunt Chase.
Kim Bailey’s rising star was brilliant on his first two starts during this campaign at Carlisle and Ascot before an out of character first fence tumble at Kempton.
This is a seriously competitive rac. Min and Saint Calvados, who fought out the finish last year, are in the frame again, while Allaho and Mister Fisher have attracted support. The latter will relish the drying ground.
Each-way thieves could do worse than fire a few quid on Kalashnikov who is overpriced at 28/1.
SELECTION: IMPERIAL AURA – 15/2
3.05. Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle
IN 2019 Paisley Park outpointed Sam Spinner to win this coveted prize. History may well repeat itself today.
Emma Lavelle’s brilliant stayer is as good as ever this season and although he is now aged nine he should have too many bullets for his rivals.
Flooring Porter is up 28lb since last July and his improvement has been rapid. He is respected along with Vinndication, who reverts to hurdling but is a classy horse who rarely runs a bad race.
Last year’s winner Lisnagar Oscar is another big player and was an excellent second to Third Wind trying to give him 6lb last time out.
Colin Tizzard was happy with Reserve Tank on his return and he should not be 80/1 while Sam Spinner is 66/1 and although he has had his issues that is a silly price if he can recapture his best form.
Selection: PAISLEY PARK – 2/1
Each-way: Sam Spinner
3.40 Paddy Power Plate Handicap Chase
HAPPY DIVA loves Cheltenham and she is a sporting punt in a fiercely competitive race.
The mare was runner-up in last year’s renewal when she only found Simply The Betts too good.
Crucially, she is racing from a 4lb lower perch this time and that has to bring her into the mix.
The fact she is as big as 16/1 is a bonus.
There are dangers everywhere although I was taken with the way Champagne Court ran at Warwick last time. He has slipped down the ratings to a dangerous mark and he is another who could reach a place at a big price.
Oldgrangewood (25/1) and Mister Whitaker (12/1) are others to throw each-way shillings at while at the other end of the market Farclas continues to attract serious cash.
Selection: HAPPY DIVA – 16/1
Each-way: Champagne Court
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4.15 Parnell Properties Mares’ Novice Hurdle
The Irish form is difficult to assess but on the book Rosey’s Hollow holds both Royal Kahala and Gauloise.
The latter is one of four Willie Mullins runners and three are single figure odds. But I doubt there is another Concertista in the field.
The Glancing Queen has run in the Champion Bumper twice including when fifth to Envoi Allen in 2019. Her second in the Challow Hurdle reads well and she is a player.
But a chance is taken with Olly Murphy’s ALLAVINA – an imposing mare who is progressive. She only won an egg and spoon race at Taunton but she really caught the eye in the way she travelled and put the race to bed, She looks too big in the betting at 33/1.
Selection: ALLAVINA – 33/1
Each-way: The Glancing Queen
4.50 Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase
IT could be third time lucky for KILFILUM CROSS who has been second in the last two runnings.
He is 3lb lower in the ratings this year and the talented Alex Edwards can use his 3lb claim against the pro jockeys, so he is 6lb better off.
He has been out of sorts this season but must have a serious chance if he can recapture his best form. He certainly comes alive in this race.
Deise Aba was eight lengths behind him last year and may get closer as he is progressive.
Shantou Flyer has been placed three times at the Festival and is 18lb lower than when third in the Ultima in 2018.
Milanford was bought from the point to point field and has put together three solid runs. He is each-way play
Selection: KILFILUM CROSS – 14/1
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