BestofBets Road to Cheltenham Festival – Cheltenham Trials Day Races 

BestofBets Road to Cheltenham Festival – Cheltenham Trials Day Races 
This weekend, as the racing world gather for the Cheltenham Trials Day Races, have taken a look at what horses are set to impress at the main Festival in March.
Cheltenham Trials Day has known for throwing up Festival winners and with a nine-race card day, it’s certain to shine a light on several hopefuls. But the questions is… who will come out of left field?
In fact, since the turn of the century, a total of 38 Cheltenham Festival winners had their final start before their big day at Prestbury Park on the Trials Day card with the Cleeve Hurdle proving the Big Daddy of the meeting, finding no fewer than 11 Festival winners in the last 22 years.
Saturday promises to provide a rich source of Festival fancies and while some horses, including Energumene, in this year’s re-routed Clarence House, will only solidify their already obvious Festival chance, there will be some that use this weekend to announce themselves on the Cheltenham stage.
Gordon Elliott’s Hollow Games 
Hollow Games is a fascinating entry for Gordon Elliott in the Novices’ Handicap Chase at 12:10 on Trials Day and it will be interesting to see what mark the UK handicapper gives him.

He finished 3rd in the Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle at the festival last season (14/1 for the Plate Handicap Chase in 2023) off a mark of 143 and has made a good start to his chasing campaign this season. He won by four lengths at Navan on his chasing debut in November before finishing 4th at Leopardstown in the Grade 1 Novice Chase behind Saint Roi. This step up in trip would suit him well and it will be interesting if he takes up his engagement or if it just an exercise to find out his UK mark.

Two debutants to challenge Delta Work in the Cross Country

Delta Work (7/4 favourite) will no doubt prove popular in the Cross Country Chase at the Festival but two interesting entries for Saturday are Grand National winner Minella Times and Becher Chase winner Snow Leopardess who would both be making their debut in this discipline.

Double the runners for rearranged Clarence House Chase

Gary Moore has decided to supplement Editeur Du Gite for the Clarence House Chase which has brought the number of runners up to six from the original three intended runners last weekend. He capitalised last time when Edwardstone unseated Tom Cannon at Kempton and he will ensure a good pace for both Energumene (8/15) and Edwardstone (15/8) to aim at during this race.

The battle for second in the Gold Cup ante-post market

Noble Yeats continues his path to the Gold Cup in the Grade 2 Cotswold Chase where he faces both Protektorat and Frodon who have both shown good form at the course. The winner will more than likely prove to be second favourite behind Galopin Des Champs for the Cheltenham Gold Cup after this race and it will be a fascinating watch.

Paisley Park bids for fourth Cleeve Hurdle

The Cleeve Hurdle looks set to be a big field this year and Paisley Park will go off a short price (11/10) to win this race for a fourth time. A fascinating opponent is the Paul Nicholls trained Gelino Bello (7/2) who reverts back to hurdling having fallen last time behind Thyme Hill at Kempton over fences.

He had won his previous four starts in a row including over this trip in the Grade 1 Sefton Novices’ Hurdle at Aintree last season so he worth taking a chance on in what looks a weak division.

Saturday Best Bets:  

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