The upcoming Cheltenham Festival will provide horse racing fans with a plethora of top-class betting opportunities throughout the meeting.
The standout races are undoubtedly the championship events, which are the centrepiece of the card on each of the four days.
The Champion Hurdle, Champion Chase, Stayers’ Hurdle and Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase are the pinnacle of their particular National Hunt discipline.
With that in mind, we look at the four races and pick out which horses we think will have the bookmakers running scared in each of them.
If you enjoy placing a bet on horse racing, the line-up for this year’s two-mile Champions Hurdle contains a horse that pundits believe is destined for superstardom.
Constitution Hill highlighted his credentials at the 2022 Festival, storming to a hugely impressive victory in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.
Trainer Nicky Henderson has been bullish about the horse’s chances in the Champion Hurdle following Grade 1 wins at Newcastle and Kempton this season.
Top Irish contender State Man will likely be the biggest threat in the race, but Constitution Hill is a banker bet to deliver winning returns for punters on the opening day.
The highlight of the action on Day Two is the two-mile Champion Chase, which will see three horses lock horns again after meeting earlier this year.
For Cheltenham betting enthusiasts, energumen was the odds-on favourite to win the Clarence House Chase at Cheltenham in January, but ran a below-par race to finish third.
Editeur Du Gite emerged victorious on that occasion, fending off the challenge of Edwardstone following an epic battle up the Cheltenham Hill.
The latter horse suffered a bruised foot during that event and looks a good bet to reverse the form to secure a famous victory in the Champion Chase.
The three-mile Stayers’ Hurdle on the third day is a tricky puzzle to unravel, with several horses holding a genuine chance of winning the race.
Paisley Park, Klassical Dream and Flooring Porter will popular with many punters, but they could find it tough to fend off two rising stars in the staying hurdle ranks.
Blazing Khal was a superb winner of the Boyne Hurdle at Navan earlier this month, but has since suffered a minor setback and could be vulnerable at Cheltenham.
On that basis, the value bet is the Gordon Elliott-trained Teahupoo, who romped home at Gowran Park in January and remains unexposed over three miles.
Gold Cup Chase
The final day of the Festival is all about the Cheltenham Gold Cup – a three mile and two furlongs race featuring the finest staying chasers in the business.
A Plus Tard will be back to defend the title he won so impressively last time around, but may find it difficult to see off the challenge of Galopin Des Champs.
Willie Mullins’ charge was an unlucky loser at last year’s meeting, falling at the final fence when miles clear in the Turners Novices’ Chase.
He has since rattled off three Grade 1 victories in Ireland and can hand top Irish trainer Mullins his third success in this race in the past five years.
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