It’s important to get off to a good start to Cheltenham week so let’s hope that we’re on the winner of the first race! My pick for the Supreme is Facile Vega at around 2/1.
Willie Mullins is a master of his craft and has won 5 of the last 10 renewals of this race and he also managed to win 6 mares hurdles with the mother of this horse, Quevega. This horse is clearly very well bred and Willie thinks an awful lot of him so it would be very special for him to add another Cheltenham success to his name after easily winning last year’s bumper.
He was electric in his first two starts over hurdles and he has already beaten third favourite Il Etait Temps so if you’re willing to forgive his run in the Dublin Racing Festival (where he had multiple excuses) then this price is awfully generous
Some have described Jonbon as a ‘God given cert’ to win in the Arkle Chase on Tuesday afternoon at Cheltenham, despite the likes of El Fabiolo to contend with. When you take a look at the stats however, it’s understandable as to why so many are confident in the horse.
8 wins from 9 lifetime races is some record, with a 100% win rate over fences boding well for the horse’s chances in the Arkle Chase. Where did he finish in the race he didn’t win, you ask? He finished 2nd; this horse is a serial contender.
Jonbon’s last race came on the 11th of Feb at Warwick, where he powered home to win by several lengths. That’s despite a tentative jump at the last that saw this horse on somewhat unsteady legs, but the 7 year old exhibited the power, the speed, and the stamina to stride clear of Calico behind him.
As mentioned earlier, this looks to be a two horse race, and trainer Nicky Henderson should fancy his chances here.
Corach Rambler has two wins from two at Cheltenham, and he’s bidding to defend his crown after winning this exact race this time last year.
Corach Rambler recently impressed with his run in the Coral Cup at Newbury where he ended up finishing fifth. He’s been saved for this week and should be fresh as he looks to win the Handicap Chase again.
The ground will be on the soft side at Cheltenham and that suits Corach Rambler down to the ground and that’s why he performs there. He’s capable of finishing a race in devastating fashion, so if he keeps pace throughout, it might be difficult to stop him.
David Nicholson Mares' Hurdle
In the mares hurdle, we see one of the most competitive renewals of the race for a very long time and the master of the mares Willie Mullins runs Brandy Love as his first string.
He will relish every yard of this trip and convincingly beat the reopposing Love Envoi last year by 8 lengths at Punchestown.
There are question marks over if she’s good enough to win an open company grade 1 but there are also question marks about if Honeysuckle and Epatante are regressing!
It’s going to be a very hard race to win but Willie Mullins knows what it takes and I’d be very shocked if he didn’t even have a horse hit the frame.
She can be forgiven for her reappearance as she didn’t look 100% fit and this has been the aim all season
National Hunt Chase
Willie Mullins and Patrick Mullins have teamed up to win this race three times in the last ten years including last year’s renewal and I can see them certainly following up Stattler’s success with Gaillard Du Mesnil this year.
This horse is vastly experienced and has proven his stamina already after a stellar effort as a novice in last year’s Irish Grand National. He’s around about even money which I think is extremely generous after the defection of nearest market rival Churchstone Warrior.
This horse has already won a grade 1 race this year and I can’t see any way that he doesn’t win this grade 2 event against inferior rivals. He has the best amateur jockey on board and that bodes very well for his already outstanding claims.