Cheltenham Tuesday Tips: New Year’s Day Meeting Preview

December 31, 2018

Posted by David Stephens Receive News Alerts

There is a bumper day of action ahead of us on New Year’s Day. On both sides of the Irish Sea some serious horses will be on display, especially at Cheltenham. There are three Graded races live on ITV and there will be festival clues aplenty. Our racing analyst Dave Stevos has looked at all four live ITV races. Check out his Cheltenham Tuesday tips below…

Cheltenham Tuesday Tips

Cheltenham Tuesday Tips: 1.25 Dipper Novices’ Chase (Grade 2)

The obvious starting point in this Grade 2 20f chase is the favourite, Defi Du Seuil. This son of Voix Du Nord won the Triumph here back in 2017 but last season was a write off. There wasn’t much encouragement to be gleaned from his comeback run here behind Lalor either. However, he looked back to something like his best at Exeter last time.

He won easily by 3.5L from Topofthegame and that horse ran a screamer behind La Bague Au Roi next time. Black Op was 4L back in 3rd and we can’t see him turning the form around. On The Blind Side was 9L behind Black Op at Aintree last season, while Lostintranslation has a bit to find on a line through La Bague Au Roi. Defi De Seuil has strong form claims and we think he looks the most likely winner at odds of 11/4.


Cheltenham Tuesday Tips: 2.00 Handicap Chase (Grade 3)

The second live race of the day on ITV is a tricky looking 21f Grade 3 Handicap Chase. Aso did us a big favour at Newbury last time out, winning easily. However, he has been given a hefty 8lb rise for that success and it won’t be easy for him off top weight. At the opposite end of the handicap, Foxtail Hill could go well at a price.

Nigel Twiston-Davies is no stranger to success here at Cheltenham. He also runs Ballyhill, but he is 10lb higher than for his win at Aintree. Foxtail Hill is now rated 135, 5lb lower than when last winning here in October 2017 over 2 miles. He won off the same mark in January 2017 over course and distance when Jamie Bargary rode. Trip, track and ground will suit and at odds of 16/1 an each way interest is advised.


Cheltenham Tuesday Tips: 2.35 Handicap Hurdle (Class 2)

A field of 14 horses have been declared for this competitive looking 24f handicap hurdle. A number of bookies are offering enhanced each way terms, so shop around. We like one at a nice each way price here, Forecast for Martin Keighley and Gavin Sheehan. This son of Observatory was well below par last time, but the drop in trip to 16f was a strange move.

He previously hosed up on heavy ground over 19.5f at Lingfield, but his run at Aintree (20f gd) was arguably even better. He stayed on really well behind Paisley Park for 3rd and that horse has franked the form since. We thought Forecast shaped like he was crying out for a step up in trip after that run, and he finally gets that here. Off a feather weight he could be worth backing each way at odds of 20/1 (4 Places 1/5 odds William Hill).


Cheltenham Tuesday Tips: 3.10 Relkeel Hurdle (Grade 2)

The closing live race of the day on ITV from Cheltenham on New Year’s Day is the Relkeel Hurdle. Last season’s Stayers’ Hurdle 3rd Wholestone is the current market leader. Nigel Twiston-Davies’ charge flopped over 3 miles on soft at Newbury last time. However, his last run over 20f on decent ground resulted in a comfortable win at Aintree. He is the highest rated horse in the race by some distance and he sets the standard.

The one that could put it right up to the favourite is Old Guard. Paul Nicholls has had a fantastic festive season so far. This fella is a dual course winner over shorter, including a Grade 2 over 16.5f. He has kept on well on his last two starts at this track over 16f, shaping as though in need of further. We can see him travelling into the race well and at odds of 9/2 he looks to have a real chance of upsetting the favourite.


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