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Cheltenham Day 3 Tips - Through the card tips on Thursday

Last updated: 16 Mar 2022
Jon Vine 16 Mar 2022
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  • Through the card tips on day three of the 2022 Cheltenham Festival
  • The Stayers' Hurdle headlines the card on St Patrick's Day
  • We're backing both Champ and Klassical Dream in the Stayers' Hurdle
  • Bob Olinger, Dinoblue and Frontal Assault also feature in our day three tips
bob olinger
Rachael Blackmore (jockey of Bob Olinger) celebrates wining the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle (Grade 1) on Day Two of the Cheltenham Festival. (Getty)

The Irish will be out in force on St Patrick's Day at the Cheltenham Festival and they'll ensure an electrifying atmosphere on day three of this famous meeting.

The oldest of the four Championship race, the Stayers' Hurdle headlines Thursday's card. Fans will also enjoy an almighty showdown in the Turners' Novices' Chase, before saluting returning champion Allaho ahead of the Ryanair.

Here are my selections through the card on day three of the Cheltenham Festival.
    Cheltenham Day 3 Tips
  • Cheltenham Festival Day 3 Card
  • Race 1 - Turners' Novices' Chase Tips
  • Race 2 - Pertemps Final Tips
  • Race 3 - Ryanair Chase Tips
  • Race 4 - Stayers' Hurdle Tips
  • Race 5 - Irish Whiskey Plate Handicap Chase Tips
  • Race 6 - Mares' Novices' Hurdle Tips
  • Race 7 - Kim Muir Tips

Cheltenham Festival Day 3 Card

1:30pm Turners' Novices' Chase Grade 1 2m4f
2:10pm Pertemps Final Grade 3 3m
2:50pm Ryanair Chase Grade 1 2m4f
3:30pm Stayers' Hurdle Grade 1 3m 
4:10pm Irish Whisky Co. Plate Handicap Chase Grade 3 2m4f
4:50pm Mares' Novices' Hurdle Grade 2 2m1f
5:30pm Kim Muir Challenge Cup Grade 1 3m2f

Cheltenham Festival Day 3 Tips - Thursday 17th March

Race 1 - Turners' Novices' Chase Tips

An old-fashioned match race kicks off the day three card, as two of the sport's most exciting novice chasers go toe-to-toe. (El Barra and Busselton also run in the Turners' Novices' Chase, but they aren't in the same league as the top two.)

Last year's Martin Pipe winner, Galopin Des Champs is two-from-two over fences. Willie Mullins' star jumped beautifully on his chase debut and travels to Cheltenham on the back of another excellent win at the Dublin Racing Festival.

Despite looking every inch a three-miler, Mullins has decided to keep Galopin Des Champs over this middle distance. The Turners' is actually two furlongs shorter than the Ladbrokes Novices' Chase, which Mullins' star won at Leopardstown, and there's no doubting this shorter trip suits the speedier BOB OLINGER.

Henry De Bromhead's star motored to a superb victory in the Ballymore here at Cheltenham last year. Bob Olinger then survived a couple of hairy moments to win easily on his chase debut at Down Royal, and had to find a third gear to see off Capodanno when the two met at Punchestown last time out.

Bob Olinger's chase runs both came when Henry De Bromhead's horses were out of form, so you can forgive him a couple of underwhelming performances. Rachael Blackmore will stalk the free-going Galopin Des Champs and look to utilise his superior turn-of-foot when the two meet rising ground. 

Turners Novices' Chase Best Bet - BOB OLINGER

Race 2 - Pertemps Final Tips

As expected, Rob James will claim seven pounds off SIRE DU BERLAIS, and there's every chance that Gordon Elliott's ten-year-old will win his third Pertemps Final.

Sire Du Berlais finished fourth in the 2018 Martin Pipe, before winning his first Pertemps off 145. The following season, under a welter-burden of 11-12, Sire Du Berlais ran down stablemate The Storyteller to successfully defend his crown. Last year, Mark Walsh's mount stayed on up Cleeve Hill to finish second in the Stayers' Hurdle.

Three defeats in good races see Sire Du Berlais return to the Pertemps Final with a mark just three pounds higher than what he won off two years ago. He'll be my best bet.
I also fancy an each-way punt on long-odds outsider COEUR SEREIN, for Jonjo O'Neill Jnr and Snr. 

Coeur Serein was outpaced in the Persian War at the start of the season, before getting unlucky in a couple of novice chases. O’Neill switched his eight-year-old back to hurdles for the qualifier at Exeter in February, where Jonjo Jnr’s mount stayed on well to finish second to the in-form Emmpressive Lady. He holds each way appeal at a massive price.

Pertemps Final Best Bet - SIRE DU BERLAIS
Pertemps Final Value Bet - Coeur Serein E/W

allaho ryanair
Jockey Rachael Blackmore rides horse Allaho to win The Ryanair Chase on Day Three of the Cheltenham Festival. (Getty)

Race 3 - Ryanair Chase Tips

ALLAHO is one of the best chasers in the sport. Only Shishkin, Energumene and Minella Indo hold a higher rating. Willie Mullins’ star has won four of his last five starts and it took a freakish performance from Chacun Pour Soi to thwart Allaho when they met over two miles at Punchestown last season. 

Mullins' eight-year-old produced one of the most dominant performances in Cheltenham history when winning the Ryanair Chase 12 months ago. Allaho returns to Cheltenham in excellent form, having won the John Durkan and his second Horse & Jockey Chase at Thurles. There's still value to be found backing Allaho at 8/13.
At the ante-post stage, I backed ELDORADO ALLEN each way at 33/1. That price vanished when Colin Tizzard's star defeated Royale Pagaille and Clan Des Obeaux on his first start over three miles in the Denman Chase at Newbury.

Eldorado Allen was ridden to pick up the pieces in the Arkle last season and snatched second place. I'm hoping Brendan Powell gives Tizzard's grey another quiet ride, in the hope of finishing second or third. He still represents decent each way value at 14/1.

Ryanair Chase Best Bet - ALLAHO
Ryanair Chase Value Bet - Eldorado Allen E/W

Race 4 - Stayers' Hurdle Tips

Paisley Park and Royal Kahala thrust themselves into the Stayers' Hurdle picture with surprise wins last time out. Despite those excellent wins, I still feel that the top four in the betting are a some way clear of the chasing pack.

Thyme Hill is the most straightforward of the leading quartet and Philip Hobbs has laid his charge out for this race. Flooring Porter made all to win 12 months ago and ran a blinder in defeat at Leopardstown over Christmas.

Both appeal in this open betting heat. Yet, I just feel that KLASSICAL DREAM and CHAMP are capable of a freakish performance on their day, so I'm going to back them both.
Klassical Dream was my ante-post selection, having won well at Punchestown last season and at Leopardstown over Christmas. Willie Mullins has admitted it was a mistake to go for the Galmoy Hurdle, where the 1/3 favourite finished an underwhelming fourth. Willie has had 50 days to freshen Klassical Dream up since that run and this former winner of the Supreme will relish good spring ground.

Champ also suffered a shock defeat on his last start, losing to Paisley Park in the Cleeve Hurdle despite the winner giving the field a 20-length headstart. Paddock watchers noted that Champ was carrying a little condition that day, which could explain his under-par performance. Like Klassical Dream, Champ goes best fresh and I expect Nicky Henderson will have his Ascot Hurdle winner cherry ripe on his return to Cheltenham.

Stayers' Hurdle Bet 1 - KLASSICAL DREAM
Stayers' Hurdle Bet 2 - CHAMP

Race 5 - Irish Whiskey Plate Handicap Chase Tips

Neither of my ante-post tips features in the final field, so I need a fresh selection for the newly named Irish Whiskey Co. Plate Handicap Chase

I came close to tipping up FUSIL RAFFLES at the ante-post stage. Nicky Henderson's seven-year-old has won around the chase course at Cheltenham, followed Chantry House home in last year's Turners and flew home to finish fourth behind Coole Cody in the Racing Post Gold Cup back in December.

When Shan Blue fell at the last, Fusil Raffles picked up the pieces to win the Charlie Hall Chase at Wetherby earlier in the season. Despite some excellent runs in handicaps and a Grade Two triumph, Fusil Raffles' mark has dropped by seven pounds since the spring. Daryl Jacob's mount could go very well in a wide open race, if he takes to the softer ground.

After yesterday's deluge of rain, Thursday's going will come up in favour of ADRIMEL, who seems at his happiest on deeper ground. Tom Lacey's novice has won his last two races, the last coming on bottomless going at Haydock, and the handicapper only upped his mark by a pound for that success. On soft or heavy ground, Adrimel has won seven times in eight starts and is two-from-two since being fitted with cheek-pieces.

Irish Whiskey Plate Handicap Chase Tip 1 - FUSIL RAFFLES E/W
Irish Whiskey Plate Handicap Chase Tip 2 - ADRIMEL E/W

chantry house
Fusil Raffles (right) tried to track down Chantry House (left) in the Turners Novices' Chase last season. (Getty)

Race 6 - Mares' Novices' Hurdle Tips

Willie Mullins runs seven of his best mares in this year's Mares' Novices' Hurdle. DINOBLUE has risen to the head of the betting in recent days, and it's very easy to see why.

Dinoblue would be the least experienced of Willies' entrants, having run just once under rules. Mark Walsh's mount faced two more experienced stablemates on her sole start at Clonmel, but was backed off the boards in the build-up and went on to hand La Prima Donna and Mi Lighthouse - who were both entered in this Grade Two - a sound thrashing.

You wouldn't have thought Dinoblue was a debutante that day. Mullins' five-year-old looked calm before the race and set off smoothly with the rest of the field. Walsh's mount travelled powerfully throughout and jumped neatly. Between the final two flights, Dinoblue only needed a few taps on the shoulder to put daylight between herself and the runner-up, cantering over the line a 15-length winner.

When some horses win on heavy ground, you can tell it was the going that brought out the best in them. Rarely does a horse, especially a five-year-old with such little experience, travel so fluently on heavy going and the time Dinoblue set was by far the quickest on the day. 

There's no easy race at the Cheltenham Festival and Dinoblue faces plenty of credible opponents. You can pick faults in most of them, though, so I'm going to back the least exposed runner, who could just be an absolute superstar.

Mares' Novices' Hurdle Best Bet - DINOBLUE 

Race 7 - Kim Muir Tips

The more I look at this year's Kim Muir, the more I fancy FRONTAL ASSAULT. Gordon Elliott's seven-year-old won a three-mile Grade Three as a novice hurdler last season, before gaining some valuable Cheltenham experience when finishing eighth in the Martin Pipe.

Frontal Assault has run three times over fences this season, with all of those runs coming over two-and-a-half-miles. Elliott's mount was narrowly beaten by Busselton on his chase debut, finished fourth behind the impressive Ciel De Neige at Navan and split stablemates Floeur and Grand Paradis when second at Fairyhouse last time out.

Milan Native and Mount Ida were both campaigned over two-and-a-half-miles before winning the Kim Muir for Gordon Elliott. Rob James took seven pounds off Milan Native's back and gave the winner a cracking ride in 2020. Elliott confirmed - before the weights were even announced - that James would ride Frontal Assault in this year's Kim Muir, and the market leader clearly has a fantastic chance.

I had a couple of each-way bets at the ante-post stage. I've backed the ultra-consistent MISTER FOGPATCHES, who'll be ridden for the first time by Patrick Mullins. I've also had a punt on COME ON TEDDY - who'll be partnered by another top amateur, Will Biddick - at a much bigger price than he is now, so I've got plenty of bases covered in the final race on day three of the Cheltenham Festival.

Kim Muir Value Bets - Mister Fogptaches & Come On Teddy E/W

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