Champion Chase Preview & Tips – Cheltenham 2018
There was good news for all racing fans on Tuesday when it was revealed that Altior would be OK to take his place in the Champion Chase and what a mouth-watering race we have now to look forward to.
Douvan can do it
Nobody has thrown the permutations of this race around his head more than Ruby Walsh, especially given that he could have rode either the second or third favourite, Douvan or Min.
If Douvan had enjoyed a normal prep to the Festival there’s a good chance we’d have had no question mark at all as Douvan’s ability has been proven time and time again and it is a look back on his only defeat that actually inspires confidence in his chance to win the Champion Chase.
Douvan suffered a stress fracture of his pelvis in the Champion Chase last year, was pretty much eased down by Ruby Walsh and still was only beaten 11 lengths with that serious injury.
Altior looked good on his comeback following a wind operation but the ground would have to be a concern for him and you’d have to feel if Douvan wasn’t right he just wouldn’t be here.
Ruby’s confidence to pick him over the talented and consistent Min, is a big plus and therefore Douvan is selected to oblige.
Reigning champion Special Tiara deserves a mention as he is defending his crown but the heavy ground would be a huge concern for him and would probably leave him out of the mix.
One horse that does deserve a mention is Ordinary World, who is a 66/1 shot for Henry de Bromhead. When it looked like the race could cut up badly he looked a bit of value and he’s one that may make appeal in the Betting Without Altior market.
He was third in the Arkle last year and is more likely to be ridden to obtain his best possible placing rather than drilled from the front to try and win the race from the outset.
All that aside, we at long last have the clash of Altior and Douvan and let’s hope that even despite all their respective issues that they can serve up a race to savour.
Ordinary World (66/1) E/W
*Prices correct at time of publication