Niall Cronin’s Cheltenham 2019 Tips – Day 1

The make up of the Supreme Novices’ and Arkle combined with the Ultima and the Close Brothers Handicap Chase suggest that the bookmakers could be leading the way going into day two of the Cheltenham Festival.

With heavy rain forecast for the track and some horses likely to experience softer ground than they have done for many months, this Cheltenham Festival is certainly going to be a marathon rather than a sprint for punters.

Nicholls to fill the coffers with Coppers
Plenty of early birds caught the price about Give Me A Copper earlier than now and his price of 11/2 is getting a little skimpy for a competitive handicap chase.

The ex-Irish point to point winner looks like he could take beating in the Ultima Handicap Chase.

This 3m1f trip looks ideal for the very lightly raced nine-year-old who was bought for £270,000 after winning a bumper at Cork three years ago but has only raced six times since.

Give Me A Copper’s comeback run at Sandown last month was very eye-catching and there seems to be plenty of confidence about the Nicholls runner with the trainer in sparking form as well coming into the meeting.

Off a current rating of 145 and in a handicap that looks fairly compressed, Give Me A Copper could prove to be very well in.


A Plus for De Bromhead and Blackmore
There looks to be a strong Irish representation in the Close Brothers Novices’ Handicap Chase and this could be the race that sees Rachael Blackmore open her account at this meeting.

Blackmore rides the youngest of the runners in the field when partnering five-year-old A Plus Tard who is sure to improve for each of his three runs for de Bromhead this term.

The French recruit couldn’t take advantage of a nice pull at the weights with Winter Escape last time at Punchestown but there’s every chance that winner could develop into a Grade 1 performer in time so that has the look of very solid form.

De Bromhead is no stranger to success at the Cheltenham Festival and this looks a horse who could go on to better things himself.

At a similar price to Give Me A Copper it could be a nice double.

Recommended Bets:
Give Me A Copper (7/1) – Ultima 2.50
A Plus Tard (13/2) – Close Brothers Novices 4.50

*Prices correct at time of publication