Robbie Power’s Cheltenham Festival Trials Day Tips

BoyleSports horse racing ambassador Robbie Power has given us his Cheltenham Festival Trials Day tips ahead of the racing this Saturday.

Festival Trials Day at Cheltenham is an important event in the national hunt racing calendar as it is the last racing action we see at Prestbury Park ahead of the Cheltenham Festival in March.

This makes Festival Trials day a great chance for punters to focus in on which horses they fancy for The Festival as it gives us a great indicator of course form and how each horse is progressing in their preparation. If you want to know more about Festival Trials Day then check out our ‘What Is Cheltenham Festival Trials Day?‘ post.

Ok so let’s get down to it, here are Robbie Power’s tips and insights for Cheltenham Festival Trials Day!

Energumene – can he be stopped in the Clarence House this weekend and the Champion Chase at the Festival?

He’s rightfully very short odds-on for both but it’s a horse race and anything can happen. I was delighted to see entries for the Clarence House re-open and for it to have a few more entries as well. There were only the three previously with Energumene, Edwardstone and Amarillo Sky but Edietur du Gite has been thrown into the mix. He was very impressive last time out and loves Cheltenham.

I’m not saying he’s good enough to beat Energumene or Edwardstone. All being well, Energumene should win it.

Edwardstone is the new kid on the block, having won the Arkle last year at Cheltenham and the Tingle Creek this year. He had a slight mishap last time but he’s a good horse. It’ll be good to see last season’s top novice taking on the reigning champion.


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Henry de Bromhead has a couple in the Cross-Country in Minella Times and Plan Of Attack – how are they both shaping up?

This is a new adventure for Minella Times, going down the cross-country route on the route back to Aintre so it’ll be all systems go for the Grand National.

This is a route that has been successful before for horses going to Aintree and he has schooled well over the banks. If he puts in a nice performance here then he’ll be in good shape for the Grand National.

Plan Of Attack is a bit of an old hand at these. This race suits him a lot better, he’s getting a stone and eight pounds. He loves a cross-country race.

Paisley Park is very popular and runs on Trials Day in the Cleeve Hurdle – he still looks ready to take on the best?

He is. I think this season he has been a reformed character. His run at Newbury where he was beaten by Champ by a neck was a fantastic run.

I thought the rescheduling of the Long Walk Hurdle to Kempton from Ascot might not have suited him as it is more of a speed track but he proved me wrong in no uncertain terms there. It was a hell of a performance, beating Goshen by four and a quarter lengths.

This season, he just seems a much happier horse, really well in himself and he’ll be hard to beat. He loves Cheltenham, he won this race last year after giving himself no chance at the start. If he puts up the same performance he did at Kempton then Paisley Park will be very hard to beat.

Looking ahead to Dublin Racing Festival, there are only a couple of English challengers heading there. Are the Brits running scared?

I am amazed there are so few entries from Britain for the Dublin Racing Festival with the prize money on offer. But then when you look at the strength in depth that Willie Mullins, Gordon Elliott and Henry de Bromhead have, do you really want to travel over to take them on? I don’t know.

English horses have come over before and taken the prizes home so it is a bit of a surprise to me. But, everything these days seems to be geared around Cheltenham in March, which is a pity because there is so much good racing with good prize money that deserves respect.

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