Cheltenham Day 4 Tips: Check out all Friday's selections here
We are all set for a fabulous final day of the Cheltenham Festival on Friday, with the Cheltenham Gold Cup taking centre stage, and our man Steve Chambers has taken a look at all Friday's action and has picked out his best bets here....
13:30 - Triumph Hurdle
A race set to be dominated by the Irish, the Triumph Hurdle is a fascinating renewal that will see the heavyweights of racing in the Emerald Isle clash with the Willie Mullins-trained Vauban locking horns with the Gordon Elliott-trained duo of Pied Piper and Fil Dor. Vauban was defeated by Pied Piper two starts ago, and the latter has since sauntered to glory at Cheltenham, where he beat an inferior field eye-catchingly well.
However, Vauban bounced back to form when beating Fil Dor in the Grade 1 Spring Juvenile Hurdle at Leopardstown in February, but at the prices for this event it could be worth siding with FIL DOR, who may have been beaten by three lengths last time out, but he had previously shown top notch form with three wins on the bounce, and that experience should hold him good stead for this. He's sure to improve again and at around 5/1 Fil Dor marks the value play for punters looking to kick off Gold Cup day on a winning note.
14:10 - County Hurdle
Impressive Greatwood Hurdle winner West Cork and the hugely exciting State Man are both prominent figures in the betting for the County Hurdle, which will be off at 14:10 on Friday afternoon, but both are awfully short for what is a hugely competitive betting heat for punters to get stuck into. Recent Imperial Cup winner Suprise Package will aim to follow up last weekend's Sandown Park success and has to be respected, while Top Bandit is going in search of a fourth win on the bounce for Gordon Elliott and is another prominent figure in the betting.
However, one at the bottom of the weights that catches the eye is Nicky Henderson's BROOMFIELD BURG, who was a disappointing seventh in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury in February - when sent off a short-priced favourite - but he can bounce back to form here at around 20/1. The lightly-raced six-year-old finished second at Cheltenham earlier in the season off a mark of 130, while he got his head in front next time out at Kempton before heading to Newbury. Lining up off 134 in the County Hurdle, Broomfield Burg will need to settle better, but with such a fiercely run race sure to suit him then he could travel serenely into contention before unleashing his charge late on.
Broomfield Burg (EW)
14:50 - Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle
We are set for a fascinating renewal of the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle and the standard is well and truly set by Gordon Elliott's Ginto, who has a 100% record over hurdles and was last seen bounding to glory in the Grade 1 Lawlor's Of Naas Novice Hurdle. Opting for this assignment instead of the Ballymore, Ginto will have notable challengers in the shape of Hillcrest and Minella Cocooner, but he looks the most solid option at the head of the betting.
One at a bigger price that could run a big race is the Henry De Bromhead-trained SHANTREUSSE, who has relished the step up to three miles in recent times, and has won over the distance twice at Clonmel and Cork in January and February. Eight lengths behind Ginto on his racecourse debut, he's come on leaps and bounds since then, and at double-figured odds he's certainly one that won't have any problems with this attritional contest and he looks a terrific each-way bet.
15:30 - Cheltenham Gold Cup
Gordon Elliott last tasted victory in the Cheltenham Gold Cup back in 2016 when Don Cossack stormed to glory, but the Cullentra House handler can claim more success in the prestigious race on Friday as he can saddle the top class GALVIN to victory in what is a fascinating renewal of the Grade 1 showpiece. A sparkling winner of the National Hunt Chase at last season's Cheltenham Festival, Galvin has continued his progression this term and has become a real top notch staying chaser that can land the biggest prize of all on day four of the festival.
He kicked off this season with a narrow defeat to Frodon in the Ladbrokes Champion Chase at Down Royal, where he finished ahead of reigning Gold Cup hero Minella Indo, while he built on that effort significantly last time out when outbattling A Plus Tard in a vintage renewal of the Grade 1 Savills Chase at Leopardstown. Now set to lock horns with both Minella Indo and A Plus Tard in this year's Gold Cup, Galvin will look to frank the season's form, and he can do just that by producing a career best performance.
Stamina is certainly one of his major attributes, and the Gold Cup is always a real test of resolve, guts and ultimately class, and Galvin has all three in abundance, and he can kick to the front turning for home and duly storm up the Cheltenham hill to land the coveted prize.
16:10 - Hunters' Chase
Heading the betting is the Willie Mullins-trained Billaway, who has finished runner-up in this event for the last two years, so he has to stand a terrific chance of finally getting his head in front, while the classy duo of Winged Leader and Bob And Co have some smart form in the book, and both feature prominently in the betting, but there could be a value each-way play elsewhere.
Gordon Elliott's MIGHTY STOWAWAY is a multiple point winner, and has racked up four successes this term, but this will be his toughest test, as he has a second crack at the Hunters' Chase at the Cheltenham Festival. A distant sixth in this contest 12 months ago, he's sure to improve for that experience and with limited quality beyond the front few in the betting then the Cullentra House inmate can challenge for placed honours at an eye-catching double-figured price.
Mighty Stowaway (EW)
16:50 - Mares' Chase
A sparkling winner of the 2020 Mares' Hurdle, CONCERTISTA nearly retained her crown last year, but was just touched off by Black Tears in the closing stages. Now, sent over fences for this new campaign, the Willie Mullins-trained mare has been faultless to date over the larger obstaces - notching two wins out of two over fences, and she can make it a hat-trick of victories on Friday as she can outclass her rivals in the Mares' Chase.
She will have two notable rivals in the shape of last year's runner-up Elimay, who lines up in excellent form, while last season's Kim Muir winner Mount Ida may just get tapped for toe in this event, so it's worth siding with Concertista, who has a fabulous record at the Cheltenham Festival. The classy triumvirate dominate the betting, and they are set to fight out the finish, but it's Concertista that can prove to be the class performer of the event, and she can bound to a second festival win.
17:30 - Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle
After bumping into Galopin Des Champs in last year's race, Dan Skelton's Langer Dan has been earmarked for another crack at this event in 2022, and he's unsurprisingly heading the betting, with the likes of Hollow Games and Adamantly Chosen just a brace of contenders that could be significant challengers.
However, one at a huge price that could run well is the Peter Fahey-trained FREEDOM TO DREAM, who produced an encouraging performance when second to Eric Bloodaxe in a Grade 2 contest two starts ago, while he wasn't disgraced when finishing fourth in the Grade 1 2m 6f novices' hurdle at Leopardstown's Dublin Racing Festival. Third that day was Hollow Games, and while Freedom To Dream was 12 lengths behind him, it was the manner in which Freedom To Dream tired late on that suggested the drop back in trip could suit. Available around the 25/1 mark at the moment, he's expected to get a lot closer to Hollow Games here and he looks terrific each-way value.