Thursday Horse Racing Tips: Dan Overall's best bets for day 3 of Cheltenham Festival
Fresh from two winners in yesterday's column, Racing TV Tipstar champion Dan Overall is back with his thoughts for day three of the Cheltenham Festival, and you can check out his best bets here...
With the heavens opening on Wednesday, the rapidly degrading ground has meant the need to rethink things from a punting perspective.
While we will be on the New Course, it’s still likely to be testing but we won’t know quite how severe it will be until the day. I would recommended lowering stakes and being flexible with regards to going conditions, as they are a key factor in identifying winners.
15:30 - Stayers Hurdle
An ultra-competitive renewal but there are flaws you can point to in the majority of the principles.
I’m concerned about Flooring Porter’s tactical inflexibility and his headstrong temperament in an environment like this, while Klassical Dream’s two standout performances since return from injury have come following a significant break. There were seemingly no excuses for Champ last time out when he was beaten by Paisley Park, who remains a very talented stayer but is getting increasingly tricky in his advancing years; while it’s also worth highlighting the poor record of ten-year-olds in the race.
And with that, THYME HILL appeals as the most solid option. He’s only ever finished outside of the front two twice over hurdles; once was in the vintage 2020 Albert Bartlett, where he was a narrow (and unlucky) fourth, while the other came in France earlier this season which you can completely put a line through.
His run at Ascot behind Champ augurs well given he had a bit to prove that day and I like that Philip Hobbs has freshened him up for this. Despite having Sporting John, who many considered to be a dark horse for this race, but you always got the feeling that Thyme Hill was by far and away the yards number one.
Still only eight, this could be his big day having been forced to miss the race last year. Royal Kahala is feared given the ground conditions.
16:10 - Plate Handicap Chase
The ground has gone against Fusil Raffles, who needs a sounder surface.
I’ve always held a high opinion of the Dipper form and L’Homme Presse duly delivered yesterday while Fantastikas didn’t do it any harm.
THE GLANCING QUEEN was a gallant second here on New Year's Day and that performance certainly gives her a chance here from a mark of 141. She’s always been held in high regard and perhaps now she is only just beginning to fulfil her potential.
A sound jumper with Cheltenham and Festival form, I also like that’s she’s ridden prominently as that is a big advantage in this race; eight of the past ten winners were either prominent or made all, which would be a mark against Celebre D’Allen. The two that defied patient tactics were placed in Grade 1 company the following season, so he will need to be lucky and very well handicapped to win if ridden as he has been in recent starts.
The Glancing Queen
16:50 - Mares' Novices' Hurdle
Willie Mullins’ mares, even in the absence of Allegorie De Vassy, dominate the market; all along, I’ve been keen on Grangee but the torrent of rain on Wednesday has turned conditions completely against her.
In contrast, DINOBLUE hosed up in heavy conditions at Clonmel and the words of Mikey Fogarty, who I had the honour of appearing at a preview evening with, have stuck with me. He was very keen on Dinoblue, stating that only good horses travel to the second last at Clonmel in that ground on the bridle like she did. She was well backed to beat her stable mates and she may just be a class above the rest.