The third day of the Cheltenham Festival will signal the start of the second half of proceedings. Hopefully, your balance sheet will be in good shape by the time you read this! Regardless, there is another half to be played in this particular match and once again I will look to pinpoint some each-way value in races that the Betfair Sportsbook are offering enhanced place terms.
The Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle (13:55) is one of the quirkier contests at the Cheltenham Festival with its qualifier system, but it always attracts a competitive field and can reward those that can spot the plot before it becomes clear to most.
Mrs Milner could run a big race
The one I’ve had in mind for the race for a while is the Paul Nolan-trained Mrs Milner. The six-year-old has progressed steadily over hurdles and very much came into the mix for this contest when running a very good race in defeat on her first try at three miles at this track back in November. Ridden to get the trip, she came from much further back than the main protagonists and was only just beaten by On The Blind Side.
With her stamina proven, she was perhaps ridden too positively with fourth in a Pertemps Qualifier at Leopardstown’s Christmas meeting. While she took a fall on her latest start at the Dublin Racing Festival, she is generally a slick jumper and that shouldn’t be held against her.
The return to this longer trip will very much suit, as will the sounder surface. It wouldn’t be at all surprising to see her run a big race and with the Betfair Sportsbook paying out on six places, backing her each-way with them could well yield a dividend.
De Bromhead runner has excellent chance
The Parnell Properties Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (16:15) is the other race of interest and at the currently available prices, the one that makes the most appeal is the Henry De Bromhead-trained Telmesomethinggirl.
The six-year-old came good over hurdles last summer, winning three of her four starts. The most recent one of those at Listowel in September was a particularly good performance, as she gave 10lb and a solid beating to Darrens Hope who has subsequently won a Listed novice hurdle and a Grade 3 mares novice hurdle.
Given a winter break, she made her return to the valuable mares’ handicap hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival. Initially lined up to take up her customary prominent position, a false start was called and when the field were let go for the second time, Rachael Blackmore was caught much further back than she would have liked. This didn’t seem to suit Telmesomethinggirl, as she raced quite freely in a contest where those that were prominent seemed favoured. Yet, she was still in the process of running a big race when getting interfered with at the last, eventually sticking on well to finish third.
De Bromhead feels that the run will bring her on and that this course and distance will very much suit. She receives weight from a few of the leading contenders and looks to have an excellent chance. She can be supported each-way with the Betfair Sportsbook who are paying four places.