Mullins runners the key

  • By: Andy Twitchen
  • Last Updated: March 11 2014, 12:32 GMT

Andy Twitchen with what's hot and what's not with the punters going into the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival.

Willie Mullins: Could dominate the Cheltenham headlines today
Willie Mullins: Could dominate the Cheltenham headlines today

1.30 SkyBet Supreme - Money Back if Fav wins and 4 Places
Good turnover race for Sky Bet helped by our fantastic offers so it's damage limitation regards race one of the Festival.

The two big losers for us will be Vautour (4/1) and Splash of Ginge (20/1 from 25/1). The 4/1 about Vautour has obviously appealed each way with punters taking the view he will be hard to keep out of the frame. Perhaps surprisingly the latter market mover has been very popular too, he represents proven handicap form for the Twiston-Davies team and if there is to be a shock in the race we don't want it to be this one.

2.05 Racing Post Arkle
The Gigginstown ownership has plenty of good chances during the week but Trifolium (7/2 from 9/2) could be get them off to a flyer and he could even go off favourite. Many believe he's the banker of the race in terms of place material so the each way money has been strong even at 7/2.

If Ruby wins the 1st on Vautour it will be important for us that Champagne Fever (3/1f) fails to win here especially with Hurricane Fly and Quevega still to come.

2.40 Baylis and Harding Handicap Chase (5 places)
A very difficult puzzle to solve so we are trying to help by offering another extra place. We want the places to be kind if we are to win money in this so that will mean Tour Des Champs running below expectations after laying him from 18/1 into 14/1. He ran a blinder last time at Kempton and if that run hasn't taken the edge off him our punters will be rightly optimistic.

Of the rest current favourite Alfie Sherrin (15/2 from 8/1) who is to be ridden by 18 time champion AP McCoy will also be a very poor result. Alfie Sherrin has already won this race two years ago and has been away from the track most of the time ever since - he is a very interesting runner.

3.20 Stan James Champion Hurdle

We have been keen to take on two-time champion Hurricane Fly (7/2 from 3/1) so he is by far and away our biggest loser. We hope that this year's renewal is the strongest race he has contested and the drying ground may help his competitors more than him. The trouble with the Fly is there won't be anything in the race tougher than him so we will have to sweat even if he does get beat! My Tent Or Yours (7/2 from 4/1) is the steamer since last night and will also be a loser for Sky Bet.

Best of the rest
Bookmakers will take any result other than Quevega in the OLBG David Nicholson Mares Hurdle who bids to win this race for the sixth time which would be an incredible feat - this wonder mare will be in most people's multiples so a turn up would be nice for the layers.

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