Cheltenham Festival Tips – Day 3

Thursday 18th March 13:20

Day 3 of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival takes place on Thursday 18th March and features the Ryanair Steeple Chase, the Paddy Power Stayers' Hurdle along with five other races. WhichBookie racing expert Will Smith shares his tips for the day's races.

Bookie Selection Best Odds Market Bet
Envoi Allen 9/2 Ante Post
Marsh Novices' Chase
Place Bet
Shishkin / Envoi Allen 53/2 Ante Post
Arkle Novices’ Chase / Marsh Novices’ Chase
Place Bet
Kansas City Chief 66/1 E/W
Pertemps Final
Place Bet
The Storyteller 11/1 E/W
Stayers' Hurdle
Place Bet
Sire Du Berlais
(view this tip here)
25/1 Ante Post
Stayers' Hurdle
Place Bet
Diol Ker
(view this tip here)
50/1 Ante Post
Stayers' Hurdle
Place Bet
Thyme Hill
Charity Daily NAP

(view this tip here)
10/3 Ante Post
Stayers' Hurdle
Place Bet

Date of Tips: 04/11/2020

Disclaimer The odds for these selections were correct at the time of publishing (15:00 04/11/2020) but may have changed since. Please check the latest price before placing your bet.

1.20 – Marsh Novices’ Chase
Having put up Shishkin and Envoi Allen in win singles and an each-way double back in April of last year, this is a defining race for the column. A slight blip in the last few weeks clearly, with Envoi Allen moving to Henry De Bromhead’s yard, but Ballyadam (who made the same move) ran well enough in the Supreme to suggest that it won’t have hindered too much. If there was one to improve on the day, and run into a place at best, then it could be last year’s Champion Hurdle third Darver Star.
1.55 – Pertemps Final Handicap Hurdle
No ante-post bet for this fiendish handicap after Honest Vic wasn’t confirmed, although no loss as it was advised NRNB. As things stand, the three market leaders look solid and I wouldn’t put anyone off backing any of Imperial Alcazar, The Bosses Oscar or Champagne Platinum.

However, keeping the mantra about Festival form repeating itself time and time again in mind, I can’t resist suggesting backing last year’s sixth in the race, Kansas City Chief, at a whopping 66/1 each-way with Betfred, who are 6 places for each-way terms. Sky Bet are offering 7 places, but are 50/1.

Kansas City Chief hit the front way too soon last year, and given that the likes of Sire Du Berlais, The Storyteller, Tout Est Permis and Third Wind have since been competitive in or won graded races since, it has the look of extremely strong form.

Factors have been against Kansas City Chief since then, but has shaped very much as if the ability remains, and the booking of Millie Wonnacott is a very good one. If Kansas City Chief was a 7 or 8-year-old, as opposed to 12, then he would be less than half the price, so at 66/1 with Betfred he is the each-way bet of the day.
2.30 – Ryanair Chase
This looks a brilliantly competitive renewal, and there isn’t a single horse in the field that would surprise me if they were in the frame. The very definition of a no bet race for me, just watch and enjoy!
3.05 – Stayer’s Hurdle
From being one of the nicest ante-post positions a couple of weeks ago, sadly the non-declaration of Diol Ker, and the setback to Thyme Hill has left the way clear for the 25/1 on Sire Du Berlais to fly the flag.

A horse closely matched with Sire Du Berlais on last year’s Pertemps Final form, is The Storyteller, and he is taken to give Denise Foster a very strong hand in the race at 11/1 each-way with Betfred or BetVictor, who are both 4 places each-way.

Fury Road completes the trio from Cullentra Stables, and wouldn’t be out of it at all on his Albert Bartlett run last season. However, The Storyteller is a versatile, tough and very high-quality horse, who is absolutely thriving at the moment. A Grade 1 winner over fences in the autumn, he has since placed second in Grade 1’s over hurdles and fences, and gets on famously with Keith Donoghue.
3.40 – Paddy Power Plate Handicap Chase
Nothing solid I’m afraid here, but it is a race that will have a fair share of intrigue, as The Shunter goes for the £100k bonus for connections, after winning the Morebattle Hurdle just under two weeks ago.
4.15 – Dawn Run Mares’ Novice Hurdle
Again, another fiendishly competitive race, with so many improving and unexposed mares lining up. If you had to pin me down to one, then perhaps it could be Roseys Hollow, but by no means is that a solid opinion.
4.50 – Kim Muir Handicap Chase
Unfortunately, another no bet race, with drying ground potentially being against some of the more fancied runners.

2021 Cheltenham Festival Day 3

The third day of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival takes place on Thursday 18th March and is opened with The Marsh Novices’ Chase at 13:20. Highlights of the day include The Ryanair Chase at 14:30 and The Stayers’ Hurdle at 15:05.

2021 Cheltenham Festival Day 3 Ante-Post Tips

Ante post tips for day 3 of the Cheltenham Festival are available for free here at WhichBookie. All of our racing tips are provided by WhichBookie racing tipster Will Smith who you may also have seen on Racing TV and William Hill Racing.

Will provides free racing tips throughout the year and puts a lot of effort into monitoring the form and odds of horses leading up to the Cheltenham Festival.

You record of all Will’s racing tips throughout the year can be found here.

All of Will’s Cheltenham Festival ante-post tips for day 3 will be published on this page when available. You’ll find these tips at the top of the page marked as ‘ante-post’.

The main advantage of ante post betting is that you can often get a much higher price than the final odds. However, there are disadvantages to ante-post betting with the main one being that it’s possible that your horse gets injured or is withdrawn from the race before it starts. You also may not qualify for certain racing offers with ante post bets such as Best Odds Guaranteed or extra places on each way bets.

2021 Cheltenham Festival Day 3 Tips

WhichBookie racing tipster Will Smith will also be providing tips closer to the time of the festival. When these become available, they will also be published at the top of this page but not marked as ‘ante-post’.

Here, you’ll find betting tips for a selection of races taking place on Thursday at the 2021 Cheltenham Festival such as The Ryanair Chase, The Stayers’ Hurdle, The Marsh Novices’ Chase and more.

Details of all day 3 races at the 2021 Cheltenham Festival can be found below. Click on a race to be taken to the individual race tips page where you’ll be able to read Will Smith’s full write-up and reasoning behind his selections.

Want to take a look at our tips for the rest of the festival? Click on a day below.

Day 3 of The 2021 Cheltenham Festival features another 7 races which include the Ryanair Chase and The Stayers Hurdle which have combined prize money of £675,000.

In this Cheltenham Festival Thursday guide, we’ll be sharing the details of every race taking place.

See the table below for details on all of the races taking place . Individual race details can be found further down the page.

2021 Cheltenham Festival Day 3 Race Schedule

Start TimeRace
13:20The Marsh Novices’ Chase
13:55The Pertemps Network Final
14:30The Ryanair Chase
15:05The Stayers’ Hurdle
15:40The Paddy Power Plate
16:15Dawn Run Mares' Novices' Hurdle
16:50The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup

The Marsh Novices’ Chase

  • Date: Thursday 18th March 2021
  • Start Time: 13:20
  • Distance: 2m 4f
  • Type: Chase
  • Prize Money: £150,000

Looking for the best Marsh Novices’ Chase odds? Click here.

The Marsh Novices’ Chase was introduced in 2011 and features 17 fences to be jumped over a distance of approximately 2 miles 3 furlongs.

The race is currently sponsored by Insurance company Marsh but has changed sponsorship a number of times throughout the 9 years it has taken place. Other sponsors include Jewson and insurance brokers JLT.

The winner of the 2020 Novices’ Chase was Gordon Elliot’s Samcro which went off at 4-1; a common price for the winner over the past decade.

Novices’ Chase Previous Winners

2020Samcro84-1Gordon ElliottDavy Russell
2019Defi du Seuil63-1FPhilipHobbsBarry Gerghty
2018Shattered Love74-1Gordon ElliottJack Kennedy
2017Yorkhill76-4FWillie MullinsRuby Walsh
2016Black Hercules74-1CFWillie MullinsRuby Walsh
2015Vautour66-4FWillie MullinsRuby Walsh
2014Taquin Du Seuil77-1Jonjo O’NeillTony McCoy
2013Benefficient720-1Tony MartinBryan Cooper
2012Sir Des Champs63-1Willie MullinsDavy Russell
2011Noble Prince74-1Paul NolanTony McCoy

Did You Know?

  • 4 out of the last 9 winners have been the SP favourite
  • Only one horse has won The Novices’ Chase at odds greater than 7-1
  • Ruby Walsh won The Novices’ Chase in three consecutive years from 2015-2017

You can watch The Marsh Novices’ Chase live on ITV or stream the race live on Bet365.

The Pertemps Network Final

  • Date: Thursday 18th March 2021
  • Start Time: 13:55
  • Distance: 3m
  • Type: Hurdle
  • Prize Money: £100,000

Looking for the best Pertemps Network Final odds? Click here.

The Pertemps Network Final is the second race on day 3 of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival and features twelve hurdles over a distance of approximately 2 miles 7 furlongs.

The race was initially sponsored by betting company Coral when it was introduced in 1974 and has had several sponsors since 1993 when Coral stepped down with the latest being recruitment firm Pertemps.

The 2020 race was won by 8-year-old Sire Du Berlais which also won the 2019 Pertemps Network Final. In 2019, Sire Du Berlais won the race as the 4-1 favourite and in 2020 at the higher starting price of 10-1.

Pertemps Network Final Previous Winners

2020Sire Du Berlais810-1Gordon ElliottBarry Geraghty
2019Sire Du Berlais74-1 FGordon ElliottBarry Geraghty
2018Delta Work56-1Gordon ElliottDavy Russell
2017Presenting Percy611-1Pat KellyDavy Russell
2016Mall Dini614-1Pat KellyDavy Russell
2015Call The Cops69-1Nicky HendersonAndrew Tinkler
2014Fingal Bay89-2FPhilip HobbsRichard Johnson
2013Holywell625-1Jonjo O’NeillRichie McLernon
2012Cape Tribulation814-1Malcolm JeffersonDenis O’Regan
2011Buena Vista1020-1David PipeConor O’Farrell
2010Buena Vista916-1David PipeHadden Frost

Did You Know?

  • 6 of the last 10 winners were priced at 11-1 or greater
  • 5 of the last 10 winners had not won over 3 miles
  • 2 of the last 10 winners were the SP favourite

You can watch The Pertemps Network Final live on ITV or stream the race live on Bet365.

The Ryanair Chase

  • Date: Thursday 18th March 2021
  • Start Time: 14:30
  • Distance: 2m 5f
  • Type: Chase
  • Prize Money: £350,000

Looking for the best Ryanair Chase odds? Click here.

The Ryanair Chase is one of the highlights of the day and features 17 fences over a course distance of approximately 2 miles and 4 furlongs.

The race has taken place 15 times since being introduced back in 2005.

The 2020 winner of The Ryanair Chase was Min which was trained by Willie Mullins. Min went off at 2-1 in 2020.


Ryanair Chase Previous Winners

2020Min92-1Willie MullinsP Townend
2019Frodon79-2Paul NichollsBryony Frost
2018Balko Des Flos78-1Henry de BromheadDavy Russell
2017Un De Sceaux97-4FWillie MullinsRuby Walsh
2016Vautour71-1FWillie MullinsRuby Walsh
2015Uxizandre716-1Alan KingTony McCoy
2014Dynaste83-1FDavid PipeTom Scudamore
2013Cue Card77-2Colin TizzardJoe Tizzard
2012Riverside Theatre87-2FNicky HendersonBarry Geraghty
2011Albertas Run106-1Jonjo O’NeillTony McCoy
2010Albertas Run914-1Jonjo O’NeillTony McCoy

Did You Know?

  • 5 of the last 10 winners were 7 years old
  • 4 of the last 10 winners were the SP favourite
  • Ruby Walsh has ridden the most winners in The Ryanair Chase with 4 victories.

You can watch The Ryanair Chase live on ITV or stream the race live on Bet365.

The Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle

  • Date: Thursday 18th March 2021
  • Start Time: 15:05
  • Distance: 3m
  • Type: Hurdle
  • Prize Money: £325,000

Looking for the best Stayers’ Hurdle odds? Click here.

The Stayers’ Hurdle is the feature race on day 3 of The Festival and features 12 hurdles over a course distance of approximately 2 miles 4 furlongs.

The race dates back to 1912 but was dropped from the festival twice between 1928-1929 and 1939-1945.

The 2020 Stayers’ Hurdle was won by Lisnagar Oscar at the huge price of 50-1!

Take a look to see who WhichBookie racing analyst Will Smith has tipped in the 2021 Stayers’ Hurdle.

Stayers’ Hurdle Previous Winners

2020Lisnagar Oscar750/1Miss R CurtisAdam Wedge
2019Paisley Park711-8FAndrew GennellEmma Lavelle
2018Penhill712-1Willie MullinsPaul Townend
2017Nichols Canyon710-1Willie MullinsRuby Walsh
2016Thistlecrack81-1FColin TizzardTom Scudamore
2015Cole Harden614-1Warren GreatrexGavin Sheehan
2014More Of That615-2Jonjo O’NeillBarry Geraghty
2013Solwhit917-2Charles ByrnesPaul Carberry
2012Big Buck’s95-6FPaul NichollsRuby Walsh
2011Big Buck’s810-11FPaul NichollsRuby Walsh
2010Big Buck’s75-6FPaul NichollsRuby Walsh

Did You Know?

  • A five year old has never won The Stayers’ Hurdle
  • 5 of the last 10 winners have been the SP Favourite
  • Big Buck’s ridden by Ruby Walsh won the race in four consecutive seasons from 2009-2014

You can watch The Stayers’ Hurdle live on ITV or stream the race live on Bet365.

The Paddy Power Plate

  • Date: Thursday 18th March 2021
  • Start Time: 15:40
  • Distance: 2m 5f
  • Type: Chase
  • Prize Money: £110,000

Looking for the best Paddy Power Plate odds? Click here.

Previously known as the Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate this race was introduced in 1951 in memory of jockey Anthony Bingham Mildmay (1909-1950) who rode three winners at The Cheltenham Festival during his career.

The race features 17 fences over a course distance of approximately 2 miles and 4 ½ furlongs and will be sponsored in 2021 by Paddy Power.

The 2020 winner of this race was the 10-3 favourite, Simply The Betts. That marked the second Plate Steeple Chase that had been won by the favourite in the last three years.

Paddy Power Plate Previous Winners

2020Simply The Betts710-3fH WhittingtonG Sheehan
2019Siruh Du Lac69-2Nick WilliamsLizzie Kelly
2018The Storyteller75-1FGordon ElliottDavy Russell
2017Road To Respect614-1Noel MeadeBryan Cooper
2016Empire Of Dirt916-1Colm MurphyBryan Cooper
2015Darna933-1Kim BaileyDavid Bass
2014Ballynagour812-1David PipeTom Scudamore
2013Carrickboy950-1Venetia WilliamsLiam Treadwell
2012Salut Flo79-2FDavid PipeTom Scudamore
2011Holmwood Legend1025-1Patrick RodfordKeiran Burke
2010Great Endeavour618-1David PipeDanny Cook

Did You Know?

  • 7 of the last 10 winners have been priced at 12-1 or greater
  • 8 of the last 10 winners had won a Class 3 or higher race
  • 12 year old has won only once in the history of the race which was Foyle Fisherman in 1991

You can watch The Paddy Power Plate live on ITV or stream the race live on Bet365.

The Mares Novices’ Hurdle

  • Date: Thursday 18th March 2021
  • Start Time: 16:15
  • Distance: 2m 1f
  • Type: Hurdle
  • Prize Money: £90,000

The Mares Novices’ Hurdle, also known as The Dawn Run Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle, is the second to last race on the 3rd day of The Festival.

The race features eight hurdles over a course distance of 2 miles and 1 furlong.

The Dawn Run Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle has only featured 5 times at The Cheltenham Festival after being introduced in 2016 with all 5 winners being trained by Willie Mullins.

The 2020 winner of The Dawn Run Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle was Concertista; a 6 year old ridden by D A Jacob.

Dawn Run Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Previous Winners

2020Concertista69-2Willie MullinsD A Jacob
2019Eglantine Du Seuil550-1Willie MullinsNoel Fehily
2018Laurina54-7FWillie MullinsPaul Townend
2017Let’s Dance511-8FWillie MullinsRuby Walsh
2016Limini58-11FWillie MullinsRuby Walsh

Did You Know?

  • Four of the five winners of The Dawn Run Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle have been 5 years old
  • All 5 winners of The Dawn Run Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle have been trained by Willie Mullins
  • Ruby Walsh has won this race twice since it was introduced in 2016.

You can stream the Mares Novices’ Hurdle Bet365. 

The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase

  • Date: Thursday 18th March 2021
  • Start Time: 16:50
  • Distance: 3m 2f
  • Type: Chase
  • Prize Money: £70,000

Looking for the best Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase odds? Click here.

The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase is the final race on Thursday and features 21 fences over a distance of approximately 3 miles and 2 furlongs.

The 2020 winner of The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase was Milan Native which was ridden by Robert James and trained by Gordon Elliott and went off at 9-1.

Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase Previous Winners

2020Milan Native79-1Gordon ElliottRobert James
2019Any Second Now76-1Ted WalshDerek O’Connor
2018Missed Approach88-1Warren GreatrexNoel McParlan
2017Domesday Book740-1Stuart EdmundsGina Andrews
2016Cause Of Causes89-2Gordon ElliottJamie Codd
2015The Package129-1David PipeJamie Codd
2014Spring Heeled712-1Jim CullotyRobbie McNamara
2013Same Difference716-1Nigel Twiston-DaviesRyan Hatch
2012Sunnyhillboy913-2FJonjo O’NeillAlan Berry
2011Junior8100-30FDavid PipeJamie Codd
2010Ballabriggs99-1Donald McCainRichard Harding

Did You Know?

  • 7 of the last 10 winners have been aged seven or eight
  • Jamie Codd has ridden the most winners in this race, claiming victory in 2009, 2011, 2015 and 2016.

You can stream the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase on Bet365.

That concludes our round-up for day 3 of The 2021 Cheltenham Festival. Click to view our Cheltenham Festival Day 4 Guide.

Previous Tips

2020 Cheltenham Festival Day 3 [expired]

1.30 – Marsh Novices’ Chase

Faugheen – 6/1 (Betfair Sportsbook)

Yes, you have read that correct… the mighty 12-year-old Faugheen can win a Grade 1 novice chase at the Cheltenham Festival. And no, I have not gone all sentimental.

Consider the facts – he is a dual Grade 1 winner in novice chases in Ireland this season, he is a nine-time Grade 1 winner over hurdles – his class and ability has never been in doubt. He won a point-to-point before joining Willie Mullins and is bred for fences, borne out in how he has jumped better with each chase start this season.

He has only had 25 career starts – the same number as 8-year-old stablemate Bapaume, while 8-year-old Melon has had 21 starts and 7-year-old Midnight Shadow has had 20 starts. In racing terms, Faugheen is lightly raced and clearly retains all the requisite zest.

To my eye, if he was an 8-year-old, and given he is to be ridden by the number one jockey in the Mullins’ camp Paul Townend, should the two-time Cheltenham Festival winner not be 3/1 favourite?

In addition to our 8/1 about Itchy Feet, advised a few weeks ago, I strongly suggest adding Faugheen at 6/1.

2.10 – Pertemps Final

Sire Du Berlais – 6/1 EW (Skybet 6 places)

The Storyteller – 7/1 EW (Skybet 6 places)

Skandiburg – 12/1 EW (Skybet 6 places)

Combination Trifecta – Tote

At first glance, backing three in one race when two of them are single figure prices is the stuff of madness. But at the Cheltenham Festival, the place terms offered are often a nice cushion to allow such methods to flourish. Skybet are 6 places here, and that should do nicely for these three selections.

The cream often rises to the top in this race, and in the Gordon Elliott-trained pair of Sire Du Berlais and The Storyteller you have previous festival winners, who have been given eye-catching and characteristically brilliant qualification paths. They will be trained to peak here, as they have done previously, and while Sire Du Berlais can win this back-to-back for the first time since Buena Vista did, The Storyteller is also a very classy horse who is a Grade 1 winner over fences.

It would be a lovely sub-plot should the Olly Murphy-trained Skandiburg pip them both, as he has received an equally notable preparation for the race. Clearly taught a thing or two by Elliott when he was his assistant, Murphy could be in for a good day with Itchy Feet and Skandiburg here.

As I fancy all three to run massive races, it might be wise to add the potential of a big payout should all three fill the podium spots, by placing a ‘combination trifecta’ bet with the Tote.

2.50 – Ryanair Chase

Duc Des Genievres – 20/1 EW (Paddy Power)

Aso – 20/1 EW (Paddy Power)

With a 5/1 ante-post bet on A Plus Tard looking pretty good going into this, it might be worth adding a couple of nice priced each-way selections to our armoury, in the shape of last year’s sensational Arkle winner Duc Des Genievres and the 2019 Ryanair Chase runner-up Aso, both at a massive 20/1.

Duc Des Genievres ran away with last year’s Arkle on soft ground and should get enough dig on Thursday to think that he could produce something resembling that run. If he does, (a time of just under half a second slower than Altior ran when winning the Champion Chase the day after on similar ground,) then he will be in the shake-up.

Aso has finished in the places in this race for the last two seasons, and will be coming here fresh and in first-time blinkers. He was only just touched off by a thriving and brilliant Frodon last year, and there are reasons to think that he could turn that around.

With doubts about Min producing his best at Cheltenham, and Riders Onthe Storm backing up three weeks after the mother of all exhausting races at Ascot, the Ryanair looks at the mercy of A Plus Tard or a couple of ‘under the radar’ horses in Duc Des Genievres or Aso.

5.30 – Kim Muir Handicap Chase

Kilfilum Cross – 12/1 EW (Skybet 6 places)

Fingerontheswitch – 25/1 EW (Skybet 6 places)

With the Stayers Hurdle sure to go to Paisley Park, and no strong opinion in the Plate and Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle, it is left to the closing race on the card for the last bets of the day.

The Kim Muir is often a fascinating race, with a mix of long-range plots and seemingly exposed hard-knocking handicappers.

It is a couple in the latter category that I would rather side with. Kilfilum Cross was a cracking second to Any Second Now in this last year, and sparked back to life in the cheekpieces, which are retained here, at Kempton a month ago. At 12/1 he’s hard to force out of the frame, ridden by the very capable Alex Edwards.

The other dart is firmly in the aforementioned exposed category, but conversely is in the form of his life – which can count for a lot. Fingerontheswitch has struck up an amazing relationship with now regular pilot Millie Wonnacott, and I expect them to hunt round, jump soundly, and be played late – hopefully picking up a few scraps once a few of the other amateur jockeys have gone at it.

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