Three Outsiders for the 2024 Cheltenham Festival

Three Outsiders for the 2024 Cheltenham Festival

With 28 races taking place across four days, the Cheltenham Festival is a great meeting to pick out some outsiders. Each contest has great depth to them, particularly the five Championship races.

Here is a look at three outsiders who have an excellent chance of picking up success this year.

Bravemansgame – Cheltenham Gold Cup – 12/1

The forgotten horse in this year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup field seems to be Bravemansgame. Paul Nicholls’ runner finished second in the contest 12 months ago, yet he is a 12/1 outsider in today’s Cheltenham odds for the Blue Riband race in the sport.

Bravemansgame will be ridden by Harry Cobden, who is 25/1 in the Cheltenham Festival top jockey odds. Cobden leads the standings in the 2023/24 British Jockeys’ Championship, and it would be no surprise to see him have a big week at the Festival.

Nicholls’ former King George winner has yet to score in three attempts this season, but he has yet to run a bad race, as he finished second in each of those starts. The Ditcheat trainer will have him in peak condition for this assignment, and if he reproduces what he did last year, he is likely to be in the mix again.

Sire Du Berlais – Stayers’ Hurdle – 16/1

It is not often a defending champion is priced up at 16/1 to defend their crown in a Championship race, but that is the case with Sire Du Berlais in the Stayers’ Hurdle. Gordon Elliott’s runner caused an upset in the race in 2023, beating a strong field to land the day three feature.

Sire Du Berlais proved his Cheltenham triumph was no fluke when he won the Grade One Liverpool Hurdle at Aintree a month later. The experienced 12-year-old has now won over £600,000 in prize money throughout his career.

The Irish horse made his seasonal reappearance in the Boyne Hurdle at Navan last month. That outing will have sharpened him up for this race, and he should be underestimated at your peril.

Protektorat – Ryanair Chase – 10/1

Trainer Dan Skelton has run Protektorat in the last two renewals of the Cheltenham Gold Cup, but he is opting for the Ryanair Chase this year for his star chaser. The day three contest has been chosen to give his Grade One winner the best chance of a victory at the meeting.

With two-time winner Allaho out of this year’s Ryanair Chase, it is an open contest. Protektorat has an official rating of 165 which is only bettered by Stage Star (166) and Conflated (166). Last year’s winner, Envoi Allen has a mark of 164.

Skelton’s runner has not had a great season by his standards, but his best performance came over the Ryanair Chase distance at Lingfield when he was second behind L’Homme Presse in the Fleur De Lys Chase. This looks like a great opportunity for the nine-year-old to score at this meeting for the first time in his career.

Enjoy all the action from this year’s Cheltenham Festival. It looks set to be one of the best renewals in recent years.

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