Cheltenham Festival tips - Racing expert Jeff Garlick's selections for days three and four

Want to know which horses to back on days three and four of the Cheltenham Festival? Look no further.

Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 9:47 am
Updated Wednesday, 17th March 2021, 10:12 am
Rachael Blackmore and Honeysuckle made history on the opening day of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival. Jeff Garlick is backing the jockey for more glory later in the week. Pictures: Getty Images

In his latest weekly column for the Harrogate Advertiser Series, racing expert and renowned tipster Jeff Garlick previews Thursday and Friday's action and shares his selections.

Rachael Blackmore created history on the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival by becoming the first female rider to win the Champion Hurdle, writes Garlick.

She rode the mare Honeysuckle, napped in this column last week, to an emphatic win, boosting the profile of female jockeys within the racing industry in the process.

Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle action from the first day of Cheltenham 2021.

Blackmore could get on the scoreboard again on Thursday when she partners Allaho in the Ryanair Chase. Mister Fisher could be her biggest danger here.

The feature race on Thursday is the Stayers Hurdle. The 2019 champion Paisley Park will be a short price but I will oppose him with the course specialist Sire Du Berlais.

He has won the Pertemps Handicap on this day in the last two years and last year recorded a time three seconds faster than the winner of the Stayers Hurdle. He battled home from The Storyteller last year and these two could fight out this Grade One contest this year.

Shan Blue is my sporting bet to beat Envoi Allen in the opener.

The Shunter could win the Paddy Power Plate to pick up a massive bonus. Promising young 7lb claimer Jordan Gainford has been booked to get his weight down even lower.

Glens of Antrim, Mrs Millner and Mount Ida can complete another good day for Irish trained horses.

On to Friday and Al Boum Photo will be bidding for a hat-trick of wins in the feature race, the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

He won when coming off a fast pace in 2019 and triumphed last year in a slow-run tactical affair. He has had the same preparation as previous years and looks bombproof.

Champ has the potential to mount a challenge but I am still unconvinced by his jumping so the main danger could be A Plus Tard, again ridden by Blackmore.

Minella Indo can make it a clean sweep for the Irish by finishing third.

Friday opens with the Triumph Hurdle where I expect Zanahiyr to beat Tritonic. The latter was very impressive when winning the Adonis Hurdle but Zanahiyrr has much the stronger form.

Third Time Lucki looks to have a great chance of continuing the Skelton’s love affair with the County Hurdle.

Bob and Co may strike a blow for the English in the Hunters Chase and Alaphilippe went into my notebook for the Albert Bartlett Hurdle when he won the trial race at Haydock. His stamina should help him repel a quartet of top young Irish stayers

Shattered Love can use her course experience to good effect to beat her compatriot Elimay in the new Mares Chase.

In the final race, the Martin Pipe Hurdle, I can see the leading trainer at the Festival, Willie Mullins, leaving with yet another winner in the shape of Galopin Des Champs.

Hopefully I am back at Cheltenham in 2022 to watch some of the horses named here return to thrill packed crowds once again.

Garlick's Cheltenham Goodies: THURSDAY - 13:20 Shan Blue; 13:55 Mrs Milner; 14:30 Allaho; 15:05 Sire Du Berlais; 15:40 The Shunter; 16:15 Glens of Antrim; 16:50 Mount Ida.

FRIDAY - 13:20 Zanahiyr; 13:55 Third Time Lucki; 14:30 Alaphilippe; 15:05 Al Boum Photo; 15:40 Bob and Co; 16:15 Shattered Love; 16:50 Galopin Des Champs.