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The final race of Day 2 is the Weatherbys Champion Bumper which is the flat race that takes place around Cheltenham with no hurdles or fences jumped.

This is one of the races which does tend to get a fair bit of criticism, as does the whole idea of bumper races. I think it's a good idea to introduce horses to the racetrack and get them ready for when they do decide to go over hurdles/fences, so they get the experience.

We do tend to see some really nice horses for the future in this with A Dream To Share winning it last year as well as the likes of Facile Vega, Sir Gerhard, Ferny Hollow and Envoi Allen all winning it before going on to have good careers over obstacles.

The Irish have won this race in 8 of the last 10 renewals.

Cheltenham 5:30 – The Yellow Clay 8/1 (1pt EW, Bet365 5pl)

Though the handicaps have been tough to try and find the winners, the bumper is just as tough as horses improve out of nowhere and it is often a guessing game, with jockey bookings pointing towards clues.

Willie Mullins has got a strong hand in this, which you'd expect given the fire power he has and he turns up to this with just the nine! Based on jockey bookings, Jasmin De Vaux is the one who will more than likely be his main play. His son, Patrick is on board and though you might question that Paul Townend is the main jockey for the stable, not for races like this where Patrick gets first choice due to bumper races in Ireland being available to amateur riders only, so this is without a shadow of a doubt one of the main races of the season for Patrick. He has opted for the green colours of Jasmin De Vaux who won on the bridle as the odds of 4/11F would suggest he should have. That performance recorded an RPR of 128 and it was run over 2m 2f, so the added stamina he clearly has under his bonnet will be a big attribute for his chances of winning the Champion Bumper.

Paul Townend is on Cantico who made amends of his below-par debut, he was sent off as favourite for his debut race and looked a bit one-paced, maybe showing that he needed the run. Last time out he was backed into even shorter odds of 4/11F and Patrick Mullins got another easy success with this horse on heavy ground. He looks a nice horse for the future and with Paul on board, you'd like to thnk he is the second string.

I think sticking to the Irish for this race is probably the best way to go and Gordon Elliott also has a strong string of runners. Jack Kennedy is on board Jalon D'oudairies who beat the well-regarded Redemption Day from the Mullins stable, which was good enough to record an RPR of 128 and this £420,000 purchase looks to have a smart future.

However, I've opted for the Jordan Gainford ride, The Yellow Clay. I am quite keen on his chances coming into this race, as he finished 4th/10 in a race which has produced many winners of this race over the years, with the likes of A Dream To Share, Facile Vega, Envoi Allen and placed horses like Kilcruit and Appreciate It. That run by The Yellow Clay was his first run in 314 days, having previously won two bumpers earlier in 2023 including a Listed race. Due to him winning a Listed race he was carrying a 3lb penalty, he might not have won the race, but he came out of it with tonnes of credit. He met trouble in running in the straight, he was cruising along, but was sandwiched and that made him retreat many lengths and would've taken him off full pelt and meant he had to regather his momentum and reach top speed again. He might not have won with a clear run as the winner was ultra-impressive, but the way he powered home despite the inconvenience he suffered was very eye-catching. He went off 40/1 for that race that day, so fitness was clearly not at its peak, but he will be turning up at 100% for this race and I think he has a massive chance.

Related Topic: Racing Tips
1 Comment
  1. dazzman1979 1 month ago

    Mic check one two ! Beeeeeeeeep 😂

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