THE Stable Plate is one of the hardest handicaps of the meeting. Can Graeme Johnston (@GraemeJ_83) pick out the winner?
16:10 Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate | Channel 4
A 24 runner handicap chase over 2 and a half miles and it's a hugely competitive race. There is a lot of each way value on offer here and once again I'm going to take a chance on two against the field here.
Tenor Nivernais has had a fantastic season and though he has only won once has been placed in three course and distance handicaps this season.
Unsurprisingly he has climbed up the weights for this but he loves it round here and I don't think he will be far away at the finish in this. Granted he would prefer softer ground but at the prices I'm prepared to take a chance on him here.
He was disappointing last time out at Kempton but it's more than possible he will bounce back here and I'm having a small each way bet on him in this.
My other selection is the Paul Nichols trained Salubrious. He won on his seasonal debut at Carlisle after being off the track for a year and looked like he was going to have a good season. However like many of the champion trainers runners he has struggled since then.
Well beaten in two Ascot handicaps after that he was then down the field over course and distance in his final start. He has been freshened up since then and as a previous winner at the festival has to be respected in this.
He's still well handicapped on his old hurdles form and if back to his best after his short break he could well go close here. When he was last seen his stable weren't quite firing and again I'll be taking a chance on him each way in this too.
16:10 Cheltenham – Tenor Nivernais each way (25/1 Ladbrokes)
16:10 Cheltenham – Salubrious each way (16/1 Ladbrokes)
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