Friday TV best bets – ITV Racing tips for Cheltenham and Bangor

Sandown ITV Racing best bets. Through the card tips on Sunday.Sandown ITV Racing best bets. Through the card tips on Sunday.

The ITV Racing cameras are back in action on Friday with day one of the Cheltenham International Meeting taking centre stage. We’ve looked through the day’s coverage and pick out our Friday TV best bets.

TV punters can enjoy the return of ITV Racing to their television screens on Friday where the cameras will be in action for the first day of the Cheltenham International Meeting which features not only Grade Three action and another round of cross-country, but also the rearranged Grade Two Peterborough Chase which has been rerouted to the home of jumps racing following the loss of Huntingdon last weekend.

Also featuring on Friday is coverage of the day’s main event at Bangor and six races in all with make up Friday’s televised coverage where Ed Chamberlain and the team will be on hand again to offer their usual expert racing tips, insights and post-race analysis.

We’ve looked through the day’s scheduled televised racing action and pick out our Friday TV best bets for what promises to be another cracking day of horse racing action.


1:15 Cheltenham – CF Roberts Electrical & Mechanical Services Mares’ Handicap Chase (Challenger Mares’ Series Qual’) Cl3 (4yo+ 0-125) 2m4½f

BLACK TULIP has placed on both of her previous chase starts at this venue and the Black Sam Bellamy mare might be worth sticking with to follow up her recent success at Uttoxeter in October.

Henry Daly’s charge has a string of solid efforts to her name over the larger obstacles, notably finishing third to Kupatana over this course and distance in a Listed contest back in April last year form a higher mark than this and she’s proven a consistent performer.

Third on her return at Uttoxeter in September she stepped up on that reappearance to strike a first chase win back at that venue when last seen, beating Overawed by almost seven lengths and that form doesn’t look too shabby with the first four home behind her all running well since.

This is tougher and she’s up 7lbs but she can remain capable of delivering another big performance at this venue where she’s gone well in the past and no surprise if she makes her presence felt.

1:50 Cheltenham – Fitzdares Club Loves The Peterborough Chase (Grade 2) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m4f

A wide-open renewal of this rearranged contest could go the way of KALASHNIKOV who ought to be better for his recent reappearance over hurdles and Amy Murphy’s charge can post a big run with that outing under his belt.

The Kalanisi gelding was a high-class hurdler, winning three times and going close in the 2018 Supreme Novices’ Hurdle here during the Cheltenham Festival; having won his first two chase starts the following campaign he continued to run at a good level and he was still travelling strongly when hampered and unseating his rider in the 2019 Arkle Chase.

He showed no ill effects to win the Manifesto Chase at Aintree and although winless since he has largely acquitted himself well in defeat although he proved mo match for Altior in the Game Spirit Chase back in February on his last chase start.

Three miles over hurdles under top-weight might have stretched him on his reappearance which was his first following wind surgery, but he went well for a long way and could build on that effort back over the larger obstacles and dropping to a more suitable trip.

Friday TV best bets. Kalashnikov can win the rearranged Peterborough Chase.

Friday TV best bets. Kalashnikov can win the rearranged Peterborough Chase.

2:05 Bangor – Buy Christmas Cards Handicap Hurdle (Challenger Stayers’ Hurdle Series Qualifier) Cl3 (4yo+ 0-135) 2m7f

Only four runners and ROBIN GOLD looks hard to oppose as the Gold Well mare bids for a fourth win in five starts.

Harry Skelton’s charge has returned from a couple of months off to show vastly improved form since being fitted with a tongue-tie, scoring a brace of victories at Perth and Lingfield before being denied a hat-trick back at Lingfield lthough she was only a half-length off the winner despite being 2lbs out of the weights.

She wasted no time though in getting back on the mark over this trip however when beating Midnightreflection by a similar margin at Ascot last month under a confident ride and the form was boosted by the runner-up winning next time.

A 9lbs rise for that cheeky victory demands more, but she’s thriving currently and her rivals here have something to prove so while she’s unlikely to be much of a betting proposition she ought to prove tough to beat in this contest.

2:25 Cheltenham – Unibet Handicap Chase (Grade 3) (GBB Race) Cl1 (4yo+) 3m2f

WEST APPROACH could be worth chancing to get back on the scoresheet although Colin Tizzard’s charge isn’t the most straight-forward and he can flatter to deceive.

That said he’s proven himself to be very smart over fences when the mood strikes him as it did thwn winning over further here last November, beating Achille, after which he was an early casualty in the Ladbrokes Trophy Chase won by De Rasher Counter.

He finished third in this race twelve months ago and probably failed to see out the trip in the Welsh National before a disappointing spell back over hurdles. However he’s run well both starts this term back over fences, chasing down Frodon here in October and performing better than the bare result back here last month behind Ramses De Teillee.

While he’s no certainty to put his best foot forward he nevertheless might prove the answer in receipt of 12lbs from Black Corton and if in the mood he can deliver a big performance back at this venue where he usually runs well.

Friday TV best bets. Colin Tizzard's West Approach can give the Dorset handler a TV winner at Cheltenham.

Friday TV best bets. Colin Tizzard’s West Approach can give the Dorset handler a TV winner at Cheltenham.

3:00 Cheltenham – Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase (GBB Race) Cl2 (5yo+) 3m6f

BEAU DU BRIZAIS found only reopposimg Kingswell Theatre too strong in the October heat of this contest but the Kapgarde gelding could exact some revenge on the veteran on these better terms and Philip Hobbs’ charge can strike.

That was the selections’ first try over the banks and he appeared to take well to the discipline where he raced prominently behind the winner who made all. He couldn’t quite muster the same finishing effort and eventually finished five lengths’ adrift with Potters Corner and Easysland further behind.

On that last occasion both runners contested from level weights, but the Hobbs runner now gets 5lbs from his conquerer which ought to see him close the gap and given it was his first experience of cross-country there might be better to come and he can improve to come out on top this time around.

3:35 Cheltenham – Citipost Handicap Hurdle (GBB Race) Cl2 (4yo+) 3m

Unowhatimeanharry rolled back the years to strike at Aintree last month, beating the reopposing MOHAAYED; but Dan Skelton’s charge might be able to overturn that form on revised terms and the Intikhab gelding can post a big run.

The 2018 County Hurdle winner has won just once since, scoring at Ascot almost two years ago and his form has been patchy since. However, he’s run well on both starts this term, finishing fourth at Aintree before tackling this trip for the first time latest where he was denied by just over one length by Harry Fry’s veteran.

He was getting 1lb from the winner factoring in the winning rider’s claim, but this time around he gets 3lbs which could be enough to see him turn the tables if posting a similar performance and he remains thoroughly unexposed over this three miles trip so could yet have more to offer as a stayer.

Assuming the stiff finish over the trip doesn’t stretch his stamina he could well go close if repeating the level of performance he showed last time.