ITV Racing tips for Friday 13 December – Live TV tips for Cheltenham and Bangor

Get Brian Healy's ITV Racing tips for Friday's televised coverage of day one of the Cheltenham International Meeting and Bangor.

The ITV Racing cameras are in action on Friday for day one of the International Meeting at Cheltenham, where the Grade Three BetVictor Handicap Chase and the Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase feature on the card.

The team will have four races live from the UK’s premier jumps venue, as well one race from Bangor on a scheduled five-race live TV broadcast.

1:55 Cheltenham – CF Roberts Electrical & Mechanical Services Mares’ Handicap Chase (Challenger Mares’ Series Qual’) Cl3 (4yo+ 0-125) 2m4½f
2:10 Bangor – Racebets Handicap Hurdle (Challenger Stayers’ Hurdle Series Qualifier) Cl3 (4yo+ 0-135) 2m7f
2:30 Cheltenham – BetVictor Handicap Chase (Grade 3) Cl1 (4yo+) 3m2f
3:05 Cheltenham – Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase Cl2 (5yo+) 3m6f
3:40 Cheltenham – Citipost Handicap Hurdle Cl2 (4yo+) 3m

Ed Chamberlain and the team will be on hand again to offer up their usual expert tips, insights and post-race analysis of all the action, and Brian Healy gives his race-by-race selections for Friday’s TV racing action.

1:55 Cheltenham – CF Roberts Electrical & Mechanical Services Mares’ Handicap Chase (Challenger Mares’ Series Qual’) Cl3 (4yo+ 0-125) 2m4½f

CHEQUERED VIEW (3/1, Ladbrokes) has a 50 percent strike rate over fences, latterly winning for the third time over the larger obstacles at Fakenham last month when beating Carnspindle by three lengths. That was her second win at the track over fences, and she has also scored at Worcester.

The Passing Glance mare won a shade cosily in that last success, and while the form perhaps isn’t the strongest, it hinted at better to come and he can continue to find improvement in this sphere.

This is obviously a tougher test as he takes a step up in class having been raised 5lbs in the weights; but he arrives in good form and Martin Keighley’s charge can continue his fine spell to strike again.

2:10 Bangor – Racebets Handicap Hurdle (Challenger Stayers’ Hurdle Series Qualifier) Cl3 (4yo+ 0-135) 2m7f

SAME CIRCUS (7/2, Paddy Power) might just have done too much out in front when last seen out at Ascot, but she stuck well to her task once headed to eventually finish fourth and she caught the eye rallying well having looked beaten.

Donald McCain’s charge had won the time before at Aintree, beating Smackwater Jack by a neck on her return to hurdles following more than six months off the track, and racing here off the same mark where Brian Hughes takes over in the saddle then she could go close to a return to winning ways.

The Brian Boru mare is 2-2 here, albeit both wins have been gained over fences, but she could still have scope from this mark and can give a good account back at this venue over the smaller obstacles this time around.

Trainer Donald McCain at Bangor-on-Dee Racecourse, Bangor-on-Dee.

2:30 Cheltenham – BetVictor Handicap Chase (Grade 3) Cl1 (4yo+) 3m2f

ONEFORTHEROADTOM (7/1, Unibet) has yet to open his account over fences, but Harry Fry’s charge has posted several solid runs in defeat, including on his recent reappearance here in October when finishing six lengths’ fourth behind The Conditional.

He wasn’t beaten far behind reopposing rivals West Approach and Cogry, and the Fair Mix gelding might have bettered his eventual finishing position had he not stumbled on landing after the last fence having made a late mistake.

It was a good effort nonetheless from out of the weights, and he kept on well to cross the line in fourth where he was just two lengths behind Cogry. He had rounded off the previous campaign with good runner-up effort behind Heron Heights at Punchestown, and he could hold solid claims on these terms given he ought to strip fitter for his reappearance.

First-time blinkers are applied now, and the headgear could also help elicit some further improvement so it wouldn’t come as a surprise to see him competitive again in this competitive handicap.

3:05 Cheltenham – Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase Cl2 (5yo+) 3m6f

NEVERUSHACON (10/1, William Hill) shaped really well faced with the Punchestown banks on his last start in the Risk Of Thunder Chase, and Jessica Harrington’s charge was only beaten just over one length behind Yanworth on that occasion where he was trying to give the former Grade One winning hurdler 5lbs.

The Echo Of Light gelding meets that same rival on better terms for this rematch, now receiving 8lbs from Philip Hobbs’ star, and he could make full use of that concession to turn the tables here where his good claiming rider can take off a further 3lbs of his burden.

He hasn’t won over obstacles since scoring over considerably shorter at Limerick last July, and while he tries a considerably longer trip here, he has shaped as if he might appreciate a stiff test of his stamina so could well find improvement for the extreme trip.

He is thoroughly unexposed over the unique demands of these obstacles, and given his big pull at the weights with Yanworth here then he rates a definite player in this contest and can go well.

Neverushacon can win over the Cross-country course at Cheltenham.

3:40 Cheltenham – Citipost Handicap Hurdle Cl2 (4yo+) 3m

It could be worth chancing on a return to form by Grade One winning novice KILBRICKEN STORM (8/1, William Hill) who drops back considerably in grade on his reppearance, and Colin Tizzard’s charge could go well back at the scene of his greatest success.

The Oscar gelding won the 2018 Albert Bartlett Hurdle – his third win in five starts which also included the 2017 Bristol Novices’ Hurdle at this meeting, and he finished a good third to Next Destination in the wake of his Grade One success when sent to Punchestown to contest the 2018 Irish Daily Mirror Hurdle.

He hasn’t been in the same form since however, despite winning on his chase debut last term, and he ended last season on a low note when beating only two home behind If The Cap Fits in last season’s Liverpool Hurdle.

He has to shoulder top-weight here as he has his sights lowered into handicap company, and he perhaps has a question to answer given his last couple of runs. However, wind surgery in the interim might help to unlock a return to his best form and he has gone well fresh in the past so a big run wouldn’t come as a surprise if back to something like his best.


1:55 Cheltenham – CHEQUERED VIEW (3/1, Ladbrokes)
2:10 Bangor – SAME CIRCUS (7/2, Paddy Power)
2:30 Cheltenham – ONEFORTHEROADTOM (7/1, Unibet)
3:05 Cheltenham – NEVERUSHACON (10/1, William Hill)
3:40 Cheltenham – KILBRICKEN STORM (8/1, William Hill)