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All Systems Go for Cheltenham Festival Favourites


As final confirmations came into the Cheltenham Festival there were no last minute shocks or line-up changes that have significantly altered the wagering. Following Kauto Star's confirmation in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, we've seen Grands Crus pointed towards the RSA Chase by his connections who are looking to avoid the two-time Gold Cup champion.


Only five remain in the mix to take on Sprinter Sacre in the Racing Post Arkle, which is one of the key events on opening day tomorrow. Punters will find him hovering around 5/6 which is not bad odds considering where he's been floating at on the ante post markets up until this point. The likes of AL Ferof, Cue Card and Menorah are all here looking to take a chunk out of the purse money. Sprinter Sacre could prove to be the real deal here and Paddy Power could wind up having to refund upwards of £3,000,000 as they are offering money back on losing horses if he wins.

The Irish challengers for the Arkle include Blackstairmountain and Foildubh.

Champion Chase sensation Sizing Europe is ready to roll with his title defence after putting in some very sharp performances this season. Big Zeb will be back for another challenge and the ongoing battle between the two looks set for it's latest iteration and neutral fans will be hoping it proves to be a bit more even than the last time the pair did battle as Sizing Europe cantered home by well over twenty lengths.

Hurricane Fly is also raring to go for his defence of the Champion Hurdle – the feature contest on opening day. He's been odds-on for the victory for quite some time now and represents a real thorn in the side of bookmakers should he wind up taking the win.

Big Buck's represents the biggest gamble of the festival once again as he looks for his seventy-thousandth win in a row over hurdles. Punters will find him as low as 4/9 with only the likes of Oscar Whisky looking able to topple Big Buck's dominance.  

Read related Horse Racing blog posts
Big Buck's Remains Cheltenham's Biggest Banker
2012 Arkle Challenge Betting Preview Part Two
2012 Arkle Challenge Betting Preview Part One
Long Run Doing Brisk Business: Bookmakers

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