Kevin Blake picks a pair to play each-way using Betfair's enhanced place markets on day two of the Cheltenham Festival...
"Us And Them is a horse that needs to get into a good rhythm in a handy position, so as long as he jumps the first few fences cleanly, he should be capable of producing a big performance. The Betfair Sportsbook are paying on six places, so each-way support for him could well yield a dividend."
The second day of the Cheltenham Festival will commence another assault on the senses and once again I will look to pinpoint some each-way value in races that the Betfair Sportsbook are offering enhanced place terms.
Cash in on Koshari
The Coral Cup (14:30) is always one of the most difficult races to solve all week, but the one I've had in mind for it for the last while is the Willie Mullins-trained Koshari. The nine-year-old doesn't have many miles on the clock for his age, having had just 13 career starts and only seven over hurdles.
He was absent for over two years prior to returning to action this season with an impressive win in a handicap hurdle over two-and-a-half miles at Cork in January. He was well fancied to follow up in the valuable William Fry Handicap Hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival, but a mistake at the third saw Paul Townend lose his irons and his position. Left with too much to do, Townend wasn't hard on his mount to guide him home in a never-nearer sixth.
He shaped more than well enough that day to suggest that he is still handicapped to be competitive and the British handicapper has been kind by only giving him a 2lb higher mark than his Irish rating. This course and distance should suit and hopefully a big effort will be forthcoming. With the Betfair Sportsbook paying out on seven places, an each-way bet with them is particularly attractive.
Cheltenham could see Us And Them back to his best
The Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Challenge Cup (16:15) can always be relied upon to be a chaotic and fiercely-competitive contest. Betfair ambassador Joseph O'Brien looks to have a particularly strong hand with three contenders that all have strong cases to be made for them, but my marginal preference is for the one that is the biggest price of the three, Us And Them.
The eight-year-old has a fine record at the Cheltenham Festival, finishing second in the Arkle Challenge Trophy in 2019 and third in the Grand Annual last year.
Things didn't really go his way on either occasion, with him getting squeezed back at the start in the Arkle and losing his position at a crucial stage in the Grand Annual. Cheltenham Festival form is something I always like to focus in on and while his form since his run at this meeting last year hasn't been too encouraging, he has been freshened up for this race and it wouldn't surprise to see him bounce back to form.
Us And Them is a horse that needs to get into a good rhythm in a handy position, so as long as he jumps the first few fences cleanly, he should be capable of producing a big performance. The Betfair Sportsbook are paying on six places, so each-way support for him could well yield a dividend.
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