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Cheltenham Festival NAPs
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Cheltenham Festival tips: NAPs from the Racing Post

Racing Post tipsters Keith Melrose, Graeme Rodway and Robbie Wilders have provided their best bets for the upcoming Cheltenham Festival.

Cheltenham Festival NAPs

Keith Melrose Cheltenham Best Bet

Bowtogreatness
Kim Muir Challenge Cup - 10/1

Graeme Rodway Cheltenham Best Bet

Edwardstone
Champion Chase - 13/2

Robbie Wilders Cheltenham Best Bet

Guard Your Dreams
Coral Cup - 25/1

Cheltenham Festival

Keith Melrose Cheltenham NAP

The novice chases and handicap chases look the best betting races of this year's Cheltenham Festival to my eyes. The bet that has appealed most to me since Festival Trials Day back in January, and on which the price has held up fairly well, is on BOWTOGREATNESS for the Kim Muir.

He looks to have been laser-focused on the Cheltenham Festival, to the extent that he probably was not half fit even when an excellent third in a valuable feature handicap at Kempton at the end of February.

He had been doubly entered at Ascot the week before, so getting a run into him was likely the priority.

Having shaped best at Kempton, he will run off the same mark at Cheltenham and from only 1lb higher than when he impressed in a Premier handicap on the Grand National card last year.

Keith Melrose's Cheltenham tip:

Kim Muir Challenge Cup
Bowtogreatness 10/1 each-way
1pt each-way

Graeme Rodway Cheltenham NAP

If there is one big race missing from EDWARDSTONE'S already impressive CV it is the Champion Chase and it's worth taking a chance on him in this year's running.

El Fabiolo is, rightly, a warm favourite and he was impressive in the Dublin Chase at Leopardstown last time. However, the mare Dinoblue was second and it probably wasn't a strong Grade 1 as he scared off a lot of rivals.

El Fabiolo has never looked a total natural over fences, often landing steeply, and there is good reason to think Edwardstone can put that potential flaw under pressure judging on the way that he won at Newbury last month.

Edwardstone tore off in front and raced with lots of zest, jumping superbly well and quickly putting his rivals under the pump. He had the race won at the top of the straight and coasted home to score by 40 lengths.

That was his second-best effort on Racing Post Ratings ever, only 1lb behind his wide-margin win in the 2022 Tingle Creek at Sandown when he thrashed course specialist Greaneteen.

It was a clear indication that Edwardstone is right back to his best and peaking at the right time, unlike last year when he came into the race on the back of a defeat and finished tailed off after going off a well-fancied 15/8 second favourite.

He will still need El Fabiolo to underperform if RPRs are right, but Edwardstone's new attacking style might help make that happen and this race hasn't always been kind to El Fabiolo's trainer, Willie Mullins.

Mullins might have won the last two runnings with Energumene, but he has also had Un De Sceaux, Douvan and Chacun Pour Soi all beaten at odds-on in the race in recent years. That makes me think El Fabiolo is no certainty.

Graeme Rodway's Cheltenham tip:

Queen Mother Champion Chase
Edwardstone @ 13/2
1pt each-way

Robbie Wilders Cheltenham NAP

From the outside it appears that GUARD YOUR DREAMS' campaign has been centered around a Cheltenham Festival bid for one of the handicaps.

After unseating Sam Twiston-Davies when spooked by a final-flight faller in the 2022 Aintree Hurdle, Guard Your Dreams was off the track for 660 days.

While he was comfortably put in his place in the International Hurdle on his belated comeback in January, so were the other three runners as Mares' Hurdle favourite Lossiemouth bossed proceedings.

Take out Lossiemouth and Guard Your Dreams wasn't beaten far by Graded performers, having been held up in last place in a race that wasn't strongly run.  

He gave the impression a greater test of stamina would be required when we next see him, and I can forgive his fourth-placed finish in Wincanton's Elite Hurdle on desperate ground on his most recent outing.

Guard Your Dreams' profile tells you he is a Cheltenham horse - he was seventh in the Coral Cup as a novice before improving to land the International Hurdle nine months later, a fair feat for a five-year-old.

The handicapper has eased him to a mark of 137, which is patently a winnable one given his previous exploits in Graded company, and as an eight-year-old, he is young enough to bounce back. 

The Coral Cup and Martin Pipe are run over similar trips and intermediate distances are where Guard Your Dreams' future lies, so I imagine his other two entries in the Champion and County Hurdle shall be resisted.

He can be backed at 25/1 with bet365 for the Coral Cup and that makes plenty of each-way appeal as one of my main Cheltenham Festival tips.

Robbie Wilders' Cheltenham tip:

Coral Cup
Guard Your Dreams @ 25/1
1pt each-way

This article was written by a partner sports writer via Spotlight Sports Group. All odds displayed on this page were correct at the time of writing and are subject to withdrawal or change at any time.

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