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3 Tips for the Handicap Races at the Cheltenham Festival
The handicap contests at the Cheltenham Festival are often some of the most interesting races across the week. Many of them have an open feel, so there could be some value if you spot a horse who is ahead of the handicapper.

Here is a look at the best three handicap bets for the Festival this year.

Does He Know – Ultima Handicap Chase (10/1)
Kim Bailey goes into the Cheltenham Festival with a strong string of horses this year. His gelding Does He Know has shown a lot of promise since switching to fences earlier this season. He is one of the popular Cheltenham betting tips for the Ultimate Handicap Chase where he can be backed at 10/1.

This horse won his opening two races as a chaser, with wins coming at Chepstow (2m7½f) and Cheltenham (3m½f). He had to settle for second place last time out at Cheltenham (3m½f), which ended his 100% record.

The seven-year-old has yet to appear in a handicap contest. He has been handed a mark of 147 by the handicapper, which looks very workable. He is open to more improvement over fences, so this opening mark gives him a great chance of winning the opening handicap contest of the week at the Festival.

Gaelic Warrior – Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (11/2)

One of the most eye-catching entries in the juvenile handicap races this year is Gaelic Warrior for Willie Mullins. The four-year-old has had three appearances in France, all of which have come at Auteuil on very testing ground.

The son of Maxios was acquired by Rich Ricci earlier this year and he is now in the hands of Willie Mullins. His form before he moved to Ireland is hard to judge, but he appeared to be improving with every start.

Connections clearly felt a lot about this horse as he began his career in a Listed contest. He then hit the frame on his next two outings at the French racecourse.

Gaelic Warrior could be a much better horse on better ground. He should get that at the Festival this year. Mullins’ runner is 11/2 in the betting for the Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle and that could turn out to be a big price.

Langer Dan – Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle (8/1)
The Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle is the last of the 28 races at the Cheltenham Festival, but it should not be the race you have the least interest in. Langer Dan finished second in the contest in 2021 and he is expected to return where he will be looking to go one place better.

Dan Skelton’s runner is a hurdler who has proven his class. He won the Grade Three Imperial Cup at Sandown last season. Since coming home runner-up to Galopin Des Champ last March, Mullins’ horse has won two Grade One races, so that form has been boosted.

Langer Dan is now up 5lb in the ratings, but that should not be a concern as the six-year-old should have improved by at least that amount. He has not appeared this season which means he will be fresh for this assignment. The Lodge Hill runner is 8/1 to win the finale of the meeting.

Best of luck in the handicap races. Hopefully, the above three horses make a mockery of their mark and can come out on top in their respective assignments.

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