Cheltenham 2.55

Cheltenham 2.55 Greatwood Handicap Hurdle - Group 3 - 20 run - 2 miles 87 yards - Going Good
This race is likely to be run at a frantic pace and will be a real test of accurate jumping and fitness as a result.
You're ideally looking for a speed horse, some Course form and possibly something that's going to be doing all it's best work late IF they go off too fast, but the danger is a lot could be run off their feet early and we could see a lot of hard luck stories in midfield coming up the hill.
There are probably around a dozen in with an actual chance and just a case of whittling them down.
The favourite is Jessie Evans, perfectly logical but at 9/2 ish not really much value there other than for the outright win and although a big danger a horse I'm happy to take on. Tudor City is another Irish raider and fit from the Flat the type who can and does pop up occasionally at big odds, it was tailed off though in this last year and I don't think it has as good a chance today as back then.
Botox Has is something of a Course specialist for the Gary Moore yard that won me a big handicap prize a few weeks ago, it unseated over Fences last time and although some of the past form is compelling that Chase run suggests this may be an afterthought. It could place at best but I think there are more progressive options today. Cormier is another who has chances, 7th in this last year, the Good ground will suit, the yard has won the race and one I fear but can't quite take a plunge on. Ballyandy was runner up last year, a fantastic servant but a 10 year old now and a view it's just on the wane and it won't say a lot for the younger crop if he was to pop up with one last hurrah, an enhanced place at big Odds possibly the best expectation.
I had a long look and thought about Glory And Fortune , has won the last 2 races, a fine mover but up 8lbs to a mark of 142 and it would become a very serious horse if winning off this mark. Confidence and fitness will take it a long way but I think it will finf 3 or 4 at least too strong up the hill on these terms.
Adagio off top weight on seasonal debut for the Pipes is a lovely horse to follow this season, it may just need this though and together with Advanced Virgo from the Cliff Byrnes yard who could be a typically well handicapped and progressive Irish raider, just missed the final cut and will be massive dangers.
At biggish odds I will have a few bob in loose change (shrapnel) on STRAW FAN JACK a runner up in a nice Class3 on reappearance, and from the Sheila Lewis yard who are certainly upwardly mobile, the type to outrun Odds and grab some each way enhanced place money. I think the same applies to CAMPROND and I may play this (in running) at the halfway point IF the pace is very fast. It drops in trip and may be taken off it's feet early on but I can see the famous silks flying up the hill here and as a Course winner and also a winner at the Distance he'll be my reserve if a non runner and a live and dangerous contender.
My 3 against the field though are TRITONIC who made a nice reappearance over Course and Distance and likely to have been laid out for this by Alan King who after a few fairly quiet years by his own standards looks set to launch some promising types this season having re-stocked his operation. GALICE MACALO comes from the rapidly improving Christian Williams yard who are banging in the winners, they go for a hood to help the horse and it runs off a very attractive mark and another I think laid out for the race. Finally of the main 3 is WEST CORK for the Skeltons who will have had any number of options for the race. It's making its seasonal debut but they would not be pitching up here without serious hopes and it's sure to be fit enough to run well. A potentially very progressive horse who may just be ahead of the assessor.
TIP - Tritonic / Trackers - Galice Macalo + West Cork (shrapnel - Camprond @ 12/1 and Straw Fan Jack @ 25/1 at your discretion)