Thursday marks the midway point of the Punchestown Festival, as day three of the five-day meeting gets underway this afternoon.
The action kicks off in County Kildare with a two-mile handicap hurdle at 3:40 and concludes at 7:40 with a two-mile bumper.
The team have taken a look through the card, in hope of picking out some winners across the eight-race fixture.
Here are their three best bets for the third day of the Punchestown Festival.
NAP – CITY CHIEF – 6:00 Punchestown (8/1 – bet365)
A promising sort from Nicky Henderson’s yard, City Chief could show further progress for his connections in the Grade B Conway Piling Handicap Hurdle.
The five-year-old has landed success on his last two outings at Hereford and Ayr and he looks to hold some potential over the three-mile trip.
He has the experienced Nico de Boinville in the saddle and he could well have more in the locker.
City Chief’s pressing style should suit him on this course, with his price of 8/1 holding massive value in this race.
NB – BLUE LORD – 6:35 Punchestown (9/4 – Various)
Following the news of Gentleman De Mee being declared as a non-runner, Blue Lord could take the opportunity to add another Grade 1 win to his tally in the Barberstown Castle Novice Chase for Willie Mullins.
The gelding is bang on the same mark as market rival Gabynako and while he proved to be smart over hurdles, he still has a bit to prove over fences for his connections.
The seven-year-old has three and a half lengths to find on Gabynako after finishing behind him in the Arkle at the Cheltenham Festival, but he does have a Grade 1 Novice Chase success to his name after landing the Irish Arkle at the Dublin Racing Festival last month.
He could reverse the form here and he looks good value to strike success in this contest.
LONGSHOT – SIR JIMMY MAC – 7:45 Punchestown (12/1 – Various)
A gelding that showed plenty of potential on his debut under rules last month, Sir Jimmy Mac could build on his eye-catching success with a big performance in the JP & M Doyle Celebrating 70 Years in Business (C &G) Flat Race.
The six-year-old blew his rivals away at Downpatrick in March, bolting up to win by a staggering 24 lengths on the day.
That form was made even more interesting by third-place Tenzing, who struck on his hurdle debut 10 days ago.
While Sir Jimmy Mac will need to find more to get the better of a useful favourite (James’s Gate), he could well be in the mix here with his price of 12/1 holding some each-way value in this contest.
Make sure to check out our ‘Mark The Card’ feature for the third day of the Punchestown Festival at cheltenham.co.uk!