Arkle Chase tips and runners for the Cheltenham Festival 2021

Shishkin is odds-on favourite for the Arkle Chase.

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The 2021 Arkle Chase looked set to be an absolute belter as last year’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle winner Shishkin and Energumene were due to put their unbeaten seasonal records on the line.

But racing fans were dealt a bitter blow when Willie Mullins announced on the Friday before Festival week that Energumene was lame and would not be taking his place in the renewal, which now sees Dan Skelton’s Allmankind climb to second in the betting behind Shishkin.

DON’T MISS: CHELTENHAM TIPS – OUR PUNDITS’ CHEAT SHEET FOR ALL WEDNESDAY’S RACES

Taking up it’s traditional slot as the second race of the Cheltenham Festival, the Arkle is a true test of speed and jumping over 2m on the Old Course at Prestbury Park.

The field, made up entirely of novice chasers aged five and older, will have to navigate 13 fences and then show an impressive turn of foot up the famous hill if they want a share of the £175,000 prize pot. Can anyone deal a first defeat of the season to Shishkin?

Arkle Chase odds

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Shishkin Nico de Boinville Kempton December 23, 2020

Arkle Chase tips

Matt Chapman:SHISHKIN was my banker for Cheltenham 2021 long before Energumene was ruled out through injury and I expect the hot favourite to hack up here for Nicky Henderson and Nico de Boinville.”

FULL PREVIEW: MATT CHAPMAN’S BEST BETS FOR DAY ONE OF THE 2021 CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL

Timeform: SHISHKIN deserves his position at the head of the market.”

FULL PREVIEW: SHISHKIN SHOWS ARKLE CLASS

Gina Bryce:SHISHKIN has looked foot perfect in three chase starts to date, most recently bounding clear of a classy rival in dead ground at Doncaster to further cement his status as a potential superstar.”

FULL PREVIEW: GINA BRYCE’S BEST BETS FOR DAY ONE OF THE 2021 CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL

Mick Fitzgerald: “The 2m speed test for novices has lost a lot of its appeal with the withdrawal of the second favourite Energumene. I really can’t see past Nicky Henderson SHISHKIN to win it.”

FULL PREVIEW: MICK FITZGERALD’S BEST BETS FOR DAY ONE OF THE FESTIVAL

Paddy Power: “You can’t oppose SHISHKIN here, he will win. Allmankind may put up a fight and I know there’s been a case made for Captain Guinness but Shishkin is my pick.”

FULL PREVIEW: PADDY POWER’S CHELTENHAM TIPS FOR TUESDAY AS EPATANTE FAVOURED TO HONEYSUCKLE

Allmankind Harry Skelton Sandown December 5, 2020

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Arkle Chase Trainers’ Verdicts

Nicky Henderson, trainer of Shishkin: “He’s the tour leader now. He was in fantastic form and I’ve never been happier than I was on Friday. Allmankind will set us a stern test but I hope he’s more than up to it.”

Dan Skelton, trainer of Allmankind: “I cannot wait for it. He’s in good form, he looks fantastic and I’ve got no worries about the track. I’m just really excited about it and I think he’s as good as I can have him. Match on!:

Henry de Bromhead, trainer of Captain Guinness: “This lad is in great form. He was very fresh on Monday morning and looked great. I’ve been very happy with him in the lead-up to the race.”

Cheltenham tips: Our pundits’ cheat sheet for all Tuesday’s races

Willie Mullins, trainer of Franco De Port: “He was second to Energumene in the Irish Arkle at Leopardstown but this is over a furlong shorter which won’t be to his advantage. However, he is a Grade 1 winner and is fit and well so could get into the shake-up.”

Joe Tizzard, assistant to Colin, trainer of Eldorado Allen: “It was a close one as to whether to go for this or the Grand Annual but we felt as there’s so few runners and with the prize-money so good we thought we’d give him a crack at it. He’s got course form but he’s got to find a fair bit with Shishkin on the Doncaster run but he’s in better form now. It only takes a small mishap and he’s right in the place money.”

Today at the Cheltenham Festival

CaptainGuinnessDec20a

When is the Arkle Chase?

The Arkle Chase takes place on Tuesday March 16, on the first day of the Cheltenham Festival 2021. It’s scheduled to start at 13.55.

Arkle Chase winners at the last five festivals

2020 – Put The Kettle On (Horse), Aidan Coleman (Jockey), Henry de Bromhead (Trainer)

2019 – Dec Des Genievres, Paul Townend, Willie Mullins

2018 – Footpad, Ruby Walsh, Willie Mullins

2017 – Altior, Nico de Boinville, Nicky Henderson

2016 – Douvan, Ruby Walsh, Willie Mullins

CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL‘S BIG RACES

March 16 – 13.20 – Supreme Novices’ Hurdle latest odds and tips
March 16 – 13.55 – Arkle Chase latest odds and tips
March 16 – 15.05 – Champion Hurdle latest odds and tips
March 16 – 15.40 – Mares’ Hurdle latest odds and tips

March 17 – 13.20 – Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle latest odds and tips
March 17 – 13.55 – Festival Novices’ Chase latest odds and tips
March 17 – 15.05 – Queen Mother Champion Chase latest odds and tips
March 17 – 16.50 – Champion Bumper latest odds and tips

March 18 – 13.20 – Marsh Novices’ Chase latest odds and tips
March 18 – 14.30 – Ryanair Chase latest odds and tips
March 18 – 15.05 – Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle latest odds and tips

March 19 – 13.20 – Triumph Hurdle latest odds and tips
March 19 – 14.30 – Albert Bartlett Novices’ Chase latest odds and tips
March 19 – 15.05 – Gold Cup latest odds and tips
March 19 – 16.15 – Mrs Paddy Power Mares’ Chase latest odds and tips

    CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL DAY ONE SCHEDULE

    13:20 – Supreme Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 87y

    13.55 – Arkle Chase (Grade 1) 1m 7f 199y

    14.30 – Ultima Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 3m 1f

    15.05 – Champion Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 87y

    15.40 – Close Brothers Mares’ Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 3f 200y

    16.15 – Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) 2m 87y

    16.50 – National Hunt Chase (Grade 2) 3m 5f 201y

    *Paddy will be all over your telly box throughout the Cheltenham Festival sponsoring ITV’s live coverage from Prestbury Park – and you can get free and exclusive tipping columns EVERY DAY from Ruby Walsh, Matt Chapman and Mick Fitzgerald here on PP News.

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