Horse racing tips: Cheltenham and Doncaster – Friday ITV Racing picks

Horse racing tips: Cheltenham and Doncaster – Friday ITV Racing picks
Friday’s ITV Racing tips cover all six races from Cheltenham and Doncaster Credit: Getty

Read expert horse racing tips and analysis for Friday’s ITV Racing from Cheltenham and Doncaster and a free bets offer to back the selections

It’s a sure sign that National Hunt racing is moving to centre stage once when the ITV cameras return to Cheltenham on Friday afternoon.

The broadcast is from 1.30-4.00pm on ITV4 has four races from Cheltenham and two more from Doncaster on the Flat, and our expert has selections for all six contests.

ITV Racing tips – Cheltenham and Doncaster, Friday 23 October

Find Enda McElhinney’s Friday selections for all six races and the analysis behind his picks below.

Odds correct at time of publishing and may be subject to change.

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1.50 Cheltenham – Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle (2m 5f)

Ask For Glory looks set to carry favouritism for the in-form Paul Nicholls and Harry Cobden team. He won easily on his most recent start at Wincanton in February and has scope for better things, but this is a tougher test. Last month’s Uttoxeter winner Topofthecotswolds is capable of more improvement for the Twiston-Davies team but GLOBAL FLAME is the one with the best form in the book.

He was beaten by a next-time-out Grade 2-winning novice on his hurdles bow at Chepstow in December and made no mistake at Wetherby in March on his second spin over hurdles. Like Ask For Glory, he has undergone a wind op during his downtime and, with Fergal O’Brien and Paddy Brennan thriving of late, he can take this Cheltenham season opener.

Tip: Global Flame @ 9/2 with 888sport

2.25 Cheltenham – Matchbook Better Way To Bet Novices' Chase (3m)

This is potentially a cracking match-up between GALVIN and Soldier Of Love, representing powerhouse trainers Gordon Elliott and Paul Nicholls. The latter is on a winning sequence of four since returning to action in July and is a strong stayer despite sometimes looking outpaced in races.

Galvin meanwhile finished second behind Imperial Aura at the Festival here in March (2m 4f, soft) and is having his stamina stretched today with a view towards the National Hunt Chase back here in the spring. He has won his last three in Ireland and rates the one to beat.

Tip: Galvin @ 2/1 with 888sport

2.40 Doncaster – Vertem Investing In The Future Handicap (6f)

Having won the big two-year-old sales race here last year at the St Leger Festival, KING’S LYNN was off the track for 338 days. He finished a good second behind Starman over track and trip in August, form boosted by the winner’s subsequent Listed win at York and brave showing in a Group 1 at Ascot.

Front-running tactics didn’t pay off for Andrew Balding’s Royal runner at Ayr on his next start but the Cable Bay colt retains plenty of scope for better and may bounce back now returned to Town Moor.

Tip: King's Lynn @ 5/1 with 888sport

3.00 Cheltenham – squareintheair.com Handicap Hurdle (2m 5f)

This is a wide-open handicap in which it’s worth paying attention to in-form and determined mare Yeavering Belle. However, preference at a decent price goes to the returning HOMETOWN BOY for trainer Stuart Edmonds.

The Irish point-to-point winner routed his rivals on his handicap debut at Market Rasen on Boxing Day last year and twice locked horns with progressive McFabulous. He was second to him in February and that rival is now among the cast for the Stayers' Hurdle here in March after a winning comeback.

Hometown Boy almost certainly has further progress in him this season and, if fit enough, could have a big say in this.

Tip: Hometown Boy @ 16/1 with 888sport

3.15 Doncaster – vertem.co.uk Handicap (1m6½f)

RHYTHMIC INTENT looked to be a soft-ground stayer worth noting when he scored at Newbury in August in eye-catching style. He ran a fair race at Haydock next time in the Old Borough Cup (fourth) and perhaps just wasn’t suited when dropped to 1m 4f at Leicester last time in a small-field affair, where he was racing closer to the pace than is ideal.

Champion jockey Oisin Murphy seemingly prefers the chances of Opera Gift today but man of the moment Tom Marquand is an able deputy and, with the handicapper having eased him 1lb, Rhythmic Intent is still deemed capable if he can get a nice toe into the race.

Tip: Rhythmic Intent @ 9/1 with 888sport

3.35 Cheltenham – Bentley Flying Spur Handicap Chase (2m)

Hatcher wasn’t fully extended at Southwell in July when holding off the teenager Croco Bay to win for the Skeltons and he has a chance again. He’s up 6lb for that success and should travel into the race as well as anything but it’s open to debate how he will handle the battle up this famous hill.

ON THE SLOPES was third here on Trials Day in January over 2m 4½f, behind Simply The Betts and Imperial Aura, both of whom went on to win at the Festival in March.

Chris Gordon’s charge had a pair of pleasing successes at Kempton before the season was cut short and rates as one to go well on his return.

Tip: On The Slopes @ 9/2 with 888sport

Want to find out more about the latest horse racing action?

For more expert opinion on the ITV Racing card, see these ITV racing tips from bettingexpert.

Telegraph Betting hosts racecards for every meeting every day and they include horse racing tips for each and every race. 

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