Those started with the win of Impaire et Passe in the Novices' Hurdle which led trainer Willie Mullins to ponder on whether they have found something to take on Constitution Hill. He won by 6 ½ lengths to stablemate Gaelic Warrior with another stablemate Champ Kiely third. Hermes Allen seems not to have liked the soft ground.
The Broadway Novices' Chase provided a great fighting finish between The Real Whacker who loves Cheltenham and fav Gerri Colombe with Sam Twiston-Davies pushing Whacker's neck out to get the verdict by a short head. Bronn at 50/1 was third.
The Queen Mother Champion Chase saw a good win from Energumene for Mullins-Townend who finished 10 lengths in front of Captain Guiness 12/1 and Greaneteen. No excuses were found for beaten fav Edwardstone but one suspects the soft groung.
It's still going to be soft on Thursday but the day is forecast to be warmer so watch for any changes in going through the afternoon.
The Golden Miller Novices' Chase has 9 runners headed by the classy Might Potter on 10/11 for Gordon Elliott and Davy Russell. Appreciate It is on 10/3 for Mullins-Townend and we like the improving Stage Star who is a c&d winner on 10/1 from the Nicholls-Cobden team.
The Stayers' Hurdle is the feature of the afternoon with 11 runners and nothing between the top two in the market – Teahupoo Elliott-Russell and Blazing Khai C & P Byrnes. Our sort of roughie here is Klassical Dream for Mullins-Townend on 8/1.
Special mention here of the Gr 2 Mares' Novices' Hurdle named in memory of Jack de Bromhead, the trainer's son who was killed in a racing accident last year aged 13. Henry saddles 5 of the 21 runners here but the favourite comes from the Henderson yard, the unbeaten Luccia who looks special. She's on 3/2 and Nico de Boinville will ride. Lot of Joy for Mullins-Townend is on 5/1 and for the de Bromhead team we have gone for Foxy Girl with Racheal Blackmore on board. She has a modest win in a Limerick Maiden but has shown promise and Racheal Blackmore will ride and they are on 9/1.