TWO of the horses I highlighted among half a dozen to follow this season - one of them a tremendous winner at Bangor-on-Dee - are well fancied for Cheltenham Festival success next week.
It's the first-ever four-day festival, and up to 200,000 people will pack a racecourse that is one of only three in Britain to enjoy larger average crowds than the Roodee.
Comply Or Die won his debut over fences in the Rensburg Beginners' Chase at the Bangor-on-Dee Race-course in October. It was an excellent performance.
Champion Trainer Martin Pipe has been easy on him since a fall at the end of the following month, but punters are now putting plenty of money on the horse to win the Royal & SunAlliance Novices' Chase on the second day of the festival. If the market leader Ollie Magern goes for the Gold Cup instead, Comply Or Die may well be sent off as favourite come the day.
Our Vic was another Martin Pipe horse I suggested would have a fine season. In December he also had a bad fall, but is now a short-priced favourite for a new steeplechase at the festival - the Daily Telegraph Trophy - run over two miles and five furlongs.
The grip that Cheshire's two Grand National horses have at the top of the Aintree betting market tightened following the injury to race favourite Silver Birch.
The Welsh National winner, trained by Paul Nicholls in Somerset, was due to have raced at Bangor-on-Dee on Wednesday this week but is now ruled out for the season.
Amberleigh House, whose run at Doncaster last weekend pleased Cholmondeley trainer Ginger Mc-Cain, is now 12-1 and Forest Gunner, from Richard Ford's Tarporley yard, is 16-1. nRacing at Bangor-on-Dee Race-course today starts at 2.10pm. The last race is due off at 5.10pm.
A free bus service runs from Wrexham Station to the racecourse at 12.40pm and returns after racing from the racecourse. Racegoers with railway tickets have priority.
Admission to the Course Enclosure is £7, while the Paddock Enclosure is £14. Accompanied children enter free.
More information is available on www.BangorOnDeeRaces.co.uk or contact the racecourse on 01978 780323.
* The next racing at The Roodee is the three-day May Festival starting on Wednesday, May 4. Tickets are on sale.
More information is available on www.chester-races.co.uk.