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Three conditional jockeys to follow at Cheltenham Festival 2015

| 06.02.2015

As the Cheltenham Festival approaches it’s important to leave no stone unturned in the search for potential profit.

With this in mind, news.ladbrokes.com introduce three conditional jockeys who are likely to be worth their weight in gold come the greatest show on turf.

Disregard their mounts at your peril…

Lizzie Kelly (7lbs)

Don’t be put off by the racing media’s frankly patronising focus on the fact that Kelly ‘isn’t afraid to take on the boys’.

In the 2014/15 Jump Jockeys Championship only AP McCoy has a better strike rate from 18-plus rides than the south Devon native.

Her big-race chops are in little doubt after she added victory on well-backed Lanzarote Hurdle joint-favourite Tea For Two to her success in Haydock’s valuable Fixed Brush Hurdle on Aubusson this term.

That pair are 16/1 for the Neptune/Albert Bartlett and 40/1 for the World Hurdle respectively.

Claiming a hefty 7lbs it’s likely her agent will receive no shortage of phone calls with handicap mounts in mind as the festival approaches.

Sean Bowen (5lbs)

Welsh teenager Bowen is enjoying a high-profile second campaign thanks to his association with Paul Nicholls and has already struck twice at Prestbury Park.

He steered Mon Parrain to victory at Cheltenham days after riding a treble at Chepstow on Welsh National day.

Bowen’s 5lb claim is likely to remain intact come the festival after he sustained a shoulder injury when falling from Millborough in the North Yorkshire Grand National at Catterick, from which he is expected back soon.

The Nicholls-trained likes of Byrne Group plate fancy Caid Du Berlais are sure to benefit from this talented young pilot’s 5lb concession at the festival.

Gavin Sheehan

Attached to the Warren Greatrex yard, West Cork pilot Sheehan has long been highly thought off, being tipped for the top by Charlie Mann after a stellar sophomore season back in 2012/13.

Mann, a fine rider in his saladays, has been proven right in no small manner, with Sheehan champion conditional last season and well on the way to retaining his title.

His claim may have long since evaporated, but he’s riding out of his skin this term, with a 20 per cent strike rate.

Sheehan booted home the biggest winner of his career when Annacotty took the 2m5f Grade 3 handicap on Cheltenham trials day in January.

Boss Greatrex’s Shantou Bob looks his liveliest chance of a festival winner after finishing a nose second to Vyta Du Roc at Sandown earlier this term.

That rival went on finish a neck behind Neptune Novices Hurdle favourite Parlour Games next time out, making the conditional’s likely mount a nice-looking 33/1 shot.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Thomas Reynolds