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2014 Arkle Chase tips - Champagne Fever ready to complete Festival treble

With all the hype surrounding Hurricane Fly and Quevega, Champagne Fever has slipped slightly under the radar today, but hopes are high that he can land a memorable Cheltenham Festival hat-trick in the Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase.

The flying grey had The New One and Jezki behind him when beating New Year's Eve in the 2012 Weatherbys Champion Bumper and then held off the challenge of My Tent Or Yours in last season's Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle.

He began his chasing career with a facile success at Punchestown but has a bit to prove at Prestbury Park after only finishing third to Defy Logic in the Grade One Racing Post Novice Chase at Leopardstown on Boxing Day, following a bad mistake at the second-last fence.

However, he bounced back from a below-par display at Naas last January to go on and claim his second Festival prize and the vibes coming from within the Willie Mullins camp suggest he is on course to make it a Cheltenham treble.

"I think his jumping is solid. He made a mistake, but he'll learn from that and I'd be hopeful he'll run a huge race," said the County Carlow trainer's son Patrick Mullins. "He's won there twice so he obviously handles the kind of conditions the track places you under."

Cheltenham clerk of the course Simon Claisse has kept the Prestbury going as good-to-soft, good in places, and insisted he is delighted with conditions for day one of the 2014 Festival.

Champagne Fever has proven versatile with regards the ground in the past and Ruby Walsh has no worries on that score or with his mount's well-being, although he does acknowledge a sound surface will suit one of his main market rivals Rock On Ruby.

"He had a disappointing run over hurdles last January at Naas, but then went to Cheltenham and won well," recalled Walsh of his charge. "We're happy with him. He's shown plenty of spark, he's schooled really well. It's a competitive race, Rock On Ruby is a Champion Hurdle winner, but I'm looking forward to it."


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2014 Arkle Chase tips - Champagne Fever ready to complete Festival treble

With all the hype surrounding Hurricane Fly and Quevega, Champagne Fever has slipped slightly under the radar today, but hopes are high that he can land a memorable Cheltenham Festival hat-trick in the Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase.

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