Sprinter Sacre: racing's most exciting chaser is due to run at CheltenhamPICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
Cheltenham odds-on to be off on Saturday
CHELTENHAM needs temperatures to rise this week to stand any chance of staging Saturday's meeting, but Coral's odds compilers are not convinced and make the fixture odds-on to be abandoned.
The course is raceable, but the covers protecting it are covered in snow.
It is set to remain cold with occasional snow until Tuesday with milder weather forecast towards the weekend and rain on Saturday.
Cheltenham tweeted on Monday morning: "Course remains raceable under the covers, but need a thaw to shift the snow on top of the covers."
The meeting - due to feature red-hot Champion Chase favourite Sprinter Sacre and the return of 2010 Gold Cup winner Imperial Commander - is 4-6 to be off and 11-10 to be on with Coral.
At 4.15pm on Monday is was evens to go ahead and 5-6 to be cancelled on Betfair.
Entries for the card were revealed on Monday, although the Grade 1 Victor Chandler Chase, switched from Ascot on Saturday and the race Sprinter Sacre intends to run in, was reopened until noon on Tuesday.
Imperial Commader: has been absent since March 2011PICTURE: Martin Lynch
Tidal Bay, Bobs Worth, Imperial Commander and Grands Crus are among 14 engaged in the Grade 2 Argento Chase, while the Grade 2 Rewards4Racing Cleeve Hurdle attracted 16 entries including Tidal Bay, Peddlers Cross and Oscar Whisky.
The Giant Bolster, second in last year's Gold Cup, will not run in the Argento.
His owner Simon Hunt tweeted: "The Giant Bolster skips the Argento Saturday, will prep for the Denman [Chase] at Newbury, want to have him spot on for another crack at the Gold Cup."
Champion trainer Paul Nicholls has nine horses entered at Cheltenham on Saturday.
"Tidal Bay will probably run in the Argento although he is in the Cleeve as well," he told At The Races.
"I've left a couple of nice juveniles in, Irish Saint and Sametegal in the Triumph trial and I've got Sanctuaire in the Victor Chandler.
"I've had a thought of running Kauto Stone back over hurdles, so I've put him in the Cleeve Hurdle."