FIFTEEN Dorset horses will grace Prestbury Park when the Cheltenham Festival returns this afternoon (1.30pm).

This season, Sherborne-based Joe Tizzard has taken over the reins from father Colin at their Venn Farm Stables, while Lower Crockermoor handler Harry Fry carries five entries.

Up-and-coming west Dorset trainer Ben Clarke and Chris Barber also have shots at glory but well-known Dorset handlers Anthony Honeyball and Robert Walford have none.

So, who are the Dorset 15? Here, we give you a brief rundown of the county’s contenders.

Oscar Elite & The Big BreakawayUltima Handicap Chase – Joe Tizzard (today, 2.50pm) – 11/1 & 18/1 respectively

Dorset Echo: Oscar Elite is one of Dorset's best chances for victoryOscar Elite is one of Dorset's best chances for victory (Image: STEVEN PASTON/PA WIRE)

JOE Tizzard kicks off the Festival for Dorset in the third race of the day, with two runners.

READ MORE: Love Envoi wins for Harry Fry at Cheltenham Festival

Oscar Elite finished third in this race last year behind winner Corach Rambler and appears marginally the better chance for Tizzard ahead of The Big Breakaway.

Oscar Elite won at Ascot on his last outing in February, while The Big Breakaway finished second in the Welsh Grand National in December.

HoneysuckleMares’ Hurdle – Glanvilles Stud (today, 4.10pm) – 7/2

REIGNING Champion Hurdle holder Honeysuckle returns for another Cheltenham shot.

Bred by Doug Procter’s Glanvilles Stud near Sherborne, the superstar has been beaten into second and third on her last two outings but will be heavily backed again under the guidance of jockey Rachael Blackmore.

Love EnvoiMares’ Hurdle – Harry Fry (today, 4.10pm) – 9/1

Dorset Echo: Love Envoi goes for glory in the Mares' HurdleLove Envoi goes for glory in the Mares' Hurdle (Image: STEVEN PASTON/PA WIRE)

RIGHT behind Honeysuckle comes Harry Fry’s stable star Love Envoi, winner of the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle at last year’s Festival.

Love Envoi steps up in quality with grander ambitions and, with two wins from two this season, is Fry’s biggest chance of a winner.

Elixir De NutzGrand Annual Chase – Joe Tizzard (tomorrow, 4.50pm) – 16/1

DORSET’S sole runner on the second day is Elixir De Nutz for the Tizzards.

In what is quite an open race, form could be crucial and Elixir has not finished lower than second on each of his past three starts.

The Changing ManPertemps Handicap Hurdle – Joe Tizzard (Thursday, 2.10pm) – 28/1

BREAKING through this season, The Changing Man has two victories and three second-places in five races.

At the time of writing, he starts at an attractive price of 28/1 and could be worth following if the going hardens a little from its current rating of soft.

However, he’s never raced at Cheltenham before.

War LordMagners Plate – Joe Tizzard (Thursday, 4.10pm) – 25/1

FINISHING fourth in the Arkle at Cheltenham last year, War Lord is another who prefers good-to-soft ground.

Has the form if the going quickens but was pulled up at Cheltenham on soft ground in January.

Endless EscapeMares’ Novices’ Hurdle – Ben Clarke (Thursday, 4.50pm) – 33/1

POTENTIALLY one of the surprises of the Festival incoming here for promising Mosterton trainer Ben Clarke.

Endless Escape has won all four races this season over a variety of ground and courses. Definitely one to watch.

Dr KanangaKim Muir Handicap Case – Ben Clarke (Thursday, 5.30pm) – 40/1

Dorset Echo: Dr Kananga, right, is one of two shots for west Dorset ace Ben ClarkeDr Kananga, right, is one of two shots for west Dorset ace Ben Clarke (Image: NIGEL FRENCH/PA WIRE)

RACING under the name of the infamous James Bond villain, Dr Kananga will hope to forge a similarly fearsome reputation for Clarke.

Looks a tall ask for him though, with finishes of seventh and 16th over the 3m2f distance in his past two starts.

Gin Coco, Might I & MetierMcCoy Contractors County Hurdle – Harry Fry (Friday, 2.10pm) – 16/1, 33/1 & 50/1 respectively

HARRY Fry has three entries in this race, with the field of 52 yet to be whittled down at the time of writing.

Gin Coco appears Fry’s most realistic chance ahead of Might I and Metier, the latter running a disappointing race in the Supreme two years ago.

Gin Coco has been lightly raced this season, claiming a win and a second, and could be a stealthy each-way shot.

ScarfaceAlbert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle – Joe Tizzard (Friday, 2.50pm) – 100/1

TIZZARD’S penultimate runner, Scarface, is a massive outsider.

Has won two races under favouritism this season but uninspiring in the next two.

Eldorado AllenCheltenham Gold Cup – Joe Tizzard (Friday, 3.30pm) – 150/1

Dorset Echo: Eldorado Allen is Dorset's hope for Cheltenham Gold Cup historyEldorado Allen is Dorset's hope for Cheltenham Gold Cup history (Image: PA WIRE)

LAST a winner in February 2022, Eldorado Allen is the underdog in the blue riband Cheltenham Gold Cup.

Up against a high-class field, it would take a cataclysmic shock for Tizzard’s final mount to mix it with the favourites.

Tizzard's father Colin saddled Native River to victory in this illustrious race in 2018.

Famous ClermontSt James’s Place Hunters’ Chase – Chris Barber (Friday, 4.10pm) – 6/1

Dorset Echo: Dorset jockey-turned-trainer Chris Barber, rightDorset jockey-turned-trainer Chris Barber, right (Image: TIM HOLT)

SEABOROUGH trainer Chris Barber’s one and only chance in the Festival comes with Famous Clermont.

Has seven wins in 15 point-to-point races plus three victories over four Chase starts, and is dubbed one of Britain’s most exciting hunter chaser prospects.

Might IMartin Pipe Handicap Hurdle – Harry Fry (Friday, 5.30pm) – 10/1

HARRY Fry is expected to save Might I for this race, rather than the McCoy.

Highly-regarded as a possible winner by the Racing Post and has placed five times in six hurdle races.

*All prices and races correct at time of writing.