CHELTENHAM – MARCH 14
Last year’s corresponding toteplacepot dividend:
2016: £38.90 (6 favourites – 3 winners – 1 placed – 2 unplaced)
Tuesday's Placepot permutation at Cheltenham:
Leg 1 (1.30): 12 (Melon), 14 (River Wylde) & 9 (High Bridge)
Leg 2 (2.10): 2 (Altior) & 3 (Charbel)
Leg 3 (2.50): 18 (Singlefarmpayment), 10 (Junction Fourteen), 9 (Holywell) & 1 (Un Temps Por Tout)
Leg 4 (3.30): 12 (Yanworth) & 6 (Moon Racer)
Leg 5 (4.10): 10 (Limini) & 18 (Vroum Vroum Mag)
Leg 6 (4.50): 1 (A Genie In Abottle), 10 (Edwulf), 3 (Arpege D’Alene) & 5 (Bells N Banjos)
Suggested stake: 384 bets to 10p stakes
Overview for Tuesday - please scroll down to the bottom of the page
1.30: Two things to say before I light the blue touch paper. Firstly with four different courses to race on, the relevant course winners listed under each race have not been identified as C/D winners at Cheltenham this week because of the different 'routes' relating to so many horses and events. Secondly, the ground has dried up sufficiently for those damned bookmakers to go into the week with an edge, after so many prep races have been contested on bad ground. Upwards and onward by revealing that five and six-year-olds have won 13 of the last 14 renewals of this opening event between them, securing 38/42 each way/toteplacepot positions during the study period. MELON is the latest ‘talking horse’ from the Willie Mullins yard in the opening race of the week and whilst it seems that I am conditioned to include the Irish raider in my Placepot mix, RIVER WYLDE and HIGH BRIDGE are ‘preferred’ from a value for money perspective. Willie and Nicky Henderson (RIVER WYLDE and Beyond conceit) lead the way during the last decade with two winners apiece in this event which is as close as you can get to a ‘cavalry charge’ over a two mile trip!
Favourite factor: Fate of recent favourites: 24 market leaders—5 winners—8 placed—11 unplaced. First three in the betting: 68 runners--12 winners--20 placed--36 unplaced.
Cheltenham record of course winners in the 'Supreme Novices':
2/3—Ballyandy (good & good to soft)
2.10: The way that runners fall by the wayside through injury etc., makes it a crying shame from my viewpoint that we have been denied a dual between ALTIOR and Douvan in Wednesday’s Champion Chase, though naturally (and rightly), owners have the last word, however bullish trainers might be one way or the other. With Nicky Henderson of course, we know that he thinks first and foremost of the welfare of the horses in his care whereby his might have been the final decision and if so, it’s hardly surprising that he wants his connections to win very decent price money without taking too many risks at this stage of Altior’s career. Back on the racing front, CHARBEL is fancied to follow the favourite home (as he did recently at Sandown), albeit at a respectable distance.
Favourite factor: Fate of recent favourites: 22 market leaders—6 winners—6 placed—10 unplaced. First three in the betting: 67 runners--13 winners--18 placed--36 unplaced.
Cheltenham record of course winners in the 'Arkle':
1/3—A Hare Breath (good)
2/2—Altior (2 x good to soft)
2.50: Fourteen of the last eighteen winners carried a maximum burden of 10-12 whereby the victory of UN TEMPS PUR TOUT twelve months ago off 11-7 is all the more impressive. David Pipe has offered the green light again, albeit an additional five pounds will be carried this time around. HOLYWELL is twelve pounds better off for the relevant seven length defeat in the race last year when Jonjo’s raider finished second, finishing well clear of the remainder of the field. There should not be a great deal of daylight between the pair again and yes, there is a chance that they could dominate proceedings. Whether that will be possible with the concession of weight SINGLEFARMPAYMENT is another matter altogether. Others for consideration include NOBLE ENDEAVOUR and Emma Lavelle’s overpriced raider JUNCTION FOURTEEN.
Favourite factor: Fate of recent favourites: 26 market leaders—1 winner—11 placed—14 unplaced. First three in the betting: 68 runners--9 winners--18 places--41 unplaced.
Cheltenham record of course winners in the Handicap Chase:
1/6—Un Temps Pour Tout (good to soft)
1/7—Theatre Guide (good)
1/1—Vincente De Noyer (good to soft)
3/11—Annacotty (good to soft – soft – heavy)
1/5—The Young Master (good)
2/4—Holywell (2 x good to soft)
1/6—The Druid’s Nephew (good to soft)
1/3—Ibis Du Rheu (good)
1/7—Caid Du Berlais (soft)
2/3—Singlefarmpayment (good & heavy)
1/6—A Good Skin (good)
3.30: With so much positive talk hailing from the Yanworth camp, punters who took around 3/1 for Alan King’s raider recently can feel pleased with themselves as if the hype continues into Tuesday, as there is a chance that the seven-year-old could be sent off as short at 15/8 in my book. Certainly, I believe that if YANWORTH is to become the new champion, his price will be veering that way rather than towards the 11/4 mark which the trade press has opted for at the time of writing. Either way, YANWORTH looks sure to figure prominently, though the 3/3 ratio offered by MOON RACER at Cheltenham suggest that the David Pipe team are right to ‘go for broke’ as opposed to taking easier options at the Festival. THE NEW ONE will struggle to win for well documented reasons, though his 16/1 quote in a place makes for interesting each way reading for those that want a genuine run for their money on an outsider. The ground looks like being too lively for Buveur D’Air, whereby Brain Power could contest minor honours with The New One.
Favourite factor: Fate of recent favourites: 23 market leaders—9 winners—6 placed—8 unplaced. First three in the betting: 66 runners--10 winners--24 placed--32 unplaced.
Cheltenham record of course winners in the 'Champion Hurdle':
3/3—Moon Racer (good – good to soft – soft)
2/3—Sceau Royal (good & soft)
6/11—The New One (4 x good to soft – good – soft)
1/2—Wicklow Brave (soft)
4.10: Plenty of respect has to be paid to the Gordon Elliott raider Apple’s Jade but with Willie Mullins having won eight of the nine renewals of this event for mares, the chances for LIMINI and VROUM VROUM MAG are there for all to see. I guess that Willie might be a little miffed that the pair have to clash at this stage but as long as he lands the forecast between the pair, the trainer will be happy enough. Lifeboat Mona is the ‘optimistic’ hope that runners this side of the Irish Sea might be able to swag some prize money, though I wouldn’t bank on it. I’ll let you decide between the Irish trio, swerving any possible blame, a stance which seems to be in evidence so much in our country (the world over) these days!
Favourite factor: The nine favourites have snared six golds and one bronze medal to date, impressive stats that would have looked even better but for the fall at the last flight of Annie Power two years ago with the race at her mercy.
Cheltenham record of course winners in the 'Mares Hurdle':
1/6—Briery Queen (soft)
1/1—Indian Stream (good)
1/4—Rons Dream (good to soft)
1/1—Vroum Vroum Mag (good to soft)
4.50: Seven-year-olds have won six of the last twelve contests and I have win and place notions about ARPEGE D’ALENE and even BELLS N BANJOS at the exhilarating price of 50/1 representing the Fergal O’Brien team that never turn their back on a challenge, however much layers dismiss their chances, a stance which has cost them plenty of money ay Cheltenham in recent years. That said, GENIE IN ABOTTLE, EDWULF and FLINTHAM have terrific pilots on their side here, which cannot be ignored in this type of (amateur) event.
Favourite factor: Fate of recent favourites: 22 market leaders—5 winners—4 placed—13 unplaced. First three in the betting: 69 runners--8 winners--14 placed--47 unplaced.
Cheltenham record of course winners in the 'NH Chase':
1/5—Champers On Ice (heavy)
1/2—Martello Tower (soft)
2/4—Tiger Roll (good & good to soft)
1/1—What A Moment (good)
All place details offered on my pages relate to an 'exact science', whereby horses that finish third in 5/6/7 runner races (and other such scenarios) are not 'placed' regarding my statistics.
Trainers with their relevant number of runners on the Cheltenham card on Tuesday – followed by their five year ratio at the track + profits/losses accrued:
11—Willie Mullins (1/2 – slight loss)
9—Nicky Henderson (4/36 – loss of 18 points)
8—Henry De Bromhead (1/9 – loss of 2 points)
8—Alan King (3/23 – loss of 4 points)
5—Gordon Elliott (0/8)
5—Neil Mulholland (2/12 – loss of 6 points)
5—Nigel Twiston-Davies (7/33 – Profit of 1 point)
4—Paul Nicholls (6/45 – loss of 13 points)
4—David Pipe (2/18 – loss of 5 points)
4—Dan Shelton (4/36 – loss of 18 points)
4—Colin Tizzard (6/42 – Profit of 20 points)
3—Tom George (2/10 – loss of 6 points)
3—Malcolm Jefferson (0/1)
3—Venetia Williams (0/9)
2—Peter Bowen (0/5)
2—Rebecca Curtis (1/13 – Profit of 8 points)
2—Fergal O’Brien (3/19 – Profit of 4 points)
2—Noel Meade (No previous runners this season)
2—Jonjo O’Neill (3/24 (Profit of 25 points)
2—Ben Pauling (0/12)
+ 27 different trainers who each saddle just one runner on the card
115 declared runners
General overview - Corresponding Placepot dividends from last year:
Sedgefield: £153.00 – 3 winners & 3 unplaced
Southwell: £152.40 – 5 favourites – 2 winners – 2 placed – 1 unplaced (1 non-runner - second favourite in the relevant contest was unplaced; hence the good dividend)
Wolverhampton: £25.50 – 7 favourites – 2 winners – 4 placed – 1 unplaced