This is My Cheltenham Banker… What’s Yours?

It's interactive time again, dear reader, as the build up to the great Cheltenham Festival reaches its crescendo.

Yes, today, I'm going to nominate my Cheltenham Festival banker.

But, more than that, I want to know what your best bet of the meeting is, and why!

So, it's a short post from me, as I nominate Master Minded as my bombproof bet of the meeting. I wouldn't mind 1/2 on him winning if completing the course, having seen the way his Moses impression with the last fence at Newbury. It may not have been the Red Sea, but MM was clearly expecting that obstacle to cleft itself in twain and ensure his safe passage to the finish line.

There was a remarkable image of him in many of the Sunday papers, showing Ruby Walsh literally two feet above the horse, his feet still just about stirruped up, and his flabber well and truly gasted. That was more a case of an elastic band than a super glue job for Walsh to remain aboard.

For all that, Master Minded's fencing is generally impeccable, and he laughed at reasonable opposition that day. We can expect that the horse will have been a good 10-15% per cent of top match fitness that day, and we can also expect that he'll be tighter than anything you'll see on Muscle Beach a week today.

Master Minded is my idea of the best bet next week.

I have to say - and it worries me greatly that I fancy three odds on shots - I also really like the chances of Dunguib, though there are clearly unexposed horses against him; and Big Buck's, whose only danger looks to be the resurgent hurdles returner, Tidal Bay.

Kauto Star might also win, but I would be against him. (The bet there looks to be Nicholls to saddle the first three home at 6/1 with totesport. I don't really fancy Cooldine, and the champion handler has Kauto, Denman, My Will, Tricky Trickster and What A Friend engaged of the sixteen still in).

So, enough about me... What's your best bet, and why?

Your first 30 days for just £1
96 replies
  1. Mike G says:

    Kalahari King 5/1 Queen Mother Chase

    I think Ferdy Murphy has primed him for this race, after only one impressive victory this season.

  2. Seaside Owen says:

    If your talking about a banker it has to be Kauto Star @ 4/5 whatever the ground I think the level of his King George performance makes him good value. He has learnt how to keep his concentration over the last fence, his nearest rival Denman just does not seem up to his mark. Kauto Star history in the making.

  3. General says:

    Agree with Seaside, after his King George demolition job, Kauto Star has only to replicate his Gold Cup win of last year to win in 2010.

  4. Joe Q says:

    Tranquil Sea in the Ryanair at 9/2. Has won around Cheltenham, is in tip top form and is trained by one of the shrewdest trainers in the business!

  5. ron.goodall says:

    to matt
    i agree with mike g
    kalahari king ferdy murphy knows the time of day he his in my tote
    ten to follow oscar whisky should go close as well
    regards ron goodall

  6. Jon says:

    Quevega. She’s been off the track for the last year but what can beat her? Even if she runs to within 15 lengths of her win last year she wins again.

  7. ken weall says:

    garde champetre in the crooss country and lami will be second they are cross country specialists

  8. Darrin says:

    Hi Matt

    I am with you with Master Minded and Big Bucks and that will be my double. Not sure about Dunguib as all sorts of stats seem to be against him. Still the most likely winner though.

    I think that MM will win by over 5 lengths and that is my bet for that race. Paul Nicholls likes to prove a point and get his superstars the best possible rating so expect him to be pushed out to the line. Exacta with Kalahari King also looks good.

    Can’t wait and will be there for all 4 days. Magic.

    Good luck to everyone with their fancies.

    Cheers Darrin

  9. Luckylennox says:

    Mister McGoldrick is my banker, only because it is a tip from a guy who has a great record of tips from stables. Not many tips, not very often, but quality almost every time.


  10. Steve says:

    I can’t see anything beating Big Buck’s.

    Also, Garde Champetre looks a likely winner.

  11. john cutler says:

    Least you all forget things do not always go as quiyte to plan then afterwards people say should have known somethink like this would happen.#

    Kauto star great horse when on the job my concern AGE beats the bestof them is this (French Bredmature early decline sooner) Denman last year had a heart murmer no mention of murmer this year?

    My horse to beat them is value Imperial Commander

    Also look back & see who i put up to win the Champion Hurdle
    (Go Native 33/1) my lucky race or what.

  12. MaxFax says:

    Dunguib for me, if a newcomer beats him then it’s going to have to be a remarkable animal and we,ve of no trainers singing the praises of such a beast, so far

  13. John Evans says:

    Hi Matt,
    I have 3 in mind,but I am waiting for the weekend Decs.
    John Evans.

  14. MICHAEL ELSE says:

    Hi Matt,

    I agree entirely with you about Masterminded and the 5/2 bet I have had seems very good now, also got 5/2/on Kauto, happy days hopefully. The big outsider I fancy is Bedlam Boy in te Arkle, backed him E/W @ 66/1. Triumph hurdle hope is Carlito Brigante at 12/1 and also good E/W bet on The Betchworth Kid 14/1 in the Albert Bartlett. Roll on Cheltenham as I will be there for the Thursday & Friday extravaganza. Good luck to all who have a bet next week.

  15. Graham says:

    I love Kauto to bits but as Denman is so unpredictable he has to be worth an each way punt now. Dunguib has to be my banker though and I agree with John the paddypower makes him a good bet.

  16. neil dawkins says:

    For me Punjabi is NAP material, never hits best form until this time of year, tough as old boots, was on at 16-1 , still think 8-1 is a very good bet. Will place for sure.

    Actual BANKER eg life depends on it Kauto Star.
    Best longer priced Turthen in the Foxhunters 16-1 mental price

  17. Ejay says:

    My idea of a Cheltenham Banker is Denham especially if there is some rain. I also fancy Punjabi and Kandari

  18. paul says:

    In the main all the above comments are complete rubbish and it’s this sort of thinking that ensures the bookies win at this meeting year after year.Dunguib can’t jump they know he can’t and that’s why he is going for this race but he won’t win it does anybody remember the same Paddy Power special on this race last year? Go Native, does anybody really think this horse will out battle Punjabi and Merdemit and Celestial Halo going up the hill of course he wont,When was the last time the Supreme Novice won the Champion? Kauto Star can’t and will not go on forever he has never clocked near a fully tuned Denman and would not be a Banker for me,what happened last time they were both fit and well and met in the Gold Cup?Masterminded well you only have to read what the Corals Odds Compiler wrote in last saturdays racing post he’s not banker material.As I see things the only banker of the meeting is Big Bucks.Did I really see Solwhit and Tataniano above they won’t even make it there will they.
    All the Best

  19. Kevin says:

    Albertas Run for the Ryan Air as long as Cheltenham don’t over water. He is very ground dependant but his second to Kauto Star in the King George ’08 and his Ascot win mean I retain my faith in him.

    Forpadydeplasterer in the QM is my e/w banker. All his wins except one came in large fields, 17+, and the strong pace of the QM will show him in a good light again.

  20. John says:

    Easy peasy!!! Is that a baby with candy i see????????????????? Denman Evs a place Yehaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa Thank you God!!!!!!!

  21. bernie says:

    somersby+oscar whiskey h knight has another good horse
    n henderson will have a good meet

  22. alan says:

    Dunguib ! yes the very fact that PP. have this offer on tells you all you need to know,they don,t give much away!

  23. mark says:

    Denman for me

    Just because of ond poor run to many punters have written him off, so he will be the best value eachway bet of the festival.

  24. brian dennis says:

    Denman but only if given a front running ride Even though not Sure if mccoys style is suited 100%

  25. geoff says:

    Big Bucks and Garde Champtre for a double then follow A King, N Henderson and D Pipe and lay Mc Coy.
    Avoid short priced favs but don’t stray outside the first five in the betting unless its a King or Pipe horse.
    I like the idea of a Nichols 1.2.3 for the gold cup at 6/1 Good shout that man.
    My mother follows double letters so Master Minded must come back and don’t forget the Irish. Shinrock Paddy, Novice Hurdle, Carlito Brigante (triumph hdle) and Sizing Mexico in the Bumper.
    Now dip your bread in all that gravy

  26. David Robertson says:

    Sizing Australia in that funny race with the hedges. Not got much to beat

  27. Steve M says:

    Barbers Shop in the Ryanair 2m 5f round Cheltenham will be perfect no ground worries and his excellent 3rd in the King George reads really well!

  28. Wilson says:

    If Dunguib jumps like he’s done in his other races – he cant win!
    jimmy – Tataniano is a non runner.
    The bet of the meeting is Go Native – will get the run of the race, will cruise through the field and win 5L.
    Another to watch for is THE HOLLINWELL -130 Thursday – laid out for the race.
    Just Like to wish everyone all the best for next week.

  29. rob says:

    the best banker at cheltenham is the festival trends tips,here,s hoping for another 33/1 nap,eh matt
    p.s any chance of a freebie next year for plugging it LOL.

  30. Ian Synnott says:

    Hi Matt,

    Just in response to ‘Paul’ up above – I don’t agree with your thoughts on Dunguib. Yes he’s not the best of jumpers but if he stays standing then he will absolutely walk this race. The fact the bookies were going 5/1 about him winning the Champion Hurdle is saying alot. He’s got an absolute collosal engine and is in a different league to Cousin Vinny in this regard. BANKER!!
    Also… The World Hurdle is surely a formality for Big Bucks. I cannot see a 9yo Tidal Bay taking his crown. Double them up is my bet!!!

  31. Nathan says:

    Hi Matt

    Sorry to sound predicatable but looking at the way Kauto and Master Minded won their last races – nothing is getting near either of them

    Particuarly happy with the 33/1 antepost on Merdermit although that will be a tough race. Like Cel Halo alot in that race too…..

    Good luck to all – can’t wait!

  32. William says:

    Well i’ll be waiting just a little longer to be scoffing on my ”main bet of the meeting” but as a selection for hopefully winning then its ANY CURRENCY, on the 1st or 2nd day, all the best to everyone.

  33. Dave Proc says:

    Quel Esprit for the Neptune Hurdle……Banker after running well last year .

  34. Dave says:

    Denman may not be a banker but at 5.3 on Betfair he looks to be the best value by a long way. If you were just looking at his Hennessey run he would only be odds against because of Kauto’s massive (deserved) fan base. Remember last year he was second despite Nicholls admitting he was 2 weeks short of full fitness after his heart scare. No such health scares this year, just a duff run under a new jockey (even if he is the greatest of all time). Can’t see Big Buck’s or Masterminded loosing.

  35. Peter Hodges says:

    Somersby and Big Bucks are my bankers of the meeting Matt, but the horse I’m looking forward to most is Knockara Beau in the RSA chase. He’s got the most experience over fences of this lot, and he’s never been out of the first two in seven runs. Looks an each way steal at 33/1 .

  36. Joe Ryan says:

    Kauto Star is my banker and i have a hunch that Kandari will run well in the Vincent o’Brien County Hurgle. You have been told.

  37. Jason Browne says:

    Medermit at 15/2 is a great value bet imo. More than twice the price of Go Native & came close to beating him here last year. Also Go Native has the days absence stat to overcome.

  38. Gary says:

    not interested in any of the short stuff as a punting proposition,if its not double figures its not worth betting.Hoping Pigeon Island gets into Jewson he’s 40/1 at the moment but needs a few to drop out if he does get in he’s a must ew.

  39. john cutts says:

    i agree with neil and derrick, PUNJABI. It will be interesting to see who Geraghty picks. stats people will know that title defenders are 2/10 , 7yo + 8yo 7/55, ( 7yo 4/31) and 1st 2 LTO 9/10 ( 8 won ). when combined with 1st 6 in betting 8/10, this leaves Punjabi and Solwhit ( latter lacks festival, indeed chelt form ). 8/1 great value i think.

    Kauto will be hailed the new Arkle ! Check the times for the last 2 Gold Cups, Kauto won in a time 7 secs faster than Denman ( i know you have to make allowances for the going but……. )

  40. sim says:

    Hi Matt,
    Still havent decided my banker yet, but with the dunguib offer, it’s obvious pp think that rite of passage will win the supreme as they are 5’s when you can get 10’s elsewhere, do they know something the rest of us dont.

  41. Carl says:

    Any Currency second day The trainer couldn t be happier with the horse will win on way to next seasons target of the grand national this horse stays forever……….

  42. Tim says:

    Not followed racing for that many years but I know there are no Jodrells at Cheltenham. Sports Line in the Arkle may be worth a punt.

  43. Jim says:

    Punjabi is my main hope for the meeting. I backed him each way at 33/1 2 years ago and when he won last year at 22/1 even after hitting the last hurdle (thanks again for the mini-site videos, Matt).
    This year he has again been ignored and I will be backing him to win.
    Skybet are offering 14/1 against a Nicky Henderson 1st and 2nd and I may just have a little of that as well.

    Good punting to one and all.

  44. paul says:

    Just a note re johns above comment on Kauto Stars time please do not quote rubbish it may only mislead people Denman recorded a Racing Post top speed figure of 178 in 2008 kauto’s best is 172 when he won last year.
    All the Best

    • Matt Bisogno says:

      Now steady on Paul. This is a polite society, as you’ll have noticed by the good wishes shared amongst contributors.

      It’s fine to disagree. It’s also fine to wear your disagreement in a slightly more communal and, dare I say it, engaging fashion. 😉


  45. Ger says:

    If the ground drys up to good or better and Rite of Passge stands his ground I will lay Dungib.

  46. david w says:

    I’m sweet on medermit (55’s on betfair, 33’s and 25’s e/w elsewhere!) as I too can’t see go native outstaying that one…place money is fine at those prices
    And everyone still seems to be ignoring poor poquelin (even though he’s a worthy fav)

    Good luck to all

  47. paul says:

    al ferof each way in the champion bumper.Tough race with the usual many unexposed but already has a good level of form in the book.Bought by current owner and put with Paul Nicholls after winning at Fairyhouse before winning at Newbury.

  48. paul says:

    I think Matt is right I will have to watch my Ps and Qs I just naturally assume everyone is as thick skinned as I am.Anyway, anybody thinking of backing Rite Of Passage might want to nibble away at the 64/1 available on betfair.

  49. Bobzy says:

    I have it on good authority that Babysitter in the 4:40 on the Friday is confidently entered into this race. well worth an each way as in excess of 25/1

  50. David says:

    Ferdy Murphy’s The Hollinwell in the Jewson. Up in class but Ferdy knows the time of day @ Cheltenham. Look out for Le Burf in the Festival Plate @ 40/1 Ladbrokes. Thats a nice little ew double

  51. jon says:

    master minded closest thing to a dead cert, just a tip for anyone who is betting against Dunguib paddy power are doing a money back special if Dunguib wins they will refund losing bets up to £200, but please read the terms and conditions first!!! hope thats ok to put on the post matt dont want anyone accusing me of advertising lol just doing my good deed for the day

    Jon (bristol)

  52. richard dymond says:

    My banker is Master Minded. I backed him at 7/4 because I felt the market overreacted to his injury after his run at Cheltenham in November.
    I was in no doubt that Paul Nicholls would have him spot on come the big day.
    Good Luck to all

  53. SEAN says:


    QUEL ESPRIT for me, this is Willy Mullins charity bet for the festival and is Rubys choice for the race.

    SANCTUAIRE in the Fred Winter, another charity tip.

    A 59/1 double 🙂

  54. kevin hogan says:

    premier victory in the mares race, outstanding each way value at 20/1. second to a primed western leader when only 80%,has come on a ton since the race at thurles. shark hanlon rates western leader as far superior to luska lad and with doubts over quevega and colm murphys mare as talented as she is ,she will not stay 2.4 miles at cheltenham at championship pace. premier victory goes on any ground and will run a big race

  55. john murray says:

    dear matt,
    you have opened a hornets nest here my man. well i have one not mentioned so far, the horse is poquelin (hope thats the correct spelling) all i can say is it comes from a very good source.

  56. terence says:

    hi matt i like the way u do it ! easy strait to the pt &easy to flw i will let u know how i get on regards terry.

  57. Darren says:

    With the drying ground i fancy Fair Along Each Way for the World Hurdle Goes well Fresh been slogging it out in good races on unsuitable ground and prefers to here his feet rattle @ 80/1 must be worth a squeak

  58. Matt Bisogno says:

    Brilliant! 🙂 🙂

    90 odd comments, and 41 different banker horses.

    THAT’S why Cheltenham is the #1 Festival on the planet, by a country mile!


    p.s. I’m growing very strong on Notus De La Tour e/w in the Fred Winter. Make that 42…!

  59. karen says:

    hi guys.

    agree with paul….i like a dispute!

    forpaddytheplasterer for me….and punjabi also backed him on betfair at massive price last year…agree about dunguib…gotta have proven jumping and tataniano isnt in the arkle anymore as they dont think hes good enough! denman for me

  60. Steve M says:

    Dunguib in the opener may be a good thing in many peoples books and that my be the case, but take a look at Inventor who currently is on offer at 66/1.

    This ex flat racer is well over priced at these odds and will definately be running on when other’s have cried enough and cannot be ignored to run in to a place!

    You have been advised!

  61. mark says:

    Medermit and Captain Cee Bee for me. Both have big engines
    can cruise up with pace and battle when the going gets tough.

    Also like Barwell Bridge and Olofi each way depending on which race they end up in

    be lucky

  62. kevin g says:

    Bankers – Kalahari King/Go Native, likely outsider,Bothy in the Triumph Hurdle. Hope everyone has a profitable Festival !!!

  63. MJ says:

    Was told last year that Dunguib is the best horse Fenton has ever seen and all the big boys in Ireland want to buy him!!! That says it all in my mind.
    Big Bucks also.

  64. david w says:

    re: john murray

    think you’ll find i mentioned poquelin and backed accordingly at 12, 8 and 6-1!!!
    nice to know someone finally agrees with me though!

Comments are closed.