Tag Archives: Cheltenham Festival

Cheltenham Gold Cup Puzzle Looks Tough to Solve

The Cheltenham Festival is the centerpiece of national hunt racing in the UK and Ireland. The biggest race of the entire week is without a doubt the Cheltenham Gold Cup, a race that racing fans and punter savior. This Cheltenham horse race attracts excitement and attention, and the 2020 renewal is no different.

The standout feature of the Cheltenham Gold Cup so far is how wide open it looks. By now in most years we have had a strong favorite who has shown ability far superior to those in opposition. However, with holes to pick in most form lines, and horses impressing before disappointing or the other way around, this could be the most open Gold Cup we have seen for years.

That will please punters betting on the race, who will be able to get good value on the selections they fancy. Those with free Cheltenham bets will be able to spend them on this race and get a big price, rather than backing an odds-on favorite like we will have in some other races at the meeting.

Free bets are a great way for punters to bet at the Cheltenham Festival and there will be many free bets in the UK on offer for the upcoming horse racing. The Cheltenham Gold Cup is the pinnacle of the national hunt calendar, and a huge betting heat that everyone wants to be involved with.

Who Are the Main Cheltenham Gold Cup Contenders?

You will find many household names in this Cheltenham horse race, with plenty of fan-favorites taking to the track. With many horses coming back year after year to run in this race again, they quickly become adored by the public and this is one of the main reasons why the love for this race is so strong.

Ireland Holds Strong Hand to Win Another Gold Cup

Willie Mullins, who trains in Ireland, holds a strong hand here, with both the winner from last season and one of the most talked about horses from last season both expected to line up. Al Boum Photo won the race last season and he is set to defend his crown after returning with an impressive win at Tramore over the Christmas period.

While his victory in the race last season was a surprise to some, he was foot perfect on the day, relished the stiff finish of the Cheltenham course and demands plenty of respect going back there as the champion.

His stablemate Kemboy also ran in the Gold Cup of 2019, but unseated his rider early in the race which prevented him from getting involved. The rest of his form is top class though, and includes a win against Al Boum Photo after the Cheltenham Gold Cup last year as well as a win at Aintree where he beat King George dual winner Clan Des Obeaux.

He has only been seen once this season and was disappointing when only managing to finish fourth at Leopardstown but he is clearly a high quality horse on his day who could take a lot of beating.

Nicholls and Tizzard Lead British Challenge

We have just mentioned Clan Des Obeaux, and he is another in with a chance this season. The Paul Nicholls trained runner will have landed many winning free bets for punters when landing his two King George titles, but can he win a Gold Cup? He struggled to get home over the distance of 3m2f last year and seems to need a flat three miles to be seen at his very best which is a worry for him.

There is no doubt that this horse is full of class, and if terms of ability he could well be the best horse in the race. However, the test of a Cheltenham Gold Cup over 3m2f and on a stiff track is not what he needs, and for that reason there will be many who think he simply cannot win the big one, no matter how good he is over shorter.

The youngster emerging as a star horse is definitely Lostintranslation, though he has to bounce back from a disappointing run in the King George. He was excellent as a novice last season and backed that up with a win in the Betfair Chase at Haydock in November to show he is the real deal.

However, he was pulled up when running poorly in the King George, and that does leave a question mark over his name. He is the ideal Gold Cup horse, which is a big positive, and unlike Clan Des Obeaux, he needs the stamina test of a Gold Cup to be seen at his best.

He will head straight to the race without a prep run, but if you can forgive him his run in the King George, he is the one horse in this field who could go on to win multiple Gold Cups as he is still only a youngster.

Those with free Cheltenham bets to spend will have their favorite from the field of runners, but so far, the general feeling is that this race is wide open.

Cheltenham 2019: Three to Watch as We Approach the Festival

It’s now fewer than three weeks until the 2019 Cheltenham Festival (12th-15th March). For some of Britain and Ireland’s top trainers, the date can’t come quickly enough. For others, one would think, an extra few weeks of preparation would be most welcome. The equine flu outbreak hasn’t really hampered preparations in the way it was first feared, but other more familiar issues, like form and injury, have blighted some trainers.

In light of that, we take a look at some horses who will be worth keeping an eye on at the Festival, including those who might need to dig very deep to tackle a challenge of a lifetime.

Min

Let’s give this a little bit of context: If everything went to plan, Altior, the 2018 Champion Chase winner and seemingly unbeatable superstar, would be lining up against Footpad, the young pretender and 2018 Arkle Chase winner. That still may be the case, but Footpad has not yet found the form we all hoped he would this season. It now seems like Min, who has finished runner-up to Altior twice before at Cheltenham, will have another crack at the champion. Will it be third time lucky? The form book says no: Altior is odds-on at 4/11 with Bet365, whereas Min can be found at 8/1 with Betfair. However, Min is a gutsy, wonderful horse in his own right, who has it in him to pull one out of the bag when it matters. Consensus says no, but consensus is often wrong in horse racing.

Clan Des Obeaux

The Gold Cup is really open this year, so check out Cheltenham betting offers, such as free bets and matched offers, before you part with any money, because there are at least 10 candidates with really reasonable claims on Cheltenham’s most prestigious prize. However, one horse who seems to have juggernaut-like momentum is Clan Des Obeaux. Before Christmas, he wasn’t even being talked about as any sort of contender. Yet his win in the King George VI Chase, coupled with a brilliant run at Ascot last week, has pushed his star higher and higher. Clan Des Obeaux has odds of 9/2 from Sportingbet for the Gold Cup, just trailing Presenting Percy who is on 11/4. There is a real sense that those positions will be reversed by race day.

Laurina

How many times have we seen the focus go on the wrong horses down the years in racing? Everyone is talking about the potential scrap for the Champion Hurdle between Buveur D’Air and Apple’s Jade. The pair is locked as co-favourites at 2/1 with Betfair, although the majority of sportsbooks prefer the older gelding and two-time winner, Buveur D’Air. In truth, it’s a thrilling match-up, with Buveur’s experience being offset by the weight allowance given to mares like Apple’s Jade.

However, Laurina, a younger mare, is sitting stubbornly behind them in the betting markets, best-priced at 9/2. The thing is, most thought the conventional wisdom would be to send Laurina to the Mares’ Hurdle, then perhaps have a crack at this next year, when she is older and more experienced. Willie Mullins thinks otherwise, and as a man who has won this race with a mare before, you would be inclined to have faith in him. Anyone who has doubted the most successful trainer at the Festival in the past has looked foolish, so take note.

Cheltenham Festival: New Rules Will Restrict Horses to Just a Single Appearance in 2019

Photo source: Racing Post via Twitter.

The BHA have made a number of small tweaks ahead of the 2019 Cheltenham Festival with horses now being limited to just one appearance at Prestbury Park. It is a decision which has not been unanimously welcomed by trainers, but it does appear to be a sensible move from the authorities. It is rare to see a competitor doubling up during the four-day festival; however, this new governance is designed to provide greater clarity for horse-racing punters.

Announced at the beginning of February, the new ruling is one of a number of alterations which have been introduced ahead of the 2019 Cheltenham Festival. A small reshuffle in the race order will see the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockey’s Handicap bring the curtain down on another four days of high-octane action in Gloucestershire, with the Grand Annual now taking place on the Thursday. The National Hunt Chase and the Close Brothers Novice’s Handicap Chase will also swap places on Tuesday’s card. The second-last fence on the old course will also be moved in order to give competitors a greater run-up to the obstacle.

However, it is the declaration change which has caused the biggest stir amongst the training fraternity and this new rule appears to have thoroughly divided opinion. Many handlers believed that Cheltenham did not need to act and that they should be solely responsible for their horses’ welfare. Trainers will now be prohibited from entering their horse into multiple events, with many of the top yards having the tendency to declare their stable stars for two or three different races. This had allowed them to make a decision on the day itself; however, it also resulted in several non-runners throughout the festival.

Many National Hunt stars are hardy competitors and the possibility of a quick turnaround is perfectly plausible, but the new ruling will no longer allow this to happen. In 2004, Our Armageddon pulled up in the Arkle, but made his re-appearance just days later in the Cathcart Chase and easily saw off the threat of Iris Rose to land the spoils for trainer Richard Guest.

Source: Racing Post via Twitter

Several horses were declared for multiple races in 2018, with Richard Hobson’s Shantou Flyer running in the Ultima Handicap on the opening day before subsequently entering the reckoning for Friday’s Gold Cup. The nine-year old was eventually aimed at the Randox Health Grand National instead, but connections believed that he would have more than held his own in the hugely competitive final-day contest. Hobson’s charge is in the betting for this year’s Foxhunters Chase and is currently priced at 14/1. This race will be held on the new course and is one of many contests which will be comprehensively analysed by betting.betfair’s Cheltenham tips ahead of this year’s extravaganza, which gets underway on March 12th.

With savvy punters finalising their ante-post bets months in advance, this new rule should help avoid confusion and the markets are likely to look far less congested as a result. Trainers may be disgruntled by these latest alterations, but it does appear to be a step in the right direction will undoubtedly make things much simpler for punters.

The 2019 Cheltenham Festival is set to be another fantastic spectacle and the four-day exhibition will once again showcase the classiest hurdlers and the most powerful chasers. The new rule change may have divided trainers, but it definitely won’t detract from yet another sensational showdown in Gloucestershire.

Next Staying Star? 3 Candidates for National Hunt Chase at Cheltenham Festival

Nicky Henderson has the National Hunt Chase ante post favourite in his stable this season” (CC BY 2.0) by danheap77.

While the RSA Chase has considerable claims for being the classiest race for up-and-coming stayers over fences, its supremacy at the Cheltenham Festival has come under threat in recent years.

This is because horses that have won or placed in the National Hunt Chase – also for novices – during the last three years went on to land some of the most valuable stayers’ races in 2018.

What’s the difference between the two Festival events? The RSA is over three miles and holds Grade 1 status, but the National Hunt Chase is a four-mile Grade 2 contest for amateur riders only.

Despite that, the likes of Native River (Cheltenham Gold Cup), Sizing Tennessee (Ladbokes Trophy), and Tiger Roll (Grand National) have all run well in the inferior race, but then gone on to even greater things.

Who could be the next staying star of jumps racing? Here are three candidates for the 2019 National Hunt Chase.

OK Corral

One of the few races reigning British champion trainer Nicky Henderson hasn’t won is this one. In OK Corral, he has a hugely talented Mahler gelding who is lightly-raced for a nine-year-old and unbeaten in two starts over fences.

As OK Corral represents leading Irish owner J. P. McManus, who since 1995 has had more winners of the National Hunt Chase than anybody, he’s a serious prospect. Crack amateur jockey Derek O’Connor partnered the horse to his second chase victory over the stiff fences of Warwick at Listed level – strongly suggesting this race is the plan.

Bookmakers were quick to make OK Corral ante post favourite off the back of that victory, and he is now 100/30 with Betfair in the latest Cheltenham betting. If getting the trip, and he has a stamina laden pedigree being out of a Flemensfirth mare, then the Henderson hoodoo in the National Hunt Chase could well end.

Ballyward

Willie Mullins holds the rare feat of riding and training two winners of this race. The Closutton master handler saddled Rathvinden to the spoils 12 months ago and impressive Naas Grade 3 winner Ballyward is the sole representative from his yard in the early closing entries.

Mullins’ son Patrick is one of the top amateur riders in Ireland and Emerald Isle raiders have won four of the last eight renewals of the National Hunt Chase. Ballyward was sired by Flemensfirth and placed fourth in both staying novice hurdles at the Cheltenham and Punchestown Festivals last season.

Connections didn’t mess about over the smaller obstacles, giving the seven-year-old just four starts, but he’s taken his form to a new level now sent chasing. While Ballyward may seem young to be taking on a four-mile marathon, he fits the age profile of most winners since 2005; so, at a general 6/1 with bookies, he is respected for an Irish stable that targets the Cheltenham Festival.

Impulsive Star

As the National Hunt Chase is over an extreme distance, there are very few obvious trials for it. One horse who has acquitted himself admirably in a real stamina test is last year’s fourth Impulsive Star, who retained novice status for this season.

Although the Neil Mulholland trained nine-year-old was beaten 24 lengths by Rathvinden and also finished behind gutsy mare Ms Parfois and Sizing Tennessee 12 months ago, and has something to find on Plumpton form with OK Corral, he took a big step forward last time out. Impulsive Star is now rated a 7lb better horse because he’s won a race over fences in the Grade 3 Classic Chase over 3m 5f at Warwick.

Given his victory in a competitive staying handicap like that under the owner’s son and former Cheltenham Gold Cup winning rider Sam Waley-Cohen, an each-way punt looks great value at 14/1 with William Hill and others.

Will Paisley Park Prove to Be the Real Deal?

The 2019 Cheltenham Festival is just around the corner and the trainers and jockeys are busy preparing their horses for what could be the biggest race of their season. For Paisley Park and everyone involved with him, there is a real feeling that he could be the next big horse.

With four wins from four races this season, he is already proving that he has what it takes to go all the way in the sport. Although Paisley Park isn’t running in the main event at the festival, the Gold Cup, he is the current favourite to win the Stayers’ Hurdle on St Patrick’s Thursday, according to Paddy Power.

His trainer Emma Lavelle is confident of victory in the race at Cheltenham and is fearful of just one horse. She said, “How could he not be made favourite?

“I don’t think there is anyone this side of the water who wasn’t in the Cleeve on Saturday, and with last year’s winner Penhill not having run this season he would have to come over in tip-top shape. Then Paisley Park would have a fight on his hands.”

It’s hard to blame her for being so confident given Paisley Park’s incredible start to the season. His first race this season, the Racing UK Handicap Hurdle at Aintree, saw him set off as the joint favourite with Lygon Rock and Byron Flyer. In the final 100 yards of the race he pulled away from Lygon Rock and won the race by 2 ½ lengths.

Race two of the season for the Irish thoroughbred was the Betfair Exchange Stayers’ Handicap Hurdle at Haydock. In the Grade 3 race he was the third favourite behind the favourite First Assignment and second favourite Captain Cattistock. He finished the race strong, defeating 20/1 longshot Shades of Midnight by just ½ a length.

In the Grade 1 JLT Hurdle at Ascot, he had pre-race odds of 8/1, making him the fifth favourite to win the race. Despite starting slowly, Paisley Park steadily gained ground on the leaders and after the last, he drove ahead and maintained pace to finish two lengths clear of second place West Approach.

For the first time this season Paisley Park ran as the favourite. The Grade 2 galliardhomes.com Cleeve Hurdle saw the 100/30 favourite obliterate the rest of the field, taking the lead before the last. Finished impressively and finished ahead of West Approach for the second time in a row, but this time finished an incredible 12 lengths clear.

He is currently the 9/4 favourite to win the Stayers’ Hurdle at this year’s Cheltenham Festival, ahead of Gold Cup favourite Presenting Percy. Last year’s winner Penhill is the fourth favourite at 5/1, but having not run so far this season, it is likely to take a monumental effort to defeat the in-form Paisley Park. Jockey Aidan Coleman has ridden him to four victories in four races and if he were to go on to win the Stayers’ Hurdle, then perhaps people will start to see the potential in this horse.

Cheltenham Festival: Most Memorable Gold Cup Wins

The highlight of Cheltenham Festival and by far the world’s most prestigious jump race, the Gold Cup has provided some of the most iconic and memorable moments that racing has ever seen.

The gruelling 3 miles and 2 ½ furlong track is not for the faint-hearted, and only those who have the stamina and willpower will be in with a chance of success.

Here, we take a look back at the most famous Gold Cup wins ahead of the 2019 event – where you’ll find all the latest ante-post prices right here: https://www.betfair.com/exchange/plus/horse-racing.

Desert Orchid 1989

Desert Orchid was undoubtedly one of the finest jumpers racing has witnessed, and his success throughout the 1980s was incomparable. ‘Dessie’ won the King George VI Chase at Kempton four times, but the Gold Cup was considered beyond him due to the harder course and longer distance.

In 1989, ‘Dessie’ proved all his doubters wrong when he clinched the Gold Cup in his first ever run, pipping Yahoo by one and a half lengths. Although he was losing ground on Yahoo with the post in sight, ‘Dessie’ called up all of his strength and determination to start gaining on his rival and clinch the coveted prize at the post.

Best Mate 2002-2004

Best Mate wrote himself into Gold Cup folklore when he completed a hat-trick of successive victories, the last being in 2004. It was the first time a trio of consecutive victories was achieved since the legendary Arkle in the 1960s, which further highlights just how good Best Mate was in his prime.

Perhaps it was Best Mate’s second win at Prestbury Park which was the finest win, romping home by ten lengths from Truckers Tavern and Harbour Pilot who filled the places. Although his victories in 2002 and 2004 were much closer, Best Mate’s record in the Gold Cup is imperious.

Long Run 2011

The youthful legs of Long Run proved to be the deciding factor in the 2011 Gold Cup, after he burst past Kauto Star and Denman to take top spot. The race itself was billed to be a classic, with a really strong field present.

Midnight Chase was leading for the majority, but after fading away, it gave Kauto Star, Denman, Imperial Commander, and Long Run the incentive to clinch glory, whereby the last showed his worth to charge through and take first place.

Denman 2008

The 2008 Gold Cup was arguably one of the most entertaining races in the modern era, which saw two of the finest jumpers in the business go head to head. Kauto Star and Denman had built up quite the rivalry prior to the Gold Cup in 2008, with the latter coming out on top.

Kauto Star was having something of an off day, which enabled Denman to win by seven lengths and clinch his one and only Gold Cup. It was unfortunate that Denman couldn’t increase his tally of wins at Prestbury Park but “The Tank” enjoyed a stellar career before retiring in 2011.

Lord Windermere 2014

The longest-priced winner since Cool Dawn in 1998, Lord Windermere wasn’t enjoying his finest form as Cheltenham Festival approached. Defeats in the Hennessy Gold Cup, Lexus Chase, and Irish Gold Cup saw the five-year-old’s price drop to 20/1.

However, on the day of the race, Lord Windermere tore up the form book and beat 16/1 shot On His Own by a short-head. meaning a steward’s enquiry ensued but the Willie Mullins-trained thoroughbred was victorious after a thrilling encounter.

Who Are the Irish Bankers at the 2019 Cheltenham Festival?

Cheltenham Racecourse” (CC BY 2.0) by UAV Filming

Irish raiders were especially dominant at last year’s Cheltenham Festival, with warm favourites Footpad, Samcro, and Tiger Roll among those scoring big victories.

There are certain races at the four-day meeting in mid-March that runners hailing from the Emerald Isle do particularly well in, but where do the banker bets lie this year? Here, we take a look at the main horses from Ireland with the best chances.

Apple’s Jade

Powerful owners Gigginstown House Stud have the world at their feet with tough mare Apple’s Jade, who has taken her form against the geldings to dizzying new heights on her side of the Irish Sea this season. The Gordon Elliott trained seven-year-old has won her three starts this season by increasingly wide margins and holds Cheltenham Festival entries in the Champion Hurdle over 2m, against her own sex in the Mares’ race and the 3m Stayers’ Hurdle.

If the ante-post markets are any indicator, then Cheltenham betting odds 2019 of 11/8 with William Hill suggests a third run in the Mares’ Hurdle is the route Apple’s Jade will take. The Champion Hurdle looks a muddle, however, and she’s running in the Irish equivalent at the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown.

Betfair are as big as 16/1 Apple’s Jade is redirected to the 2m championship race at Cheltenham before contesting the Irish Champion Hurdle. As for the Stayers’, she is two from two over three miles and a best-price 10/1 with the same bookmaker about that event.

Davy Russell in the Presenting Percy colours” (CC BY 2.0) by Florian Christoph

Presenting Percy

It’s bold to suggest any horse winning the Cheltenham Gold Cup is a banker, but Presenting Percy has sat and watched all his rivals throw up more questions than answers en route to the blue riband event of steeplechasing. Pat Kelly’s stable star has done nothing wrong in contrast, and finally made his anticipated return to action when successfully defending the Galmoy Hurdle over 3m at Gowran Park.

That may seem like an unusual preparation for the elite staying chase at the Cheltenham Festival, but Presenting Percy took that en route to landing the RSA at the meeting 12 months ago. The bookies have shortened him up for Gold Cup glory as a result, with betway going a standout 100/30.

Last year’s one-two Native River and Might Bite have doubts hanging over them. Will the former get the soft ground he needs to be shown to best effect? The latter, meanwhile, has flopped in two starts this season and failed to defend his King George VI Chase crown at Kempton over Christmas.

While young improvers like Clan Des Obeaux and Kemboy have staked their claims, they simply don’t have the Festival pedigree of Presenting Percy. He won the ultra-competitive Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle two years ago before tasting RSA Chase success as a novice last season.

Tiger Roll

Grand National hero Tiger Roll is also Gigginstown owned and trained by Elliott, and already boasts three victories at the Cheltenham Festival. This nine-year-old landed the Triumph Hurdle as a juvenile, then proved his stamina with a win in the 4m National Hunt Novices’ Chase two years ago before delivering again in the 3m 6f Cross Country Chase.

Tiger Roll relishes running in the spring and clearly loves Cheltenham. Winning another Grand National is a big ask for him, because only Red Rum in modern times has done it, but the Cross Country is a conditions race and he goes there fresh as a general 5/2 chance with bookmakers to defend his crown.

4 Cheltenham Festival Races Irish Horses Are Expected to Dominate in 2019

Cheltenham Festival winners’ enclosure” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Carine06.

A prevailing trend at the Cheltenham Festival in recent years is for Irish trained horses to absolutely tear it up when they come over to England.

Nothing illustrates that better than the fact that the Prestbury Cup – a trophy awarded either to Great Britain or Ireland for the most winners at each Festival – has gone back to the Emerald Isle in each of the last three years.

Although there’s still a while to go until Cheltenham 2019, with the Festival taking place between March 12 and 15, some races already have a strong Irish presence in the futures betting. With that in mind, here are four Cheltenham Festival races in particular where Irish raiders are set to dominate.

Mares’ Hurdle

All but one previous running of the Mares’ Hurdle over two-and-a-half miles have been won by horses trained in Ireland since the race was added to the Festival in 2008.

Irish champion jumps trainer Willie Mullins especially targets this event and has won it nine times before with four different horses.

Despite possible Mares’ Hurdle contenders Laurina, Limini, and Stormy Island joining 2018 winner Benie Des Dieux in his Closutton stable, it’s former charge and now Gordon Elliott trained Apple’s Jade that is a hot betting favourite with bookmakers.

Cross Country Chase

Another Festival race where the Irish really have dominated is the Cross Country discipline. A thoroughbred horse needs abundant stamina in its pedigree in order to last home for three-and-three-quarter miles.

Although run as a handicap until become a conditions race in recent years, all but two renewals have gone to Emerald Isle based horses.

Subsequent Aintree Grand National hero Tiger Roll is the +250.00 favorite with Paddy Power to win the Cross Country two years running for Elliott and owners Gigginstown House Stud.

However, the improving My Hometown and relative Cross Country discipline veteran Josie’s Orders head a strong contingent from the specialist stable of Enda Bolger and another of Ireland’s leading owners JP McManus.

While British and French-trained horses have done well in the Cross Country handicaps run at other Cheltenham race meetings, off level weights it’s easy to why Irish runners with experience of bank races do so well.

Stayers’ Hurdle

The British staying hurdle division – that is horses over the smaller National Hunt obstacles running at around three miles – looks very weak this year.

While a home contender looks sure to emerge from the pack in the Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot over the Christmas period, it’s no surprise to find five Irish trained horses towards the head of the betting.

Leading those is 2018 winner Penhill for Mullins and his stable has won the Stayers at Cheltenham in each of the last two seasons.

While he needs minimal racetrack prep, popular veteran Faugheen would bring the house down were he to win this at current futures Cheltenham odds of 10/1 with Paddy Power.

Last year’s second Supasundae is a highly consistent hurdler at Grade 1 level across a variety of distances for Jessica Harrington, meanwhile, and Elliott may have a hand to play too.

The aforementioned mare Apple’s Jade, if the owners are bold enough to take on the geldings, would have claims if lining up, alongside the highly-regarded Samcro.

Ryanair Chase

While the last three Ryanair Chase winners were all Ireland based, there’s another factor in play for the 2019 running.

Many owners and trainers will want to avoid reigning Queen Mother Champion Chase star Altior, who is the undisputed king of the two-mile division.

That means stepping horses up in trip to the Ryanair’s extended two-and-a-half miles as a result.

Again, the first four in Paddy Power’s Ryanair Chase betting are all Irish trained and headed by John Durkan Memorial winner Min.

The last two Ryanair winners Balko Des Flos and Un De Sceaux may lineup again, alongside Henry De Bromhead trained talent Monalee and the highly-regarded Footpad.

Cheltenham Festival Tips and Predictions

Even if you’re not entirely invested in betting on horse racing, the opportunity to bet on some of the bigger race meetings is something that a lot of people will take an interest in. This is an occurrence that’s been proven through the sudden interest that vast numbers of people take in the Aintree Grand National when it arises, where it seems like everyone across the UK will place their bets on a horse to win or finish each-way.

In terms of festivals, Cheltenham Festival is likely to be the only horse racing event where everyone remains engrossed from start to finish. If you’re yet to try your hand at backing your own Cheltenham Festival tips, it’s not something that you should completely rule out, as it’s certainly worth considering due to the fun that can be had from horse racing betting when it’s done responsibly.

Whether you’re a regular punter with an eye for winning horse tips, or if you like the thought of having a go and seeing what all the fuss is about, we’ve considered the factors that make betting on Cheltenham Festival tips so worthwhile:

More than one hotly-contested race meeting

Although the Cheltenham Gold Cup is undoubtedly the biggest race at Cheltenham Festival, there’s more races to indulge in, with it being one of the only festivals where it’s not primarily focused on one race ahead of all others. This is very different to Aintree Festival, where everything hinges on the massively popular Grand National.

Bookmaker odds available months in advance

If you’re interested in betting on The Festival to such a point that you want to lock in your bets as soon as possible, you’ll be able to do this on most bookmaker websites and apps months before all horses are even confirmed to race. By doing this, experienced punters are able to get the best available price before anything changes, but it’s unlikely that any newcomers to betting on horse racing will be quite so keen.

Plenty of places to pick up a tip and back your bets

Building your own Cheltenham Festival tips is possible through the many websites that provide all of the statistics and form necessary prior to placing your bets. While it’s to be expected that you might have a go at making your own bets, there are other means of finding a Cheltenham bet, including on the many horse tipster websites on the internet. The same can be said for backing your bets, where bookmaker websites and apps come in high numbers to accommodate you in choosing the one that best suits your needs.

Cheltenham Festival: No Horsing Around

If ever in doubt about the popularity of horse racing and the excitement it evokes in enthusiasts, bookmakers, and pundits, it is important to note that even with six months to go for the Cheltenham Festival, punters are already analysing horses and jockeys, looking for the next big bet.

March 12th will see the commencement of the four-day festival that is considered one of the top racing events in the entire world. Cheltenham Festival, in comparison with the Grand National, is more local with few international entries. It also has more hurdle races unlike the flat tracks of other competitions. These differences make Cheltenham a lot more challenging and thrilling for jockeys as well as bettors who have more than 25 races to place bets on, increasing their chances of winning.

Altior

Punters are eagerly awaiting March 13, 2019 to see Altior in action at the Cheltenham Festival. With odds of 6/4, he is already a favourite among bookmakers to win the all-important Queen Mother Champion Chase. Altior dominated the Champion Chase during the festival in 2018 coming in first and had won the Arkle Chase year before that. With speed and stamina both evident in every stride, punters need to keep a keen eye on this one as he is bound to perform spectacularly in 2019 as well.

Samcro

Samcro has been one of the most debated horses in the competition. Whether he will run in the Gold Cup or should he wait out another year, everyone associated with horse racing has been discussing his future and second-guessing decisions taken by the owners. Nevertheless, he remains a favourite when it comes to the Arkle Trophy with 5/1 odds and the RSA Chase with 8/1 odds, both of which are undoubtedly favourites when it comes to betting. Trained by the legendary Gordon Elliott, Samcro won the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdles in 2018 in a remarkable manner, making him the one to look out for.

Midnight Bite

The “big one” at the Cheltenham Festival is the Gold Cup. A dream win for every jockey, trainer, and horse, it is hotly contested, on the field and in the stands. For a punter too, this is the ultimate race to partake in at the festival and Cheltenham betting offers for 2019 are already looking positive with options that can add to the winnings. The nine-year-old Midnight Bite is presently the favourite with 5/1 odds having come in second at last year’s Gold Cup. He is followed closely by Presenting Percy, another horse that has proven its popularity, and Native River, both of whom are listed at 6/1 odds.

Commander of Fleet

Not ignoring some of the other races that are part of this institutional festival, Commander of Fleet is among bookmakers’ choice for winning the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle at 16/1 odds and also the Champion Bumper with 25/1 odds. The “smaller” races are an excellent opportunity for bettors to further their winnings and with limited horses running, they require less analysis, which is a big bonus. But, do keep in mind that Cheltenham is an experience that not only consists of racing but also dance, music, food, and even shopping, so make sure you enjoy every aspect of this great festival.