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BillyHills

Racing Chat - Cheltenham Festival Day 1

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We will have a separate thread for each day of the Cheltenham Festival

If you have a fancy for any of the races for this day then this is the place to post them

Don't forget we have Ante Post Previews for each race plus daily detailed racecards 

The PL Rating Tips will be published 48hrs prior to race-day

 

 

Day 1 action

Screen Shot 2020-03-06 at 09.55.49.png

 

:ok

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Going to look at the trends for 2 handicaps each day 
 

2.50: 3m1f0y Ultima Handicap Chase (Grade 3) (Class 1) (5yo+)

Previous Winners
Screen Shot 2020-03-06 at 10.31.19.png
 
Handicap ratings record
Screen Shot 2020-03-06 at 10.30.39.png
 
Trends:
10/10 English trained
9/10 Aged 9 or lower
9/10 ran within 45 days
9/10 IRE or FR Bred
8/10 Rated over 140
8/10 Carried 10st 10lbs or more
16/22 placed first 4 last time
18/22 ran at least 3 times this season

 
 
 
 
 

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450:  2m4f44y Northern Trust Company Novices' Handicap Chase (Listed Race) (Class 1) (5yo+)

Previous Winners

Screen Shot 2020-03-06 at 10.33.47.png

 

Ratings Record

Screen Shot 2020-03-06 at 10.30.48.png

 

Trends 

10/10 ran within 60 days
9/10 aged 8 or less
8/10 English trained
8/10 IRE of FR Bred
7/10 rated within 5lbs of top weight
13/15 First three last time (7 won)
15/15 Ran at least 3 times this season
14/15 Had run over this trip before

 

 

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Supreme Hurdle

I think this comes down to 5 horses and my ratings of them are as follows:

Asterion Forlonge   156

Envoi Allen             154

Shishkin                 154

Fiddlerontheroof       152

Abaracadabras        151

I am still expecting EA to head to the Neptune and which ever race he ends up in he will be a huge threat as he travels like a dream, he jumps well and he has a potent turn of foot too. AF looks to have a massive engine but I would definitely doubt his ability to jump well enough to win a race like this. He jumps to his right and really stickily at times and whilst he got away with that last time out and still managed to post a quick time, I don't see him being able to get away with it in this field. His chance increases with slower ground in my opinion.

Shishkin is another that looks to have it all. There is no obvious reason to doubt his ability other than he hasn't been properly tested. Henderson's relatively poor record in this race is curious because he has had a lot of talented horses run in this and fail to win. The one doubt I have is whether is battle hardened enough and then when I think of Henderson's other recent high profile losers in this race they seem to have a similar profile. When I say battle hardened, I mean at  true top class pace. All the other horses in this list have been tested.

The one I most like out of this list is Fiddlerontheroof. I loved the way he stayed on Sandown up the hill and how he attacked his hurdles. He drew effortless clear in the final stages and if he is in the race as they turn in, I doubt any of the others will jump as well as he does under pressure. He is a much bigger price than he should be in my opinion and had he been trained by Mullins or Henderson I bet he would be at least a couple of points shorter.

The final horse is Abaracadbras who has been the only horse to put it up to EA. It wasn't too much of a contest in the end but for a National Hunt horse he looks a slick mover who will appreciate the anticipated better ground at Cheltenham. He is a real hardy horse too, with plenty of runs and I couldn't rule him out.

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The Arkle

There are plenty in with a realistic chance of winning this race. My outlook on what they have achieved as far from a ratings point of view is as follows:

Notebook               164

Espirit Du Large    159

Brewinupastorm     159

Cash Back             158

Rouge Vif               158

Maire Banrigh        158

Mister Fisher          157

Al Dancer               156

Fakir Doudaries     156

Global Citizen         156

 

Firstly I shall start with Cash Back as I think he will be a key part of this race. I have watched both of his last starts and he will frame this race by going off hard in front. He is an extremely slick jumper and whilst I dont think he has the raw ability of some of these, his jumping will sort plenty of them out, especially those that aren't up to this class and those that don't jump well enough. I can certainly see this lad running a huge race but he might just get nabbed on the run in. I will probably back him.

One horse that will know that his run style wont trouble is Notebook. He too will run up with the pace and aside from jumping slightly right he is just as slick but with slightly more ability. I think Notebook is as bomb-proof as they come as long as he deals with the occasion better than he did at the DRF where he bolted to post. It sounds as though it was unexpected and it someways it is better to do it there for the first time rather than at Cheltenham because now they can prepare to prevent it happening on the big day. It shows how talented he is that he was able to cope with bolting to post and then still have the energy to get up to deny Cash Back last time out. I will be backing this horse, albeit I might wait until I see him safely down at the start.

The rest of the horses on the list are ones that I have tried to anticipate who will and who will not cope with the test posed by those two above. Espirit Du Large and Rouge Vif have a common foe in Nube Negra to rate their races through. I thought EDL got first run on that rival at Sandown as the Skelton horse had to switch off the bend and then try and make up ground on EDL which is hard to do at that track. I am not sure that form would stick if they ran the race again. RV has then beaten the same horse by several lengths at Warwick, producing an assured jumping display and bounding clear at the finish. RV is likely to run handier and therefore be more affected by the two Irish horses whereas EDL is more likely to hunt around and then come with a challenge. I couldn't rule either of them out from an EW perspective.

The rest I have concerns about. Brewinupastorm's form is weak enough for me and he has a tendency to put in a slow one. I am also not a fan of a horse coming back from a niggle in such a big race. Mister Fisher might get caught out by the pace of the race, but if not he jumps well enough, he will stay further and he could be seen putting down a challenge up the hill. Al Dancer is surely not going to be good enough having been beaten by several rivals and Maire Banrigh again doesnt look to have raced against decent enough horses to truely assess how good she is but she can clearly jump and she has travelled well in her races so far. Doing so in this, may just prove too much for her. Global Citizen is a flat sharp track bully and isnt one that interests me.

This leaves the well tipped Fakir Doudaries. I don't see him reversing the form with the favourite based on their previous running. He is worse off at the weights and every perceived benefit he might enjoy (the test, the ground, the pace) and I also see benefiting the favourite too.

 

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Cash Back will probably come back to haunt me. I can see the appeal but  it doesn’t tick enough boxes for me. Notebook is drifting to a decent enough price so will jump on him as a single. I’ve also had EW on Mister Fisher. Rough Vif and Brewin’Upastorm are the other two I maybe interested in.

Notebook should win.

Edited by Villa Chris

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37 minutes ago, Villa Chris said:

How does The Conditional rate in The Ultima? He’s in very low in the weights and won at Cheltenham before over CD. 

No reason why he wouldn't go close. Looks well handicapped, likes the track, trip will suit.

I would be all over Cepage in that race if I knew he would stay.

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2.50 Ultima Chase Trends

10/10 English trained
We lose 7,18
9/10 Aged 9 or lower
we lose 4, 10, 16, 13, 
9/10 ran within 45 days
we lose 1, 2, 9, 11, 14, 17, 19, 21, 
9/10 IRE or FR Bred
we lose 5, 
8/10 Rated over 140
we lose 18, 20, 23, 24
8/10 Carried 10st 10lbs or more
we lose 15
16/22 placed first 4 last time
we lose 6, 12,

Selections

1pt EW Cepage 20/1 Hills
1pt EW Who Dares Wins 10/1 bet365

 

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19 minutes ago, Blazing Bailey said:

No reason why he wouldn't go close. Looks well handicapped, likes the track, trip will suit.

I would be all over Cepage in that race if I knew he would stay.

Going up in trip a lot. Looking at its last few races it’s been staying on very well, so could handle it. With its course record might be worth a small e/w.

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Champion Hurdle

Another wide open championship race on day one. There are lots of horses rated very similarly but I think we will have to see a horse run to around 165+ to win this. With that in mind, my eye is on the following:

 

Call Me Lord    158

Cilaos Emery   160

Darver Star       160

Sharjah            163

Supasundae     159

Epatante          164

 

I might as well start with the closest horse to that mark in Epatante. The first concern is Cheltenham based on last seasons run. I don't believe it will be an issue and if anything it will have more to do with the hood. First time hood wearers at the festival have a terrible record and I watched her run up the hill and despite Gerraghty stop riding her up the hill, she wasn't packing it in by any means. What I did see in that race was some frailties with her jumping. Down the back straight she got on the back foot at two or three, losing ground. She did a similar thing to one at Kempton on the far side too, without losing too much ground. The most curious run was at Newbury. Seemingly not fancied as much as her stablemate by Henderson, she actually looked as though she would lose out to another Henderson horse between the last and second last before powering away. Her jump at that last flight was terrible as well. She absolutely winged the final flights at Kempton and the question is whether she can repeat that Christmas Hurdle run at Cheltenham. I think she can, but she cant afford any errors, and even if she does repeat that performance, there will still be others a lot closer than they were at Kempton. I would really like to see her come and blow these boys away, and she does seem to have that potent turn of foot to do so. I see no reason why she shouldn't be bang there but I would like to see her drift a little before I back her.

The stablemate CML is an interesting enough one. I think he will improve for the better ground but the trip might be a bit trappy at this level. He will need a good pace to go close IMO. I could see him running a race in the low 160's without being good enough.

The Irish form is interesting. Supasundae is likely to run to around the 160 mark and not be good enough to win but he will give us a good guide to the form. If they beat him (and Ballyandy) well, then it will be a good edition, which on paper it doesn't look to be at the moment. Sharjah is a lottery. Very much capable of running between 165 and 170 but I have no idea whether he will run his race. Cilaos Emery was going to the Champion Chase until February when he fell. He ran well enough last time out back over hurdles, beating the re-opposing Durasso handily but he didnt look like a winner of this. He is another that falls into the likely to run well without winning category. This then leaves Darver Star, who has been tipped up quite a bit by Kevin Blake. I wrote him off until I watched the last two runs back, running OK behind the best Irish novices before going on to better to finish with a rattle behind Honeysuckle. I can really see him flying up the hill. He jumped really quickly over the last two that day and a horse finishing like that always catches my eye. Honeysuckle would be a short price here and DS would have beaten her in another 100-200 yards. He has improved bundles this season already and I wouldnt expect much more but this test looks ideal and I could see him finishing best.

I can see myself back Epatante on the day when she drifts or with the bookmaker concessions and having a nibble on Darver Star EW.

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450 Northern Trust Chase

10/10 ran within 60 days
We lose 3,10, 14, 15, 

9/10 aged 8 or less
we lose 19

8/10 English trained
We lose 16, 17, 18, 20

8/10 IRE of FR Bred
We lose 11,21

7/10 rated within 5lbs of top weight
We lose 15, 22

13/15 First three last time (7 won)
We lose 4, 6, 9, 12, 13

14/15 Had run over this trip before
We lose 1
Hold The Note not won over fences

Cant split 3

Selections

1pt Imperial Aura 5/1 Betvic
1pt EW Knight In Dubai 20/1 bet365
1pt EW Champagne Mystery 33/1 PP

 

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Finally ....I can finish off the ratings and finalise bets 

Supreme 

Asterion forlong   328 

Abacadras  323 

Shishkin   319 

Fiddleronroof  319 

Classy race as usual ...any number of possibles but top two here set a high standard to aim at and especially Abacadabras who looked to have any amount in the tank last time and could be a superstar in the making ...

Asterion forlong 

Abacadras  

Both backed ew 

 

Champion 

Sharjah   341 

Cilaos emery   338 

I'll stick with the 2 Mullins horses here as being supplemented gets you bonus points because it's not cheap so returns are needed .....I'll go for a Mullins 1 and 2 here 

Sharjah and Cilaos emery  ew bets and forecasts 

Also 5pt ew doubles on all 4 

Ultima to follow ....

Edited by richard-westwood

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Ultima final selections 

The conditional   298 

Activial     295

Who dares wins 294 

Super open race but these 3 are a bit clear of the next horses so seem good enough bets based on that .....10pt wins all 3 ....and 1pt rev forecasts 

Cepage was 4th and I've had a small wager at huge prices on betfair but I'm not convinced the horse will stay an extra half mile ....just looks a 20f horse so I'm opposing 

Edited by richard-westwood

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National Hunt Chase

Traditionally this is a race I have done quite well in so I am hoping that the drop in distance doesn’t change that! Having said that, I don’t really like this years edition. Furthermore whilst it is in some ways just as important to have a good jockey as well as a good horse in this race. The figures are as follows:

Carefully Selected           156

Lord Du Mensil                156

Newtide                          149

Springfield Fox                149

Ravenhill                         148

The Hollow Ginge            148

 

The reason I don’t like this race is because I have doubts over the top two. Carefully Selected made some big mistakes when running left handed last time out, the type that would put him on the deck if he did them here. Lord Du Mensil has all his best form on heavy ground at Haydock and generally speaking, I don’t rate that form when transferred anywhere else. I cant back either of these two at the current prices with those doubts.

That leads us into the next 5 horses are very closely rated. Newtide is probably my favourite of the lot. He was fortunate to win last time but he is a proper stayer and he jumps well. He has one of the better jockeys on board as well so he ticks all the boxes. At 10/1 he is also an EW price. They have also talked about him as a Welsh National horse so if it does get testing it shouldn’t be a problem for him.

Springfield Fox will run handily which is never a bad thing in a race like this and he won well at Exeter last time out earning him this rating. He made a few mistakes in that race and I could see that being enough to stop him from winning this but again and his price is now probably about right from being much bigger in the past.

One of the best riders in this race in Jamie Codd gets the leg up on Ravenhill.  He fell last time out and that will be enough to put me off in a race like this.

The last one on the list is The Hollow Ginge who ran well either side of two below form performances at Haydock. He won a messy handicap last time out with only one other finisher and its hard to see that he will be good enough to win a race like this. I think he is already close to the ceiling of his ability whereas the others have more scope to improve. Saying that he has more experience that the other English runners and he is being earmarked for the National so he is clearly expected to stay. He is a big price too.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Villa Chris said:

Richard how do you rate The Northern Trust Handicap Chase. 

Tough tough race ......

Imperial aura   288 

Train wreck    284 

Paint the dream   282 

Narrowed it to this 3 but tricky race....each has their merits ....imperial is the form horse but has gone up weights .....train wreck needs to improve to win this but represents last years winning trainer and jockey ...chances .....paint the dream ran a stinker last time but if you forgive that run his previous run at chelt looked classy ...dark horse 

Imperial aura 10 pts win 5/1 corals 

Train wreck 5pts win 12/1 sky

Paint the dream 5 pt win 25/1 willh

 

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2.10 Notebook 3/1 

4.10 Honeysuckle 11/4 365

Double

 

First race Abacadabras single. Got 11/2 last night and is been backed currently at 7/2

Edited by Ryanpete
Added a selection

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Just gone through the day 1 handicaps and I must say that I am a bit disappointed that the ones I like the most are quite short in the market, and I actually like both of the current favourites! In the end I sided with the following:

Ultima

Vinndication 7/1 Ladbrokes - Improving horse, sound jumper, ran well enough int he Festival last season. No reason he wont run well.

Kildisart 10/1 Betvictor - Ran well in the JLT and then stepped up to win at Aintree. Back to form last time out and looks set out for this.

Mister Malarky 14/1 EW Bet365 - Favourite of mine, a tough, good jumping stayer. Back to his best last time out and no reason he wont run well again.

 

Northern Trust

Imperial Aura 11/2 Coral - Two brilliant runs at this track behind big improvers. Last time the stable were a bit quiet and more expected tomorrow.

Hold The Note 15/2 Bet365 - Couldn't hang on in Grade 2 over further. In my mind the drop back looks a plus over this stiff track and he will travel well on the likely fast pace.

Knight In Dubai 33/1 Bet365 - Good jumper, winning first two easily. Below form at Haydock G2 in bad ground but best can be seen of him here for shrewd yard.

 

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Hi everyone

Here is my next selection.

So far start bank 100 w 4 L0 bank 105.17

330 Cheltenham epatante 1pt 5/2 bog 

A star in the making?

Happy punting all. Don't get caught in the Cheltenham frenzy and be panicked into chasing your losses.

Did the business pretty well.

So five in a row.

W5 L0 Bank 107.67

Edited by Old codger
Update

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2.50  CH- ACTIVIAL 28/1 e/w  6 places 1/5- Last years 6tn and lower weight today big e/w chance imo  at a nice big price

4.50 CH-CHAMPAGNE MYSTERY 20/1 6 Places 1/5 shrewd trainer and owner been doe around for it!

Both e/w & e/w double

2.50 ch -ATLANTA ABLAZE 33/1 e/w 6 Places 1/5- Much better than last run had a wind op could bounce back at a massive price.

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On 3/8/2020 at 5:40 PM, richard-westwood said:

Ultima final selections 

The conditional   298 

Activial     295

Who dares wins 294 

Super open race but these 3 are a bit clear of the next horses so seem good enough bets based on that .....10pt wins all 3 ....and 1pt rev forecasts 

Cepage was 4th and I've had a small wager at huge prices on betfair but I'm not convinced the horse will stay an extra half mile ....just looks a 20f horse so I'm opposing 

Nice doing business ....about 100pts returned 

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