After all the talk, maybe too much talk, the Cheltenham Festival is finally here. It was a fairly quiet last week with some poor quality racing; although my first two bets of for the month won at 8/1 & 9/2 so already well on the way to yet another profitable month.
It did give me a lot of time to review the jumps form & watch a lot of replays however most seemed to be small field, slowly run affairs on winter soft ground none of which will be encountered this week at Cheltenham, some horses are going to be in for a shock and I think a lot of the form will be turned upside down.
So now for some advice to hopefully help you pick a few winners.
For me a horse must have had a previous placed run at this unique track before I would consider betting it, particular if its been at a recent festival or the big November meeting, 8 festival winners last year had ran there.
In my opinion the best Irish course form is at Navan which is closest in its configuration to Cheltenham than any other track over there.
The average number of runs in a season for a Championship race winner prior to Cheltenham since 2010 is 2.68; I consider a previous run this calendar year essential.
Review each race and keep an eye on collateral form, if a horse runs well and boosts another’s chances in a later race act swiftly.
Top Trainers festival facts:
Paul Nicholls has had 77 consecutive chase losers at the festival, quick quiz who was his last winner?
Amazingly Kauto Star which incidentally was also Ruby Walsh’s last chase winner aswell!
Willie Mullins has dreadful record in UK handicap chases he’s 0-23 at Festival and over 70 consecutive losers overall.
Six of the last ten David Pipe festival winners wore headgear, also has a great record in the Fred Winter.
Twenty of Jonjo O’Neil’s twenty five festival winners have been in races over 3 miles or further.
The main race on the first day and possible the race of the week is the Champion Hurdle. Faugheen may well be a machine but his price is based on reputation not form, I don’t think The New One hurdles well enough, the blessed Hurricane Fly has been allowed to dominate Irish races without being challenged by his top stable mates such as Annie Power & Un De Sceaux, this year they’ve allowed Arctic Fire to run against him but coast home behind, I think he could easily turn the tables on him and rates a cracking each way bet at 20/1.
The bookies are desperate for your business, compare the best prices, I use OddsChecker.com and take advantage of the special offers, some are fantastic but I don’t want to mention names as they have closed my account!
This week’s new AW hotlist entries:
SAMHAIN, HAKAM, EMIRATES SKYCARGO & KINGS BAYONET
Have a great festival; remember a bad day at the races is better than a good day at work.
Until next Tuesday.
The Shrewd Tipster