Fulham Manager Scott Parker must be wringing his hands with despair as bookmaker Paddy Power hammered another nail into his coffin today. The Irish…
On this page, you’ll find a list of Cheltenham ante-post tips from our expert horse racing analyst Will Smith.
Now the dust has settled a little on events of the Cheltenham Festival 2020, it is time to try and unearth a couple of gems to invest in for the 2021 edition. For instance, at this time last year, Envoi Allen was available at 14/1 for the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle…
Abacadabras – 12/1 EW (Betway)
Epatante and Goshen will be very popular with many punters for next season’s Champion Hurdle, and rightly so in both cases. But there are reasons to believe that at 12/1, Abacadabras is an absolutely brilliant bet.
Shishkin and Abacadabras came a long way clear in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle last week, and were streets clear of the opposition – considering much went wrong for both of them during the race. Shishkin looks set to go chasing and will be a strong favourite for the Arkle you would imagine, so the way is clear for Gordon Elliott to finally land the Champion Hurdle that he has so coveted for years.
The Supreme Novices’ Hurdle was run in a time 1.17 seconds slower than Epatante clocked in the Champion Hurdle. Basically, if the Supreme had been run in a parallel universe at the same time as the Champion Hurdle, then Shiskin and Abacadabras would have been snapping at Epatante’s heels all the way up the hill, and who knows what would have played out.
Epatante, much to Barry Geraghty’s credit, received a dream trip through the Champion Hurdle – contrast that with the Supreme, where Abacadabras had to begin the race further back than Davy Russell wanted, due to the standing start. Then the carnage caused by Asterion Forlonge at three out and two out, hindered Abacadbras’ momentum at a crucial stage – while not only that, due to the fall of Elixir D’Ainay, it left Abacadabras in front an eternity earlier than Russell would have liked.
Abacadabras was given a Champion Hurdle entry for the festival just gone, and if he had run there, he would have been placed at the very least. One year on, one year stronger, maybe slightly better ground, and with a better trip through the race, and Abacadabras can definitely win the 2021 Champion Hurdle.
Many eyes were on a Henry De Bromhead-trained horse during the Arkle, but it wasn’t until they began the downhill run, did any interested observer feel that Put The Kettle On was that horse. Notebook was a long-term favourite for the race, but failed to handle everything that goes with a festival race.
Put The Kettle On meanwhile, was sparkling in her Arkle chase victory. Comparing times on different days is always fraught with complications, but the ground was officially described as the same on the Old Course for days one and two, and time calculations suggested it rode very similar on both days also. So, the fact that Put The Kettle On ran a time 1.89 seconds quicker than Politologue did in winning the Champion Chase, makes the performance all the more notable. She was taken on up front everywhere by the free going Cash Back, and then when Fakir D’Oudaries came to challenge, she had every right to wilt, but so tough, determined and classy is she, that she went again and charged away up the hill.
Paul Nicholls felt that Politologue ran a career best in the Champion Chase, so indirectly Put The Kettle On has the beating of that field already. Obviously Altior and Chacun Pour Soi loom large, due to their eleventh-hour defections from this year’s Champion Chase. But Altior has just started to show fallibilities – in ability and soundness, and Chacun Pour Soi is yet to be tested at Cheltenham.
Put The Kettle On is now two from two at Cheltenham, is trained by a master of two mile chasers, and would have been a good winner of this year’s Champion Chase had she ran in it. How she is 25/1 for the 2021 Champion Chase is beyond me.
Thyme Hill – 20/1 EW (Bet365)
Sire Du Berlais – 25/1 EW (William Hill)
Paisley Park was one of a number of high-profile below par performances over the week, and it has since transpired that he suffered from an irregular heartbeat post-race. Let’s hope he recovers fully, but what it did do was blow the division wide open – not only for the Stayers’ Hurdle won by Lisnagar Oscar last week, but also for the 2021 edition.
Anyone with any ounce of interest in the game will have noted that the Albert Bartlett won by Monkfish featured perhaps four of the most promising horses going forward. Monkfish, Latest Exhibition and Fury Road are just three of what could be a fascinating crop of novice chasers next season – when you add Envoi Allen, Shiskin, The Big Getaway and The Big Breakaway to that list, and we might just be treated to the best novice chase division that we have seen for many a year.
But I digress, it is the horse in fourth in the Albert Bartlett, Thyme Hill, whose run was one of the most eye-catching of the whole week. Squeezed up going to the last, and then again after last, he couldn’t quite force his way into the frame. Added in to the fact that he travelled widest of all for virtually the whole race, affording mountains of ground to the three horses that finished in front of him, and his run was an absolute belter.
His trainer Philip Hobbs has expressed that Thyme Hill is not the most robust of horses, so I would be surprised if he went chasing. There is a lovely run of staying hurdle trials through the winter, and I expect Thyme Hill to take high order in that division. 20/1 could be long gone by mid-winter.
The other bet in the Stayers’ Hurdle 2021, is the dual Pertemps Final winner Sire Du Berlais at 25/1. Gordon Elliott is a master at bringing horses back to the Cheltenham festival to win or run well on multiple occasions – Tiger Roll, anyone.
Sire Du Berlais won the Pertemps in a time 2.98 seconds quicker than Lisnagar Oscar won the Stayer’s Hurdle this year, on the same day. Enough said. Given the Irish handicappers domination of this year’s handicap hurdlses in particular, it is highly likely that Sire Du Berlai’s eyes will no longer be on handicaps from this point onwards.
If you’re looking to get your bets on early and take advantage of some of the Cheltenham ante post betting offers, click on one of the Cheltenham races below to see our expert tipsters picks.
|Race||Tip||Date Added||View Tip>|
|Champion Hurdle||- Saldier||17th Jan 2020||Read More|
|Champion Hurdle||- Darver Star||6th Feb 2020||Read More|
|Gold Cup||- Kemboy||22nd Jan 2020||Read More|
|Novices’ Handicap Chase||- Imperial Aura|
- Deyrann De Carjac
|National Hunt Chase||- Champagne Classic||27/01/2020||Read More|
|RSA Chase||- Minella Indo||27/01/2020||Read More|
|Ryanair Chase||- A Plus Tard||01/02/2020||Read More|
|Supreme Novices' Hurdle||- Abacadabras||04/02/2020||Read More|
|Marsh Novices' Chase||- Itchy Feet||04/02/2020||Read More|
|Arkle Challenge Trophy||- Brewin’upastorm||12/02/2020||Read More|
|JCB Triumph Hurdle||- Grand Roi |
- Sir Psycho
|Foxhunter Chase||- Minella Rocco|
- Shantou Flyer
|Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle||- Thyme Hill |
- The Cashel Man
|Ballymore Novices' Hurdle||- Sporting John||02/03/2020||Read More|
|Ultim Handicap Chase||- Discorama||07/03/2020||Read More|