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Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase Tips

Tuesday 12th March 14:10

Below you will find our Arkle Challenge Trophy tips from our expert horse racing analyst Will Smith. Our tipsters will be providing tips for various races at the 2024 Cheltenham Festival which are available 100% free to our readers. Take a look at our Cheltenham Festival Tips page for more hot tips.

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Bookie Selection Best Odds Market Bet
JPR One 11/111/1 Ante Post
EW 3 Places (1/5)
Arkle Challenge Trophy
Place BetPlace Bet

Date of Tips: 21/02/2024

Disclaimer The odds for these selections were correct at the time of publishing (09:41 21/02/2024) but may have changed since. Please check the latest price before placing your bet.

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Barring one or two last chance saloon runs in terms of qualifying for certain races, the shape of most of next month’s Cheltenham Festival 28 races are just about definable. Obviously, the handicap ratings announcements next week will also be another factor to affect the markets, but surely most of any unknowns could be closely guessed at already.

So, armed with a fair amount of evidence now at our disposal, it is time to delve into those ante-post Cheltenham Festival prices again, and coming under the microscope this time is an extremely open-looking Arkle Challenge Trophy Novices’ Chase at 2.10 on the Tuesday – the traditional opening race over fences.

It feels like an Edwardstone, Put The Kettle On, Duc Des Genievres, Western Warhorse kind of renewal for the 2024 Arkle, as opposed to when the skinny-priced favourites El Fabiolo, Shishkin, Footpad, Altior, Douvan and Un De Sceaux won in the remaining 6 out of the last 10 years.

Dealing with the principals in roughly market order, here’s why I would be against most – Marine Nationale looked to be feeling something physically when beaten at Leopardstown and can’t be backed at the price; Il Etait Temps has twice been slightly disappointing at Cheltenham; Found a Fifty can adjust right at this fences (and I’m not sold on the strength of the Irish 2m novice chase from at all this season); Facile Vega hasn’t jumped as fluently as you’d hope and looks to be in need of further now; Quilixios is decent on his day but his chase form is miles off some of these; while Hunters Yarn and Blood Destiny could be players but don’t have 100% convincing profiles.

So, that leaves JPR One at a best priced 11/1 each-way selection with Bet365, Coral or Ladbrokes as an outstanding value ante-post bet. All three of those bookmakers are offering ‘non-runner, money back’ now too, and if JPR One was trained by Mullins, Elliott, Nicholls or Henderson, I suspect he’d be nearer the 6/1 or 7/1 mark. Joe Tizzard is yet to train a Cheltenham Festival winner with his name on the licence, but has been part of many alongside his father Colin of course.

His enthusiasm and clear verve for jumping fences has turned JPR One from a middle-of-the-road novice hurdler into a chaser capable of a really high level of form.

On his chase debut, JPR One defied market weakness to jump and travel all over two decent rivals on heavy ground at Newton Abbot, and would have then absolutely bolted up over the Arkle course and distance at Cheltenham back in November, but for overbalancing after the last.

His next run came in the Grade 1 Henry VIII Novices’ Chase at Sandown Park, and again it was overexuberance that ultimately cost JPR One a chance of running down the front-running Le Patron, as a nod at the second last halted the momentum he was building up.

It was also noteworthy that if you watch all the chases on the Sandown Park card that day, the horses to come to the fore in the closing stages almost wholly raced more towards the outside of the track. The one outlier that day was JPR One, who had three factors that probably hindered him from showing his best – this aforementioned track position, the heavy ground, and the nod at the second last.

It is a sign of his ability that he was anywhere near the winner going down over the last few fences, and he duly proved his high level of ability when absolutely dotting up in the re-arranged Grade 2 Lightning Novices’ Chase at Lingfield Park’s Winter Million meeting, idling after the last to only win by as far as necessary.

I have seen more than enough in his four chase starts to think that he could have an opportunity to put it all together in a well-run Arkle on decent ground, at a track that we know he handles well. As a result, in my eyes, JPR One should be much nearer vying for favouritism than he is.

That he isn’t, is down to the factors outlined above, but don’t let them put you off, as at 11/1 each-way with Bet365, Coral or Ladbrokes, JPR One is outstanding ante-post value for Tuesday’s Arkle Challenge Trophy Novices’ Chase.

Arkle Challenge Trophy
DateTimeDistanceType
Tues 12/03/202314:102mChase

The Arkle Challenge Trophy is a Grade 1 race for novice chasers that covers a distance of 2 miles. It is named after the legendary horse Arkle, who won the Cheltenham Gold Cup three times in the 1960s. The race is run on the Old Course at Cheltenham and features 13 fences to be jumped. The Arkle Challenge Trophy is one of the most prestigious races of the Cheltenham Festival and has produced some legendary winners such as Sprinter Sacre, Moscow Flyer and Altior.

Arkle Challenge Trophy Odds

Selection Odds
Gaelic Warrior 4/1
Il Etait Temps 9/2
Hunters Yarn 11/2
Found A Fifty 5/1
Quilixios 7/1
Jpr One 8/1
Facile Vega 12/1
My Mate Mozzie 12/1
Master Chewy 25/1
Matata 25/1
Sharjah 40/1
Djelo 40/1
Zanahiyr 50/1
Colonel Harry 100/1
Authorised Speed 200/1

Previous Tips

2023 Tips [expired]

Visually the best jumper in this field is Dysart Dynamo and he can lift this Arkle Chase by being dominant from the front.

Cheltenham’s undulating course will suit his front running style and if he can set a quick pace over this two mile trip he can put huge pressure on the ones chasing him behind. Danny Mullins is just the man for the job and I honestly believe they won’t be able to peg Dysart Dynamo back.

Jonbon’s running style is to get himself into a bit of a hole before somehow managing to scramble his way out of it. I can see the same thing happening at Cheltenham, only this time Dysart Dynamo will be away and gone and he will have to settle for the runner-up spot.

Steve Mullington’s Arkle Chase Tip – Dysart Dynamo (NAP) @ 5/1 with Bet365

2022 Tips [expired]

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Andrew Blair White’s Arkle Challenge Trophy Tips

If at first you don’t succeed – try again. Hopefully we have succeeded on a Willie Mullins winner in the opener, and I will be looking for a quick double for the Irish Champion Trainer. Of the majority of the horses in the Arkle, I still feel there is enough improvement to still come from Blue Lord – who looks to be progressing away and looks a shade overpriced given he was the winner of the Irish Arkle last time out. He should come further forward for that run and I think he should be able to confirm the form with Riviere D’Etel. A price of 4/1 with Paddy Power looks a shade big.

Click here to view more tips for races on Day 1 of the Cheltenham Festival!
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2022 Arkle Non-Runner [expired]

The great thing about ante-post betting is that it never stops. Historically, the ante-post price about a horse you feel will be carefully plotted towards a long-term target, has been the domain of the slightly nervous request to a betting shop assistant.

Not so anymore, a swift look at many an odds comparison site reveals a raft of opportunities way beyond the upcoming Cheltenham Festival, at which every race already has a fairly mature market to boot.

Having had one ante-post look ahead to racing beyond this season’s Cheltenham Festival already, in the shape of this selection for the 2021 King George VI Chase – which is still available at 33/1 with Paddy Power – a lazy perusal through some of the further afield markets threw up something else of real interest.

William Hill and Unibet have priced up a handful of races for the 2022 Cheltenham Festival already, and while to some, the mere thought of locking up your money for the best part of 14 months seems like madness, I’d suggest many would do similar with your savings accounts for a much smaller potential interest rate! Obviously, there is the chance that your investment could well bite the dust before the dividend date, but therein lies the risk/reward rationale that you need to apply to ante-post betting.

My Drogo is a horse who will probably have novice hurdle entries at this year’s Cheltenham Festival, but it wouldn’t be the biggest shock to see Dan Skelton sidestep March, and aim his strapping young horse to Aintree, or something else away from the spotlight at this stage of his career.

It is this patience and ability to ascertain what is best for a horse’s career that sets aside Skelton to many, and is inevitably a quality learnt from his previous boss Paul Nicholls.

My Drogo is without doubt going to be a smashing chaser at some stage, and more likely than not, that transition to the bigger obstacles will come next season. He is 50/1 with Unibet for the 2022 Arkle Novices’ Chase, and 50/1 with William Hill for the 2022 Marsh’ Novices Chase – I advise having a small EW bet on both, as essentially you’re getting roughly 25/1 that he wins at the 2022 Cheltenham Festival.

Back My Drogo in the 2022 Arkle Novices
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My Drogo looks blessed with a lovely blend of latent ability and pace and is also very much bred for stamina, so I wouldn’t know which one of the Arkle or Marsh would be more suitable just yet, but I do know that his three runs this season have made just about as striking an impression on me, as any novice hurdler has.

That impression is a combination of visual impression and also a dissection of the times of the races he’s been involved in.

Second on debut in a Cheltenham bumper to another potential star, the Nicky Henderson-trained I Am Maximus, My Drogo‘s run was worth marking up significantly, as the winner got first run at a crucial time and bagged the favoured stands-side rail up the straight.

Little time was wasted, and the Skelton’s sent My Drogo straight over hurdles for a ready win in a decent Newbury maiden hurdle, before again they were keen to set him a new and bigger challenge for his next run.

In winning a Grade 2 novice hurdle at Ascot on just his second hurdle start, in a strikingly good time, My Drogo has cosily accomplished every assignment his handler has posed of him. The bare form of that Ascot Grade 2 gives us mixed messages, but that it is more a factor of consequence than anything else.

Fast forward 12 months, and I really do believe that granted a fair wind, My Drogo could be a name on everyone’s lips – and at 50/1 for either the 2022 Arkle with Unibet, or 2022 Marsh with William Hill, both are investments well worth locking away now.

2020 Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase Tips [expired]

Having suggested in a previous article that this could well be the year that Olly Murphy lands his maiden Cheltenham Festival winner with Itchy Feet in the Marsh Novices’ Chase on day three, I now am going to fast forward that milestone two days.

He has a live Champion Hurdle outsider in Thomas Darby, should he run there – but it is in the Arkle Novices’ Chase, the first race run over fences at the Festival, that he can etch that first notable notch on his tally.

Brewin’upastorm is a topical selection too, with so much racing abandoned due to the inclement weather conditions currently. With Cheltenham Festival form when fourth in last year’s Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle, a perfect 2 from 2 record over fences, an even more striking 4 from 4 record when appearing off a break – and it all adds up to Brewin’upastorm having a massive chance in a race that will really be run to suit. At 9/1 with William Hill, I could see him being latched on to in the next few weeks.

Notebook, Cash Back and live outsiders Rouge Vif and Global Citizen are all likely to race up with the pace – not to mention Fakir D’Oudairies if he were to line up here – so we are guaranteed a strong pace to the race.

This will suit the strong travelling Brewin’upastorm perfectly, as highlighted by his ability to make a striking mid-race move to jump the second last in last year’s Ballymore upsides City Island and Champ. He paid for this in the closing stages, but with the benefit of a wind-op in the winter, the addition of stiffer obstacles in front of him which he relishes, and the aforementioned strong pace to aim at – the suggestion that a potential career defining performance is in the offing for horse and trainer is not an unrealistic one.

Having had a slight hold up mid-season, the only worry is that he doesn’t make the race, but the NRNB concession is an option at only one point less with Skybet, if you are so inclined.

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