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|Balco Coastal||14/114/1||Ante Post
EW (2 Places) / NRNB
Turners Novices Chase
|Place BetPlace Bet|
Date of Tips: 03/03/2023
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For some reason, and looking back at previous years it is a recurring theme, the WhichBookie ante-post locker is quite notably front loaded with selections on Day One of the Cheltenham Festival.
So, in an effort to redress that balance somewhat, it is time to look deeper in to the week – and of course, I fancy this horse too, for those worrying that I’m merely trying to even things out!
The race in question is the Turners Novices’ Chase at 1.30 on the Thursday of the 2023 Cheltenham Festival, and at first glance the race looks at the mercy of the proven Grade 1 novices at the top of the market – Mighty Potter, Banbridge and Appreciate It haven’t done a huge amount wrong in their chasing careers to date.
However, for all that these three will have their supporters, and justified though they will be, I do feel this is more than just a 3-runner contest. That said, it may not be a large field that go to post, but one horse who looks set to be aimed here, and come the end of Wednesday at the Festival, might be the horse who can boast the best form coming into the Turners.
Balco Coastal is available at 14/1 each-way with Bet365, who not only offer Non-Runner, No Bet but also Best Odds Guaranteed, and that is a cracking price in my opinion. 12/1 more generally is available, and if I were to put a cap on what value may look like, regarding Balco Coastal’s chances, then I would suggest that would be anything double figures or higher.
The veiled ‘end of Wednesday’ reference two paragraphs up is in reference to the fact that Balco Coastal’s Scilly Isles Novice Chase Grade 1 form will be extensively tested in the Brown Advisory Novices’ Chase earlier that day.
The winner Gerri Colombe is currently a very solid favourite for that race, and the third home Thunder Rock is certainly no back number either. At various stages through that race, the way Balco Coastal jumped and travelled on the front end, (qualities that are perfectly suited to the chase track on the New course at Cheltenham,) served to put the ability of Gerri Colombe under real pressure.
A brief look at the rate of progression of Nicky Henderson’s Balco Coastal, since he has gone chasing, is quite startling. Since finding 2m and decent ground on chase debut too sharp at Newbury (admittedly in a race that has worked out very well,) Balco Coastal has won doing handstands in a decent handicap at Kempton Park, and then stepped forward a good chunk again to seriously contest the aforementioned Grade 1 Scilly Isles Novices’ Chase.
A left-handed track like Cheltenham will suit Balco Coastal, and as mentioned, a prominent run style will do too. While also, all types of ground seem to come alike to him, so in terms of assessing an ante-post bet, that can be all important.
Mighty Potter has taken extremely well to fences, but his only previous experience of Cheltenham was a wholly unsatisfying one last year, Banbridge is solid enough but perhaps has become a bit of a talking horse, while Appreciate It didn’t go with much zest at Leopardstown when last seen.
Clearly, the Turners Novices’ Chase at 1.30 on the Thursday of the 2023 Cheltenham Festival could be a pretty competitive affair, but if Balco Coastal continues to improve at a similar rate, then taking the 14/1 each-way with Bet365 right now, could prove to be a wise move.
|Turners Novices Chase|
|Thurs 16/03/2023||13:30||2m 4f||Chase|
The Marsh Novices’ Chase, formally the Marsh Novices’ Chase, is a Grade 1 chase race for novice horses and has been run at the Cheltenham Festival since 2011. It is run on the New Course over a distance of 2 miles and 4 furlongs, and is open to horses aged five and older. The race is a major test of jumping ability and is considered one of the most prestigious novice chases in the racing calendar.
The Marsh Novices’ Chase features 17 fences to be jumped and requires a horse with both speed and stamina to handle the testing course. The race has been won by some impressive young horses over the years, including Defi Du Seuil, Vautour, and Sir Des Champs.
The Marsh Novices’ Chase is a popular race with both trainers and punters as it provides a glimpse into the future stars of National Hunt racing. The race often attracts some of the best young chasers in training and is a true showcase of emerging talent.
|James Du Berlais||16/1|
|Cheltenham Tips by Day|
|Day 1 TipsTips for Tuesday 14th March||Day 2 TipsTips for Wednesday 15th March|
|Day 3 TipsTips for Thursday 16th March||Day 4 TipsTips for Friday 17th March|
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The jumps juices are flowing again after a day of fascinating action at Chepstow yesterday, and in particular, those juices seem particularly potent in the Paul Nicholls’ camp as they had a brilliant day with four winners and a number of other horses running notably well.
Conversely, the day didn’t go as well for his main west country training rival Colin Tizzard, and he has seen fit to withdraw his lovely young chaser Fiddlerontheroof from today’s novice chase on the card, on account of the ground drying up.
It would’ve been great to see the physical progress that Fiddlerontheroof had made over the summer, but it seems he will remain under wraps for now, but that shouldn’t and won’t hinder me from suggesting the Cheltenham festival ante-post recommendation that was in the offing anyhow…
That is to suggest backing Fiddlerontheroof each-way for the 2021 Marsh Novices’ Chase (the opening race on the New Course on day three) at 33/1 with Bet365, Paddy Power or Boylesports. But what about Envoi Allen I hear you cry! Well, he was recommended as a bet at 5/1 for this race as early as April, in combination with Shishkin for the Arkle as an each-way double. Gordon Elliott’s flagbearer had the Marsh Novices’ Chase confirmed as the likely target earlier this week, so all is good there.
With that in mind, a quick scan down the list of those chasing Envoi Allen in the market, and it is very hard to find anything that has the race as a likely target. Shishkin will surely stick to 2m and the Arkle, The Big Getaway has already chased home Envoi Allen at Cheltenham and will presumably be upped in trip this season, Honeysuckle has much more likely options in trying to retain her Mares’ Hurdle crown or the new Mares’ Chase, Thyme Hill will stay over hurdles and bid for a Stayers’ Hurdle win, and Monkfish will stay at 3m surely too. Beyond that there is little else.
So, in taking the 33/1 each-way now, we could be sitting on a very appealing alternative option to Envoi Allen come March time. Joe Tizzard was quoted as saying that the race would be his likely target, and for a horse who reminds me quite markedly of Lostintranslation (second to Defi Du Seuil in the 2019 Marsh (then JLT) Novices’ Chase), I am excited to see how much he can improve and flourish for fences.
Sent off a well fancied 6/1 shot for last season’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, the relative test of speed and a busy season combined to produce an under-par performance. Knockers will point to the fact that the form of his novice hurdling campaign will need improving upon, and of that I agree. However, if you look back to his point-to-point and bumper form, then it stacks up pretty nicely with some of the best young horses around.
Without a doubt, Fiddlerontheroof will come into his own over fences, and whenever we do see him out this season, it could become patently clear that he is no 33/1 shot for the opening race on the Thursday of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival.
5 weeks to go until the big show gets underway at Prestbury Park, and many punters will be getting itchy feet and wishing these 42 days to fly by. In a bid to calm the mind, avail yourselves of the 8/1 about Olly Murphy’s Itchy Feet for the race known as the Golden Miller – the Marsh Novices’ Chase – the curtain raiser as racing switches to the stiffer New Course on day three of the Cheltenham Festival.
It is only a matter of time before the former assistant to the genius that is Gordon Elliott, gets his Cheltenham Festival tally up and running. He claimed his first Grade 1 victory when Itchy Feet won the Scilly Isles Novices’ Chase at Sandown Park on Saturday in impressive fashion, and the much sought after festival winner surely won’t be long in coming.
The performance was visually impressive, and the way he sprinted up the hill at the Esher venue in the closing stages was notable. Sometimes when that is the case, it can mask some lesser elements of substance to the performance. But in this case, it highlighted the fact that Itchy Feet ran the final section of the race, from the Pond Fence, just under 2 seconds quicker than Dolos, the 157-rated winner of the 2m handicap chase earlier on the card.
Not only that, but he ran the final circuit of the race in a quicker time than those quality 2m handicap chasers also. Style and substance mixed together in equal measure. The market for the Marsh Novices’ Chase is very much up in the air at the moment, and while Faugheen is the current favourite, and would be a huge danger, you feel it was all about getting him to peak for his tear-jerking effort at the Dublin racing Festival last weekend.
Whereas, in the case of Itchy Feet, it would be a shock if he were to not improve again for his Cheltenham Festival assignment, for a trainer who will be itching to have a memorable four days in March.
A brilliant third in last year’s Supreme Novice Hurdle, Itchy Feet has the look of a real chaser, and is a great bet at 8/1 generally.