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Betfair Super Saturday – Newbury – Saturday 12th February

Saturday 12th February 15:00

WhichBookie racing analyst Will Smith gives you the lowdown on Betfair's Super Saturday card at Newbury on 12th February, with one standout selection.

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Bookie Selection Best Odds Market Bet
Funambule Sivola 5/25/2 15.00 Newbury
win only
Place BetPlace Bet

Date of Tips: 12/02/2022

Disclaimer The odds for these selections were correct at the time of publishing (07:35 12/02/2022) but may have changed since. Please check the latest price before placing your bet.

‘If at first you don’t succeed, try try and try again.’

A mantra that I’m sure we can all agree is a pretty vital one to getting anywhere in any walk of life. But definitely not one I would apply to finding a bet in a big race, that you have been circling round your head for days and weeks.

This is me and today’s Betfair Hurdle at 3.35 at Newbury. We have agreed to disagree, and move on with our lives!

At the current prices, I could make a claim for both Royaume Uni and Glory And Fortune at 14/1 each-way with Betfair Sportsbook and Paddy Power, who both offer 5 places on the race. But when lining up bigger priced each-way options like this, I would want to be much more negative about those ahead of them in the market, and in this case, many of those at shorter odds have very appealing profiles.

Perhaps last year’s ready winner Soaring Glory will be spot on again for his bid to regain the crown, but I’d be a little worried by the cheekpieces added back on, given he didn’t need them to win impressively last season, and didn’t seem to overly enjoy their presence in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle last March.

Without doubt the bet of the day comes 35 minutes earlier, in the four-runner Betfair Exchange Game Spirit Chase at 3.00 at Newbury. As with the opening novices’ handicap chase at 1.15, the Denman Chase at 2.25, and this race – there are some tightly knit betting races on the card. Particularly as all three feature Paul Nicholls-trained favourites or fancied horses, and without labouring the point, the yard hasn’t been firing in the last few weeks.

So, if you have one bet today, make it Funambule Sivola at 5/2 with Betfair Sportsbook or Paddy Power in the Betfair Game Spirit Chase, to continue what has been a remarkable season for Venetia Williams and Charlie Deutsch.

When chasing home Shishkin at Aintree last April, and giving him a slight scare, Funambule Sivola perhaps didn’t get the credit he deserved that day. Put down quite quickly into the ‘fluke’ category by many, the time of the race suggests strongly otherwise.

That Funambule Sivola has been tested at 2m4f on his first two starts of this season, suggested that connections were either attempting to avoid the ‘big guns’ at 2m, shave a few pounds off his handicap mark before a tilt at a spring festival handicap – or perhaps a bit of both, and a fact-finding mission has ensued.

The experiment over 2m4f was shelved with an impressively cosy win over 2m at Doncaster last time, when Charlie Deutsch gave Funambule Sivola a brilliant ride to not win by too far. It screamed of hiding his horse’s superiority, and a such, my mind immediately raced towards hoping he was kept fresh for a tilt at the Red Rum Handicap Chase back at Aintree in two months’ time.

In having a crack at the Game Spirit Chase, clearly connections feel the horse is just too well and the prize too ripe for the taking not to have a go, and so are going back down the Graded route just two weeks after Doncaster.

Granted 2m on a flat track on drying ground are his perfect conditions, and so with a few niggling doubts about all of the other three in the race, Funambule Sivola should be favourite, and isn’t. So that makes him a good bet at 5/2 with Betfair Sportsbook and Paddy Power.

What’s more, Funambule Sivola might only face any pressure on the front end from Hitman, who is a horse I like, but might find Funambule Sivola too speedy here. Sceau Royal won the race last year, and will be a tough rival to beat, and despite facing his ideal conditions, might just face a rival with too much progression forthcoming here.

While, Sky Pirate likes an end-to-end-gallop, and is surely being kept busy with a view to getting his mark back down to a winnable one for an attempt at regaining his Grand Annual crown in March.

The Daily Rewards With Betfair Handicap Hurdle at 1.50 has the look of a race that would float my punting boat, but similar to the Betfair Hurdle – the more I looked, the more I went around in circles.

So, with discipline and slight bemusement in equal measure, I make Funambule Sivola at 5/2 with Betfair Sportsbook or Paddy Power, to win the Betfair Game Spirit Chase at 3.00, the only bet on the Newbury card.

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