Monday, March 12, 2018

Cheltenham Festival 2018 - Wednesday

I've upgraded to Club enclosure for this year's visit to the Cheltenham Festival; I must check my tweed trousers don't need pressing...

Here's current thinking about Wednesday's card. Needless to say, after numerous pints of Guinness at the track, I'll probably end up changing my mind.

On Monday evening the going is described as heavy.

1.30 Ballymore Novices' Hurdle
Samcro has been considered banker material by many for some considerable time now. The best of the British form is represented by On The Blind Side but he misses the race following a setback. To date the favourite has barely come off the bridle; this probably represents his first race proper. On official ratings he is five pounds clear of his nearest rivals.

I've considered Black Op and Vision Des Flos. The former might have beaten Santini here in the trial at the end of January but for a mistake at the final flight while the latter appeared to improve markedly for a wind operation when beating Mercenaire (runs in the Fred Winter at 4.50) by over 30 lengths. Black Op is generally 9/1 while Vision Des Flos is 16/1 in places.

Vision Des Flos is the each-way selection.

2.10 RSA Chase
Presenting Percy is the best horse in the race and has the considerable assistance of Davy Russell in the saddle but he's priced accordingly; four favourites have obliged in the past ten years.

Black Corton goes well for Bryony Frost, Elegant Escape looks solid and Twiston-Davies has said Ballyoptic is in the mould of 2016 winner Blaklion but on balance the Irish form has the stronger feel.

At the beginning of February Monalee beat Al Boum Photo, Invitation Only and Dounikos over two miles five at Leopardstown. Dounikos has been the subject of some bullish comment and was near the head of the market for the four mile amateurs' chase so connections clearly feel he's going to stay but he hasn't won at this trip and neither has Ruby's mount Al Boum Photo.

Presenting Percy was beaten a length by Our Duke (holds an entry in Friday's Gold Cup) over a trip of two and half miles just three and a half weeks ago. He hasn't had that much time to recover but on balance he looks the percentage call in an open race and is the win selection.

2.05 Coral Cup
Through a friend of a friend of a work colleague I have received a tip for what looks a typically impossible Coral Cup. The individual concerned tipped Supreme Story to win the 2016 County Hurdle so you'll understand if I say I feel duty bound to follow his advice...

Burbank (fourth behind Willoughby Court in last year's Neptune) is the each-way selection at around 20/1.

3.30 Champion Chase
Here's a maverick view of the Champion Chase.

At the time of writing favourite Altior is doubtful having been found lame in his near fore this morning; he has had just one run this season.

Douvan hasn't been seen on a racetrack since injuring himself in this race last year.

At Leopardstown last time Min looked set for some battle with Ordinary World coming to the final flight but the latter made a shuddering mistake, came to a standstill and eventually finished fourth.

Min is 3/1, Ordinary World 80/1; on official ratings Ordinary World has ten pounds to find with Min.

I should explain I have a bit of a history backing each-way longshots in this race. I still haven't quite forgotten how Mr O J Carter declared Venn Ottery without a tongue-tie in 2004 and in recent years Special Tiara has been particularly obliging although the ground has now gone against him.

For those of a quixotic disposition, Ordinary World (80/1) may outrun those odds and is the each-way selection.

4.50 Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle
Last year I wrote:

"Often a lottery, in the past decade no winner has had an official rating higher than 133."

Flying Tiger won off a mark of 134.

You're probably better off purchasing a lottery ticket but I'm going to chance Oxford Blu on the back of a couple of comments trainer Olly Murphy made last week.

Oxford Blu (20/1) is the each-way selection.

5.30 Champion Bumper
Acey Milan is my idea of the winner but by this stage it's a distinct probability I'll have no money left; at around 8/1, the beast doesn't really offer any value anyway so I'll just sit this one out (in a corner of the bar, weeping silently into an empty plastic glass).


Sandracer said...

OK you beat me. At 80's Ordinary World I will play each way haha... cheers

GeeDee said...

Hopeful rather than confident, Sandracer... ;)

Anonymous said...

6PTS down after Day 1 without ever getting close, on to Day 2

Assumed Going: Soft

1:30 Ballymore Novices' Hurdle (Grade 1) (Registered As The Baring Bingham) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m5f
176 SAMCRO(IRE) 33.01 3.05
167 DUC DES GENIEVRES(FR) 11.94 8.4
148 BLACK OP(IRE) 6.98 14.5
144 DIABLO DE ROUHET(FR) 5.2 19.5
144 BRAHMA BULL(IRE) 4.6 22
166 VISION DES FLOS(FR) 3.83 27

Samcro certainly deserves to be favourite but too short for me. Twice raced Duc Des Genievres will enjoy going back up trip and the ground should suit, 14/1 EW looks a fair bet.

Bet(s): 0.5PT EW Duc Des Genievres 14/1

2:10 RSA Insurance Novices' Chase (Grade 1) Cl1 (5yo+) 3m½f
177 BLACK CORTON(FR) 28.83 3.5
175 ELEGANT ESCAPE(IRE) 15.16 6.6
170 AL BOUM PHOTO(FR) 10.38 9.8
171 MONALEE(IRE) 9.63 10.5

Elegant Escape looks the one out line price wise. Closely matched with Black Corton EE might just cope with the ground that bit better and there looks a bit of value at 11/1 EW

Bet(s): 1PT EW Elegant Escape 11/1

2:50 Coral Cup Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m5f
170 RIVER FROST(GB) 7.87 13
165 RED INDIAN(GB) 7.06 14.5
166 SPRINGTOWN LAKE(IRE) 6.65 15.5
164 WILLIAM HENRY(IRE) 5.88 17
166 C'EST JERSEY(FR) 5.88 17
163 MOUNT MEWS(IRE) 5.5 18.5
164 VOIX DU REVE(FR) 4.28 24
164 BURBANK(IRE) 3.94 26

River Frost tops the system output but he’s got a red flag next to him regarding the ground, so he’s overlooked. Two possible value options are Springtown Lake (25/1) and C’est Jersey (33/1). The latter is back over hurdles and the blinkers are re-applied (won only other time he wore them).

Bet(s): 0.5PT EW C’est Jersey 33/1

3:30 Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase (Grade 1) Cl1 (5yo+) 2m
187 ALTIOR(IRE) 35.15 2.86
183 MIN(FR) 28.34 3.55
178 DOUVAN(FR) 14.93 6.8
177 POLITOLOGUE(FR) 7.78 13
174 AR MAD(FR) 3.66 28
175 SPECIAL TIARA(GB) 3.06 34
172 CHARBEL(IRE) 2.65 38
172 GOD'S OWN(IRE) 2.02 50

Altior tops the ratings but is perhaps a bit shorter than he should be in the betting, Douvan has not been seen since finishing down the field in last year’s renewal so I’ll take a chance on Min at 4/1. The system has Ordinary World at 42.0 so odds of 81.0 does represent value!

Bet(s): 1 PT Win Min 4/1

4:10 Glenfarclas Chase (A Cross Country Chase) Cl2 (5yo+) 3m6f
A race I always watch and enjoy but no real interest from a betting perspective though the 13/2 about The Last Samuri (top BHA, top RPR and top speed rating) might look a snip post race.

4:50 Boodles Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) Cl1 (4yo) 2m½f
160 ERAGON DE CHANAY(FR) 19.04 5.3
157 THE KING OF MAY(FR) 12.59 8
145 NUBE NEGRA(SPA) 6.62 15.5
136 LISP(IRE) 5.26 19
150 STYLE DE GARDE(FR) 4.61 22
148 ACT OF VALOUR(GB) 4.42 23
154 MERCENAIRE(FR) 4.34 24
153 GRAND SANCY(FR) 4 26
147 MITCHOUKA(FR) 3.93 26
146 OXFORD BLU(GB) 3.91 26

This might come too soon for top rated Eragon De Chanay so I’ll sit the race out.

Enjoy the day


GeeDee said...

Thanks again for your ratings, TW. I noted the ratings looking good for the Mares' Hurdle, the four miler (top-rated Rathvinden won, Ms Parfois, rated third, second) and the finale (Mr Whitaker rated second beat Rather Be rated fourth).


GeeDee said...

Presenting Percy (5/2f) win the RSA Chase (2.10)

Burbank (18/1) finished seventh, seven lengths behind winner Bleu Berry in the Coral Cup (2.50).

Ordinary World (40/1) crept into contention three out in the Champion Chase (3.30) but was quickly tapped for toe off the home bend and finished fifth, some 35 lengths behind winner Altior.

Oxford Blu (14/1) was pulled up in the Fred Winter (4.50) which went to Veneer Of Charm (33/1).