Coral Cup Handicap Chase
- 11/03 | 14:50
Fred Winter Handicap Hurdle
- 11/03 | 16:50
Pertemps Handicap Hurdle
- 12/03 | 14:10
- 13/03 | 14:10
Ultima Handicap Chase
- 10/03 | 14:50
Coral Cup Handicap Chase
- 11/03 | 14:50
Pertemps Handicap Hurdle
- 12/03 | 14:10
Grand Annual Chase
- 13/03 | 16:50
The fact he could run as well as he did against the second favourite for the Supreme was a feather in his cap and he’s taken off over further since. Last time he stayed on strongly to win the Grade 1 over 2m6f at the Dublin Racing Festival and he will have no trouble staying 3m and staying it well.
- 13/03 | 14:50
It was the manner of his Naas victory that marked him down as something special and he comes from a yard that has the best record in novice hurdles at the festival. What was so impressive at Naas was his hurdling, which was quick and accurate, and he looked a horse who was destined for the very top.
Ballymore Novices' Hurdle
- 11/03 | 13:30
Timing is the key to winning at Cheltenham and it seems to me there are three phases of betting. We’ve been through the first one as that’s about securing long-range prices about horses with big chances. If Copperhead runs in the RSA, then I could have a chance of knocking one out of the park, if he doesn’t I’m struggling a bit. The next time to consider betting is when all the bookmakers go non-runner, no bet. With so many choices of races, year in year out horses switch from one to another late on and the non-runner, no-bet concession gives you that safety blanket. Finally, and clearly the most important one, is the day of the race and, with the bookmakers all fighting for business in competitive races, it is often then that the best value is found. As for strategy, I don’t do anything different. The hype machine starts for the Cheltenham Festival the day after the previous one finishes and it’s easy to get sucked into bad bets. The same principles apply to a Cheltenham race as they do any other in that you should always try to find horses who have a better chance than their price suggests. The hype machine dictates that certain horses are shorter prices than they actually should be on form and that provides punters with chances. Over the last 20 years I’ve taken on all the short-priced ones with varying degrees of success. However, you don’t need many 16-1 shots to come out in front and every year there are plenty of upsets due to the competitive nature of the contests. My punting strategy is going to be based around the novice chases because at this stage I don’t think the form is anywhere near as strong as it has been in previous years. Consequently, I think the markets are all wrong in most of them and a horse like Brewin’upastorm could easily be better than those at the head of the Arkle betting. However, the final bit of advice is always the most important and it’s simply not to get too carried away. It’s only horses running around a field and, while Cheltenham is the best four days, there are more than 300 others and there’s no need to have a bet just for the sake of it.
You can be forgiven for looking towards the bottom of the handicap in races such as the Coral Cup – a big-field handicap hurdle with a mixture of proven Graded horses, well-handicapped performers and young, unexposed types. However, William Henry’s shock victory over fellow veteran Wicklow Brave last year proved yet again that it pays to stick towards those at the top of the racecard, with six of the last seven winners donning a single-figure digit between one and eight on their number cloth. Punters often attempt to find an unknown quantity in the handicaps, but that hasn’t paid its way in the Coral Cup in recent years and trends suggest you should always nail your colours to the mast of a proven Graded-level runner in the field. The trainer is important, too, as Nicky Henderson (three), Gordon Elliott (two), Willie Mullins and Paul Nicholls have won seven of the last ten Coral Cups between them.
We all know JP McManus loves a bet on one of his horses and he rarely gets it wrong when plunging on one at the festival. Sire Du Berlais (Pertemps), Any Second Now (Kim Muir) and Early Doors (Martin Pipe) were all the subject of strong support before their respective races last year and racegoers witnessed the green and gold silks flying up the run-in in front just moments later. McManus has several big chances this time around and missing out on a gamble could prove folly. We know the legendary owner loves his horses to be primed for a crack at this meeting and sharp improvement in form from his handicappers is not uncommon.
The best horses could look bombproof all year long but the Cheltenham Festival is prone to throwing up some shock results. This is where the best meet the best and you can’t always take a load of ‘1s’ next to a horse’s name for granted. The likes of Tiger Roll and Altior rewarded short-priced punters with comfortable successes at skinny odds 12 months ago, but there were also shocks aplenty over the four days, most notably Benie Des Dieux’s defeat when coming to grief at the last in the Mares’ Hurdle. She had looked unbeatable for some time in that division – and has proven since she is head and shoulders clear of anything else – and her jumping is normally oh so slick, so it is fair to say you have to expect the unexpected. Not every ‘good thing’ will prove to be just that.
When a trainer with numerous talented horses in one division enters two, three or four in a race it is common to dismiss them all other than the first string, citing that the rider would have had the choice and therefore the others aren’t as good. Eglantine Du Seuil’s 50-1 success in the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle – a race in which Willie Mullins had seven runners, including 13-2 shot My Sister Sarah – was one of several examples of stablemates getting the better of supposed first strings. Add to that Al Boum Photo’s win as second string behind Kemboy in the Gold Cup and Espoir D’Allen’s Champion Hurdle triumph in the second colours of JP McManus and punters would be silly not to take each horse on face value.
One bet consisting of two selections in different races. Both horses must win (or place if the bet is each-way) to guarantee a return. If the first selection wins, everything that would have been returned is then staked on the second selection. This is a good way of multiplying the value of two selections and each-way doubles are popular as the place part of the bet runs on to the second selection even if the first doesn’t win. A place double will often yield enough for the full stake to be returned should both selections make the places, so it’s a solid way of attempting to cover your stake on the win part of the bet.
Similar to a double bet but containing three selections rather than two, a treble is a single bet on three horses in different races. All three selections must win (or place if the bet is each-way) to guarantee a win with the returns of the first selection staked on the second, then the returns of the second staked on the third. This is a useful way to multiply the odds on several horses.
An accumulator is a bet that combines four or more selections in one bet. As with doubles and trebles, this is a group of horses in different races and all of them must win (or place if the bet is each-way) to guarantee a return. Due to the high number of selections the odds are bigger and the risk is greater but, with so much accumulating, the reward for a win is often substantial.
This is one of the most popular multiple bets among racing punters and the clue is in the name as a Lucky 15 consists of 15 bets on four horses in different races. That equals four singles, six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold accumulator. The beauty of the Lucky 15 is that only one selection of four must win to guarantee a return and the majority of bookmakers will offer incentives to play the bet. Most will pay out at double the odds if you select one winner, while several pay a bonus of up to 10 per cent for four winners. The problem is that even if one selection wins at double the odds, it’s highly unlikely the original full stake will be covered and you can still end up losing on the bet despite having had a winner.
Basically a Lucky 15 without the four single bets, a Yankee consists of a total of 11 bets on four horses in different races. That equals six doubles, four trebles and a four-fold accumulator. Given we’ve forsaken the singles, a minimum of two selections must win to guarantee a return but that should at least cover the initial outlay and in most cases two winners will secure a profit.
A horse racing tip is a suggested bet, often by a profession, predicting the outcome of a race or event. Our tips are thoroughly thought out and meticulously selected by racing experts, before being published on the Racing Post website or newspaper. This is designed to save punters’ time when looking to have a bet, so they don’t have to research Cheltenham Tips themselves.
Ante-post in the term used to describe a bet that is placed well in advance of the day of the event. The benefit of placing a bet well in advance of the day of the race, is the increased odds that are available. However, the risk of placing an ante-post bet is that if your selection does not compete in the event, you will still lose your bet.
The Cheltenham Festival is renowned for ante-post betting. It’s a tradition dating back centuries that offers punters the chance to predict a winner months in advance. There are many strategies and tactics that punters can use to predict an outcome, even without the guarantee of the horse running in the race. Trainers and jockeys may suggest a future race for a horse to target, particular races are good guide to the class of a horse and can indicate a potential target, whilst others simply use their own intuition and skill to take a punt.
An each-way bet on horse racing is essentially two bets on the same horse. The first bet, known as a ‘back bet’ requires the horse to win the race in order to return a profit. The second bet, known as a ‘place bet’ will pay out if the horse finishes in the first 3 positions (subject to bookmaker and race terms). When placing an each-way bet your stake will be doubled, so bare this in mind when placing your bets (£10 each-way will cost £20, £10 win bet and £10 place bet).
The benefit of placing an each-way bet is that you can still win, even if your horse doesn’t finish first. It’s important to note that the ‘place bet’ will return a fraction of the original odds at which the bet was placed. For example, if you placed an each way bet at 16/1 and the horse finished 2nd or 3rd, then you would be paid out on the place bet at one-quarter of the original odds (4/1) – this is subject to bookmaker and race terms.
There are plenty of ways to place a bet on Cheltenham. If you are attending the Cheltenham Festival you will have access to the betting ring which is a collection of bookmakers next to the racecourse who accept cash only bets. If you aren’t attending Cheltenham, you can visit a bookmaker shop or place a bet online. Most bookmakers have mobile apps and websites in which you can sign up for an account and place bets through. Alternatively, you can bet through the Racing Post app – where you can study the form and place your bets all in one place without having to switch between apps.
It can pay to follow a professional tipster and there are a handful of consistent experts out there. We think we have the best tipsters in the business at Racing Post and the majority of their tips are for premium customers only. Tom Segal and Paul Kealy are among our most popular tipsters, along with Tom Collins, James Hill and Graeme Rodway. However, on the Cheltenham Festival microsite, we have unlocked some of our best tipsters’ selections to help give you an edge at Cheltenham this year. We even have David Jennings and Gavin Lynch’s ante-post Cheltenham tips from the Upping The Ante show. Now that’s a blockbuster line-up.