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Revealed: the five worst results for Ladbrokes at the Cheltenham Festival

Gordon Elliott responsible for three of the firm's five biggest liabilities

Gordon Elliott: holds a powerful hand at the Cheltenham Festival next month
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Gordon Elliott holds the key to how Ladbrokes fare at Cheltenham next month, with the firm revealing that the County Meath trainer holds three of the five worst results in their festival book. 

Topping the Ladbrokes list is Gigginstown House Stud ace Samcro, who was well backed for the Marsh Novices' Chase after a promising start to the season at Down Royal in November. At that point, he was supported into 7-2 favouritism for the Marsh, but he has since drifted out to 8-1 after failing to live up to expectations thereafter.


The worst results for Ladbrokes

The firm's five biggest Cheltenham Festival liabilities

Horse
Samcro

Race
Marsh Novices' Chase, Thursday

Current odds
8-1

Why he was backed
Made an impressive chasing debut at Down Royal, winning by 17 lengths, before falling in the Drinmore Novice Chase won by Fakir D'Oudaries in December. Most recently, he was soundly beaten by Faugheen in a Limerick Grade 1 novice chase over Christmas.


Horse
Goshen

Race
JCB Triumph Hurdle, Friday

Goshen: unbeaten Gary Moore-trained juvenile is well fancied for the JCB Triumph Hurdle

Current odds
7-2

Why he was backed
Unbeaten in three starts over hurdles, winning by an aggregate of 68 lengths. The form of his most recent victory at Ascot, when he won by 11 lengths, was franked when the runner-up that day – Nordano – bolted up by 16 lengths in a handicap hurdle at the same course this month.


Horse
Appreciate It

Race
Weatherbys Champion Bumper, Wednesday

Current odds
2-1

Why he was backed
Winning pointer has landed two of his three starts in bumpers, most recently a Grade 2 at the Dublin Racing Festival. He routed the field that day, winning in the manner of a smart performer, and looks set to go off a short-priced favourite in the big one.


Horse
Envoi Allen

Race
Ballymore Novices' Hurdle, Wednesday

Envoi Allen: Cheltenham Festival winner has landed two Grade 1s over hurdles this term

Current odds
11-8

Why he was backed
Seven from seven under rules and already a winner at Cheltenham, having landed the Champion Bumper last March. A two-time Grade 1 winner over hurdles, he looks the real deal and is bound to feature in many life-changing accumulators in the weeks to come.


Horse
Tiger Roll

Race
Cross Country Chase, Wednesday

Current odds
Evens

Why he was backed
Needs no introduction as a two-time Grand National and four-time festival hero, winning the Triumph, National Hunt Chase and Cross Country Chase twice in an epic career. He won the cross-country by 22 lengths last season and will bid to set up an historic Aintree bid with a similar performance next month.


Unsurprisingly, the potential Irish banker Envoi Allen, also trained by Elliott, makes the list as the fourth-worst festival result for Ladbrokes.

With three Grade 1 victories to his name, two of them over hurdles, it is no wonder that the Cheveley Park Stud-owned star has at no time been any bigger than 10-1 for the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle.

The unbeaten six-year-old is now just 11-8 to land the opener on day two of the festival, a moment that could make-or-break the week for many bookmakers across the four days.

The support for Elliott-trained runners does not stop there, however, with Tiger Roll the firm's fifth-worst festival result as he bids to land the Cross Country Chase for a third time.

Victory next month would be his fifth at the Cheltenham Festival and the two-time Randox Health Grand National hero is the even-money favourite for the cross-country, and has never been any bigger than 13-8 since betting opened last year.

Away from the Elliott contingent, Ladbrokes's second-biggest liability is the Gary Moore-trained Goshen, a 7-2 chance for the JCB Triumph Hurdle.

He was first introduced into the betting at 33-1 in November after making a huge impression on his three starts over hurdles, and the price of the unbeaten four-year-old has crashed. However, he has since lost favouritism to Solo, who posted a smart performance in winning the Adonis at Kempton on Saturday.

Appreciate It: 2-1 with Ladbrokes to win the Weatherbys Champion Bumper at Cheltenham

Not far behind him on liabilities at number three is Appreciate It in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper. The Willie Mullins-trained hopeful entered the bumper picture at 16-1 when winning at Leopardstown over Christmas and is now the clear 2-1 favourite, following on from his Dublin Racing Festival triumph this month.

Nicola McGeady of Ladbrokes said: "Gordon Elliott is the man we fear most heading into the Cheltenham Festival as he's responsible for three of our five biggest liabilities this year. It's hard to pick holes in Envoi Allen and Tiger Roll, but we will be hoping Samcro can give us some respite at least."


You might also be interested in:

Elliott 'very happy' as Tiger Roll schools over Cheltenham cross-country fences

'I will not be backing Tiger Roll for the Grand National'

Dawn Run to Annie Power: seven queens of the turf who made Cheltenham their own


Don't miss the Racing Post Cheltenham Festival Guide 2020 – 208 pages featuring Paul Kealy's race-by-race guide, Racing Post Ratings, top tipsters, bookmaker Q&A, trainer analysis and more. Pre-order here or call 01933 304858. Out Friday, February 21


 

It's hard to pick holes in Envoi Allen and Tiger Roll, but we will be hoping Samcro can give us some respite at least
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