Skip to main content

Diamond Jubilee National Hunt Chase preview

Stepping up to take on Wednesday's toughest looking race is David Plane, @planey2k. You can read more of his musings on his blog

Chicago Grey’s crown will be handed over to another Irish chaser tomorrow in the shape of WP Mullins’s Soll. See him in the flesh and you’ll be forgiven for double-taking, as this son of Presenting - built muscular, with a dark, liver chestnut coat and a huge pair of lungs – resembles famous Cheltenham favourite Denman.

Soll, who will be ridden by Katy Walsh, has drifted from favouritism in the market, with Mullins’ son Patrick preferring stable companion Allee Garde, and Sir Alex Ferguson’s Paul Nicholls trained gelding Harry the Viking slightly shorter with most bookmakers. Most punters will appreciate both the decision-making significance of the younger Mullins and the experience of Allee Garde, so it’s difficult to argue against him, but everything I’ve heard coming from his father suggests confidence in Soll, particularly with regards to his credentials over a longer distance. You pays your money, you takes your chance, as the ridiculous saying goes.

Other contenders exist in the shape of Teaforthree (who I last saw pull up behind Grands Crus in the Feltham at the Kempton Park Boxing Day meeting), Alfie Spinner (who won at Chepstow over 3m at Christmas, finished 3rd behind Invictus and Bobs Worth, ahead of Silviniaco Conti at Ascot in February and is partnered by “The Dentist” tomorrow), Universal Soldier at 14-1 (who’s been beaten by Teaforthree in the past) and Four Commanders (who’s been there or thereabouts this year and has a couple of wins at half the distance asked of him here). It’s 20-1 bar, but don’t let that put you off looking further down the betting for some value. Four out of the last 10 winners of this stamina-testing four-miler were priced up greater than 25-1, and Chicago Grey was the first outright favourite to win the “Challenge Cup” in 20 years, offering perhaps a tenuous reason to oppose Allee Garde at the head of the market. Please feel free to accuse me of myopia with regards to this one though, as I’ve had my eye on Soll for some time now, and am probably not the most objective blogger to ask for a more balanced opinion!

If Soll can tank home tomorrow it will hand Mullins a title that, as a jockey 30 years ago, he won for his father, triumphant in 1982 on board a horse called Hazy Dawn. Backers who got 12-1 about Soll a few weeks ago will undoubtedly be celebrating for the rest of tomorrow afternoon’s racing and well on into the west country dusk.

Listen to Sportingbet.com’s “Cheltenham Chat” to hear why Soll is my tip for the week.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

It's all gone Pete Tong at Betfair!

The Christmas Hurdle from Leopardstown, a good Grade 2 race during the holiday period. But now it will go into history as the race which brought Betfair down. Over £21m at odds of 29 available on Voler La Vedette in-running - that's a potential liability of over £500m. You might think that's a bit suspicious, something's fishy, especially with the horse starting at a Betfair SP of 2.96. Well, this wasn't a horse being stopped by a jockey either - the bloody horse won! Look at what was matched at 29. Split that in half and multiply by 28 for the actual liability for the layer(s). (Matched amounts always shown as double the backers' stake, never counts the layers' risk). There's no way a Betfair client would have £600m+ in their account. Maybe £20 or even £50m from the massive syndicates who regard(ed) Betfair as safer than any bank, but not £600m. So the error has to be something technical. However, rumour has it, a helpdesk reply (not gospel, natur

What shits me about match-fixing 'journalism'.

The anti-wagering media bandwagon has dozens of new members this week, all weighing in an industry they have absolutely no idea about. I'm all for getting the betting industry into the mainstream but it shits me no end when they roll out reports and celebrities who simply don't have a clue what they are talking about and don't bother to check basic facts which key arguments in their story. If this was the financial industry, making errors like this would have them in all sorts of trouble, but the same level of regulation doesn't apply because finance stock markets are supposedly all legitimate and serious, whereas sports betting is just a bit of fun for people who can never win in the long-term... according to the media. This week we have seen the sting by the Telegraph which, on the face of it, looks to be a tremendous piece of investigative work into fixing in English football. But the headlines around it are over-sensationalised yet again. Delroy Facey, a former pla

lay the field - my favourite racing strategy

Dabbling with laying the field in-running at various prices today, not just one price, but several in the same race. Got several matched in the previous race at Brighton, then this race came along at Nottingham. Such a long straight at Nottingham makes punters often over-react and think the finish line is closer than it actually is. As you can see by the number of bets matched, there was plenty of volatility in this in-play market. It's rare you'll get a complete wipe-out with one horse getting matched at all levels, but it can happen, so don't give yourself too much risk...