Skip to main content

Close Brothers Novice Handicap Chase preview

Day One of the Festival comes to an end with a nasty handicap chase, you'd want to be in front by this stage...

Keeping it brief and rolling a few dice, because you'll be seven pints in by this stage, is Stephen Conchar, @wickyman. Welcome aboard!

---------------------------

Close Brothers Novice Handicap Chase
Listed, £70,000, about 2m4.5f
Cheltenham Tuesday 1730 local, 0430 AEDT


The last race on day one of the greatest show on earth is the Close Brothers Novice Handicap Chase, a new race by festival standards. It's a race that has evolved from the Cathcart Chase and is a 0/140 handicap with six previous runnings, normally won by one of the higher rated fancied horses. This year's field isn't great by Cheltenham standards but gives a chance for smaller trainers and larger stable's second strings to get a bit of glory. At the moment there are 20 runners and the place terms are 1/4 odds the first four, but on the day I am sure plenty of books will be offering the five place concession.

There are not many that can be ruled out, it will be all about who can do it on the day in a race sure to be ran at a breakneck pace.

The Contenders

1 Zandy Man - a small field, soft ground front runner likely to struggle in this.

2 Last Goodbye - Irish raider won a Down Royal novice chase, looks badly handicapped.

3 Double Ws - one of the Northern hopes, hardly thrown in but this has been his target all season.

4 Mixboy - trained in Scotland, looks to be taking on a bit much.

5 Foxtail Hill - the fav trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies (NTD) and ridden by his son Willie. Jumped well at Kempton.

6 Hammersley Lake - put in some good rounds of jumping has to be of interests with Danny Mullins booked.

7 Captain Redbeard - a fine chestnut who really comes into his own in the spring having won two points, three hurdles and two chases. Trained by Stuart Coltherd and ridden by his son Sam, I am hopeful of a big run. The horse has really improved lately and should love the big field hustle and bustle of Cheltenham. Both horse and jockey's first visit to Cheltenham.

8 Templehills - another NTD runner, was inpressive at Warwick.

9 Bun Doran - I saw him at Newcastle and was quietly impressed but I think this is a bit much for him.

10 Killiney Court - hacked up at Galway but am not sure that form's up to much.

11 Itsafreebee - they have managed to get him down to a mark that he gets in here placed in the Neptune last year, hard to rule him out.

12 Powersbomb - bit of a tearaway that makes mistakes but will set a fair pace.

13 Tully East - been running in good company was fourth in Martin Pipe hurdle last year.

14 Relentless Dreamer - don't think this one is good enough.

15 Deans Road - another that I like trained by De Bromhead.

16 Gold Present - looks out of sorts.

17 Two Taffs - looked to struggle at Catterick, it could all happen too quick for him.

18 Sizing Tennessee - blinkered first time.

19 All Hell Let Loose - ran in the Pertemps last season and beaten a long, long way.

20 Burtons Well - ran behind Waiting Patiently at Sedgefield, is that festival form though?

BETS

Itsafreebee 1 point win 9/1
Captain Redbeard 1 point ew 20/1 general
Hammersley Lake 1 point ew 16/1 Hills
Deans Road 1 point ew 25/1 general

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

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...

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