Festival 2020: Day 1 (COMPLETE: Tips x7+write ups)

Tips x7 + write ups /notes etc / ‘through the card’ / Stats / trends pointers >>>

1.Main Tips (summary)

2.’Through The Card’

3.Stats Pack Trainer/Micro Quals

4.Stats Pack Race Trends/Trainer Pointers

5. Tips – Write Ups/Notes


1.Main Tips (summary) (Tips Complete x 7, as of 09.10) 


1/7, 2p, +7.4 

#1 – The Conditional – 1 point EW – 8/1 gen  WON, 15/2 (declared,hopefully some got 8s) +9 

#2 – Big River – 1 point EW – 25/1 (bet 365/BV/Boyle) 22/1 (gen/bog) 5th, (22/1, 1/5p declared) +3.4 

#7 – Mister Malarky – 1 point win – 12/1 (gen) (15.00 BetfX) (as of 09.11) UP – ah, he didn’t like that ground at all, sticky, very heavy, at least that’s confirmed!


#3 – Champagne Court – 1 point win – 18/1 (betf/BV/PP/Coral) 16/1 (others) UP, poor -1 

#4 – Trainwreck – 1 point win – 12/1 (gen) Up poor, both travelled ok for a time but soon faded on turn for home. The top of the market did dominate sadly! -1 


#5 – Newtide – 1 point win – 11/1 (betfS/PP) 10/1 (gen) UP, ran well for a long way but emptied on turn for home. 

#6 – The Hollow Ginge – 1 point win – 25/1 (gen) (29.00 BetfX) UP, just not good enough. Right to take on fav, winner drifted 6/1>12s. 

That’s all for main tips today, x7 of them, 9 points total… a late morning addition in the 2.50 which i’ll explain below. As of 09.11. There will not be any further main tips for Day 1. All write ups, notes, updated notes and ‘through the card’ notes can be found at the bottom of the post, keep scrolling… 🙂 


2.’Through The Card’ 

Focusing on my ‘non target’ races for a bit of fun…

1/5, 3p = -1 

1.30 – Fiddlerontheroof (13/2) UP / Abacadabras (6/1) 2nd 

2.10 – Fakir DOudairies (4/1) 2nd 

2.50 – Main tips above

3.30 – Epatante (win – 3/1)  WON 3/1 / Conerstone Lad (EW 4p, 28/1) UP

4.10 – No bet – (Benie should hack up bar accidents/one for multiples)

4.50 – Main tips above

5.30 – Main tips above 


3.Stats Pack Trainer/Micro Quals 

Note: It is NOT advised to back any of these systematically, I think they’re more useful used in any punting deliberations, but you’ve seen the research and can do as you please. 

Trainer Pointers 

4.50 – Galvin (any odds)

Handicap Micros (x6)

Micro (M) 1 (25/1< guide)

4.50  – Lord Schnitzel / Trainwreck

M3 (16/1<, 12/1< best)

2.50 – Cepage / Cogry

4.50 – Beakstown/ Champagne Court / Imperial Aura / Jarveys Plate / Galvin

M4 (28/1< guide)

2.50 – Elwood

4.50 – Beakstown/ Earlofthecotswolds

M5 (16/1<)

2.50 – Elwood

4.50 – Daly Tiger / Trainwreck

M6 (15/2< SP)

2.50 – No Comment



4.Stats Pack Race Trends/Trainer Pointers

As with the micros above these are only a guide/to use as part of wider process if you wish…


Trainers (to have won race/with runners)

  • Vindication
  • Who Dares Wins
  • Mister Malarkey
  • Brave Eagle/ Burbank
  • Quarenta
  • Soupy Soups

Trends Shortlist 

The 15/15 and 14/15 stats leave 12/15 winners (12/96, 28p)…

Discorama / Mulcahays Hill/ No Comment / Burbank / Atlanta Blaze / Ice Cool Champs 

If I ignore the G3 LTO stat, and focus on the other 15/15,14/15 which are more about the horses profile that covers 13/117, 32p… leaves 11 runners total adding those below to the above…

Vindication / Kildisart / The Conditional/ Mister Malarkey / Brave Eagle 


Trainers (to have won race/with runners)

  • Hold The Note
  • Trainwreck
  • Precious Cargo / Champagne Mystery

Trends Shortlist 

This race doesn’t look the strongest from a trends perspective, but the 15/15,14/15 and 13/15 stats (exc odds) leave 10/15 (10/96 runners, 26p)… more long list, cutting the field in half…

Imperial Aura / Hold The Note/ Champagne Court / Highest Sun/ Precious Cargo / Torpillo / Knight In Dubai / Champagne Mystery / Paint The Dream / Daly Tiger / Jarveys Plate 


Trainers (to have won race/with runners)

  • Carefully Selected
  • Ravenhill
  • The Hollow Ginge

Trends Shortlist 

Some caution as this race’s conditions have changed since previous years, so that may have some impact in time but we shall see.

The 15/15 and 14/15 stats leave 13/15 winners (13/106, 27p)…

Carefully Selected/ Lord Du Mesnil / Forza Milan / The Hollow Ginge / Redzor / Anteros 


5. Tips – Write Ups/Notes 


Cheltenham Festival 2020 Master Post: READ HERE>>>

-The ‘Master Post’ includes various links inc main stats report, the plan for the week, betting banks etc


Write ups/notes…


The Conditional – 1 point EW – 8/1 gen (hunt for best places/ declared 1/5 5p)

Big River – 1 point EW – 25/1 (bet 365/BV/Boyle) 22/1 (gen/bog)

Mister Malarkey – 1 point win – 12/1 (gen) 

My shortlist: the selections / Vindication / Discorama / 

I’ve approached day 1 assuming this will be testing enough – I can’t have there being any ‘good’ in the going and while it may not be heavy (fresh ground/drains ok although high water table etc) there’s enough rain in the air to suggest it should be soft+. You will need to get home/handle it. Tuesday is set fair/sunny and it may start to dry out as the week progresses. As always the times of the first few races will reveal plenty.

The Conditional – I’ve gone EW on this race as I concluded it wasn’t that competitive, if it’s testing, and so many have questions. I thought he looked solid and baring accidents I struggled to see him out the places, and I do think he’s the one to beat. I nearly cursed him with a 2 pointer and of course he will now finish outside the top 5, but still, on paper, he just looks good. He generally travels near the pace, has CD form, won’t mind what the ground is, has nothing on his back and he still travels as if he’s chucked in. DB can ready them after a break (he’s superb actually with chasers 60+ days, which this is, near enough) and that won’t be a problem. He won here in the slop before Xmas and travelled even better in the Ladbrooke – Brendan maybe could have got after him sooner but he did whack a fence or two – he does have the odd niggly error in him and they put CP back on to sharpen his focus – he never looks like coming down, and prob another reason for EW as a chance any errors catch up with him in the last 1/2 f. Anyway, while it wasn’t a vintage Ladbroke, it wasn’t any worse than this race – and he had the likes of Mister Malarky well beat there. He travelled so well through that and was staying on again at the end. He travelled well again at Warwick off a fierce pace – he missed out two down the back, was squeezed on the bend and just didn’t stay that far. Golden Cheiften came from a placed effort in the Classic Chase to win this. That was a decent race with no hiding place-  Kimberlite should go well in the National, Captain C has hacked up in the Grimthorpe since, the 6th has since won. If he runs his race and granted usual luck in running, I can’t see how he won’t be in there pitching after the last.

Big River – early on I knew I couldn’t leave him at 22s/25s as I still have his run in this last year etched in my mind. It was one of the most extraordinary runs i’ve ever seen in decent handicap chase- i’m not sure where he came from but flew up the hill into 4th like a fresh horse. 1 furlong + further and he’d have won. All he does is stay and the more rain the better given his form in heavy – there could also be more pace than last year’s race and some of them will be stopping up the hill. He can struggle to hold his pitch despite the fact they’ve tried to race him handy, including in this last year and then the Scottish National. The recent application of CP may have helped sharpen him up. I don’t know how they will ride him but if he is happily holding a position in the front half , we really will have some fun as I don’t think anything in here will outstay him. He is lightly raced for his age (only his 5th run since this last year) and this mark won’t beat him, and he also arrives in form and after a break – this will have been the plan. Now, he could capsize, get too far back, run into trouble – but he’s a 22s shot, they’re not meant to tick every box.

Of the rest… what would annoy me at the prices?

Update: Mister Malarky – This will be the only race I have 5 points on this week, but I couldn’t help myself…I originally had him on my shortlist above and removed for some reason and given that the ‘going’ is my only niggle, my morning eyes have decided i’d be besides myself if he took this at 12s, especially as for some reason still unknown to me I crossed him off a shortlist of 2 LTO, and stuck 2 points on Black Corton like a fool.  He’s the only horse in the 3 races i’ve played in that would infuriate me if hacking up at the odds – Espoir De Guye may not be far behind in the 4.50 but he’s 7s and I can live with that more, and he’s more questions than this one. (although possible saver/small change) Tizzard has won this race before and the horse hits my trends etc. He won well LTO and it could be that he’s just in better form now than before Xmas – Tizzard is quoted as saying on reflection he doesn’t think he’s ground dependant as such (although they didn’t say that after Kempton!) Anyway, this shouldn’t be heavy given only 4mm and while I think soft enough, 12s allows the play. He was 4th in last year’s RSA on soft and two of those in front are fancied for the Gold Cup. Coming here on the back of a win only 17 days ago, fresh fit and well, could be a big positive in this line up. Tizzard is in decent form again and Junior will also try to be aggressive I suspect and won’t have him far off the pace. He’d have had the chance to ride his dad’s outsider but sticks with this one. He also shows up well on various ratings I use as a guide. That was also a career best RPR (156) and there could be a few pounds left in this mark. He could still be progressive.

Well nothing really too annoying – I suppose Discorama  (i should add, as I think he will be held up, his in running price should be much bigger than 8s at some point… ) to a point at 8s, of those near the top it was between him and The Conditional. I thought he may be ridden too cold, there are questions over his recent form, and he’s had a wind op etc – no doubt this has been the plan since but the Irish don’t do well in this (they do generally much better than the English when the rains come though) and I think I wanted a bigger price. If he was a front runner/tracked the pace i’d have been seriously interested. And maybe they will ride him that way.  His trainer said otherwise in a recent interview. We were on at 33s/50s when he came 2nd at this meeting two years ago (yes yes win only), agony! Given far too much to do and should have won for us. Not that I remember it of course. Obviously he ran a cracker in the NH chase also. So, he has Festival/course form. But just a couple of niggles at his price. I’ve no doubt he’s well handicapped and he is a danger.

Were this much better ground then Kildisart and Mister Malarkey would be higher up my list – in the end on assumption this would be testing enough, I could leave. They are much better on a decent surface but if i’ve got that wrong they won’t be far away. (on review, I can’t leave MM at 12s as above)

Some fancy Cepage – i decided he won’t stay, and along with Venetia’s record in this (0/22,1p) I could leave. Horses that have yet to race over 3m+ don’t do that well either (0/33,3p last 15 yrs). I wasn’t sure he screamed stayer BUT if he relished it, then he may run a big race. He’s tough and has a bit of class and the odd run over 2m5f here would give you hope, but not for me this time.

Vindication – well if he’s a G1 horse in the making then fair play to him – at what was 13/2 or so, off 11-12, gone up 8lb, a mark of 159, with some niggles about going LH (or lack of experience anyway) and the break (had a hold up/bruised bone) i could leave. Classier horses have been winning more handicaps in recent years but he didn’t look overpriced. I wouldn’t fall off my seat if him, The Conditional and Discorama were fighting this out though, but Big River can swoop past them all after the last 🙂

If this were better ground I may have fancied Activial, 6th in this last year, 6lb lower – but I think this will stretch his stamina. The yard are red hot though, and those with previous form in this race do well. Still, he doesn’t want rain over this trip.

I will mention Elwood in those ‘muddy staying chase’ colours for Big Gordy. I concluded he was too inexperienced and I didn’t like how he’s been jumping. I’ve no doubt he’s well handicapped though and if he travels/jumps, he could out run his odds. He’s in 1st CP no doubt to sharpen him up.

If one of the others takes this in these conditions I was nowhere near them – I don’t quite get the support for No Comment – i’m sure he wants better ground. He did run well in the Kim Muir though last year, but is a chase maiden who fell LTO – I can’t have that profile in a handicap chase like this at 12s<. Oh, Who Dares Wins – stamina doubt for me, and he’s small – not sure how this rough and tumble will suit, but King has won this race a couple of times before. I don’t rate the form of that last run. I could go on, but I won’t. I’ve gone through them all with a fine tooth-comb and that’s where the pins landed.


#3 – Champagne Court – 1 point win – 18/1 (betf/BV/PP/Coral) 16/1 (others)

#4 – Trainwreck – 1 point win – 12/1 (gen)

…as the week goes on my write-ups will no doubt shorten…

Shortlist: the selections / Galvin / Espoir De Guye 

Champagne Court – well this is competitive stuff and most of these in time may prove their current marks to be lenient to a point – this one hits my trends longlist and the simple ‘Chelt LTO Micro’ – I thought he got an odd ride LTO here. It transpires he’d had the old hold up and wasn’t fully fit. This horse won a Plumpton Bonus race which will add X (£50/100k?) to the coffers if he can win this. He came into that Novice hncp here last time on a mark that would get him into this race – he couldn’t afford to win or get that close, IF this was pencilled in. Given that bonus they’d have been stupid to blow his mark LTO. This horse handles the ground, travels well and jumps superbly on what i’ve watched. I didn’t think he should be more than x3 the price of the fav.  It could be there isn’t a grand plan and the capper just has him/he isn’t right, but he looked big to my eyes and I think he will stay further, which could be no bad thing. No trainer has won this twice as yet in 15 years and maybe Mr Scott can keep that illogical ‘trend’ going.

Trainwreck – I did spend an age agonising over what else to throw into the mix, mainly focused on the top of the market, and then I decided I didn’t like any at the prices, which i’ll get onto. I thought i’d have an Irish horse onside from the red hot De Bromhead yard, who of course won this last year. I doubt this one has as much in hand as A Plus Tard did that day, but I still thought he looked interesting. He ran his best race over fences LTO when upped in trip, his trainer admitting afterwards that he’d clearly been running him over too short. That was a deep, big field, competitive Leop handicap chase and he ran a cracker. Any Second Now was in behind, rated 150 and he’d win NTO as he prepped for The National. It was deep enough. He appears on a few micros and I do use all that stats content to try and sway me when i’m in a dilemma. He should hold a position off the pace hopefully and has jumped well from what i’ve seen. He’s got some good form. I’m not sure he wants a bog but soft should be fine.

Of the rest…

Well none of the other bigger priced ones jumped out at me. Whatmore has got into this and is being nibbled at – he did travel well at Kemp and maybe a strong pace/this trip will suit him. I wasn’t sure he wanted it proper soft but like with many of these there should be more to come and he was an ‘eye catcher’ LTO. Maybe he would be the annoying one at a price but I think there will be classier/better treated rivals and there’s a fear they ride him cold, although Dickie is on and that would be unlike him.

If i’m wrong, I suspect the market is right… but.. Imperial Aura seemed short given he’s gone up 7lb without running since LTO and he is looking a bit tripless to my eyes. Maybe he just bumped into one LTO. 5s seemed short but if he hacks up, Simply The Betts will shorten in price for the Stable Plate, so be quick. Much of the ‘wise chat’ has been about doubling these, and certainly the latter being the most solid of bets. Simple. We shall see. That was a stonking RPR LTO and he could have stacks in hand. Maybe it is a case of the obvious.

I toyed with Venetia’s at 8s (update , he would be the annoying one, but I can live with it at 7s – however I will be having some change on, just to make me feel better if he’s a machine and to buy some beer to console myself)  but the lack of a recent run put me off and he has gone up 14lb for that win LTO. It is also his first run at the track and he’s no non handicap graded form – all those negs made me think his price was getting on the short side, but he has been backed. There’s a chance he’s just much better than a handicapper and he storms this. I did think that a possibility. Then I also flipped to Galvin, as he hits so many Elliot pointers in my guide etc – BUT, I decided this big field was a question and he has made errors in all his chases, and I had a stamina niggle in testing.  I do think he’s well handicapped and has a nice pot in him – his recent chase form is solid and he was 6th in last year’s Ballymore (G1 form, often to be feared in handicaps, esp hurdlers). His owner is Scottish and if he doesn’t take this, I wouldn’t be shocked to see him in a handicap up at Ayr in their big season finale. But he could win this well. In the end, for a 7s shot, just a few too many niggles – again his first chase run here also. As it is for Hold The Note – who i’m not convinced by, despite connections knowing the time of day in this race. I thought he was outbattled LTO but that may be harsh. Some of his jumping didn’t fill me with confidence either in his runs to date but he’s good on some of the ‘figures’, very good.

So, that’s a long winded way of saying one of the four may bolt up, I couldn’t decide which one, I didn’t like their prices given my concerns, so i’ve gone with two at bigger odds who looked overpriced! I won’t be putting you off any at the top of the market if you fancy them though and value judgements at that end are always tough.

If something else wins this then I wasn’t near them. Jarveys Plate could possibly run into a place if the blinkers work/runs to his best, but that’s questionable. Both of Henderson’s run too free for me, too keen and I worry about them getting home up this hill. I’d prefer Champagne Mystery and if he settles (and this big field may help if they decide to track the pace) he will out-run his 20s price and if he went very close, would boost the form of Greaneteen in the Grand Annual. Still, some questions over his form I think. I thought both of Skelton’s want better ground and had enough questions over them also.

So, we shall see.

Pace – it could be frenetic but then again, IF it’s testing, jockeys can come to a gentleman’s agreement to not go too hard. But this shouldn’t be run at a dawdle. Both of mine have the ability to track the pace and race where their jockey wants them to I think. If they hold either up right out the back, then they will deserve what they get, which won’t be very much over this CD. Patient, but not too patient, may be the order of the day.



#5 – Newtide – 1 point win – 11/1 (betfS/PP) 10/1 (gen)

#6 – The Hollow Ginge – 1 point win – 25/1 (gen) (29.00 BetfX) 

The final race of the day and  a couple of pokes.

Carefully Selected may hack up at 2s and you get the impression that there is more to come – but for one who jumps so ponderously and given the stamina unknown, that is rather short. All of the ‘shrewdies’ (everyone in the media/podcasts etc) wants to take him on given the doubts – and I agree, although there is that niggling doubt that he may hack up – but if you can’t take on a 2s shot with his questions, in a race like this, I’m not sure when you can.

Newtide – well if he stays sound I suspect he will go close in something like The Eider one day/next season – he is a brute of a horse who runs like a proper stayer – his trainer thinks he’s a 4 miler in the making and that will do for me. He could tidy up his jumping but they’ve booked a good pilot (2nd on Discorama in this last year, 17% sr over fences, very experienced) and the story of the day may be Bailey’s two fancied handicappers losing, only for this lad to stride up the hill in isolation! I can but dream. If he gets into a rhythm and is travelling in a comfort zone/close to the pace as they turn for home, I don’t think anything will get up the hill better. At 11s I wanted to pay to find out. He was a fortunate winner LTO but was staying on and going down to Boldmere will prove no bad thing in time, smart handicapper in the making.

The Hollow Ginge – I thought worth chancing at 25s given Twister has won this before and he appears on my trends list – Zak Baker is tidy enough over fences and the horse has shaped like he’s worth a go over a marathon trip. I don’t think he wants it heavy, but this ground may be ideal for him. His chasing career started well, beating The Conditional (not fit enough) at Worcester and then running a cracker at Aintree over 25f in a decent Novice handicap that’s 6/18 since. The front two were clear there and he was only just beaten, staying on well. He was poor on his next two starts but they were both at Haydock. Maybe he just doesn’t like the chase track there but in any case bounced back LTO, admittedly in a race that fell apart, but he stayed on well. This is a funny race and last year it was a desperate watch. It could be some slog again and he looked overpriced. The yard are in form also. He can race prominently.

Of the rest…

Lord Du Mesnil – what a bonny little horse – he could see these off if that effort LTO hasn’t drained him. More rain the better for him. It’s his first run here though (over fences) and I don’t think he will be able to doss along on the front end, although I could be wrong. Given those niggles 11/2 or so seemed short enough. He’s also got more actual weight on his back than he used to carrying which poses a question as there are bigger chasers in this – 15lb more led/jockey than LTO, for example, as no 3lb claim today. That may make no difference at all. I could see him winning this, but a question of price, and it just wasn’t big enough. I haven’t got him right all season, bar when he should have won for us at 20s at Stratford (still not sure how he lost that off 115!) – it would be typical for him to take another race carrying none of my money, which he may do.

Ravenhill – i had questions over stamina in this ground, at his price. His best form has been on better. I had stamina niggles over Forza Milan also, given he’s yet to win beyond 20f. Springfield Fox – Noel George is 3/60 over regulation fences (exc hunter chases- solid in those) and that niggled me given the horse is 7s. He is a nice type in the making and dotted up LTO. He could be the answer but i’d be more interested with another pilot. Again the horse’s first chase run here. Tom George is red hot though.

I wasn’t that close to the others. Ocean Cove could sneak a place for Fergal at a big big price- I just thought he looked a slow boat – too slow maybe! – and Newtide had more class (as the ratings would tell you), although he is 33s. If he’s holding a position through this, he runs as if he will keep on going and some of these may have given up by then. I’ve seen worse 33s shots and he may be worth £2 on the machine for interest. Anteros is a 150s shot (320 betfair) on the trends ‘shortlist – but I was struggling to make a case for him, surely not.

Of course, if Carefully Selected isn’t so careful at his fences, the rest can run the race of their lives and it may not matter. But I have to take him on at 2s.

So, that’s Day 1. Fingers crossed.

That’s the lot for main tips/write ups…


Through the card ‘notes’ – in races I don’t play in all year really – but absorbing various thoughts from preview evenings and my own instinct etc… more for ITV7 / placepot/fun multiple consideration although last year was the first time I did a ‘through the card’ and they pulled in +36 points, so who knows!

Focusing on my ‘non target’ races for a bit of fun…

1.30 – Fiddlerontheroof (13/2) / Abacadabras (6/1)

Assuming this may be a relative slog for young horses, I decided to side with Andy Holding’s views from the preview evening I went to (notes/post in the ‘free reports/systems’ tab if you click that, also a link in the Festival master post) Abacadabras is being smashed in, so they must be confident. Hopefully a good start. Fiddler will just relish conditions and keep going, whether he’s good enough we shall see but on the figures he looks best of the english on what they’ve done to date. 

2.10 – Fakir DOudairies (4/1)

Again, assuming this is soft… and given the potential pace (of which he may set but could sit off) I thought you will need to get home and he does stay 20f. Notebook has beaten him, and he doesn’t get the age allowance, and maybe that form will be confirmed – but F was closing at the line still, and i’m not convinced as to Notebook’s stamina around here in soft. I may have that wrong but I really like this horse and if he’s popping away as he can, he should keep going. I can’t say 4s is ‘value’ as such, but I have ‘winners eyes’ on for these ‘through the card’, rather than agonising over price etc! 

2.50 – Main tips above

3.30 – Epatante (win – 3/1) / Conerstone Lad (EW 4p, 28/1)

I decided after all the bluster about this being a poor renewal etc (which is it) and everyone trying to be too clever – that the master Champion hurdle connections may just take this with the fav, and that she could well destroy them. Maybe 3s is short when you have a niggle over the track/atmosphere but that was some performance at Kempton, winning on the bridle really. Cornerston Lad is of some mild interest 4 places given he will relish conditions, tries and gallops. He may not be good enough but on that Haydock run (was giving away weight to the other two) I thought 28s was a tad insulting. He could sneak a place, and give an exciting run for my money, at least until after the last. Imagine Micky Hammond winning a Champion Hurdle, nope me neither, but you never know. He’s probably at Sedgefield! 🙂 

4.10 – No bet – (Benie should hack up bar accidents/one for multiples)

4.50 – Main tips above

5.30 – Main tips above 



Post Comments

Do join in the conversation below, we're a friendly bunch.. all questions welcome, and do share your selections or thoughts

36 Responses

  1. Hi Josh – “Harry’s Historical Fact of Day One of the Festival”. The Champion Hurdle

    The Champion Hurdle is a Grade 1 National Hunt hurdle race which is open to horses aged four years or older. It is run on the Old Course at Cheltenham over a distance of about 2 miles and ½ furlong, and during its running there are eight hurdles to be jumped. The race takes place each year on the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival in March.
    The first Champion Hurdle was run in 1927, and its inaugural winner, Blaris, was awarded prize money of £365. In its second year the event was won by Brown Jack, who subsequently became a prolific winner of long-distance flat races
    The 1947 renewal paved the way for a golden era in the Champion Hurdle with just 3 winners until 1955, National Spirit, Hatton’s Grace and Sir Ken, all of them etched into the list of greatest ever hurdlers. The runner up from 1947 Le Paillon actually went on to win the Prix de l’arc de Triomphe the same year – can’t see that happening these days!!
    Sir Ken won it 3 times in a row – 1952/53/54 – in 1953 he went off at 2/5F – the shortest priced winner ever.
    The 1970s produced another golden era of hurdling, and how about these for names, Persian War, Night Nurse, Monksfield, Bula, Comedy of Errors (who was the first horse to win two non-consecutive titles), Sea Pigeon and Monksfield. The Racing Post declared the 1977 running to be the “strongest of fields ever assembled”.
    The 1984 winner, Dawn Run, became the second mare to win the Champion Hurdle. In the same year she also won the Irish and French versions of the event, and two seasons later she won the most prestigious chase in National Hunt racing, the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
    The last triple winner of the Champion Hurdle was Istabraq, whose successes came in 1998, 1999 and 2000, his attempt to be the first horse to win in it 4 times was halted in 2001 by the foot and mouth outbreak
    Last years winner was of course Espoir d’Allen ridden by Mark Walsh @ 16/1.
    I have 2 replays for this race, as explained below
    The names from the 70’s were the horses that got me gripped on national Hunt racing along with the great Red Rum, so I tried to get the replay from 1977 but could only get the finish, which is here
    An all time favourite of mine won the race in 1991 – the full race replay is below

  2. Day 1 race 1. 13.30 Cheltenham – Sky Bet Supreme Novices Hurdle – Money Back As Cash If You Lose
    With this offer in mind iv’e been racking my brains of where to put my tenner Fiddlerontheroof 5-1 and Abacadabras 6-1 are 2 of the more obvious choices, the lightly raced Captain Guinness 12-1 could improve again from his narrow defeat to Andy Dufresne lto and one from complete left field is the W.Mullins trained Berkshire Royal 50-1 who has never run a hurdle race before.
    Maybe a shorter priced one for the money back bet and a longshot with WH who are paying 7 places any comments ,opinions, tips gratefully received.

  3. Two simple micros I am following this week:

    Won at Leopardstown last time out:

    1.30 Abacadabras and Asterion Forlonge; 2.10 Notebook; 4.10 Honeysuckle.

    Ran at Cheltenham’s last meeting:

    2.50 Cepage; 4.50 Jarvey’s Plate + Imperial Aura + Champagne Court.

    I will back/track these at BFSP this week.

    I will put up my day one thoughts and bets later.

    Good luck Martin

  4. Day one thoughts:

    1.30. Asterion Forlonge looks a bit short in the betting to me. He does jump to the right which is not so good at Cheltenham. I am unsure as to whether Shishkin has beaten much? I quite like Abacadabras and in particular his run behind Envoi Allen. Chantry House is unbeaten but is up in class here and his trainer does not have a good record in this race. Edwardstone may be a decent pick if you want something 14/1 plus?
    I do like Fiddlerontheroof and he should go well in soft ground. he does stay on in his races. I am discounting the others. My bets are Abacadabras and Fiddlerontheroof in multiples.

    2.10. I do like Cashback at the price as opposed to Notebook. There is not much between them. His trainer has a decent record in this race. Esprit Du Large looks like an improver and could spring somewhat of a surprise? I cannot see why Fakir will reverse form with notebook?
    Global Citizen has course form but needs to step up here. I think that Rouge Vif needs to step up a fair bit as well, as does Marie Banrigh. I like Put The Kettle On at 16/1 as he has decent course form. Finally I think one or two of these may be too classy for Brewinupastorm, game and resolute as he is. So in a tough race I will go with Cashback and Esprit Du large each way.

    2.50. I think that Vinndication as he has to carry top weight here. I do like Cepage on his last course win where he jumped very well. Venetia is not in good form though. Mister Malarky seems to be improving and so has to be in my thoughts. Some people have been getting excited about Kildisart and Discorama but they have not won for a while and look one paced, albeit that a stamina test is required. Who dares Win won well last time out but this looks tougher. Atlanta Ablaze has had a relatively easy season and may be primed for this?
    Cogry loves the course and only wins here, nowhere else. Townshend won well last time out and is a big price.
    I am with Cepage and Cogry each way.

    3.30. The big one. Epatante gets a 7LB mares allowance. I am a bit worried that he has not run for a while. I like Ballyandy in a fast paced stamina test for a place. I quite like Cilaos Emery but he may be getting a bit short now. I prefer Cornerstone Lad to Darver Star. The Lad can make it and may hang on for a place?
    Pentland Hills look a year off being up to this level. If you want something at a big price Not So Sleepy may scrape in for a place? Supasundae looks past his best but I can see Sharjah being competitive, although he is usually best before Christmas.
    So I will go with Cilaos Emery and Ballyandy each way in an open race.

    4.10. I like Benie to beat these. As each way picks I like Roksana, who won this last year after Benie’s fall, and Lady Button each way. Elfile may go well for Willie Mullins each way? If I have to have each way picks they are Roksana and Elfile.

    4.50. Espoir De Guye has been running well and looks to be improving still. Champagne Mystery has been solid for a while and could be value for a place?
    Paint The Dream has been touted at big odds. The Eliiott and Russell team have Galvin but his form does not impress me. Earlofthecotswolds stays on well and will likely enjoy a stamina test. Is Knight In Dubai or Beakstown a Skelton plot? More likely Beakstown.
    I quite like Champagne Court if you forget his last run. Imperial Aura is too short in the betting now based on his form. I shall go with, in a hard race, Espoir De Guye and Beakstown.

    5.30. Carefully Selected looks to me to be a short price in such a long distance race where a lot can go wrong. He could be heavily backed in the getting out stakes? Forza Milan is a maiden over fences but he does have Derek O’Connor in the saddle. Lord De Mesnil is a Haydock specialist but will go in soft ground. Ravenhill looks to have been laid out for this and has the Coddfather in the saddle.
    The Kim Bailey trained Newtide has not done much wrong this season and should stay. Springfield Fox has been improving big style this season and has been well supported in the market.
    I will stick with the top jockeys and go with Ravenhill and Forza Milan each way.

    My bet is a £2 each way Canadian paying £104,800 at current prices I think.

    My selections are:

    1.30 Abacadabras.
    2.10 Cash Back.
    3.30 Cilaos Emery.
    4.50 Espoir De Guye.
    5.30 Ravenhill.

    I will do another multiple on course with different selections on Tuesday at BOG betting shop odds.

    I will be back on Wednesday morning with day two tips.

    Good luck Martin

  5. My tips for Day 1:

    Abacadabras Cheltenham 13:30 1pt e/w
    The Conditional Cheltenham 14:50 1pt e/w
    Elwood Cheltenham 14:50 1pt e/w
    Darver Star Cheltenham 15:30 1pt e/w

    For the rest the Arkle looks a minefield as does the novice chase although I will have some sofa change on Jarvey’s Plate. Bennie should win the Mares and with the lack of four places I don’t see a real e/w angles and the w/o market is about right. I am against the fav in the last but couldn’t see anything I wanted to be with at the current price even if i was probably closest to Josh’s.

  6. May have time for write ups in morning, we shall see.
    BREWINUPASTORM 1pt win 13/2 gen
    CASH BACK 1pt win 15/2 gen
    THE CONDITIONAL 1pt win 15/2 gen
    KILDISART 1pt win 10/1 gen
    HOLD THE NOTE 1pt win 15/2 gen
    PRECIOUS CARGO 1pt win 16/1 gen
    SPRINGFIELD FOX 1pt win 7/1 hills/ boyle
    NEW TIDE 1pt win 11/1 gen

    time dependant, write ups in morning.

  7. Day 1
    13.30 Fiddlerontheroof
    14.50 Vinndication
    15.30 Coeur Sublime and Silver Streak both e/w
    16.50 Hold the Note
    17.30 Lord du Mesnil
    Good luck all, enjoy the week!

  8. All about Espoir de Guye for me in the 4.50. Think he could be a class above this lot and is being backed accordingly. Otherwise I like Cobra de Mai who I hope has been laid out for the 2.50 after a C&D win in April and also Lamanver Pippin for Tizzard who is worth a few quid in the last.

  9. A bit barmy this Supreme, I normally like getting involved in this race the last few years but struggling with this, no collateral form to go off. Iv backed Edwardstone as I think the price is big, he’s shown he stays and battles so hopefully involved in a finish. If I thought one who could blow the rest away I’d say Shishkin moves powerfully but again you’r guessing with the form

    I can overthink races sometimes but can’t get away from Notebook in the Arkle. and I think if anything you mark up the last run after charging off b4 the start

    I thought this Ultima isn’t the best of races, a lot of average in the card to my eyes. Vindication the classiest horse there but wudn’t back here as I don’t know if he’d want 3M around here. same with Kildisart, poss ground issue with him if it is testing also to see him at best, poss the same with Mr Malarky aswel??
    Anyways as ppl have already put up the Conditional is pretty bombproof. That Newbury form looks very good and has already won here on soft. Would win back that and back Cory ew. Bit of a risk as has to go from the front but with STD on I’d be confident he’d get him there. With questions over others you know with Cogry he stays the trip and suits the course and will battle in a finish and has won here on soft ground, always the case the race could be too hot for him but I don’t think this one is but may get proved wrong

    i backed Darver Star early on the exchange only a few quid but I don’t want to get involved in the Champ Hurdle now

  10. Day 1 selections,
    1-30. Fiddlerontheroof, Allart, Edwardstone.
    2-10. Cash back, Put The Kettle On, Maire Banrigh
    2-50. Activail ,Vintage Clouds.
    3-30. Cornerstone Lad, Ballandy, Silver Streak
    4-10. Roksana, Stormy Island.
    4-50. Whatmore, Jarveys Plate, Champagne Court.
    5-30. Lord De Mesnil, The Hollow Ginge.

    1. Soft all over at Cheltenham. My two penneth worth is as follows:
      1.30 Fiddlerontheroof
      2.10 Marie Banrigh
      2.50 The Conditional
      3.30 Ballyandy
      4.10 Benie but doubled with A Plus Tard
      4.50 Earlofthecotswolds
      5.30 The Hollow Ginge/Ocean Cove forecast ()

      Josh will tell you that there MIGHT be some Twisters bias in there but hey what can you do…

      Best of luck and most importantly of all, let’s hope ALL the horses and jockeys return safe and sound….

    No bet

    2.50 Cheltenham Vinndication

    2.50 Cheltenham Who Dares Wins

  12. Notebook my banker if the day, already beaten cashback plus he bolted to the start and still won , when was the last time we saw that happen? Also beat jp’s horse the time before and that horse doesn’t get the age allowance this time. H deB in scintillating form makes this a confident bet for me. Good luck all

  13. My picks of the day with odds just taken
    1.30 – Abacadabras @ 5
    2.10 – Put The Kettle On @ 16
    2.50 – Elwood @ 22 e/w
    Vintage Clouds @ 33 e/w……Ryan up 1st time for Sue since comeback so can’t pass.
    3.30 – Sharjah @ 14
    4.50 – Galvin @ 15/2

    1. cheers, yep I did just notice that when flicking through, correct everywhere else, and with any luck that hasn’t confused anyone!

  14. My fancies for day 1
    1.30 Abacadabras 7/2
    2.10 Fakir D’Oudairies 4/1
    2.50 Kidisart 12/1
    3.30 Coeur sublime 16/1
    4.10 Benie des dieux 8/15
    4.50 Galvin 15/2
    5.30 Ravenhill 15/2

    1. Ah, well we won’t get ahead of ourselves. This is a rather big week in the grand scheme of recent months – I found the winner of this last year, and then struggled a tad, so won’t get ahead of myself (well a few agonising places as per, etc) I’d have been sick if not getting a positive return on that.

    1. ah cheers, that won’t be the first typo no doubt!
      Thanks, a solid start but only that, long long long way to go!

  15. Good start Josh but I’m not sure how you managed a 7.4 profit if you’re playing to 1/5 odds for places from 8’s and 22’s, popular maths says +7.0
    Just keeping you on your toes 😉
    Best of luck for the rest of the week 🙂

    1. Solid, if unspectacular but Day 1 often like that.

      Hmm, can I just not count??

      7.5/1 for the conditional , 1/5 of odds = 1.5 ? Added to the +7.5 on the win side… so +9

      22/1 Big River… 1/5 odds is 4.4/1 isn’t it for the place? Minus the 1 lost on win side, that’s +3.4 on him… minus 1 for Mister M, that’s 11.4 on race, minus the 4 losers… = +7.4 ?

      1. I worked it out as an outlay of 9. Win return of 9 @ 8/1 . So place money is profit 4.4 and 1.6 which equals 6, plus the 2 stakes = 8 (yeah I forgot a stake before! it was me with the silly maths afterall !)

        @7.5 you’re right with 7.4 profit

        But it looks to me you declared it at 8’s that’s my point (badly made)

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