Cheltenham Festival Expectations

8th Mar 2012 | Horse Racing

Zaidpour to win the Champion Hurdle 40/1 with Boylesports Place Bet

With the Cheltenham Festival getting ever closer we have a quick chat with our racing expert to get his thoughts on next week’s action.

What do you hope for next week?
Financial gain would be a good start! The 2011 Cheltenham Festival was my most successful for many years. I landed Zarkandar, Albertas Run and Bostons Angel all at decent odds for 15.75 points profit and a 286% return on investment. Just a tenth of that success would be great.

Which Championship race are you looking forward to most?
Fingers crossed Kauto Star can make it to the Gold Cup from a neutral’s perspective. It is a race that takes the sport to a wider audience and has a great narrative.

From a personal viewpoint, the Gold Cup lacks a bit of strength in depth and I’m being drawn towards the Champion Hurdle again. Hurricane Fly is exemplary but Binocular is returning to his best and could give the favourite a scare. The likes of Overturn, Rock On Ruby and Zarkandar shouldn’t be discounted either.

Which horse are you looking forward to most?
Everyone enjoys the old champions coming back to defend their titles, and that is what makes Cheltenham great, but there are a couple of lesser lights that interest me.

Zaidpour had the world at his feet 18 months ago and has rather been forgotten since flopping at the festival last year. He has slowly rebuilt his reputation in Ireland, winning all four of his races this season. The ground might be too quick for him at Cheltenham but if he does run, the Champion Hurdle is on the first day when there might be some moisture left in the ground.

I’m also looking forward to watching Hold On Julio in the JLT Chase (2.40 Tuesday). At 6/1 (William Hill) he is quite short in the betting but I was mightily impressed by his two victories at Sandown. He is nine-years-old but incredibly lightly raced; he’s unbeaten in three chase starts and could be quite useful.

Any tips for Cheltenham?
All my selections will be on Betting Bias each day and I alert people on twitter (@bettingbias) when they are posted. I have some horses in mind but I tend not to make a firm decision until the actual day.

Surely four days of manic punting sends you mad?
It could - but primarily Cheltenham is great fun. Having said this I have some rules to make the most of my week. I’ll prep all the races in advance, study the form several nights before the actual race and draw up my short list. On the day of the race I want to be free to hunt for value rather than still studying the form.

Best of luck and enjoy the week.

Zaidpour to win the Champion Hurdle 40/1 with Boylesports Place Bet

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Featured Tips

29th Jul 15:05 | Horse Racing

3.05 Goodwood (Tue)

Amarillo to win @ 14/1

His German form is underrated but he is a Group-class and travelled strongly when winning last time out over an inadequate 6f.

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29th Jul 17:20 | Horse Racing

5.20 Goodwood (Tue)

Fitz Flyer e/w @ 18/1

In-form jockey riding for an in-form yard. Only beaten 2 lengths in this race two years ago and returns off an 8lbs lower mark.

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Featured Tips

Recent Winners

Tips & Advice

Goodwood Tips: Amarillo

His German form is underrated but he is a Group-class and travelled strongly when winning last time out over an inadequate 6f.

Goodwood Tips: Fitz Flyer

In-form jockey riding for an in-form yard. Only beaten 2 lengths in this race two years ago and returns off an 8lbs lower mark.

Market Movers: Sleep Walk

Sleep Walk has only had one race, beating three runners in an ordinary maiden but she's probably better than the form having been backed into odds-on from 2/1.

Ayr Tips: Findog

Linda Perratt’s runners have been flying this month and a strongly run 5f on quick ground should suit the horse.

Skybet Dash Tips: Zalty

Beaten only half a length in a valuable handicap at the Curragh when he almost overcame a four length draw bias.

York Tips: Olivia Fallow

Had no chance last time out when almost unseating her rider but she was an impressive winner on her penultimate start.

York Tips: Dutch Rose

Unbeaten in four starts over course and distance and recorded a career best when successful in May.

Lingfield Tips: Rylee Mooch

Been running well on turf but a better horse on the all-weather. Should capitalise on a declining handicap mark in a weak looking race for the grade.

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