long run

On this page you find articles on long run and sports betting in general.

Boylesports go Non Runner No Bet for King George VI Chase Betting


The big feature race of Boxing Day, the prestigious King George VI Chase betting has already seen three major withdrawals, all working in favour of Long Run. The Paul Nicholls trained Al Ferof was the first to go, picking up a tendon tear, which is likely to keep him out of action for the rest of the season. Now, because of the ground expected to be soft at Kempton on Boxing Day, Sir Des Champs will be bypassing the King George VI Chase, instead focusing on the Lexus Chase at Leopardstown on Friday instead. Nicky Henderson’s Finian’s Rainbow has also become another absentee form the Boxing Day feature race because of the concerns over the heavy ground that will there..

So former King George champion Long Run has been the benefactor of all this and has already been trimmed to 15/8  for the renewal. Online bookmaker Boylesports are offering some protection for your 2013 King George VI betting at Kempton with their Non-Runner No Bet offer for the big race. This means that if your horse fails to make it to the starting line on Boxing Day, then you will get your stake on the non-runner refunded, so you are not going to lose out if your selection does not run.

Punters have started to turn towards The Giant Bolster and Riverside Theatre as possible challengers to Long Run, who hasn’t won any of his five starts since he won the 2010 Gold Cup. Long Run is beatable and The Giant Bolster, who finished ahead of Long Run in the Gold Cup and was close to Long Run at the Betfair Chase recently. The Giant Bolster could also have Champion jockey AP McCoy in the saddle. Because of the ground, this is going to be a massive test of stamina this year, and while Cue Card uncertain over the distance, Riverside Theatre, who finished second to Long Run at the 2010 King George should fit the distance. The Ryanair winner looks to be in good form and could really challenge for the win.

2013 King George VI Chase betting odds at online bookmaker Boylesports
Long Run 15/8, Cue Card 9/2, Riverside Theatre 5/1, Kauto Stone 7/1, Grands Crus 9/1, The Giant Bolster 10/1, Captain Chris 14/1, Junior 20/1, Champion Court 25/1, For No Stop 25/1, hunt Ball 25/1, Wishfull Thinking 50/1, Menorah 50/1

The King George VI Chase is one of the flagship races of the entire jumping season the Boylesports offer will be great coverage to take. Along with Non-Runner No Bet promotion that the betting site are running, you can also get a free £20 bet from Boylesports as a welcome bonus to use on the Kempton showcase race on December 26th.


Horse Racing Betting – 2012 BetFair Chase sees heavy money against Long Run

Horse Racing Betting

There is surprisingly good value on Long Run at the moment for the 2012 BetFair Chase to be taken at online betting site Bet365.

Despite all of his credentials, including his famous victory in the 2011 Cheltenham Gold Cup, punters have seemingly been a bit hesitant to get behind the Nicky Henderson trained charge. So much so that betting exchange BetFair said that they have taken a big influx of customers who have been deciding to lay Long Run. The slightly strange thing about Long Run odds for the 2012 BetFair Chase is that following the news that Imperial Commander’s injury was going to keep him out of the race, the odds drifted a bit on Long Run. With everything going on in the build up to the big race, the thing which is screaming the loudest is value. Value on Long Run.

Long Run is now trading at 11/8 with online bookmaker Bet365 and is clearly the best horse in the field. There were rumours of Long Run having a small issue, but with all positive news coming out of the stables ahead of the seasonal debut at Haydock Park on Saturday, it hasn’t stopped punters deciding not to back him heavily. He certainly not as heavily as expected. Even the conditions, which look more than likely to remain soft will be in the favour of Henderson’s chaser. By a good 10lbs Long Run is the best chaser in the field, and all the hesitance means that it is a good chance to get some value on him. But will he deliver? After being in the headlines for the right reasons for so long, he had a disappointing season last term.

The last time we saw Long Run was his third placed finish at the Cheltenham Gold Cup this year behind Synchronised. With no apparent problems, Long Run’s stand at 11/8 puts him favourite in the market ahead of 9/4 shot Silviniaco Conti, but why not stronger?

It is the presence of the Charlie Hall Chase winner Silviniaco Conti that is keep Long Run at a healthy price.

Money continues to pour in for Paul Nicholls’ rising star, who has come in from 5/2 to really challenge the established Nicky Henderson chaser in the betting. Conti was immense in his Charlie Hall victory and it is to the workmanlike horse than punters are steering. Conti’s progress has been likened to the development of Kauto Star, with plenty more promise to be fulfilled by all accounts.

With odds already having been trimmed. Silviniaco Conti will probably come in more by the star of the race. A head trader for Bet365 said “Silviniaco Conti was 3-1 when we opened our book, and he has been backed to the exclusion of everything else, down to 5-2. I think the punters have seen n by his name, and realised that he could have gone to Ascot for any number of good rides, yet is going all the way north for Silviniaco Conti.” So that is the explanation for the prices and the fact is that Long Run may be a bit vulnerable and not at his best as he heads into the first race of the season.

Will the Paul Nicholls and Ruby Walsh combine again to hit the bookmakers in the pocket? The duo are a massive liability for bookies and Silviniaco Conti could do some serious damage. Other contenders in the pack are The Giant Bolster in at 6/1 at the moment, followed by Weird Al, who may spring a surprise. But it looks as if it will come down to a two horse race realistically, and the Long Run camp will probably be feeling the pressure of favouritism in this one. But the positive quote of 11/8 still isn’t bad for such a strong competitor. Will he be strong enough to hold on against the rising form and power of Silviniaco Conti on Saturday?

2012 BetFair Chase Horse Racing Betting Odds at online bookmaker Bet365
Long Run 11/8, Silviniaco Conti 9/4, The Giant Bolster 6/1, Weird Al 7/1, Tidal Bay 10/1, Cannington Brook 33/1, Wayward Prince 25/1, Midnight Chase 33/1

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2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting – Money Back Special


We are going to get the much anticipated showdown in the Cheltenham Gold Cup as expected. We are going to see Kauto Star take on Long Run again. Long Run of course is the defending Gold Cup champion, after demolishing a star studded field last year, but has since suffered back to back defeats to Kauto Star, who found a new lease of life. The build up to the Cheltenham Gold Cup was all about Kauto Star’s injury during schooling, which left the legend at being nothing more than a 50/50 shot to actually make the race. But he is there, the stable sounds pretty confident, and the bookies have subsequently drawn his odds on winning the Gold Cup back in. Kauto Star had drifted out to 4/1 as we waited to see if he was going to run, but he has been pulled back in a little to around 7/2 across the board. Outright favourite Long Run has just about stayed his ground at 2/1, and he is not shorter because he hasn’t been showing terrific form in his last few outings.

Another challenger in the field which is getting overlooked quite a bit because of the Long Run v Kauto Star rivalry in 2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup betting, is Burton Port. Burton Port is a serious danger to both of the two main contenders, and has the ability to show up and steal all the limelight. Trading back at 7/1 behind the big two, there is a quiet feeling that he may just fly in under the radar and upset the card. So a fascinating Gold Cup in prospect on Friday at 3.20pm from Prestbury Park. The big question is, can Kauto Star bounce back from his injury and win the Gold Cup for the third time?

Well, Paddy Power are offering a Money Back Special in the event that Kauto Star defies the odds and takes the race. Back a selection in 2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup betting, and if your horse finishes second in the race to Kauto Star, then Bet Victor will refund your lost stake. This naturally provides superb coverage on Long Run who should be there or thereabouts, but also Burton Port who is expected to challenge. So back your selection against Kauto Star, and if your selection trails in second to the legend, then you will at least get your lost stake refunded from Bet Victor.

The highly rated online bookmaker Bet Victor, offer a free £25 bet for new customers registering an account with them. The bookie will match the value of your first stake on a new account with a free bet, up to the maximum value of £25. That gives you a nice bit of free betting cash to enjoy to get started on your new Bet Victor account, who offer fantastic horse racing betting services.

2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup Odds at Bet Victor
Long Run 15/8, Kauto Star 7/2, Burton Port 7/1, Midnight Chase 11/10, Synchronised 10/1




Cheltenham Festival Day Four – Horse Racing Betting (March 16)

Cheltenham Festival

Kauto Star is bidding to defy the history books as he lines up for a fifth Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup. The brilliant 12-year-old has won chasing’s blue riband twice, in 2007 and 2009, and has also been placed on two occasions including last year when third to Long Run. The veteran has turned that form around its head this season, however, beating  the reigning champion at Haydock and in the King George at his beloved Kempton but trainer Paul Nicholls has had a race against time to get him ready for the Gold Cup after he fell heavily in a schooling session and this is not a race to approach less than 100 per cent. Big Bucks excepted, it’s been a poor week for the Nicholls team with several runners performing below par and the cough that affected the yard a few weeks ago may still be hampering the yard. All in all, Kauto Star must be worth opposing at Betfred and totesport‘s 4/1 and we’ll stick with Long Run at the general 2/1, though Synchronicity could go close at 14/1 with BetVictor, bodog and Paddy Power.

The best bet on the final day, however, could be Boston Bob in the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle. Willie Mullins has already had a good Festival but this is reputed to be his yard’s best novice and its significant he’s running in this race instead of the Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle over a shorter trip. Boston Bob is a 13/8 chance with Betfred – he may even start shorter!

The JCB Triumph Hurdle normally provides a thrilling finish and this year should be no exception as several bring solid juvenile form into the contest. Balder Success may be Alan King’s second string on paper but Robert Thornton reportedly agonised over choosing Grumeti ahead of the French import, who was hugely impressive when beating older horses at Ascot. He could be the one to be on at Coral‘s 9/1.

Redera could give you a run for your money at BetVictor and Ladbrokes 25/1 in the Vincent O’Brien County Hurdle and fellow Irish raider On The Fringe is interesting in the Christie’s Foxhunter Chase at Coral and Stan James10/1 as he was strongly fancied for the race 12 months ago and ran a nice race on his belated reappearance. David Pipe could finally get the winner of the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys Handicap Hurdle with general 8/1 chance Street Entertainer, who is very well handicapped on his form of last spring, and I also fancy last year’s fourth De Boitron to give Ferdy Murphy his customary Festival success in the closing Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase at the general 11/1.


2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting Tips – Can Kauto Star challenge Long Run at Festival?

Cheltenham Festival

2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting Tips has to start with a look at the great legend that is Kauto Star at the Cheltenham Festival 2012. After falling while schooling, trainer Paul Nicholls announced that the two time Gold Cup winner was only a 50/50 shot to make the race. However, the news has slowly gotten better and better over the last week or so, and on Saturday Kauto Star was declared 100% sound ahead of Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting 2012. So now Kauto Star is up to a 95% chance of running in the Gold Cup and while he is still out at around 4/1 across the board, his main challenger Long Run had drifted out just a little bit. So is there something special to come from Kauto Star. Just imagine the story if he makes the race and wins it for that elusive hat-trick of Gold Cup triumphs? What a headline maker, and that is just the calibre of this horse. The injury came at such a poor time, because a resurgent Kauto Star had just gotten the ascendancy over Long Run, beating the defending Gold Cup champion twice since Cheltenham last year. So does Kauto Star make a good Cheltenham Gold Cup Tip? How about Long Run? Are there any other serious challengers? So if you are wondering Who Will Win the 2012 Cheltenham Gold Cup then let our tips guide you.

Kauto Star Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting Tip
So it was all set up for another thrilling rematch, so where does Kauto Star line up in Cheltenham Gold Cup Tips? In the category of you just never know. Nicholls says that the twelve year old is like he was eight years old again and in the prime of his career. The ante post price of Kauto Star still suggests that he is difficult to back with confidence, at least not for another few days. But nonetheless, if he is getting fitter and stronger every day, would lap up that 4/1 price with Bet Victor.

Long Run Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting Tip
The youngster completely upstaged the powerhouse field of Denman and Kauto Star last season at Prestbury Park, and he is outright favourite to taste glory for a second time. He is such an impressive horse, but the bookies drifted Long Run’s Gold Cup odds a little after an unconvincing run at Newbury where he edged out Gold Cup challenger Burton Port. While it was a win, there was a look that suggested he had sacrificed a little speed for endurance and it wasn’t a totally fluent run. However, with Kauto Star’s injury, the 2012 Cheltenham Festival show-piece may just have been handed to him. Supports of Long Run say that he never really hit top gear at Newbury and that Nicky Henderson’s charge will dominate the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Defintely the one to beat, even if his form has been a bit below par, including those back to back defeats against Kauto Star. Trading at around 2/1 with Bet365 at the moment.

Grands Crus Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting Tip
Definitely worth a shot as this exiting seven year old can spring a big surprise here. The David Pipe trained Grands Crus has had an impressive season, but hasn’t been out on the track since a Grade I win at Kempton back in December. However, potential is the key word here and while all of the headlines are being grabbed by Kauto Star and Long Run, Grands Crus could easily slip past the both of them and at a general price of 6/1 is worth a flutter. But just bear this in mind, while Grands Crus will take a good shot at the Gold Cup, he is better primed for the RSA Chase.

Burton Port Cheltenham Gold Cup Betting Tip
After impressing so much after taking a year off from racing, can the Nicky Henderson trained Burton Port make a surprise impact? The indications are that he may just having something to challenge. He was beaten by Long Run at Newbury recently, but jockey Barry Geraghty was not pushing hard at all. Reports from the camp are that he has been phenomenal on the Lambourn gallops and could make a wonderful return at 8/11 with William Hill

Highly rated online Bookmaker Bet365 are offering Best Odds Guaranteed at the Cheltenham Festival this season, along with their superb 4/1 Winner Special. Back a winner at 4/1 or greater and earn yourself a free bet for the next race. Win at 4/1 or greater with that free bet and get another free bet! Great horse racing betting coverage for the 2012 Cheltenham Festival. Online bookmaker Bet365 offers a free £200 bet as a welcome bonus for new customers.




Kauto Star Cheltenham Gold Cup 2012 odds

Cheltenham Festival

Kauto Star Cheltenham Gold Cup 2012 odds have already gone through some ups and downs ahead of the Festival showpiece on Friday, March 16th. The duel of Kauto Star and Long Run was lining up to be another thriller this season, as Kauto Star has been enjoying something of a renaissance after failing to capture his third Gold Cup last season. The pretender Long Run popped up and beat a class-filled field in the 2011 Cheltenham Gold Cup, but Kauto Star was far from done, as he enjoyed back to back victories over the fantastic youngster Long Run, beating the Gold Cup winner at the BetFair Chase and the King George IV Chase. So everything was gearing up for Kauto Star to target a hat trick of wins over Long Run when they come together again this year at the Cheltenham Gold Cup. However, there was some disappointing news after a injury during schooling of the 12 year old, which left trainer Paul Nicholls saying that Kauto Star was only a 50/50 shot to make it to the Gold Cup. That naturally saw Kauto Star’s odds drift out a little, after he had been trading as joint 5/2 favourite with Long Run across the board.

Kauto Star Cheltenham Gold Cup 2012 odds had actually been cut to be trading at an even price with Long Run, after the latter had put in an unimpressive run at Kempton in mid February, which saw him just beat Burton Port by half a length. That got all the doubters about Long Run’s Gold Defence in a fluster and Long Run’s odds for the 2012 Gold Cup drifted, while Kauto Star’s was cut down to meet his. That was before Kauto Star Cheltenham Gold Cup 2012 odds were affected by the news of his injury. But on a more positive note, Paul Nicholls has said that Kauto Star has now made a huge leap forward in getting ready for the big race at Prestbury Park. So much so that Nicholls has been massively relieved about the rapid progress that Kauto Star is making. After physio and strong canter there could be a happy ending to all of this. However, Nicholls himself has warned not to get carried away yet, because Kauto Star is not back at the level of fitness where he needs to be in order to land his third Cheltenham Gold Cup title. If he is even ready enough to make the start, it will be a big something for this year’s race, which does lack a bit of last year’s appeal.

After landing the Gold Cup in 2007 and 2009, fans were wondering if Kauto Star would be able to land that elusive third title. The anticipation about the 2012 Gold Cup was all about the ensuing battle between the legend and the young champion Long Run. That looks to be a little bit at risk at the moment, and Nicholls has been quite honest in his assessment of Kauto Star’s chances. Even if he makes the start, getting into prime shape to challenge is a different matter. But still Kauto Star Cheltenham Gold Cup 2012 odds are holding at around 4/1 with most bookies across the board including Totesport. So there is some so home for Kauto Star, still some romantic anticipation about him appearing in this year’s race, and what a story it would be, one that you just couldn’t write if he could come back from injury and cross the line first.

The nature and class of the horse is all written in his current odds, as he is still shorter than other contenders, like Burton Port, Synchronised and the good outside shot Grands Crus. Will this be Kauto Star’s last shot at the Gold Cup hattrick? Will he even make the start? After having drifted out from 5/2 joint favourite to 4/1 at the moment, now would be the time to jump on his back if you are fancying an optimistic punt on him.

Online bookmaker Bet365 offer superb horse racing betting coverage with their 4/1 Winner Special. Back a winner in any live BBC or Channel 4 race at Bet365 at odds of 4/1 or greater, then the bookie will give you a free bet for the very next race! The free bet will be to the value of your original winning stake, and the great thing here, is that if you pick another 4/1 with your free bet, then you will get another free bet, and so on. Terrific value and it applies to all live BBC or Channel 4 races. The bookie also offers Best Odds Guaranteed and a 50p bet on this race will get you access to a live stream of the race as well to watch on your computer. Online bookmaker Bet365 offer a free £200 bet as a welcome bonus for new customers registering an account. The bookie will match the value of your first deposit with a 100% bonus, giving you a tremendous amount of free betting cash to enjoy with your new account!


Guaranteed £250,000 Win and Bonus Fund in Boxing Day Scoop6 Horse Racing Totepool

Horse Racing Betting

There is a real horse racing betting treat happening with online bookmaker Totesport on Boxing Day. There is the King George meeting at Kempton of course which is going to attract all of the highlights of the real. Their Scoop6 Totepool offer with a guaranteed prize of £250,000 for Boxing Day is well worth taking a look at for your Boxing Day horse racing betting. This week’s Scoop6 legs come from both Kempton and Wetherby as well on December 26th. The Kempton legs of the Scoop6 are at 1.25pm, 2.00pm, 2.35pm and 3.10, and then the Wetherby legs are the 1.45pm and the 2.20pm. The Scoop6 means that you need to pick all six winners from those Totepool leg in order to claim the grand prize. All of the races are live on Channel 4 of course, so you can watch the action and hope for the bet.

The Totepool is a great form of horse racing betting, which means that all money staked on a race goes into the Pool, from which the funds are then split between the winners. For the Totesport Scoop6 horse racing betting, there are three funds which will be paid out. The Winners Fund, which will need all six winners to come up, the Place Fund in which you will paid out if all six of your horses place, and the Bonus Fund pays out a winner in the selected bonus race from Totesport. There is a minimum bet of £2 for a Totescoop6 bet. The average win fund of the Totescoop6 is just over £180,000 and it has been won thirteen times. The biggest ever Win Fund amount was over £650,000 back at the end of last year.

For the Boxing Day Scoop6 Totepool, Totesport are guaranteeing a £250,000 Win and Bonus fund. The Christmas treat for the Scoop6 means that the guaranteed Win Fund will stand at £150,000, and winners there will be eligible to enter the £100,000 Bonus Fund the following Saturday. So with this great Horse Racing system from Totesport, you can be in for a big share of some earnings. Of course, the amount of payout will be determined by how many other winners there are in the particular fund. But, for the Boxing Day Scoop6, if you do land all six winners then you will at least be guaranteed a share of £150,000 with a shot at another share of £100,000 next Saturday.

The King George VI Chase goes at 3.10pm at Kempton on Boxing Day, with the renewal of the Long Run and Kauto Star rivalry, with quality added to the field with Master Minded and Captain Chris. Long Run is edging the betting at the moment priced at 5/4, with Kauto Star who recently beat Long Run, is back at 7/2. This is the feature race of Boxing Day and it does fall under the Scoop6 and the guaranteed prize fund from Totesport on December 26th.

The highly popular online bookmaker Totesport, who are respected for their horse racing betting coverage, offer a free £10 bet for new customers registering an account. The bookie will match the value of your first bet on a new account, up to the maximum value of £10, with a free bet.


BetFred Long Run Specials and Horse Racing “Lucky” Offer

Horse Racing Betting

There’s a big weekend at Haydock for your horse racing betting, with the big rematch of Kauto Star against this year’s Gold Cup winner Long Run the highlight in the Betfair Chase. There are some good specials on Long Run at BetFred at the moment which are definitely worth taking a look at. With Long Run favourite to lift the Betfair Chase title this year, you can back him to Win the Betfair Chase and King George VI Chase at a price of 9/4. If you think that he pull of a superb treble and land the Betfair Chase, King George VI and the BetFred Gold Cup then you take that at 13/2. Naturally you’ll need to get these fired off before Saturday’s running of the 3.05 at Haydock. See our full Betfair Chase preview here…

Online bookmaker BetFred offer some good coverage on your horse racing betting, and they will be well worth a visit due to their Treble Odds Payout. When you have a Lucky 15, Lucky 31 or Lucky 31 bet on all Horse Racing and Greyhounds, then the bookie will pay you out treble the odds for just one winner from any of those formats of bets. This provides some great coverage if you go for the potential high profit of the full coverage multiples. The payout of treble your odds for one winner is a superb consolation offer should your Lucky bet go south, and well worth having on your side for your horse racing and greyhound racing.

The highly popular online bookmaker BetFred offer a free £50 for new customers as a welcome bonus. The bookie will match the value of your first stake as a free bet, up to the maximum value of £50. That gives you some fantastic free betting cash to work with on your new account, and with the great horse racing coverage that the bookie provides, you shouldn’t be short of options on how to use it!


2011 Cheltenham gold cup latest odds & betting preview

Cheltenham Festival

The final day of the Cheltenham Festival 2011 is arguably the most exciting, especially as it features the Gold Cup, a race which has the highest prize money and features the best three-mile chasers in the world.

Cheltenham Gold Cup Latest Odds 2011

There are likely to be five horses which go off at single figure odds thanks to a gamble on Kempes which started several months ago and now sees the Willie Mullins horse trading at a best price 11/1 with Paddy Power but as short as 9/1 with Ladbrokes.

There was nothing fluky about the horse’s win in the Hennessy Gold Cup, landing a surprise result at 25/1 and he might yet take advantage of what could be a weak renewal.

Even so, many people backed Imperial Commander last year on the basis of Nigel Twiston-Davies’ confident quotes and the trainer believes that his horse will once again take all the beating, with Ladbrokes offering a best price 4/1 that the champion wins the race for the second time.

Paddy Power have an excellent offer available on the race where they will refund your bets if your horse finishes second to Imperial Commander and that could appeal to backers of Long Run (5/1), with the young horse having comfortably got the better of Kauto Star in the King George Chase.

Nicky Henderson has not had a great Festival and it’s mainly down to the withdrawal of the highly-fancied Binocular in the Champion Hurdle, although the six-year-old looked the part when winning at Kempton and could go close in this race.

Paul Nicholls has two very lively chances in the guise of Kauto Star and Denman, the duo who were supposed to battle it out for last year’s Gold Cup before the Commander took centre stage.

Kauto Star apparently scoped badly after his defeat in the King George and the 11-year-old is 15/2 with William Hill to claim a third crown thus emulating the recent achievement of Best Mate, while Denman is a 13/2 chance with bet365 and could present a sterner challenge.

Denman broke on to the scene in 2008 and hammered his stable mate into the ground, although a series of injuries and breathing problems means that the horse has struggled to regain its best form.

Pandorama is a 12/1 chance to win the race with Ladbrokes and the horse has the class to win a Cheltenham Gold Cup although it appears that the ground is going to count against him. Meanwhile, Midnight Chase has been backed in the past 48 hours and Coral now offer a best price 16/1.



Who will win the Cheltenham Gold Cup 2011

Cheltenham Festival

Who will win the Cheltenham Gold Cup 2011? That is the question on everyone’s lips as the highlight of the National Hunt calendar is upon us. The Cheltenham Festival gets under way on Tuesday, with the big race, the Cheltenham Gold cup, hitting the start tape on Friday. The big race of the meeting is the Gold Cup, and the build up for that has been going on pretty much since the finishing of the last race twelve months ago, which was won by Imperial Commander. The Gold Cup is a Grade 1 National Hunt chase, and horses five years and older are eligible for entry. The distance goes over 3 miles and two and a half furlong, with twenty two obstacles in the way. This is the most valuable, non handicap chase in Britain. Now it is time for Punter and Bookmaker to square off again, at the prestigious meeting as tensions rise again for the big meeting. The line up in the race is just incredible, with all winners from the last four runnings of the race taking the tape. Imperial Commander sets out to defend the crown, while two time winner Kauto Star looks to secure a hat trick of wins, while 2008 winner Denman is also in the mix. But while the established guard will all draw the majority of the betting, punters are not being too shy in not looking beyond some outsiders. So who will win the Cheltenham Gold Cup 2011?

Long Run (11/2 at Victor Chandler)
, one of the most highly touted youngsters in the National Hunt, is ready to take stage as well, and is drawing a lot of interest. He is the young pretender in the pack, and after winning the King George in astonishing fashion, taking the crown ahead of Kauto Star (who came in third), and it was something which firmly put his name amongst the potential winners here. However, the one hesitation of the rookie, is that in two previous runnings at Cheltenham, he has looked less than confident, and maybe the course does not suit him. Long Run finished third in both of those previous race meetings, and the biggest questions was over the jumping technique on the famous course. There was just not the same conviction over the jumps which he had shown in previous times. Long Run wasn’t out of things completely, but it just showed exactly what a raw talent he is, and are things that time and experience will probably iron out. Long Run has the edge over Kauto Star in the betting at the moment, and that will be on the strength of his King George triumph.

Defending champion Imperial Commander (7/2 at SportingBet) has just such a good track record at Cheltenham, winning five out of six runnings over the jumps there. He hasn’t ran since November, and while that will be a concern for punters, trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies is carrying good form at the moment, and Imperial Commander looks to be full of running. While a lot of the headlines will gravitate towards Kauto Star and Denman, it is Imperial Commander who looks the most assured of the three main challengers to be honest. The last ten winners of the Cheltenham Gold Cup have been in the top three of the betting, so the likelihood is that gives a strong leaning towards Imperial Commander, who is favourite at the bookmakers at the moment. The front runners in the Cheltenham Gold Cup betting at the moment, is Imperial Commander, Long Run and Kauto Star. So the youngster has the potential to make a big impact, but must get over his Cheltenham jitters.

Kauto Star (13/2 at Extrabet), two times winner of the Cheltenham Gold Cup, took a tumble last year, and hasn’t has a season which has seen him on top of his game. Couldn’t match what Long Run had to offer at the King George. Does that mean he should be counted out of your betting? Of course not. His record at Kempton (where the King George is ran) simply wasn’t great to start with, and there were concerns over his health there. But Trainer Paul Nicholls insists that Kauto Star is as good as ever, even though age may now be working against the 11 year old. Sixteen of the last seventeen Gold Winners have been aged between seven and nine, perhaps casting doubt on Kauto Star’s chances. But then, along with Imperial Commander and Denman, all three will be over nine, something to be considered as you ask yourself who will win the Cheltenham Gold Cup? Kauto Star is still coming in shorter and shorter all the time in the odds, and will always stay at good value none the less. Cheltenham is more of a stamina test than the King George, so we could yet still see Kauto Star land his third Gold Cup crown, and there probably could not be more of a popular winner. There could be a major deciding factor for Kauto Star, and that could be the presence of Ruby Walsh in the saddle, something which trainer Nicholls insists will make a big difference. AP McCoy was in the seat for the third place finish behind Long Run at the King George, and the feeling is that Walsh and Kauto Star are a better, more familiar team.

What of Denman (7/1 at Paddy Power), Kauto Star’s stable mate? Ran brilliantly in the Hennessey, giving away two stones in weight to Diamond Harry, but Denman is also looking fitter after being treated for health issues as well. If he is fully fit, then he has to be near the front of the pack, and just like Kauto Star, should be worth taking at a good price. We could genuinely see a resurgent Denman at Cheltenham this week. Probably more of a sound each way bet in terms of value than Kauto Star realistically, but you never know with him. So who will win the Cheltenham Gold Cup? Well, the bookies are predicting something unexpected. The stats weigh heavily against any of the three established brigade, Imperial Commander, Denman and Kauto Star picking up a victory (such as the stat that no runner over the age of 10 years old has won since 1969), and while those three will take the bulk of the betting, it could be a good day for the bookies on Friday. Long Run, who may be considered as an upset if he were to win by some, also doesn’t have a convincing record at Cheltenham to firmly put him at the front of the betting. The course could also be a bit quicker than normal because of the dry weather, and the Course usually runs at good to soft, so the pace may be picked up, working against the older runners.

So where to look for an outsider?
Maybe Pandorama (14/1at Bet365), but he could be hampered if the track is running a big faster than normal, but does have the class to compete. Tidal Bay (20/1 at SkyBet) has a good running record at Cheltenham, and is good value in the betting at the moment, for a very strong finishers. If the course is running a bit faster than normal, than it could bring What a Friend (50/1 at Stan James) into play, who, like Pandorama has the class and with the going in his favour, could also make an impact. So will we see an established name hit the line first, or will we see, as bookies are predicting, a winner come from nowhere? It is time to decide who will win the Cheltenham Gold Cup 2011 for your horse racing betting, and while the field looks narrow, there is plenty of great value around at the moment to get your wagers down early.