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Gordon Elliott

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Cheltenham Festival Day Two Preview – Horse Racing Betting March 14

Horse Racing Betting
SAMCRO looks a banker in the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle at the start of day two of the Cheltenham Festival. Gordon Elliott resisted the temptation to run his star novice in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle yesterday and probably has another Irish raider, Next Destination, to beat in this lesser contest, though nobody will be getting rich at the current best 8/11. Honours were fairly even between Ireland and the home team on the opening day of The Festival and day two promises to be just as competitive, though Irish eyes should be smiling again after the second race, the RSA Insurance Novices' Chase. This is as much a race for future stayers as yesterday's National Hunt Chase and Presenting Percy has been popular with ante-post punters and is set to go off favourite (currently a best 5/2). He won the Pertemps Final over hurdles last year for Patrick Kelly and has proved just as adept over fences but could find MONALEE a tough opponent. Henry De Bromhead's seven-year-old has always looked a chaser in the making, despite having the speed to finish second in last year's Albert Bartlett over the smaller obstacles. He's won both completed starts over fences, beating today's rivals Al Boum Photo and Dounikos in a Grade 1 at Leopardstown last time, and the return to 3m is probably a plus - the 7/2 with Betbright looks a bit of value. Bryony Frost has developed a terrific partnership with Black Corton but this may be a step too far for the Paul Nicholls runner.

RSA Insurance Novices' Chase Current Best Odds

Presenting Percy 5/2, Monalee 7/2, Al Boum Photo 7/1, Black Corton and Dounikos 8/1, Elegant Escape 11/1, Ballyoptic 18/1, Bonbon Au Miel 25/1, Allysson Monterg 50/1, Full Irish 100/1 The Coral Cup comes under the 'too hard' category while a late injury scare has dampened enthusiasm for backing ALTIOR at a best 5/4 in the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase and who's to say which of Willie Mullins' five runners in the Weatherbys Champion Bumper will prove best but TIGER ROLL could be worth an interest in the Glenfarclas Chase over the cross-country fences. Gordon Elliott won the race last year with Cause Of Causes, ridden by Jamie Codd, and that partnership has been backed for a repeat (a general 11/4). But the stable also run Bless the Wings, who has run over the cross-country fences, and Tiger Roll. The latter won the National Hunt Chase at the meeting last year and his run behind Bless The Wings at Cheltenham in December had all the hallmarks of a prep race, though he's now into a general 6/1. The Last Samuri is the potential fly in the ointment but the Aintree specialist will have to adapt quickly to the unique challenge of the obstacles.  
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Randox Health Grand National Weights and Odds – Horse Racing Betting April 14

Horse Racing Betting
Following the somewhat chaotic announcement of the Grand National weights Blaklion, compared to the incomparable Red Rum by trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies, remains favourite for April's Aintree showpiece though there has been serious support for Willie Mullins' Total Recall. Willie Mullins' stayer, now only a best 20/1 with Unibet, is unbeaten so far this season. But Blaklion's odds, a general 10/1, will contract further if he wins this Saturday's Grand National Trial at Haydock, which we will be previewing fully in the next 48 hours. Twiston-Davies has won the Grand National twice before and his charge has already jumped twice around Aintree's big fences without making a semblance of a mistake. However, it may not be the fences that stop the nine-year-old. He isn't a big horse and will have to carry at least 11st 6lb. Red Rum, of course, regularly used to carry 12st but he was an anomaly.

Grand National 2018 Weights

1) DEFINITLY RED (IRE) 9 11-10 165 Phil & Julie Martin, Brian Ellison 2) BRISTOL DE MAI (FR) 7 11-09 164 Simon Munir & Isaac Souede, Nigel Twiston-Davies 3) EDWULF 9 11-09 164 J P McManus, Joseph O'Brien IRE 4) OUTLANDER (IRE) 10 11-08 163 Gigginstown House Stud, Gordon Elliott IRE 5) MINELLA ROCCO (IRE) 8 11-07 162 J P McManus, Jonjo O'Neill 6) BLAKLION 9 11-06 161 Simon Such & Gino Paletta, Nigel Twiston-Davies 7) SUB LIEUTENANT (IRE) 9 11-05 160 Gigginstown House Stud, Henry de Bromhead IRE 8) ANIBALE FLY (FR) 8 11-04 159 J P McManus, Tony Martin IRE 9) THE LAST SAMURI (IRE) 10 11-04 159 Paul & Clare Rooney, Kim Bailey 10) MALA BEACH (IRE) 10 11-03 158 Chris Jones, Gordon Elliott IRE 11) VALSEUR LIDO (FR) 9 11-03 158 Gigginstown House Stud, Henry de Bromhead IRE 12) AMERICAN (FR) 8 11-02 157 The Jago Family Partnership, Harry Fry 13) TOTAL RECALL (IRE) 9 11-01 156 Slaneyville Syndicate, Willie Mullins IRE 14) ALPHA DES OBEAUX (FR) 8 11-00 155 Gigginstown House Stud, Mouse Morris IRE 15) GOLD PRESENT (IRE) 8 11-00 155 John & Barbara Cotton, Nicky Henderson 16) NOBLE ENDEAVOR (IRE) 9 10-13 154 Chris Jones, Gordon Elliott IRE 17) PERFECT CANDIDATE (IRE) 11 10-13 154 ISL Recruitment, Fergal O'Brien 18) SIZING CODELCO (IRE) 9 10-13 154 Ann & Alan Potts Limited, Colin Tizzard 19) CAUSE OF CAUSES (USA) 10 10-12 153 J P McManus, Gordon Elliott IRE 20) SHANTOU FLYER (IRE) 8 10-12 153 Carl Hinchy, Richard Hobson 21) CARLINGFORD LOUGH (IRE) 12 10-11 152 J P McManus, John Kiely IRE 22) O O SEVEN (IRE) 8 10-11 152 Christopher Hanbury, Nicky Henderson 23) TENOR NIVERNAIS (FR) 11 10-11 152 Boultbee Brooks Ltd, Venetia Williams 24) GO CONQUER (IRE) 9 10-10 151 Paul & Clare Rooney, Jonjo O'Neill 25) TRAFFIC FLUIDE (FR) 8 10-10 151 Galloping On The South Downs Partnership, Gary Moore 26) VICENTE (FR) 9 10-10 151 Trevor Hemmings, Paul Nicholls 27) ACAPELLA BOURGEOIS (FR) 8 10-09 150 Slaneyville Syndicate, Willie Mullins IRE 28) RATHVINDEN (IRE) 10 10-09 150 Ronnie Bartlett, Willie Mullins IRE 29) REGAL ENCORE (IRE) 10 10-09 150 J P McManus, Anthony Honeyball 30) TIGER ROLL (IRE) 8 10-09 150 Gigginstown House Stud, Gordon Elliott IRE 31) VIEUX LION ROUGE (FR) 9 10-09 150 Prof Caroline Tisdall & John Gent, David Pipe 32) A GENIE IN ABOTTLE (IRE) 7 10-08 149 Gigginstown House Stud, Noel Meade IRE 33) AS DE MEE (FR) 8 10-08 149 The Stewart Family & Judi Dench, Paul Nicholls 34) CHASE THE SPUD 10 10-08 149 Christine Banks, Fergal O'Brien 35) ROCK THE KASBAH (IRE) 8 10-08 149 Diana Whateley, Philip Hobbs 36) SEEYOUATMIDNIGHT 10 10-08 149 Quona Thomson, Sandy Thomson 37) WARRIORS TALE 9 10-08 149 Michelle & Dan Macdonald, Paul Nicholls 38) BELLSHILL (IRE) 8 10-07 148 Andrea & Graham Wylie, Willie Mullins IRE 39) FLYING ANGEL (IRE) 7 10-07 148 Rob Rexton, Nigel Twiston-Davies 40) GAS LINE BOY (IRE) 12 10-07 148 The Three Graces, Ian Williams 41) PLEASANT COMPANY (IRE) 10 10-07 148 Malcolm C Denmark, Willie Mullins IRE 42) THE DUTCHMAN (IRE) 8 10-07 148 SprayClad UK, Colin Tizzard 43) BEEVES (IRE) 11 10-06 147 Paul & Clare Rooney, Jennie Candlish 44) SAINT ARE (FR) 12 10-06 147 David Fox, Tom George 45) UCELLO CONTI (FR) 10 10-06 147 Simon Munir & Isaac Souede, Gordon Elliott IRE 46) VYTA DU ROC (FR) 9 10-06 147 Simon Munir & Isaac Souede, Nicky Henderson 47) CAROLE'S DESTRIER 10 10-05 146 Carole Skipworth, Neil Mulholland 48) LONG HOUSE HALL (IRE) 10 10-05 146 Carl Hinchy, Dan Skelton 49) POLIDAM (FR) 9 10-05 146 Simon Munir & Isaac Souede, Willie Mullins IRE 50) RAZ DE MAREE (FR) 13 10-05 146 James Swan Gavin Cromwell IRE 51) ABOLITIONIST (IRE) 10 10-04 145 Mark Albon, John Provan & Chris Stedman Dr Richard Newland 52) BAIE DES ILES (FR) 7 10-04 145 Zorka Wentworth, Ross O'Sullivan IRE 53) BUYWISE (IRE) 11 10-04 145 T Hywel Jones, Evan Williams 54) CHILDRENS LIST (IRE) 8 10-04 145 Susannah Ricci, Willie Mullins IRE 55) I JUST KNOW (IRE) 8 10-04 145 M B Scholey & the late R H Scholey, Sue Smith 56) MAGGIO (FR) 13 10-04 145 Douglas Pryde/James Beaumont, Patrick Griffin IRE 57) PENDRA (IRE) 10 10-04 145 J P McManus, Charlie Longsdon 58) VIRGILIO (FR) 9 10-04 145 C J Edwards, D Futter, A H Rushworth, Dan Skelton 59) CAPTAIN REDBEARD (IRE) 9 10-03 144 Stuart Coltherd, Stuart Coltherd 60) HOUBLON DES OBEAUX (FR) 11 10-03 144 Mrs Julian Blackwell, Venetia Williams 61) LORD WINDERMERE (IRE) 12 10-03 144 Dr Ronan Lambe, Jim Culloty IRE 62) SILSOL (GER) 9 10-03 144 Michelle & Dan Macdonald, Paul Nicholls 63) THIRD INTENTION (IRE) 11 10-03 144 Robert & Sarah Tizzard, Colin Tizzard 64) THREE FACES WEST (IRE) 10 10-03 144 Paul & Clare Rooney, Philip Hobbs 65) WILD WEST WIND (IRE) 9 10-03 144 Simon Clarke, Tom George 66) BLESS THE WINGS (IRE) 13 10-02 143 Adrian Butler & S P O'Connor, Gordon Elliott IRE 67) DOUBLE ROSS (IRE) 12 10-02 143 Options O Syndicate, Nigel Twiston-Davies 68) FINAL NUDGE (IRE) 9 10-02 143 Corbett Stud, David Dennis 69) MILANSBAR (IRE) 11 10-02 143 Robert Bothway, Neil King 70) MORNING ASSEMBLY (IRE) 11 10-02 143 Clipper Logistics Group Ltd, Pat Fahy IRE 71) DELUSIONOFGRANDEUR (IRE) 8 10-01 142 McGoldrick Racing 3, Sue Smith 72) ROAD TO RICHES (IRE) 11 10-01 142 Gigginstown House Stud, Noel Meade IRE 73) THUNDER AND ROSES (IRE) 10 10-01 142 Gigginstown House Stud, Mouse Morris IRE 74) SAMETEGAL (FR) 9 10-00 141 John & Barbara Cotton, Paul Nicholls 75) VINTAGE CLOUDS (IRE) 8 10-00 141 Trevor Hemmings, Sue Smith 76) WALK IN THE MILL (FR) 8 10-00 141 Baroness Harding, Robert Walford 77) GENERAL PRINCIPLE (IRE) 9 9-12 139 Gigginstown House Stud, Gordon Elliott IRE 78) VIC DE TOUZAINE (FR) 9 9-12 139 Andrew Brooks & G Moore, Venetia Williams 79) VIEUX MORVAN (FR) 9 9-12 139 M L Bloodstock, Joseph O'Brien IRE 80) WOUNDED WARRIOR (IRE) 9 9-12 139 Gigginstown House Stud, Noel Meade IRE 81) ARBRE DE VIE (FR) 8 9-11 138 Susannah Ricci, Willie Mullins IRE 82) BALLYALTON (IRE) 11 9-11 138 John Westwood, Ian Williams 83) BONNY KATE (IRE) 8 9-11 138 Patricia Hunt, Noel Meade IRE 84) COGRY 9 9-11 138 Graham & Alison Jelley, Nigel Twiston-Davies 85) MISSED APPROACH (IRE) 8 9-11 138 Alan & Andrew Turner, Warren Greatrex 86) MYSTEREE (IRE) 10 9-11 138 Mrs Lynne Maclennan, Michael Scudamore 87) SIR MANGAN (IRE) 10 9-11 138 Frank McAleavy, Dan Skelton 88) SPLASH OF GINGE 10 9-11 138 John Neild, Nigel Twiston-Davies 89) BRAQUEUR D'OR (FR) 7 9-10 137 Corsellis & Seyfried, Paul Nicholls 90) MINELLA DADDY (IRE) 8 9-10 137 Roddy Owen & Paul Fullagar, Peter Bowen 91) PAIROFBROWNEYES (IRE) 9 9-10 137 Fibbage Syndicate, Willie Mullins IRE 92) RELENTLESS DREAMER (IRE) 9 9-10 137 Nigel Morris, Rebecca Curtis 93) KNOCK HOUSE (IRE) 9 9-09 136 Tim Leslie, Donald McCain 94) THE YOUNG MASTER 9 9-08 135 Mike Burbidge & The Old Masters, Neil Mulholland 95) ALFIE SPINNER (IRE) 13 9-06 133 Alan Beard & Brian Beard, Kerry Lee 96) HENRI PARRY MORGAN 10 9-06 133 Ednyfed & Elizabeth Morgan, Peter Bowen 97) PHIL'S MAGIC (IRE) 8 9-06 133 Lyreen Syndicate, Tony Martin IRE 98) BRAVISSIMO (FR) 7 9-05 132 Susannah Ricci, Willie Mullins IRE 99) DANCING SHADOW (IRE) 9 9-05 132 The Dancing Shadows, Victor Dartnall 100) ROGUE ANGEL (IRE) 10 9-05 132 Gigginstown House Stud, Mouse Morris IRE 101) THEBARROWMAN (IRE) 8 9-04 131 D Keys, Adrian Keatley IRE 102) OUT SAM 9 9-03 130 D Charlesworth, Gordon Elliott IRE 103) KRACKATOA KING 10 9-00 127 JC Harrison Lee & T Howard Partnership, Kerry Lee Champion trainer Nicky Henderson is hoping that Gold Present is the chaser that finally wins him that first Grand National. A general 25/1 having won both starts this season at Newbury and Ascot, he did fall in the Topham at Aintree last year however. Otherwise, many of those prominent in the betting are proven over the Grand National fences. The Last Samuri, still 10lb higher than when runner-up in 2016, is a general 20/1 with recent form tied in closely with the likes of Blaklion and recent Cheltenham winner Definitly Red, who started second favourite last year but was hampered in the early stages and eventually pulled up. Brian Ellison's charge is due to carry top weight this time. Last year's second Cause Of Causes is a general 25/1 but, at the weights and current odds, I'd be more interested in another Gordon Elliott-trained runner - General Principle - who has been brought along quietly this season and is available at 100/1 with Unibet. Sue Smith's progressive stayer¬†I Just Know can also be backed at 100/1 with Sportingbet.  
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Boylesports Irish Grand National Odds and Preview – Horse Racing Betting April 17

Horse Racing Betting
A big well done to Dublin-based Paddy Power and Skybet for offering each-way betting at one quarter the odds on the first six in Easter Monday's Boylesports Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse. You would have thought that the sponsors, also based in Ireland, would have offered the same concession in a bid to boost the races's profile, though they are offering an extra place (down to fifth) on top of the normal each-way terms applicable in a handicap featuring 30 runners. Paddy Power and are renowned for their repeated bonuses and daily money back specials. They are well known for their social media exploits and they like to promote plenty of excitement about their markets and their products. They can back it all up with a very strong product platform, one of the best in-play services around and an extensive sports book. There is a welcome bonus available too of £30 worth of free bets to enjoy when you become a new customer of Paddy Power via online-betting.me.uk. You automatically receive a free £30 bet but this is only activated when you, as a new customer, place a minimum stake of £10 with minimum odds of 1.50 (1/2). When that is done Paddy Power will give you 3 free bets of £10 each (3 x £10). This offer is only valid for new customers and the free bets will be valid for 30 days. Any possible winnings will be displayed on the betting receipt. This will include the stake but because this is a free offer, the stake will not be returned, only the winnings. This offer can only be used on Paddy Power and only in their sportsbook; it cannot be used in any other part of the Paddy Power website. Although Paddy Power accepts payment from Skrill/Moneybookers and Neteller they do not accept these methods of payment for this free bet offer. Terms and conditions apply, please see full details directly at Paddy Power.

Irish National History

The Irish Grand National doesn't generate the excitement of its English cousin - there is no Becher's Brook or Chair at Fairyhouse- but it can boast a similar long history. It has often proved a decent trial for the following year's Aintree marathon and is a tough race in its own right. Several winners have gone on to glory at Liverpool - Rhyme 'n' Reason, Bobbyjo and Numbersixvalverde among them - and last year's Aintree hero Rule The World was placed in the Irish Grand National in the year before. The race also carries 270,000 euros in prize money so it's no surprise that it attracts top stayers from both sides of the Irish Sea. The event was first run in 1870 and has only ever been staged at Fairyhouse - the first winner, Sir Robert Peel, earned 167 sovereigns. The Easter Monday fixture is a magnet for racegoers from nearby Dublin, earning it the name 'The Dubs' Day Out'. Often run on quickish going, no chaser since Commanche Court in 2000 has successful carried more than 11st to victory. Only one winner since 1991 has been aged older than 10 but the brilliant Desert Orchid was that age when carrying top weight of 12st to victory in 1990. Both Jonjo O'Neill and Mouse Morris have trained the winner twice in the last 10 years and the race has also been a good one recent for lady trainers with two of the last four renewals going to handlers of the female persuasion. Gigginstown must have struggled to find enough caps of varied colours to differentiate between their 14 runners. Gordon Elliott trains eight of those and also runs Noble Endeavor and Bless The Wings for different owners. It's very rare for one owner to dominate a race like this but there is no doubting the credentials of Tiger Roll, winner of the 4m National Hunt Chase at last month's Cheltenham Festival and a general 16/1, though not certain to confirm that form with Haymount (a general 12/1) on worse terms. Three entries run in the famous JP McManus green and gold, if you include first reserve Oscar Knight, and Shutthefrontdoor bids to repeat his victory in the race in 2014. He is a best 25/1 but retained jockey Barry Geraghty rides Minella Foru (a general 14/1), who has had just one run this term and looked a smart prospect at the end of 2015. Last year's winner Rogue Angel and 2015 hero Thunder And Roses also take part. Jessica Harrington's Our Duke has won a Grade 1 race this season but possibly has a few pounds too much and is little value at a best 11/2, though is possibly better treated than Noble Endeavor (16/1 with Skybet). UK raider Fletchers Flyer looks to have been 'laid out' for the race and has been backed accordingly. Only a best 10/1 now, he has excellent claims but I feel that Gigginstown's mass saturation of the entries can pay dividends. The improving GENERAL PRINCIPLE, the mount of Bryan Cooper, can be backed at 20/1 and should make his presence felt while ALPHA DES OBEAUX (a general 25/1) has a touch of class and would be an interesting prospect if fully recovered from breaking a blood vessel in the RSA Chase at Cheltenham.

Irish Grand National Forecast Odds

Our Duke (11/2), Fletchers Flyer (10/1), Abolitionist (12/1), Minella Foru, Haymount and General Principle (14/1), Noble Endeavor and Tiger Roll (16/1), Arbre De Vie, Bless The Wings, Foxrock and Shutthefrontdoor (20/1), Alpha Des Obeaux, Bonny Kate, Oscar Knight , Raz De Maree and Sambremont (25/1), Another Hero, Baie Des Iles, Lord Scoundrel, Measureofmydreams , Mystical Knight, Rogue Angel, Roi Des Francs, Stellar Notion and Thunder And Roses (33/1), Dedigout, Double Seven, First Lieutenant, Tell Us More, Wounded Warrior and Clarcam (50/1), The Game Changer (66/1)
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Cheltenham Festival Day Two Preview – Horse Racing Betting March 15

Horse Racing Betting
The opener yesterday produced a 25/1 winner but punters could get their own back in Wednesday's first race - the Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle. All but two of the last 30 winners have been in the first six in the betting so we can probably concentrate on the head of the market. Bacardys looks the pick of the Irish challenge but his defeat of Bunk Off Early in the Deloitte at Leopardstown last month was let down by the performance of the runner-up in yesterday's Supreme Novices'. Stablemate Bon Papa may have been unbeaten but for falling at Cork in January but will need another step forward to land a prize like this. NEON WOLF steps up in distance but the same can be said of most of his likely market rivals. Harry Fry's six-year-old has won over 2m2f and was mightily impressive in a Grade 2 at Haydock on his latest start. He was successful over 3m in a point-to-point a year ago so stamina is not going to be an issue and he looks worth a hefty wager at the 2/1 available with BetVictor. Bet £10 when you open an account with BetVictor through online-betting.me.uk this week and get a free £2 bet on every race at the Cheltenham Festival. BetVictor are also guaranteeing Best Odds on every UK and Irish race at present. TOMBSTONE ran well at last year's Festival and Gordon Elliott's charge is a very strong fancy for the Coral Cup. The seven-year-old looks very well handicapped having reversed earlier running with former champion hurdler Jezki in a Grade 3 at Gowran last month. Not many would be good enough to win a tough race like this off a mark of 149 but the Gigginstown gelding could be an exception, though connections wouldn't want the ground to get any quicker - he is an 11/2 chance with the sponsors and BetVictor. DOUVAN is only a best 2/7 to extend his winning run in Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase but this is a race to watch rather than gamble on and we'll get much bigger odds on SAUSALITO SUNRISE in the Glenfarclas Chase. Not every staying chaser takes to the cross-country fences at Cheltenham, or adapts to its sharp turns, and the nine-year-old lacks the experience of many of his rivals in that respect. But I reckon he would have been favourite were this race being run on a more conventional course and he has won around Cheltenham in the past. Philip Hobbs trained Balthazar King to win the race twice and Richard Johnson rides. I'd be amazed if he hadn't been extensively schooled over obstacles similar in type and could prove too strong for the lies of Usuel Smurfer and the JP McManus legions if in contention on the final circuit - at BetVictor's 16/1, it's certainly worth the risk.

Glenfarclas Chase Latest Odds

Cantlow (11/4), Cause Of Causes (7/2), Auvergnat (15/2), Quantitativeeasing and Any Currency (14/1), Bless The Wings and Sausalito Sunrise (16/1), Alelchi Inois and Usuel Smurfer (18/1), First Lieutenant (20/1), Colour Squadron (25/1), Kingswell Theatre, Third Intention and Ballyboker Bridge (33/1), Valadom (40/1), Amazing Comedy (66/1)
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Cheltenham Gold Cup Updated Odds – Horse Racing Betting March 17

Horse Racing Betting
A season-ending tendon injury¬†means Thistlecrack has¬†become the latest high-profile name to be ruled out of the Cheltenham Festival. Colin Tizzard's nine-year-old, the champion staying hurdler last season, has won four of his five races over fences this season, including the King George VI Chase¬†at Kempton. He did head the betting for the Timico Gold Cup next month, despite suffering a narrow defeat at the hands of the ill-fated Many Clouds in the Cotswold Chase at Cheltenham at the end of January, but will now not line up at Prestbury Park. Thistlecrack had been on the easy list since the Cotswold Chase but was due to start cantering again this week. However, a scan has revealed a tear in his tendon which means he won't run again this season, though it shouldn't affect his long-term future. The last two winners of the Gold Cup - Coneygree and Don Cossack - have already been ruled out and the Stan James Champion Hurdle will be run without¬†both Faugheen¬†and defending champion¬†Annie Power. However, the Tizzard stable still has a strong hand in the Gold Cup and have the new favourite in Native River. He's already won the Hennessy Gold Cup and Welsh National this season and made all in the Denman Chase at Newbury earlier this month. The yard also have the second favourite in Cue Card, runner-up to Thistlecrack in the King George and successful nine times at the highest level, including the Betfair Ascot Chase in his final prep race. Irish runners occupy the next five places in the betting with Outlander a stand-out 10/1 on Betfair. Gordon Elliott's charge came right back to his best when landing the Lexus Chase at Leopardstown in December, though has disappointed twice at the Cheltenham Festival in recent years. Betfair have an exclusive free ¬£30 bet for new customers. This is different to most other websites¬†as your free bet is a matched bet. All you need to do is sign up here, using the code ZSK200 and place your first bet (min. ¬£10) at odds of at least 1.2 (1/5) within 30 days of opening your account. Within 24 hours of your qualifying bet being accepted, you will be offered 3 x ¬£/‚ā¨10 free bets. Exchange bets don't apply as qualifying bets! You can go on the website and sign up straight from there. To get going, open an account, deposit money and then bet and play on the website. Customers must be over 18 in order to fill in the registration form and¬†the use of Neteller, Skrill & Moneybookers eWallets are not eligible for this offer. Terms and conditions apply, please see full detail directly at Betfair.

Timico Gold Cup Updated Best Odds

Native River (3/1), Cue Card (7/2), Djakadam (11/2), Sizing John (9/1), Outlander (10/1), Don Poli (16/1), Champagne West and Empire Of Dirt (20/1), Bristol De Mai, Minella Rocco and More Of That (25/1), Vroum Vroum Mag (33/1), Zabana (40/1), Blaklion and Smad Place (50/1), Saphir De Rheu, Road To Riches, Tea For Two and Sub Lieutenant (66/1), Irish Cavalier, Sausalito Sunrise and Vezelay (100/1)
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Crabbie’s Grand National Odds and Preview – Horse Racing Betting April 9

Horse Racing Betting
The Crabbie's Grand National has evolved. A softening of its previously fearsome obstacles and a stricter qualifying criteria, as well as a slight shortening of the distance, have combined to generally hand the initiative to the classy chasers nearer the top of the handicap. Of course, it's still the race in which everyone still feels obliged to have a bet and, don't get me wrong, I wouldn't like to be hurtling towards Bechers Brook on half-a-ton of horse at 30mph. But maybe some of the romance has been taken out of the event by the animal welfare people, though I do wonder if the Aintree course 'improvements' have made a notable difference to casualty figures. One redeeming factor for those having their pocket money on an outsider this weekend is that soft going could level the playing field. BetVictor are paying out on six places at a quarter the odds. 

Crabbie's Grand National Trends

It was good to soft when Many Clouds all but rewrote the record books last year. As well as becoming the youngest winner in the past decade, he was also rated 3lbs higher than 2012 winner Neptune Collonges at 160 and carried 3lbs more. As 11st 10lb is now the maximum any horse can carry in the National, the weight shouldn't be an issue in Oliver Sherwood's stable star's bid for repeat success though he runs off a mind-blowing 165 this year. You could still get a return at the general 8/1, however, though the top weight is no certainty to confirm running last year with runner-up Saint Are (a general 16/1). Winners aged under eight and over 11 are rare so we'll cross out On His Own, Aachen, Onenightinvienna, Vics Canvas and Vieux Lion Rouge. Pendra's lack of a recent run is a concern as most recent winners had had a prep race in the last two months. For the same reason, Wonderful Charm is ignored. Six winners in the last 10 years had contested a hurdle in the same season so THE DRUID'S NEPHEW (a general 16/1) and GALLANT OSCAR (20/1 in several places) are the first two of my four selections. Neil Mulholland's charge appeared to be travelling like a winner when over-jumping at the fourth-last 12 months ago and slithering to a standstill. He is 9lb higher this year but ran a very nice trial when second in the Grimthorpe at Doncaster and this has been his target since last year. Gallant Oscar was third to The Druid's Hephew at Cheltenham last year and then won a valuable handicap on soft going at the Punchestown Festival. He, too, has been laid out for this by Tony Martin and might be the best of a very strong Irish presence. Gordon Elliott fances the lightly-raced Ucello Conti (a general 25/1) to run well, however, and what a story it would be if RULE THE WORLD were to pass the post in front. I don't know if a maiden over fences has ever won the big one at Aintree but Mouse Morris' nine-year-old has some cracking credentials considering he's never won over the larger obstacles. He was placed in the Irish National last year and also the Kerry National and wasn't far behind Ucello Conti in the Thyestes Chase at Gowran in January when 6lb worse off - the general 50/1 is quite attractive on that evidence so he goes on our list. Dour stayer Goonyella will be staying on in the closing stages if jumping round safely and is 20/1 with most bookmakers. Morning Assembly (a general 25/1) has been well backed since his second at Cheltenham while Gilgamboa (66/1 general) could also figure. Ruby Walsh surprisingly rides Sir Des Champs (33/1 with William Hill) but none of the Willie Mullins team make much appeal this time. Silviniaco Conti has been a superstar for Paul Nicholls, winning seven times at Grade 1 level. But he's failed twice in the Gold Cup and his chances of staying another mile at Aintree look remote under a big weight and the general 12/1 is much too short. HOLYWELL's lack of size could be a problem but he's probably the best handicapped horse in the Crabbie's Grand National off 153. He ran a blinder at Cheltenham and this is his time of year. He's won at this meeting the past and, if he does get into a rhythm, I wouldn't rule out a big run at the 16/1 with several layers including Betfred. The Last Samuri is arguably the unknown quantity this year but I'm not sure he yet jumps well enough to conquer Aintree and the general 10/1 is short enough now.

Crabbie's Grand National Current Best Odds

Many Clouds (8/1), The Last Samuri (10/1), Silviniaco Conti (12/1), Holywell (16/1), Saint Are (16/1), The Druids Nephew (16/1), Goonyella, Gallant Oscar and Shutthefrontdoor (20/1), Ucello Conti, Kruzhlinin and Morning Assembly (25/1), O'Faolains Boy, Sir Des Champs, Triolo D'Alene and Unioniste (33/1), Boston Bob and First Lieutenant (40/1), Just A Par, Le Reve, On His Own, Onenightinvienna, Rule The World and Soll (50/1), The Romford Pele, Wonderful Charm, Ballycasey, Ballynagour, Buywise, Gilgamboa, Home Farm, Katenko, Pendra, Rocky Creek, Vics Canvas, Vieux Lion Rouge, Black Thunder and Hadrian's Approach (66/1), Aachen and Double Ross (100/1) Bet365 are guaranteeing best odds in the race now that the final declarations have been made.

Crabbie's Grand National Four To Follow

GALLANT OSCAR (20/1 general) THE DRUID'S NEPHEW (16/1 general) RULE THE WORLD (50/1 general) HOLYWELL (16/1 general) It's worth noting that NetBet are offering money back as¬†a free bet if your horse falls, unseats its rider or is brought down the Crabbie's Grand National.  
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Day 4 Preview – Cheltenham Festival Betting March 18

Cheltenham Festival
After another record-breaking Cheltenham Festival - can Willie Mullins and Ruby Walsh cap their exploits by teaming up to land the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup with Djakadam? Second to Coneygree last year, the seven-year-old rather blotted his copy-book when falling in his prep race at Cheltenham in January eventually won by Smad Place. It was not the first time that he'd failed to cope with the fences at Prestbury Park but he's a real talent who could well go one better than 12 months ago if everything fell into place. That said, he was beaten fair and square by Don Cossack at Punchestown last season, when Cue Card was only fourth, so does have some improving to do and he's short enough now at the general 3/1. Don Cossack would probably have gone close to catching Cue Card and Vautour in the King George at Kempton had he not fallen two out. The runner-up has already franked that form at Cheltenham this week and Gordon Elliott's charge is also a general 3/1. Cue Card is the best staying chaser in the UK and is 4/1 with most bookmakers, though there is a slight doubt concerning his stamina over 3m2f. DON POLI may not have the class of some of his rivals but he's a tough stayer who will be charging up the hill when others have cried enough. William Hill could have blundered in putting up the assumed Mullins' second string at 5/1 as he ran an excellent trial for this in the Lexus at Leopardstown in December and won the RSA Chase at The Festival last year with his stamina.
 
 

Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase Best Odds

Don Cossack and Djakadam (3/1), Cue Card (4/1), Don Poli (5/1), Smad Place (10/1), Carlingford Lough (25/1), O'Faolains Boy (66/1), On His Own (80/1), Irish Cavalier (100/1) ZUBAYR only made his debut over hurdles less than three weeks ago - but what a debut it was! Held up behind in the Adonis Hurdle at Kempton, Paul Nicholls' juvenile made relentless headway down the back straight and cruised to the front on the bridle before the last to record an effortless victory. He made decent opposition look positively pedestrian and the Adonis has always been a good trial for the JCB Triumph Hurdle - I'll be looking no further for the winner at 5/1 with BetVictor.

JCB Triumph Hurdle Current BetVictor Odds

Ivanovich Gorbatov (9/2), Zubayr (5/1), Sceau Royal (15/2), Footpad (9/1), Who Dares Wins (11/1), Connetable (12/1), Let's Dance (14/1), Clan Des Obeaux and Apple's Jade (16/1), Tommy Silver (20/1), Frodon and Leoncavallo (25/1), Gibralfaro (28/1), Consul De Thaix (33/1), Big McIntosh (150/1) The Vincent O'Brien Handicap Hurdle is always one of the most competitive races at The Festival and there are 26 due to face the starter this year. This is not a race in which to throw all your eggs into one basket as the winner will need luck in-running. Several bookmakers are offering place betting down to fifth place so check before you bet.
 
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  I can see HAWK HIGH running well at the general 33/1 as he's at his best on good ground. he won the Fred Winter at Cheltenham in his younger days and his last success also came on this sort of surface at Aintree back in 2014. he's had just the one run this winter so will be fresher than some and Tim Easterby wouldn't have sent him down from North Yorkshire for the day out. STARCHITECT ran a cracker in the Betfair considering he was returning from a lay-off. He's another who will enjoy the better going and his jockey Tom Scudamore is having a good week - he is a general 12/1. Modus, widely available at 16/1, is a smart novice who still has time on his side while Blue Hell (10/1 with BetVictor) beat Coral Cup winner Diamond King on his latest start so has to be respected.

Vincent O'Brien Handicap Hurdle Current Best Odds

Great Field (8/1), Superb Story (9/1), Blue Hell and All Yours (10/1), Starchitect and Henry Higgins (12/1), John Constable (14/1), Modus, Wait For Me and Cardinal Walter (16/1), Dicosimo and Sternrubin (20/1), Mad Jack Mytton, Montbazon, Some Plan and Cheltenian (25/1), Devilment, Hawk High, Fethard Player, Sizing Tennessee and Bentelimar (33/1), Draco, Francis Of Assisi and Ivan Grozny (40/1), Kayf Blanco and Zamdy Man (50/1)
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William Hill King George VI Chase Odds and Preview – Horse Racing Betting December 26

Horse Racing Betting
What racing fan doesn't look forward to the William Hill King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day? Most racegoers maybe full of mince pies and sherry but they will still show their appreciation of top-class jump racing and the annual battle with bookmakers over cash otherwise destined for the New Year sales.

King George VI Chase History

The King George VI Chase was first run at Kempton in 1937. The race was named in honour of the new King, who himself was an enthusiastic follower of National Hunt racing. But the race didn't immediately capture the public's imagination - the first two runnings only attracted four runners and the Second World War then intervened. Kempton Park was used as a POW camp so racing was suspended. But the King George resumed on Boxing Day, 1947, and has been run on the day after Christmas since, weather permitting. Since 1949, the race has been televised and it's become one of the jump season's highlights as a result. It's the mid-season championship for staying chasers, though the form doesn't always translate to the Cheltenham Gold Cup in March. Some say that Kempton is an easy course in nature but the King George is a real test of staying power as the ground invariably rides soft on Boxing Day - plenty with stamina limitations have been found wanting in the past. Past winners include Arkle, Desert Orchid, Wayward Lad, Best Mate and Kauto Star and Silviniaco Conti is bidding to write his name into the record books this year with a third successive victory.

King George VI Chase Trends

This is very much a race for French or Irish-bred chasers. There has not been one 'home-grown' winner since the turn of the century which may well count against the well-backed Cue Card (currently a best 4/1). Colin Tizzard claims that his star chaser has benefited from new facilities at his Dorset base and he beat defending champion Silviniaco Conti and Ballynagour in the Betfair Chase at Haydock. Though surely the 9/1 with Paddy Power and others against Silviniaco Conti is too big given his fine record in the King George VI Chase - Ballynagour (as big as 100/1) has had more runs this season than his rivals and looks outclassed. Vautour (only a best 10/3 with the sponsors), Irish Cavalier (50/1) and Al Ferof (20/1) look worth opposing on stamina grounds. The former has never raced beyond 2m5f and though the latter has finished third in the last two renewals he didn't really last home on either occasion and is better over shorter and, how 10, is outside the ideal age range - six to nine produces most winners. Most of the recent winners scored on their previous outing so Ballynagour and Irish Cavalier get crossed out a second time. Silviniaco Conti and Valseur Lido (a best 25/1) were only second last time and the latter is the least fancied of the Willie Mullins runners. Smad Place (available at 9/1) may have been impressive against handicappers in the Hennessy but has never won a Grade 1 over fences and that is another pre-requisite for the King George V Chase. He will also do well to wrest the lead from Cue Card. DON COSSACK is the only one who really ticks all the boxes and can be backed at 5/2 with 888sport. He readily picked off Cue Card in the Melling Chase at Aintree in the spring and has won all three starts since with his defeat of Djakadam in the Punchestown Gold Cup now looking a very good run. Gordon Elliott's charge can lay down a marker for Cheltenham with victory, though he has been disappointing in two previous trips to The Festival.
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The Ladbroke (Handicap Hurdle) Preview and Odds – Horse Racing Betting December 19

Horse Racing Betting

The Ladbroke (Handicap Hurdle) History and Trends

Ladbrokes sponsored Ireland's most valuable handicap hurdle, the former Irish Sweeps Hurdle, at Leopardstown from 1987 until the turn of the century. But, in 2001, effectively began backing an identical contest at Ascot, which has quickly become established as a pre-Christmas treat. It is now a Grade 3 handicap, open to horses aged four years or older and run over a distance of two miles. Only one four-year-old has ever won it, Cause Of Causes in 2012, with five-year-olds doing best. That age group has claimed six of the 10 renewals (it's been been called off four times) with only one six-year-old and one seven-year-old being successful. Nicky Henderson has trained the winner three times and Irish handler Gordon Elliott twice. Henderson doesn't have a runner this year but Elliott saddles Vercingetorix - don't be put off by his general 33/1 quote as his trainer's two winners have started at 25/1 and 14/1. There is a very strong Irish challenge this year with four different stables represented. Champion trainer Willie Mullins runs two, Renneti and Noble Inn, but the former has a bit to find with Waxies Dargle on Cheltenham form. Eddie Harty saddles Punchestown winner Sort It Out, who was second in the County Hurdle at Cheltenham in March on his only previous run in the UK - he could be worth a second look at 14/1 with bet365. Nothing separated Jolly's Cracked It and Unanimite behind Nabucco at Ascot in October and they meet again on identical terms. But punters and bookmakers expect Harry Fry's charge to come out on top this time as he's only a best 5/1 while the David Pipe runner is 25/1 with Coral. Jolly's Cracked It has never finished out of the first two at Ascot so must be on the short-list while Winner Massagot looked much improved when beating another of this weekend's rivals, Rayvin Black, at the track last month and has also attracted each-way support. Sternrubin is on a hat-trick but I'm very interested in the two Dan Skelton runners. Skelton sent out the winner in 2013 and had the well-backed fourth last year. Harry rides Elite Hurdle third Zarib (16/1 with Coral) but HURRICANE HOLLOW is reunited with 5lb claimer Bridget Andrews for the first time since the partnership took a competitive affair at Cheltenham in April. The five-year-old's ability to stay further should be an asset in a race that's always run at a good gallop and there is nothing wrong with his latest third at Chepstow - the general 16/1 has to be a bit of value.

The Ladbroke Current Selected Best Odds

Jolly's Cracked It and Winner Massagot (5/1), Renneti, Sternrubin and Waxies Dargle (12/1), Sort It Out (14/1), Zarib, Hurricane Hollow and Some Plan (16/1), Noble Inn and Devilment (20/1)
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Betfred Cesarewitch Odds – Horse Racing Betting October 10

Horse Racing Betting
There have been a number of shocks in the Betfred Cesarewitch, the second leg of the famed Autumn Double,¬†in recent years. Two of the last three winners have started at 66/1, though Big Easy was only 10/1 when successful 12 months ago having earlier finished second in the Cesarewitch Trial at Newmarket. The trial race on the Rowley Mile course is a relatively new concept but runners in that contest are clearly worth a second look if turning up in the big one. Low Key won it three weeks ago and his trainer, David Pipe, will be looking to maintain the relative stranglehold that National Hunt trainers have had on the big staying races on the Flat this year. His eight-year-old only has a 4lb penalty and Tom Marquand again takes off 3lb so a big run is anticipated from this late developer who is now a best 8/1 with Skybet and Paddy Power. Tony Martin is another NH trainer with a strong hand as he saddles Galway Hurdle winner Quick Jack (10/1 with Paddy Power and Coral), Cassells Rock (33/1 with Betfred) and York winner Heartbreak City (also a best 10/1). The latter beat Saved By The Bell (66/1 with Skybet) on the Knavesmire but is 9lb higher. Willie Mullins sends over Renneti (14/1 with Stan James, BetVictor and Paddy Power), a winner over hurdles at Sligo in August, while Alan King runs jumpers First Mohican (50/1 with Coral), hugely-priced on his latest second at Goodwood though no certainty to stay this far,¬†and Grumeti (40/1 with William Hill). Oriental Fox (a general 20/1) has been placed in group races in France since winning over further at Royal Ascot in June and won't mind the forecast soft going and the ground could be a real factor this Saturday. They race on the Rowley Mile on Friday as well so it will be tacky, especially if drying out a little before the weekend. Gordon Elliott's useful hurdler Bayan (20/1 with Ladbrokes) could be interesting off a low weight. He won over 1m6f on soft ground on the Flat at Leopardstown last year and is only 4lb higher at Newmarket. The Brown Jack Stakes, run at Ascot in July, has proved a good trial for this in the past and four of the field took part this year. High Secret, one of four Sir Mark Prescott runners this Saturday, did best in finishing second¬†and is a general 25/1 for the big race. But CINNILLA comes out best at the weights today, making Coral and bet365's 50/1 look very tempting for each-way backers with most major bookmakers offering place betting down to fifth place. Ralph Beckett's filly had no chance at the weights in a conditions race at Salisbury last month but that should have brought her nicely to the boil for this.  
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