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16th October 2021

Newbury Free Tips and Trends: Sun 21st Feb 2021

Plenty more Cheltenham Festival clues on offer on Sunday 21st Feb 2021 as the ITV cameras head to Newbury racecourse to take in their rescheduled Betfair Hurdle fixture that was cancelled on Saturday 13th Feb.

At Newbury, the Denman Chase, Betfair Hurdle and Betfair Exchange Chase are the standout contests - In the last 17 runnings of the Denman Chase we've seen 8 winning favourites, while ALL of the last 18 Betfair Hurdle winners carried 11st 8lbs or less in weight.

So, as always, we’ve got it all covered here at TQ with all the key trends, plus our verdict, on each of the LIVE ITV races - we’re confident these trends will point you in the direction of a few winners, or at least help narrow down some of the field to highlight the horses that fit the best profile of past winners – So, let’s get going!

 

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NEWBURY Horse Racing Trends (ITV/RacingTV)


1.50 -
Betfair Weighed-In Podcast Handicap Hurdle Cl2 3m52y ITV4

14/15 – Had won no more than 3 times over hurdles before
13/15 – Had run within the last 10 weeks
11/15 – Aged 7 or younger
11/15 – Carried 10-13 or more
10/15 – Had won over at least 2 ½ miles (hurdles) before
10/15 – Winning distance – 3 ½ lengths or less
9/15 – Unplaced last time out
9/15 – Carried 11-0 or more
8/15 – Came from the top 3 in the betting
6/15 – Aged 7 years-old
6/15 – Winners that went onto run at that season’s Cheltenham Festival (no winners)
6/15 – Had run over hurdles at Newbury before (no winners)
3/15 – French bred
3/15 – Won last time out
3/15 – Winning favourites
2/15 – Trained by Nicky Henderson
2/15 – Trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies
2/15 – Raced at Haydock last time out

TQ VERDICT: Sizable Sam will be popular here after a couple of nice wins at Wincanton, but up another 7lbs here and even though I feel there is more to come from this 6 year-old, he looked a bit green an inexperienced last time – wandering around and wasn’t the most fluent at some of the hurdles. This is a better race too so more is needed, but, in his defence, this step up to 3m is probably what he’s been crying out for and could improve him again. Of the rest, the consistent Mint Condition should go well, while it’s hard to ignore the Paul Nicholls runner – SOUTHFIELD HARVEST, who is yet to finish out of the first two from four hurdles runs and sets a fair standard with his recent close second at Wincanton. Alan King won this in 2019 and his Es Perfecto is another that should be involved, but of those at bigger prices the only CD winner in the field – VIVE LE ROI (e/w) – might be worth a small interest too. Yes, he was down the field in this race last year (5th), but is 7lbs lower this time and hinted at a return to form last time at Cheltenham when a fair 5th of 12 in a similar race. 

 

2.25 - Betfair Denman Chase (Grade 2) Cl1 3m ITV4

15/17 – Had won at least 4 times over fences (UK) before
15/17 – Had won over at least 3m (fences) before
14/17 – Rated 150+
13/17 – Placed favourites
13/17 – Ran within the last 6 weeks
13/17 – Came from the top 3 in the betting
12/17 – Aged 8 or younger
11/17 – Winners that went onto race in that season’s Gold Cup (4 winners)
11/17 – Had won over fences at Newbury before
10/17 – Raced at either Cheltenham (4) or Kempton (4) last time out
8/17 – Won last time out
8/17 – Winning favourites
7/17 – Trained by Paul Nicholls
7/17 – Irish bred
6/17 – French bred
5/17 – Winning distance – ¾ length or less
4/17 – Winners that went onto win the Gold Cup (Coneygree, Denman, Kauto Star & Native River)
3/17 – Returned a double-figure price
3/17 – Ridden by Richard Johnson
3/17 – Trained by Colin Tizzard
2/17 – Won by the Pipe stable
7 of the last 14 winners were aged 7 years-old
The average SP in the last 14 runnings is 3/1

TQ VERDICT: Paul Nicholl has a good record in this race and he’s going to have another big chance with his multiple King George winner, CLAN DES OBEAUX. This 9 year-old is the joint top-rated in the field (169) and is a former course winner – he’s clearly got a big chance. However, those against him will note he’s also not won now since landing the 2019 King George and despite being lightly-raced since (3 runs), he was put in his place by Frodon at Kempton over Christmas.  But with his main rival, in term of the ratings – Lostintranslation – having a bit to prove, then Clan Des Obeaux gets the call by default really. He’s a course winner here too and heavy/soft ground is fine. Nicholls has already said he’s unlikely to be seen at Cheltenham again, so he can take this before heading to Aintree in April. The other joint top-rated is the Tizzard runner – Lostintranslation – and on his best form he’d, of course, be a player – let’s not forget, he was a close third in the Gold Cup last March. However, he’s rather lost his way since with poor runs in the King George and Betfair Chase – a recent wind op might do the trick, but I’d rather see it on the track first. Cepage, The Conditional and Secret Investor are all good horses in their own right too, but in this graded race have a bit to find at the weights. So, the other of interest is KALASHNIKOV (e/w). Yes, he’s rated 10lbs off the likes of Clan and Lost, but gets a handy 6lbs from that pair. He ran well over 2m4f at Cheltenham (2nd) last time out but looks the sort that is worth a try over 3 (fences), plus is also a proven course winner here at Newbury. If all 8 run, then he could be the e/w value in the race.

 

3.00 – Betfair Cheltenham Free Bet Pot Builder Chase (Registered as The Game Spirit Chase) (Grade 2) Cl1 2m92y ITV4

15/15 – Priced 5/1 or shorter in the betting
14/15 – Placed favourites
13/15 – Aged 8 or younger
12/15 – Winners went onto run in that season’s Champion Chase (3 winners)
12/15 – Placed in the top 3 last time out
12/15 – Had won at least 4 times over fences before
11/15 – Raced within the last 8 weeks
10/15 – Winning distance – 5 lengths or more
9/15 – Winning favourites
8/15 – Won last time out
8/15 – Had raced at Newbury (fences) before (5 winners)
6/15 – French bred
6/15 – Trained by Paul Nicholls
5/15 – Ran at Sandown last time out
5/15 – Trained by Nicky Henderson
3/15 – Winners that went onto win that season’s Champion Chase
2/15 – Winners that went onto win that season’s Arkle Chase
Altior has won the last three renewals (2017, 2018 & 2020)

Note:
The 2019 running was staged at Ascot

TQ VERDICT: No Altior, who was meant to run in last week’s race until it got called off and moved here, so that certainly makes life easier for the rest. Altior beat another runner Sceau Royal – in this race 12 months go by 3 ¼ lengths so with the Henderson horse missing there will be a lot of people siding with the King horse now. He’ll also get a handy 6lbs from the main Nicholls runner in the field Greaneteen and should go well. He’s a horse that’s been in good form this season (winning twice over hurdles), but does also return from a fall last time over fences at Kempton. Therefore, I think the Paul Nicholls runner – GREANETEEN can finally fulfil his tall reputation. The yard has made no secret that they like this 2m chaser, but even though he’s run some solid races you feel this is his time to start to kick-on. He’s still only 7 years-old so should have more to come and it’s no secret connections feel he’s got more to offer. He’s had a break since running Politologue to 7 lengths in the Tingle Creek last time out, but has won 4 of his 6 chase starts and looks a typical Nicholls sort that with a tiny bit more improvement could start to make a name for himself in this division. Nicholls also has Dolos and Magic Saint in the race, while Ventia Williams runs CD winner Fanion D’Estruval both are certainly no back numbers, but would probably need the main three in the market to have an off day. Last season's RSA Chase winner - Champ - has also been switched here, instead of the Denman Chase. A very decent horse on his day, but you just feel this 2m 1/2f trip will be plenty sharp enough for him and he might just have too much to do in the closing stages as his running style is to come late. You never know, if he can keep tabs on them early on, then he'd certainly be the winner if jumping the last in contention, but you also feel the Henderson camp didn't want to give him a hard race over 3m in the Denman Chase, so this will be an easier option to get a run into him and blow away the cobwebs, before a tilt at the Gold Cup - a Game Spirit/Gold Cup double would certainly be one to remember though!

 

3.35 – Betfair Hurdle (Handicap) (Grade 3) Cl1 2m110y ITV4

18/18 – Carried 11-8 or less in weight
17/18 – Aged 7 or younger
16/18 – Rated 130 or higher
15/18 – Won between 2-4 times over hurdles in the UK/IRE before
15/18 – Had raced within the last 8 weeks
15/18 – Placed in the top 3 last time out
15/18 – Aged either 5 or 6 years-old
14/18 – Came from the first 7 in the betting
14/18 – Went onto run at that season’s Cheltenham Festival
13/18 – Winning distance – 3 lengths or less
13/18 – Placed favourites
10/18 – Carried 10-9 or less in weight
9/18 – Came from the top 5 in the betting
9/18 – Returned a double-figure price in the betting
8/18 – Irish bred
8/18 – Won last time out
8/18 – Aged 5 years-old (including 8 of last 14)
7/18 – Winning favourites
4/18 – Raced at Cheltenham last time out
3/18 – Trained by Nicky Henderson (has won the race 5 times in all)
3/18 – Trained by Gary Moore
3/18 – Trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies (3 of the last 7)
2/18 – Trained by Paul Nicholls (2 of the last 9)
2/18  - Raced at Leopardstown last time out
2/18 – Owned by JP McManus
1/18 – Went onto win the County Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival that season (Spirit Leader 2003)
23 of the last 24 winners have been aged 7 or younger
Pic D’Orhy (33/1) won the race in 2020
The average winning SP in the last 18 runnings is 14/1

TQ VERDICT: As always, a super-competitive renewal of this Betfair Hurdle. Soaring Glory, who was a fine third in the Supreme Novices’ Trial at Ascot last time out – he gets in here with only 10st 7lbs, which looks dangerous, so it’s no shock he’s been well supported in the build-up to this. Henderson has a good record in the race too and in Buzz and Mister Coffey he’s got two fair chances too. The former is ridden by 5lb claimer Kevin Brogan to offset some of his big 11st 12lbs weight, while you feel Mister Coffey, with Nico de Boinville riding, is better than his showing (3rd) last time at Sandown after getting bogged down in heavy ground. The unbeaten Metier could be anything and comfortably beat the Harry Redknapp-owned Shakem Up’Arry last time out, so certainly can't be ruled out, but the three I like are CADZAND, GUARD YOUR DREAMS and FIFTY BALL. The first-named has won his last two in decisive fashion and the form of his last win over Christopher Wood has since been franked with that horse winning last weekend. He’s up 9lbs for that last win, but did it well to suggest he’s up to the rise in the ratings and gets in here with a nice racing weight of 10st 12lbs. The other main pick – FIFTY BALL (e/w) – comes from the Gary Moore yard that like to target this race – winning it last in 2015. He’s caught the eye in winning his last two and looks a versatile sort that has won on different ground and over trips from 2m up to 2m3 ½f. He’s up 11lbs from this last run, so more on his plate, but still gets into this better race with just 10st 5lbs to carry and that’s a full stone less in racing weight than last time. The final pick – GUARD YOUR DREAMS (e/w) – comes from the Nigel Twiston-Davies yard that have won 3 of the last 7 runnings of this race. This 5 year-old seems to be going the right way after winning three of his four hurdles starts and is up 7lbs from last time when beating Friend or Foe with a bit to spare at Sandown. Trip and ground are fine and son Sam takes the ride for his dad, something he’s done with success in this race twice since 2017!

 

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