Cheltenham Horse Racing Trends & Tips: Sunday 18th Nov 2018

Another big day ahead for the ITV racing team this Sunday as they take in four races from Cheltenham racecourse on the final day of their three-day November Meeting.

Like all big race days here at TQ we are on hand with all the LIVE ITV race trends, stats and tips.

Cheltenham Horse Racing Trends (RUK/ITV)

1.50 – Racing Post Arkle Trophy Trial Novices´ Chase (Registered as The November Novices´ Chase) (Grade 2) Cl1 2m ITV

15/16 – Placed in the top three in their last race
14/16 – Won by a horse aged 6 or younger
14/16 – Ran within the last 6 weeks
14/16 – Winners from the top 3 in the market
14/16 – Priced 7/2 or shorter in the betting
13/16 – Raced (hurdles or fences) at Cheltenham previously
13/16 – Favourites placed
13/16 – Raced just once previously over fences
10/16 – Winning distance – 6 lengths or more
10/16 – Won their latest race
10/16 – Won previously over fences
9/16 – Ran in the Arkle Chase at the Festival later that season (1 won, Azertyuiop, 2002)
9/16 – Trained by Paul Nicholls (inc last 6 of last 10 years)
9/16 – Favourites that won
7/16 – Won by a French bred
4/16 – Won by Irish bred
4/16 – Ridden by jockey Ruby Walsh
4/16 – Raced at Cheltenham last time out
3/16 – Won by a German bred
3/16 – Trained by Philip Hobbs
3/16 – Fell in the Arkle Chase later that season
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 15/8

TQ VERDICT: An intriguing Novice Chase to get the live action started, with some familiar names on show over fences now. The former Triumph Hurdle winner – Defi Du Seuil – is a good place to start and on hurdles ratings would be the one to beat. He lost his way last year though but the Hobbs yard were under a bit of a cloud so that can be forgiven. They’ve clearly taken their time with him since and with the stable in much better form now he can’t be ruled out. A fair bit has to be taken on trust though – not only his ability over fences but also if he’s the same horse as a few seasons ago – a player, but a watching brief for me until we know the answer to those two questions. One For Billy was an unlucky loser here last month after running out up the straight when looking the winner – he can certainly go well again and with six runs over fences already is one of the more experienced in the field – he’ll be looking to give trainer Dan Skelton his second win in the race after landing the prize last year. Pingshou hails from the in-form Colin Tizzard yard and despite a 572 break can be expected to be tuned-up to go well – if taking to fences he’s interesting but might have liked better ground. Lalor would also tick a lot of boxes based on his hurdles form and has run well at the track before, while Claimantakinforgan impressed on his chase debut at Uttoxeter earlier this month and also brings a high level of hurdles form to the bigger obstacles – he was a close fifth in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle last season and could easily make into a better chaser. However, it’s hard to ignore the record of trainer Paul Nicholls in the race – he’s won 6 of the last 10! He runs DYNAMITE DOLLARS here and even though he’s got a small bit to find on his hurdles rating was a nice winner over fences on debut last month and could make into a better chaser. The fact Nicholls has picked him to go for a race he loves winning suggests this could be the case and he’s also got decent form on a variety of different ground types. A fascinating race, but I’ll stick with Nicholls to maintain his good record in the race and for Dynamite Dollars to land the money.

 

2.25 – Shloer Chase (Listed Race) Cl1 2m ITV

9 previous runnings
8/9 – Returned 4/1 or shorter in the betting
8/9 – Officially rated 150+
7/9 – Had won at least 4 times over fences before
7/9 – Won on seasonal reappearance
7/9 – Had won over fences at Cheltenham before
7/9 – Aged 7 or older
7/9 – Favourites that finished 1st or 2nd
6/9 – Failed to win last time out
6/9 – Went onto run in the Champion Chase (1 winner, Sprinter Sacre 2015)
5/9 – Carried 11-0 to win
5/9 – Won by a horse aged 8 or older
4/9 – Raced at Cheltenham last time out
4/9 – Favourites that won
3/9 – German bred
3/9 – Raced at Aintree last time out
Fox Norton won the 2016 and 2017 runnings
The average winning SP in the last 9 runnings is 7/2

TQ VERDICT: Fox Norton has landed the last two runnings of this race and his connections will be trying to follow-up here with Sizing Granite. He can be expected to have come on for his last run but at the age of 10 might just get done by some younger legs here. The same can be said for the 11 year-old Simply Ned. Brain Power has threatened to do well in races like this but having unseated or fallen in three of his last 4 races needs to brush-up on his jumping for me. A recent wind op may have helped but I’d rather see the evidence of that on the track first. Le Prezien, who won the Grand Annual here in March, should in in the mix and was a fine second at Ffos Las last time out – he’s the only proven course and distance winner in the field, but it’s also a contest that’s eluded trainer Paul Nicholls. So that leaves SCEAU ROYAL. The Alan King team took this prize in 2014 and being rated 159 is the highest in the field. He’s won 4 of his 5 chase starts and certainly won’t mind if there’s more rain. A strong-travelling type that jumps well, plus has also won first time out for the last two seasons. He is also a hurdles winner at the track but could have a big season ahead over fences.

 

3.00 – Unibet Greatwood Hurdle (A Handicap) (Grade 3) Cl1 2m110y ITV

14/16 – Had won a 2m1f (or further) hurdles race before
14/16 – Had won no more than 4 times before over hurdles
13/16 – Aged 4 or 5 years-old
12/16 – Officially rated 140 or higher
11/16 – Had a recent run (within the last 6 weeks)
11/16 – Finished in the top two last time out
11/16 – Returned 10/1 or shorter in the betting
11/16 – Had run at Cheltenham before
10/16 – Had run 6 or less times over hurdles
9/16 –  Winning distance – 2 lengths or further
8/16 – Carried 11-4 or more
7/16 – Placed favourites
7/16 – Came from the first three in the betting
7/16 – Won their previous race
6/16 – Won by an Irish-bred horse
4/16 – Winners that carried 11-12
4/16 – Trained by Philip Hobbs
3/16 – Ridden by Richard Johnson
3/16 – Trained by Paul Nicholls
2/16 – Winning favourites
1/16 – Won by an Irish-trained horse
The average winning SP in the last 10 years is 9/1
6 of the last 9 winners contested the previous season’s Supreme Novices’ or Triumph Hurdle

TQ VERDICT: Old Guard won this in 2015 and was third in 2017 – he can go well again. He’s off only 3lbs higher but connections have a 5lb claimer riding in Lorcan Williams so that helps with his big weight. Yes, Bryony Frost also claimed 5lbs last year, but he might just get found out by having to carry 11-12 here as opposed to the 10-7 he had 12 months ago. Silver Streak and Storm Rising both head into the race on three-timers and can go well, while the Skelton team, who won this in 2016, run the consistent MOHAAYED (e/w). He landed the County Hurdle here in March and returned with a fair fourth to Silver Streak last time at Ffos Las. He gets a big weight pull for that run with the winner and with that run expected to have brought him on he’s certainly one for the shortlist. Charli Parcs had a tall reputation a few seasons ago but has failed to fulfil that. A 4th (of 16), behind another of the runners – Midnight Shadow – back in April was a better effort though and with Geraghty riding might be interesting at a price. But it’s hard to get away from Henderson’s other runner – VERDANA BLUE – who beat a good field at Wincanton last week in the Elite Hurdle. He’s progressing to be a horse that is better than a handicapper so even though he’s got a big weight here (11-11) he’s a classy horse that seems to have improved a lot over the summer. He was fourth in the Mares’ Novice Hurdle at the Festival here in 2017 so the track is fine – he can go well here and then move onto bigger things.

 

3.30 – Sky Bet Supreme Trial Novices´ Hurdle (Registered as The Sharp Novices´ Hurdle) (Grade 2) Cl1 2m110y ITV

14/14 – Finished 1st or 2nd last time out
12/14 – Won last time out
12/14 – Had won between 1-2 times over hurdles
12/14 – Returned 8/1 or shorter in the betting
11/14 – Had raced in the last 5 weeks
10/14 – Favourites that finished in the top three
10/14 – Winning distance 2 lengths or less
8/14 – Carried 11-7 in weight
8/14 – Had won a NH Flat race before
8/14 – Went onto run in that season’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle (1 winner, Altior)
8/14 – Aged 5 years-old
7/14 – Irish bred
5/14 – Aged 4 years-old
4/14 – Winning favourites
3/14 – Won by the Pipe stable
2/14 – Ridden by Ruby Walsh
2/14 – Trained by Nicky Henderson
2/14 – Won by the Nicholls stable
The average winning SP in the last 10 runnings is 5/1

TQ VERDICT: The in-form Colin Tizzard camp took this race in 2010 and 2017 – he’ll be trying to add to that with ELIXIR DE NUTZ and even though he’s got a bit to find on these terms looks as if he’s a horse with more to come. The yard are in great form too and he wasn’t disgraced when third (of 13) here over course and distance last time out. That came off a 174-day break so the run would have brought him on too. Colonel Custard likes to get on with things from the front so we can expect more of the same here. He’s done little wrong in winning his two recent starts, but this is a big step up in grade – we’ll find out how good he is here. Anytime Will Do, Itchy Feet and Seddon all have big cases too and head here off the back of good recent wins, but the Kim Bailey yard have been in tip-top form recently (38% at the time of writing) so it might be worth chancing their TWO FOR GOLD, despite a 270 break. He landed a few good bumpers last season but it’s interesting connections are pitching him at this level on his hurdles debut. We can expect him to be well-schooled with the yard clearly feeling he’s above average to be running him here.