3.50pm Cheltenham Tips & Betting Preview 15/11/2015

Race Time3.50pm MeetingCheltenham Day: Sunday 15th November
Distance: 2m 87yds Full Race Name“High Sheriff of Gloucestershire’s” Standard Open National Hunt Flat Race (Listed Race) Class One

A hat full of last time out winners are declared for this interesting looking bumper, many of them after a single race, so making head nor tail of the form is a minefield of catastrophic proportions but we can but give it a go. Chap is certainly one of the more interesting contender with his two from two record after a point to point win and a bumper success at Aintree where he saw off Push Ahead by an easy six lengths. The form of that race isn’t really working out so far, but he could do no more than win as he pleased, and whatever happens to him here we are eagerly anticipating his hurdling debut later in the season.

John Ferguson seems to have a ridiculous array of talent in his yard and he may rely on Waterlord (4/1), a son of Cape Cross out of a Sadler’s Wells mare who is bred to win a Derby more than a bumper. Three very easy wins at Stratford, Perth, and Uttoxeter mark him out as something pretty special, and thanks to the race conditions today he runs here at level weights, making him quite clearly one of those they all have to beat if they want to get to the winning line in front of this classy field.

Trainer Rebecca Curtis is pretty astute at the sales and looks to have found a potential bargain in course and distance winner Aurillac (12/1) who cost 60,000 Euros at the sales and looked decent winning here in late October, scoring by a length from Air Horse One but with any amount in hand at the line. Built like a chaser, he has room to grow and improve so they will need to look after him and be patient, but he deserves a chance today though we already have him marked down for when he goes jumping in the future. Leighton Aspell is down to ride him again today which is a positive, and he ought to start at an each way price, and if that is the case we may yet seriously think about backing him.

At first glance it seem fair to day that Alan King’s The Unit (16/1) would not be on many short lists with just a head success at Newbury to his name, but we know they think quite a bit of him at home, and if this race is run hell for leather as expected, he can bring his stamina in to play and run in to a place late in the race. That said, however much we like the look of the horse, the yard is not in the best of form of late with twenty-one consecutive losers, four of them favourites (correct at the time of writing), which perhaps ought to be enough to put us off suggesting him here?

To end the Cheltenham three day mini Festival, we note that Nico De Boinville has been booked to ride Bentworth Boy (16/1) for trainer Patrick Chamings despite the early entry of two horses from the Nicky Henderson yard, and wonder if that could be seen as a bit of a hint to his chances? A shock 33/1 winner under the same jockey first time out at Chepstow when pulling away for a very comfortable success, we would assume he would improve considerably for that run based on the betting and his racing style, and although yet to prove he is up to mixing it with the big boys, he will no doubt be ignored by most punters and could run a big race at an even bigger price.

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