Last week’s Cheltenham Festival saw us treated to four days of top-class National Hunt Racing. We saw some incredible horses cement their reparation, while others emerged as stars of the future. The 2022 Festival might be twelve months away, but that doesn’t mean we can’t already start looking ahead to it!
Keen ante-post bettors will have already started their 2022 profiles, taking the juiciest prices before next season’s action dilutes them. We’ve taken a look through those ante-post markets and have found three 2021 Festival winners who could repeat the feat twelve months on. They’ll like feature in our horse racing tips next season, but find their ante-post prices below form a 44-1 accumulator!
Rachael Blackmore was the star of the Cheltenham Festival and her equine partner Honeysuckle also achieved that feat with a scintillating Champion Hurdle success. Henry De Bromhead’s mare arrived to the Festival having won all ten of her starts to date, with victories over both the 2m 4f and two-mile distances.
She swatted away any doubts about her two-mile credentials at the Dublin Racing Festival on her prior start and her victory a month later was a sight to behold. Travelling much the best, she quickened clear impressively when asked to extend by Blackmore. Any doubters were put firmly in their places and going back to back looks a real possibility.
No horse has gained her measure yet and at 3-1, she’s a strong play for next year’s day one feature.
6-4 is a very short price in terms of ante-post betting, but Shishkin is a horse who warrants it. The 2020 Supreme winner has carried all before him over fences, winning all four of his chasing starts to date. Scooping a pair of Grade 2 contests in facile fashion prior to his Festival run, it was no surprise that he went off 4-9 to win the Arkle last week.
In a performance that had shades of both Altior and Sprinter Sacre, he quickened clear on the bridle down the hill and only needed a few nudges by Nico De Boinville to surge clear to record another effortless success.
Posting an RPR of 174 as a novice, it’s impossible to ignore his Champion Chase credentials. We’re yet to see him come out of first gear and Shishkin at full stretch is a frightening prospect.
Appreciate It (7-2)
The Supreme has produced some incredible winners in recent years, with Appreciate It continuing the trend last Tuesday. The 2020 Champion Bumper second was already a dual Grade 1 winner heading into the Festival and produced a devastating performance, winning by a quite remarkable 24-lengths from Ballyadam.
Given his physical prowess and stature, he’ll surely going chasing next season. He turns eight-years-old in May and he should improve for a switch to the larger obstacles. With that in mind, he has to be considered a favourite for the Arkle and if he makes that engagement, he surely won’t be going off at 7-2.
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