Racecourse Template for Cheltenham (26 January 2019)

Posted by Paul Moon in Blog | Leave a comment

Left-handed, galloping, undulating and testing track with stiff fences. Old course has circuit of 1m4f with new course 1/2f longer. Only two hurdles in final 7f on New course

The Racing Horse offers our powerful RACECOURSE TEMPLATE, TRENDS and BETTING ADVICE for Saturday 26th January 2019. 


First we look at the performance of the different disciplines in both handicap and non-handicap National Hunt races. A cursory glance at the two sets of figures show a disparity that must be factored into thought processes! Favourites in handicaps have a particularly poor record at this course and hit just 17%, that's 27% less than favourites in non-handicap hurdles and 25% less than favourites in non-handicap chases!

Assuming they have runners or rides we also highlight the trainers and jockeys most likely to be involved given current performances.

The Racecourse Templates are underpinned with Racing Trends. The profiling of races help sift the contenders from the pretenders and gives an overview of what type of entry combination are most likely to prosper. Equally, it reveals those carrying negative traits making it an essential tool/information for layers.

Finally we offer our astute betting advice. This trilateral approach offers absolute relevance and because of its importance/weight this feature is now part of the service we provide our members. We believe the pertinence of our information will help the reader find winners!



Hurdle:   51-116 for 44% (+3.93)    17-103  for 17% (-37.63)
Chase:    55-130 for 42% (-6.92)    21-123  for 17% (-33.92)
NHF:       7-28  for 25% (-4.00)     0-0    for  - 
Total:   113-274 for 41% (-6.96)    38-226  for 17% (-71.54)

TOP 5 TRAINERS at Cheltenham this season
Colin Tizzard:  5 wins from 37 for 14% (-14.30)
Fergal O'Brien: 4 wins from 24 for 17% (+31.00)
Paul Nicholls:  4 wins from 27 for 15%  (-3.16)
Ian Williams:   3 wins from  8 for 38%  (+5.00)
Gordon Elliott: 3 wins from 14 for 21%  (-0.50)

TOP 5 JOCKEYS at Cheltenham this season
Richard Johnson: 8 wins from 32 for 25% (+12.75)
Harry Cobden:    4 wins from 25 for 16%  (-5.96)
Paddy Brennan:   4 wins from 25 for 16% (+29.75)
Barry Geraghty:  3 wins from 15 for 20%  (-2.50)
Charlie Hammond: 2 wins from  8 for 25%  (+8.00)

12.40 Cheltenham: JCB Triumph Trial Juvenile Hurdle (Grade 2) 2m179y 

13/15: Finished 1st or 2nd last time out (87%)
12/15: Winners ran in season’s Triumph Hurdle at Cheltenham Festival (80%)
12/15: Raced within the last 7 weeks (80%)
12/15: Placed favourites (80%)
11/15: Came from the top 3 in the betting (73%)
10/15: Previously won at least once over hurdles in UK (67%)
..9/15: Returned 2/1 or shorter in the market (60%)
..9/15: Winning distance – 2 ¼ lengths or less (60%)
..9/15: Won last time out (60%)
..8/15: French bred (including last 6 winners) (53%)
..8/15: Winning favourites (1 joint) (53%)
..7/15: Placed in season’s Triumph Hurdle (3 winners) (47%)
..5/15: Raced at Cheltenham previously (33%)
..4/15: Trained by Alan King (27%)
..4/15: Priced 25/1, 50/1 or 100/1 (27%)
..3/15: Won by a German bred horse (20%)
..3/15: Won by an Irish bred horse (20%)


The last two winners have been owned by JP McManus ADJALI went down only narrowly in Grade 1 company last time and can enhance Nicky Henderson's excellent record in this contest. Our Power is going the right way and could be up to giving him something to think about, while the fact Protektorat went off favourite in the C&D contest won by Nelson River last month suggests he's highly regarded by the Dan Skelton team.

The Racing Horse Verdict:

1 ADJALI 13/8 (3rd)  2 OUR POWER 5/1  3 NELSON RIVER 8/1

Adjali is our Pacafi for Saturday and once our rationale has been completed we will add to this piece. He had some decent form for Guillaume Macaire in France and very good start in Britain, winning easily at Market Rasen then narrowly denied in Grade 1 Finale at Chepstow. Hard to beat.

Nicky Henderson has won 4 of the last 10 runnings of this race for 40% whilst Alan King has won 2 of them for 20%. Daryl Jacob has a big 45% strike-rate when riding hurdling favourites.

Do not know what to say about this race, struggling to accept the result at the moment! Apologies to the members! A result that suggest the British juveniles are someway behind their Irish counterparts, with Joseph O'Brien responsible for the one-two here, with the winner really quite impressive. They didn't go that quick early, but got racing a fair way out.


1.15 Cheltenham: Timeform Novices' Handicap Chase (Class 2) 2m4f127y

15/15: Aged 8yo or younger (100%)
14/15: Ran at season’s Cheltenham Festival (2 winners) (93%)
14/15: Won between 0-2 races over fences in UK previously (93%)
13/15: Raced within the last 6 weeks (87%)
12/15: Finished either 1st or 2nd last time out (80%)
12/15: Won over at least 2m4f (fences) in UK previously (80%)
11/15: Priced 13/2 or shorter (73%)
11/15: Rated 128 or higher (73%)
..9/15: Came from the top 3 in the betting (60%)
..9/15: Winning distance – 5 lengths or more (60%)
..9/15: Irish bred (60%)
..7/15: Carried 11st 2lbs or more (47%)
..6/15: Won last time out (40%)
..6/15: Ran at Kempton last time out (40%)
..5/15: French bred (33%)
..3/15: Ran at Cheltenham last time out (20%)
..3/15: Trained by Venetia Williams (20%)
..3/15: Won with 11st 12lbs (20%)
..2/15: Ridden by Richard Johnson (13%)
..2/15: Trained by Colin Tizzard (13%)
..1/15: Winning favourites (7%)


AZZERTI has gone up only 2 lb for Ascot and could be the answer to this tight affair with Richard Johnson taking over in the saddle for the first time. Spiritofthegames has been freshened up since a slightly disappointing run at Grade 2 level in November and it would be no surprise to see him get back on the up now. Kildisart has made a good start over fences and is also much respected.

The Racing Horse Verdict:


Spiritofthegames is a strong gelding and a useful hurdler. He won a handicap at Lingfield (by 1¾ lengths from Molly Carew) in 2017/18 then a good effort when 5½ lengths fifth of 24 to Mohaayed in County Hurdle at Cheltenham later that season. Has similar form over fences, he won a listed novice at Chepstow (by 6 lengths from Monbeg Legend) in October. Had a much stiffer task at 9/2 when 21 lengths last of 4 to La Bague Au Roi in Berkshire Novices' Chase at Newbury last time. Stays today's distance and now tried in cheekpieces.

We found it hard to separate Spiritofthegames and Azzerti but Dan Skelton has a 24% strike-rate with handicap chase debutants and 22% with chasers running between 19f and up to 3m. We have backed the selection with a saver on these two and do not expect to lose on the race!


1.50 Cheltenham: Spectra Cyber Security Solutions Trophy Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 2m4f127y

14/15: Won over at least 2m5f (fences) previously (93%)
13/15: Priced 9/1 or shorter (87%)
13/15: Won between 1-4 times over fences previously (87%)
13/15: Placed in the top 4 last time out (87%)
13/15: Rated 130 or higher (87%)
12/15: Ran within the last 6 weeks (80%)
11/15: Aged 8yo or older (73%)
11/15: Ran over fences at Cheltenham before (7 won) (73%)
11/15: Finished 1st or 2nd last time out (73%)
10/15: Winners ran at season’s Cheltenham Festival (0 winners) (67%)
..9/15: Aged 8 or 9yo (60%)
..9/15: Came from the top 3 in the betting (60%)
..8/15: Carried 10st 7lbs or less (53%)
..5/15: Ran at Cheltenham last time out (33%)
..5/15: Won last time out (33%)
..4/15: Ran at Newbury last time out (27%)
..3/15: Winning favourites (20%)
..3/15: Won by a previous winner of the race (20%)
..2/15: Won by the Pipe stable (13%)


French-recruit JANIKA shaped really well on British debut after 9 months off when runner-up at Ascot 5 weeks ago, the only one to make any inroads into the winner's long lead, and looks a leading player with further improvement likely. The Kings Writ and Siruh du Lac are also highly progressive chasers and need considering.

The Racing Horse Verdict:

1 BALLYHILL 7/1 (3rd)  2 JANIKA 7/2 (2nd)  3 SIRUH DU LAC 6/1 (WINNER)

Ballyhill has won two hurdle and two chase races from 2m to 2m5f on ground varying from good to heavy. The 7lbs claim from Jordan Nailor puts him right in the mix and the 7/1 looks great each-way to nothing value. Won a similar event over course and distance last season and better than ever last 2 starts.


2.25 Cheltenham:  Betbright Trial Cotswold Chase (Grade 2)

15/15: Officially rated 151 or higher (100%)
14/15: Raced in last 8 weeks (93%)
14/15: Ran at Cheltenham over fences before (8 had won) (93%)
14/15: Won over at least 3m before (fences) (93%)
10/11:  winners aged 9 or 10yo (91%)
13/15: Won between 2-6 times over fences (87%)
11/15: Raced in season’s Gold Cup (0 winners, all placed 8th or better) (73%)
11/15: Aged 9 or 10yo (73%)
10/15: Ran at Wetherby (3), Cheltenham (3) or Kempton (4) last time (67%)
10/15: Priced 7/1 or less (67%)
..9/15: Winning distance – 6 lengths or more (60%)
..9/15: Placed favourites (60%)
..7/15: Unplaced last time out (47%)
..7/15: Won by Irish-bred horse (47%)
..6/15: Winners from outside top 3 in the market (40%)
..6/15: Won last time out (40%)
..5/15: Won by French-bred horse (33%)
..2/15: Won by Paul Nicholls yard (4 wins in total) (13%)
..2/15: Won by Oliver Sherwood yard (13%)
..1/15: Won the Grand National (Many Clouds, 2015) (7%)
..0/15: Favourites (0%)

The average winning SP in the last 15 runnings is 15/2
Looks Like Trouble (2000) was the last winner to go onto win the Cheltenham Gold Cup


2018: Definitly Red (7/1)
2017: Many Clouds (8/1)
2016: Smad Place (9/2)
2015: Many Clouds (4/1)
2014: The Giant Bolster (6/1)
2013: Cape Tribulation (7/1)
2012: Midnight Chase (11/2)
2011: Neptune Collonges (11/2)
2010: Taranis (16/1)
2009: Joe Lively (11/1)
2008: Knowhere (16/1)
2007: Exotic Dancer (6/1)
2006: See You Sometime (18/1)
2005: Grey Abbey (10/3)
2004: Jair Du Cochet (11/4)


TERREFORT was a dual Grade 1 winner as a novice last season and can get firmly back on track having finished lame on his reappearance at Sandown in November. Elegant Escape is an obvious threat after his impressive win in the Welsh National at Chepstow, while Frodon is strictly the one to beat on ratings but this distance is possibly further than ideal.

The Racing Horse Verdict:

1 TERREFORT 4/1 (3rd)  2 ELEGANT ESCAPE 11/4 (2nd)

We are going to ignore the Paul Nicholls runner from a win point of view given he has recently given his horses the flu vaccination and is now 1-23. He runs 8 horses on Saturday and at this moment in time cannot back one of his. January shows 5-40 for 13%, way below his standard.


3.00 Cheltenham: Ballymore Novices' Hurdle (Registered As The Classic Novices' Hurdle) (Grade 2) 2m4f56y

13/13: Placed 1st or 2nd in their last race (100%)
12/13: Ran within the last 8 weeks (92%)
11/13: Favourites placed (85%)
11/13: Won between 1-3 times over hurdles previously (85%)
11/13: Raced at season’s Cheltenham Festival (3 winners) (85%)
10/13: Won over at least 2m4f (hurdles) previously (77%)
10/13: Winners from the top 3 in the market (77%)
10/13: Won their latest race (77%)
10/13: Won by a horse aged 6yo (77%)
..9/13: Winning distance – 2 ½ lengths or more (69%)
..8/13: Raced at Cheltenham previously (62%)
..8/13: Priced 7/2 or less (62%)
..5/13: Favourites that won (38%)
..4/13: Raced at Cheltenham last time out (31%)
..4/13: Raced at Newbury last time out (31%)
..3/13: Won by the Alan King stable (23%)
..3/13: Won at that season’s Cheltenham Festival (23%)
..3/13: Ridden by Barry Geraghty (23%)
..3/13: Won by the Nicky Henderson stable (23%)


BREWIN'UPASTORM appeals as the type than can go all the way to the top, his powerful way of travelling his best attribute but perhaps his downfall (too free) upped to this trip in the Challow last time. With the benefit of that experience he can now make the breakthrough in Graded company at the expensive of Birchdale and last month's C&D winner Jarveys Plate.

The Racing Horse Verdict:


Birchdale is an Irish point winner who looked a good prospect when landing a course and distance maiden last month, encouragingly quickening clear despite the steady gallop. Looks sure to make his mark at a very high level, this one was seriously considered as a Pacafi with a saver on Jarveys Plate. The winner will come from these two with perceived value on the selection!

Nicky Henderson could have one of those great days in racing and we have set aside a betting bank and playing stop at a winner given the quality of his runners on Saturday!


  Today's Pacafi: click here

Our information and betting advice is for educational purposes only. Please exercise caution when acting upon our advice and remember that gambling carries risk. No liability is taken by the site or product owner following any of the information given or sold to you. Betting always involves a level of risk and you should never bet more than you can afford to lose.

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