A disappointing Cheltenham…

Looking back over this years festival from a punting sense, the best thing I can say about it is that it’s over!

While not a blood bath ( I did in fact turn a small profit, thanks largely to backing Rajdhani Express at 25/1 on Day 1) it certainly wasn’t the financial triumph it has been over the last 10 years or so.

A lot of my selections performed well without actually winning – and when you are an aggressive win staker like myself, that can be a particular form of torture!

When I list the my bets at the festival, I hope you’ll get some sense of my frustration levels come Friday afternoon:

Day 1:

Time Selection Advised Price Result Return Cum P/L
13.30 Champagne Fever 7.50 W 7.50 6.50
13.30 River Maigue 13.00 U 0.00 5.50
15.20 Zarkandar 5.00 U 0.00 4.50
15.20 Countrywide Flame 17.00 P 0.00 3.50
15.20 Khyber Kim 51.00 U 0.00 2.50
17.15 Hazy Tom 19.00 PU 0.00 1.50
17.15 Rajdhani Express 26.00 W 26.00 26.50

Rajdhani Express saves Day 1  (and saves the week as it turned out!)

Day 2:

13.30 Back In Focus 3.75 W 3.75 29.25
14.40 Hadrians Approach 7.00 P 0.00 28.25
14.40 Houblon Des Obeaux 11.00 U 0.00 27.25
14.40 Real Milan 34.00 U 0.00 26.25
16.00 Crack Away Jack 34.00 U 0.00 25.25
16.00 Big Easy 51.00 U 0.00 24.25
16.40 Counsel 15.00 U 0.00 23.25
17.15 Milo Man 21.00 U 0.00 22.25
17.15 Vieux Lion Rouge 34.00 U 0.00 21.25

Very disappointing with only Back in Focus hitting the target and a loss of 5.25 points on the day.

Day 3:

13.30 Marito 21.00 F 0.00 20.25
14.05 Jetson 12.00 P 0.00 19.25
14.05 Stonemaster 19.00 U 0.00 18.25
14.05 Captain Sunshine 21.00 P 0.00 17.25
15.20 Smad Place 11.00 P 0.00 16.25
16.00 Divers 17.00 U 0.00 15.25
16.00 Matuhi 51.00 F 0.00 14.25
17.15 Sacree Tiepy 13.00 U 0.00 13.25
17.15 A New Story 21.00 U 0.00 12.25

This is where it started getting really frustrating. Completely missed the target, a loss of 8 points but Ohhhhh sooooo cloooose!

I knew it was going to be a bad day when Marito was well backed and then fell at the 2nd last when a staying on 4th with every chance.

Then Captain Sunshine was only just beaten after dwelling at the start, running in last for the whole race and then passing everything but the winner in the final 3 furlongs. He would have won easily if he hadn’t given himself such a huge disadvantage to overcome. Jetson rounded out the places giving me 2nd and third in a race where I’d backed win only!

Just to tip me over the edge, Matuhi fell at the last when 12 lengths clear in 3rd.

I’m surprised the wailing and gnashing of teeth wasn’t heard nationwide!

Day 4:

13.30 Stocktons Wing 21.00 PU 0.00 11.25
13.30 Swnymor 26.00 U 0.00 10.25
13.30 Gassin Golf 67.00 PU 0.00 9.25
14.05 Kians Delight 34.00 U 0.00 8.25
14.40 Inish Island 13.00 P 0.00 7.25
16.40 Act Of Kalanisi 51.00 U 0.00 6.25

Friday simply rubbed salt in my wounds with nothing performing all that well and not a single point put on the board.

The horrible injury to JT McNamara and the lack of betting success over those final 3 days rather soured the whole festival for me but there were a couple of high points:

Sprinter Sacre simply demolishing a high class field in the Champion Chase. Horses as good as this one are rarer than hen’s teeth and we should enjoy him to the full while we can.

Our Connor doing a similar job on the best Novice Hurdlers around. He looks a serious contender for the Champion hurdle next year.

Leave a comment and let me know what your highlights/lowlights of the festival were!

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To be completely honest, it hasn’t just been the festival that’s been disappointing – it’s the whole National Hunt Season! Normally my strongest, most profitable time of the year, this season I’ve turned a profit but only just. To put it in perspective, coming into the season, my Morning value Service had just one losing month in the 16 months since it’s launch. It’s now had 4 losing months in 20!

Please don’t feel too sorry for me – the service has still made an awful lot of profit overall – but I for one will be glad to see the back of this winter!

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Happily, tomorrow we have the first big handicap of the flat in the Lincoln and I have to say I’m looking forward to it. Last year, I was gutted to see my main bet of the race, Mull of Killough, defeated by the draw and a rapidly diminishing short head. This year I’m hoping to go one better.

I’ve had an in depth look at the race and I have to say it looks very tricky. I’ve narrowed them down to a shortlist of 5:

Belgian Bill

Chapter Seven

Strictly Silver

Lahaag

Captain Bertie

Nothing particulalrly original there I’m afraid and I won’t be getting significantly involved until after The Spring Mile has told us where (if anywhere) the draw bias is.

However, I do think Belgian Bill is a value price at 33/1 and I will probably take a bit of that this afternoon.

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Finally today, a bit of exciting news. Starting next week, I will personally be posting up a daily tip on the site. These will be professional type bets on shortish  priced horses that I think have an outstanding chance but still offer a bit of value. very occasionally there will be more than 1 and there will be plenty of no bet days.

There won’t be any massive priced winners amongst them but they will have a fairly high strike rate and will turn a long term profit. I’m not entirely sure what title to give them yet but they will have their own section on the site and I will be posting them up around noon each day. I’ll mail out a reminder on Monday morning.

Have a lucky weekend, whatever you are backing

Kieran

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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3 comments

  1. I decided to try something new this year i looked for good speed horses after all its Cheltenham they are all trying unless the owner wants to have a Cheltenham runner, the good speed ones should have a good chance, for some reason i decided to do the outsiders with a good speed rating & the ones that looked a good bet the first three days the outsiders did me proud & the last day the the ones which looked a good bet did well on the last day overall a good experience (the ones that looked a good bet were not necessarily the best speed ones ie: Salsify & Alderwood Our Conor & Bobs Worth)

     
  2. Well this year I decided to dutch two to three horses in the same race, one of shortish price and e/w the others. And did quite well out of it. So on the whole was a pretty good festival for me

     

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