St James Place Hunters Chase Tips

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4.10 St James’ Place Hunters’ Chase

Friday 18 March  |  Age: 4yo+ | Prize: £24,445
Formerly known as the Foxhunter Chase this race is usually held for amateur riders on the final day of the Cheltenham Festival, but there are no amateurs riding at the Festival this year so it takes on a different feel. It is run over a distance of about 3 miles and 2 and a half furlongs on the New Course.

St James’ Place Hunters’ Chase Tips

The Challenge cup, previous known as the Foxhunters is probably the race I look forward to least, as it’s full of amateur jockeys, most of which aren’t that great, and it’s terribly hard to weigh up the form.

BILLAWAY is a horse who has run in this race the last two times, being favourite on both occasions but failing to convert that into a win. He was very close to winning last year, losing by a short head. It’s no great surprise to see him in this race again this year, and it wouldn’t surprise me if he managed to finally get his head in front. He is one of the better horses on the ‘Hunters’ Chase’ circuit, and probably deserves his day in the sun. This lad has form tied in with a few of his rivals in this race today and has been beaten by a few, so the fact he’ll be a short price is a risky proposition.

The previous winner of 2020 makes a return in this as well. IT CAME TO PASS shocked the horse betting world when winning this race in 2020 at odds of 66/1, beating Billaway by 10L. It was some performance to win that day, but he’s not been in the same form since, and at the age of 12 it’s hard to see a way in which he wins this. He might get a few supporters who backed him a couple of years ago.

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BOB AND CO is a good horse in this kind of race, and won the Punchestown version of this race in their Spring festival last year, beating Billaway. He has been below par since, including last time out where he finished behind COUSIN PASCAL, who in turn won the Amateurs race at Aintree over the Grand National fences. For me, Bob And Co’s price is far too short for he has shown so far this year, and even though he might’ve needed the run at Haydock, he should’ve been beating Cousin Pascal if he wants to win this race. Cousin Pascal will have his followers as well, but he also surprised everyone when he won at 66/1 last year, I think he’s got to prove himself again, as I’m not totally convinced, he is better at this trip.

If you’re a backer of Billaway, then you’d have to be wary of WINGED LEADER who hammered Billaway in January, beating him by 12L. I think this is the horse they’ll have to beat, as this 8yo is a younger and fresher horse, who has a very good record over fences and PTPs. He is a horse who will be ridden prominently, and if he gets in a nice rhythm, he could be hard to stop. Based on his form he seems to handle all types of ground, so no matter the conditions he should be fine.

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I’ll probably have an EW poke on DUBAI QUEST as well for trainer T Ellis, who does well went sending horses to Cheltenham, resulting in 3 wins from 9 runners. The Ellis yard have two runners in this but based on the fact Gina Andrews had chosen this one over the other suggests this has the better chance, and I think she could be right. In terms of Hunters’ Chase horses, this horse is lightly raced, with just the 12 runs, two coming over-rules where he’s won both, and he’s 6/10 in PTPs. The form from the PTPs looks quite strong, as he beat a horse called Omar Maretti, who raced at Cheltenham on Thursday, who comes to the Festival on the back of two good wins, and is a 137 rated chaser. Gina will have this lad close to the pace, and in a big field like this, that’s probably the place to be.

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Cheltenham Festival

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Distance: 3m 2f 70y
Type: Chase
Class: 1
Track: Turf
No
Silks
Runner
8
Protektorat
1221-21

2
A Plus Tard
3/212-12

6
Galvin
111-121

9
Royale Pagaille
116-212

7
Minella Indo
F41-3P2

5
Chantry House
111-1P1

1
Al Boum Photo
11/132-1

11
Tornado Flyer
2543-51

3
Asterion Forlonge
331-UF4

10
Santini
253P-42

4
Aye Right
230-513

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Get £20 In Free Bets at The Pools

18+, UK only. Deposit and place a £10 cash bet at single or accumulated odds of 1/1 or greater and we will give you £20 in free bets. Applies to first cash bet only. Free bets credited as 4 x £5 bets to use on 3x Any sport& 1x Virtuals. Cashed out, Void or ‘Draw No Bet’ wagers do not qualify for this promotion. Free bets are credited upon qualifying first bet settlement. 7-day free bet expiry. Available once per customer. Full T&Cs apply.

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