Cheltenham Festival: Analysing the Trends
The Cheltenham Festival is truly a unique experience. Unlike any other national hunt racing festival, it has caught the heart of the public, and is the first date many racing fans will circle in their calendar.
This year’s festivities begin on March 11th and will last for four adrenaline fuelled days. Many racehorses’ entire seasons will have been carefully aimed towards a big race at the Cheltenham Festival, and for this reason some horses can magically improve and surprise everyone.
At the same time, however, past race winners can be analysed in the Cheltenham betting, and each race has a certain set of trends that the winners will fit; if you can carefully match these trends to entrants, you can sometimes find a diamond in the rough.
Cheltenham Trends- The Big Four Races
Day One- The Champion Hurdle: The New One and Hurricane Fly currently share favouritism at 3/1 with Coral, and the Fly would be a popular winner indeed. 20 of the past 23 winners of this race have begun the race in the top six in the betting, suggesting that outsiders rarely take victory. Another key pointer could be that 18 of the last 19 winners have had a race in the same calendar year, which would seem to say that having racing fitness is a top priority.
Day Two- The Queen Mother Champion Chase: With the withdrawal of hot favourite Sprinter Sacre due to injury, Sire De Grugy has been eased into the favouritism at 7/4 with Coral. A key pointer in this race is that 9 of the last 13 winners have contested the Tingle Creek at Sandown; ominously this was won by Sire De Grugy this season.
Day Three- The World Hurdle: In a battle between the upcoming star and the old warrior, Annie Power and Big Buck’s share favouritism at 3/1. Having won this event four times previously Big Buck’s has experience on his side, a factor that this race favours. Annie Power has her background against her, with Irish-trained horses only winning one of the last 18 events.
Day Four- The Cheltenham Gold Cup: Last year’s winner Bobs Worth is currently a 7/4 favourite to retain his crown, and the Gold Cup rewards consistency: the last 14 winners had all previously won a grade 1 race, and 10 of the last 13 winners had previously finished first or second at the festival. In a good stat for favourite-backers at horse racing betting sites, the last 13 winners began the race in the top three.