2014 Topham Chase – Odds and Betting Preview

An original field of 70 was declared ahead of Friday’s Aintree event and even though that will be scaled down before the off, this looks to be as tough to predict as the Grand National itself. It’s a strong field too with prices starting at the 10/1 mark and there are several contenders heading into this showpiece race.

2014 JLT Novices’ Chase – Third place finish for Double Ross

Double Ross leads the betting with most horse racing bookies and the Nigel Twiston-Davies trained 8 year old has a good record of five wins from 26 races to date. That run is improving all the time after a win at Cheltenham in December and a third place at the JLT Novices’ Chase at the same course last time out.

Double Ross is a worthy favourite and looks even better placed after two of its expected rivals were pulled out of this event. Rajdhani Express and Hunt Ball were withdrawn with Hunt Ball now taking its place in the National and the 10/1 shot is a sound bet, providing it can stay on its feet.

Lost Legend follows behind the favourite at 14/1 with Coral and it’s interesting to note that this horse has shortened from around 20/1 last week. A recent flurry of bets has helped to reduce that figure after Lost Legend won in a strong field at Kempton last time out.

At seven years old, the Jonjo O’Neill trained mount is improving with every race and if the weather stays clear and the course continues to dry out, the ground may well work in his favour.

Dunowen Point was fourth in this race 12 months ago and while some bookmakers are quoting as little as 16/1, you can pick up the Donald McCain trained horse at a best of 25/1 with Stan James. The horse is carrying less weight this year and a similar run should see him squeeze into the placings but form is poor this season and backers are hoping that a return to familiar ground will spark an improvement.

Elsewhere, Kauto Stone continues to struggle under a weight of expectation. As the half brother of Kauto Star, big things were expected of the Paul Nicholls trained 8 year old but after 14 career runs, there have only been two wins and two further finishes among the places.

Kauto Stone is out at 50/1 with William Hill and considering that all of his previous runs have been in tough, Grade One events, a less challenging field may make him the best option as an each way gamble.

Kian’s Delight is attracting a fair bit of interest in the lead up to the off and is now quoted at 33/1 with BetVictor. This should be the freshest of the horses on display after a run of low key races ended with a hiatus that has carried on since October and that extra break may well work in his favour.

This is a big field but you can use some of the recent trends to narrow things down a little and the stats show that no horse over the age of 11 has won the event since 1983. The age range among the winners is spread out but you can probably rule out the older runners over such a testing course.

There are other facts to consider but they all point to the top three with Double Ross remaining the outstanding horse for us. The places may be something of a lottery but it could be time for Kauto Stone to deliver on such an outstanding pedigree.

Recommended Bets

Double Ross to win at 10/1 with Winner Sports

Kauto Stone Each Way at 50/1 with William Hill

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