Let’s check out this weekend’s horse racing betting tips. Haydock Park racecourse in Merseyside promotes a day of top-class National Hunt horse racing action on Saturday 24th November with the schedule boasting some intriguing graded contests. The Betfair Chase stands as the top of the bill attraction on the final Saturday of the month and it enjoys the backing of chief support act the Betfair sponsored Stayers Handicap Hurdle.
Some of the biggest names in the business are booked to attend and with eye-catching prize money on offer, spectators will catch a glimpse of the form horses on the circuit, representing the hottest stables with famous riders in the saddle. It promises to be a real celebration of British horse racing and sport and armchair fans can catch the best bits live on ITV.
Bookmakers mark the day by rolling out a long list of exciting betting opportunities designed to grip your interest and if you correctly predict the winner of each of the two main races on the day you’ll be set for a bulky pay-out.
Easier said than done, of course, but that’s where we come in. Our team of horse racing tipsters have run over the facts and figures before returning with our in-depth preview of the main events, which bookies are offering the best value and where we think you should invest your stake money.
The Betfair Chase is a relatively new addition to the horse racing calendar, having been first contested in 2005 at this venue. Kingscliff wrote his name into the history books as the first to appear in the winner’s enclosure, doing the business under the ride of Robert Walford and the watchful eye of Robert Alner.
We next had the most famous champion in the books when Kauto Star scored back-to-back titles in 2006 and 2007, Ruby Walsh and then Sam Thomas doing the steering, and that set the pace for the race we know, love and look forward to today.
It’s no surprise to learn Kauto Star is the event’s most successful participant over the years with four wins – the two others in 2009 and 2011; we expect that record will take some beating. As will the top trainer tally with Paul Nicholls sitting on six gongs, four from Kauto Star and a couple handed to him by Silvianaco Conti in 2012 and 2014.
Last year’s ribbon was pinned on the chest of six-year-old Bristol De Mai who joined that exclusive winners’ club following back-to-back victories for Cue Card. The Nigel Twiston-Davies runner denied Colin Tizzard’s representative the hat-trick by a sizeable margin and was weighed in as the winner long before he crossed the finish line, living up to his pre-race odds of 11/10 favourite. Cue Card was second, 57 lengths off the pace, with Outlander left nine lengths behind for the bronze medal.
Bristol De Mai Favourite to Double-Up
Will we see two-in-a-row? Bookmakers certainly think so and have Bristol De Mai marked as favourite in the ante-post list. Backers keen to keep him close will have to make do with the 5/2 of 888sport but given the price he won so comfortably off 12 months ago, we’re sure that’ll be more than enough to catch the attention and it’ll likely be cut by traders as we approach the off.
It is worth mentioning, however, that Bristol De Mai hasn’t managed to win a race since scooping the prize here in 2017. His form shows the grey gelding has raced three times and got no closer than second on either occasion. That started with a sixth in the King George at Kempton on Boxing Day – a race won by Might Bite – and third of eight in a Trial Cotswold Chase around Prestbury Park when 7/4 jolly.
Bristol De Mai did improve a place next time out when finding only one too good over three miles in the Betway Bowl at Aintree back in April; he was held seventh lengths by the ever popular Might Bite who continued to improve and impress. The runner-up led in the early exchanges but was eventually done for pace and finished behind a better, more deserving horse.
That lack of success, going so near yet so far, is sure to put one or two less forgiving punters off and they will be happy to look down the list in an attempt to find a lively outsider with a chance of upsetting the applecart. There are certainly a few from the programme that fit the bill but finding the one best deserving of your stake money is the tricky bit.
Might Bite Main Danger
It’s extremely interesting to see Might Bite second in the betting and rated as Bristol De Mai’s main danger. The form of both runners would put Nicky Henderson’s nine-year-old at the top of the tree, but he has endured a career spent at the top of the game and has been running competitively on track since placing third on debut back in January 2015. Will we see that stress begin to catch up with him this season?
That remains to be seen but what we can’t argue with is his stats and Might Bite has won 10 of 16 outings, placing another three times. His victories include the Grade 1 RSA Novices’ Chase at the Cheltenham Festival 2017, Grade 1 Mildmay Novices’ Chase at Aintree 2017, personal best Grade 1 King George VI Chase at Kempton last Boxing Day and, of course, the Grade 1 Betway Bowl Chase before an appreciative Aintree audience in the spring of this year. There’s bits and pieces of 3/1 on him to win again and that will prove difficult to ignore.
Native River Heads the Chasing Pack
Others worth a mention from the early ante-post betting market to win this race are Native River who has been scratched up at33/1 (Ladbrokes).
Betfair Stayers Handicap Hurdle
This Grade 3 race was claimed by Sam Spinner last year for Joe Colliver and Jedd O’Keeffe. There’s plenty for followers of the trends to get stuck into when attempting to solve this year’s renewal and we look at a few of the standout features of past winners.
Four of the last five champions, including 2017 king Sam Spinner, have all been aged five years old when landing the prize money, with the spare being 9YO Kruzhlinin in 2016. That stat is strengthened when realising six of the last eight have also been five.
David Pipe ranks is the most successful trainer on three previous medals, his glory coming in the form of Grand Crus in 2010, Dynaste 2011 and Gevrey Chambertin 2013. No surprise to see each of those were also five years olds.
Let’s apply that to Saturday’s race. Soul Emotion and First Assignment are the only two horses from the first five in the ante-post betting carrying that age. The former is trained by Nicky Henderson and boasts an10/1 by William Hill.
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