After the weekend's action the Follow The Money team noted some market moves in the Gold Cup and Champion Hurdle markets following impressive wins from a couple of unlikely contenders...
Royal halves in price to be 2017 Champion Hurdle champ
Alan King wasted little time in running his impressive Cheltenham winner Sceau Royal again following an easy 11 length win at headquarters last time out.
Sent off odds-on for the Grade 2 Elite hurdle at Wincanton he made light work of his five rivals pulling clear at the finish to land the spoils. A route to the Champion Hurdle now beckons and the market has reacted accordingly, having been matched at a high of 60.059/1 for the race Sceau Royal now trades at 28.027/1.
King stated the Fighting Fifth Hurdle could be next followed by the Christmas Hurdle setting up a potential clash against Faugheen which would really test his credentials.
In a division that lacks depth and with the trainer winning the race with a similar type in 2008 Sceau Royal may yet emerge as the flag bearer for the English in the Champion Hurdle division.
Valseur Lido backed for Gold Cup glory
On the Irish scene we saw Valseur Lido stake his Gold Cup claims with an easy victory in the Jnwine Champion Chase at Down Royal, beating dual King George winner Silviniaco Conti comprehensively.
All the fancy prices for the blue riband event were quickly snapped up, having been as high as 60.059/1 he now sits at a fraction of that price at 16.015/1.
The Gigginstown House Stud-owned gelding has been no match for the mighty Vautour at the last three festivals but he continues to improve and the extra distance of the Gold Cup should bring his stamina into play putting him in the picture against the likes of Coneygree and Thistlecrack.
The Lexus Chase looks to be next on his agenda where he will face a stiffer test but if reproducing this form he should be more than capable of being in the mix.
Cheltenham Festival Movers
Sceau Royal - Champion Hurdle, 28.027/1 from 60.059/1
Valseur Lido - Gold Cup, 16.015/1 from 60.059/1