Sunday Racing Tips: Three more fancies at Cheltenham

Tony has picked out three horses worth backing at Cheltenham on Sunday
Tony has picked out three horses worth backing at Cheltenham on Sunday

Tony Calvin has cast his eye across Sunday's racing at Cheltenham and picked out three runners worth supporting...

Recommended Bets

Back Croco Bay at 12.011/1 in the 14:10 at Cheltenham

Back Bouvreuil at 19.018/1 in the 14:40 at Cheltenham

Back Redera at 38.037/1 in the 14:40 at Cheltenham

It could well be the "Ditcheat past and present show" in the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham on Sunday afternoon, and I fancy Paul Nicholls to come out on top with Bouvreuil at odds of 19.018/1 in the competitive handicap at 14:40.

There are reports that suggest that he may be better for the run today but I wouldn't have thought Nicholls would have left him short for this valuable prize, and he is a horse that I expect to come into his own this term, like a lot of ex-French purchases do in their second season.

He didn't look the finished article physically last season but he ran a screamer to finish second to stablemate Qualando in the Fred Winter here and wasn't disgraced at all when stepped up to a Grade 1 at Aintree next time.

A mark of 139 seems very fair and there should be a lot more to come from this 4yo, who can hopefully follow in the footsteps of Brampour, who won this race at the same age for the stable in 2011. Noel Fehily rides because he can't do the 10st 2lb on Mick Jazz, but I think he could be sitting on the right one anyway.

The ex-Ditcheat assistants Harry Fry and Dan Skelton run market leaders Mick Jazz and Superb Story, and it is not hard to see them running big races.

I am particularly interested in the former in a first-time hood and tongue tie and off what could be a lenient mark of 130 - they thought he was a lot better than he showed last season - but he has not been missed in the market at 9.08/1, that's for sure.

I am also going to take a flier in the race with Redera at 38.037/1 or bigger.

He has had his fair share of injury problems and is relatively lightly-raced these days but there was a fair bit of promise in his run in the Irish Cesarewitch at the Curragh last month, and he has slipped down to a an attractive mark over hurdles.

He has form in testing ground and, with a tongue tie on for the first time, I can see him going well off his light weight, with Tony Martin sticking up a 5lb claimer, too.

Waxies Dargle disappointed when well-backed for the County Hurdle in March and has been punted again throughout the week for this, and he makes some appeal off a very fair mark - a 6lb rise for his Killarney win in May could be lenient - and on softening ground.

I couldn't put anyone off him at around 11.010/1 but for me the juice has gone out of his price in such a competitive race. He was twice those odds, and more, at the start of the week.

In the other C4 races, small-field condition races don't tend to lend themselves to my kind of betting.

The opening novice hurdle at 13:00 is a case in point. It's a cracking contest and I wouldn't be in a rush to dismiss outsider Viens Chercher, for all that he will be racing on different ground to that which he has won his two English starts on.

If forced to play then I would probably side with recent course and distance winner Mister Miyagi at around 6-1, but I won't be having a bet myself, so no tip.

The same is also true of the novice chase at 13:35, where I think Garde La Victoire will take the world of beating. He won the Greatwood on this card last season and this 154-rated hurdler looked as if he could prove an even better tool over fences when beating the well-regarded Bristol De Mai by 7 lengths at Uttoxeter on his chasing debut.

But I am not telling you anything the market isn't, as he is around an even-money poke.

I am going to take a chance with the lowest-rated horse in the Shloer Chase at 14:10, and suggest a bet on Croco Bay at 12.011/1 or better.

The simple angle into this race is that I want to take on the market leaders, not least Sprinter Sacre, even getting all the weight, and Mr Mole, who has to shoulder a 10lb penalty.

Sprinter Sacre may not even take his chance if the ground turns very testing but I hope he does, as he makes the market. He ran perfectly respectably last season and the vibes coming out of the Henderson camp are positive - though I pay no attention to these upbeat bulletins - but he is clearly not the horse he was and he remains vulnerable.

The one I like to cause a mini-surprise is Croco Bay, as he ran very well over 2m1f on fast ground at Kelso on his reappearance, and always improves massively for a run.

He progressed enormously from his first to second start in 2013 and again last season, when he ran away with a 2m1f Ascot handicap in the soft by 19 lengths, and if he comes on similarly from Kelso then he has definite chances.

We know that he is fit, he has solid course form (third in the Grand Annual in March off 149) and soft ground is no problem. He is worth a small-stakes punt.

In the 15:15 on RUK, my two against the field are Daveron and Battling Boru, but not with enough confidence to put them up as a bet.

Be lucky.


Recommended Bets

Back Croco Bay at 12.011/1 in the 14:10 at Cheltenham
Back Bouvreuil at 19.018/1 in the 14:40 at Cheltenham
Back Redera at 38.037/1 in the 14:40 at Cheltenham


For all Betting.Betfair's excellent horse racing coverage, click here


Get a Free £/€20 Exchange Bet

  • Join Now - Open your account today using promo code VAL225
  • Bet - Place a £/€20 Bet on the Exchange
  • Earn - £/€20 Back in cash if your bet loses
Bet Now

T&Cs apply.

Discover the latest articles

Read past articles