BetVictor customers are always keen to try and find an ante post winner or two. Now they have even more incentive to try and find a big price play with BetVictor going FOUR places on every novice hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival ahead of the four biggest days in the jumps season.
Head of trading Chris Poole shared his view on the extra ante post place offer:
“We are currently the only firm paying 4 places on the four novice hurdles at the Festival in singles and multiples. Best of luck for anyone who is getting involved and taking a view this far out.”
With the extra place on offer, I am going to try and point you in the direction of a value play for each Novice race at the Festival. It is only November but we have already seen plenty of contenders to get excited about on both sides of the Irish Sea.
All of the 2021 #CheltenhamFestival Novice Hurdles are now Extra Place races!
🏇 Supreme Novices Hurdle
🏇 Ballymore Novices Hurdle
🏇 Mares Novice Hurdle
🏇 Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle
We will be paying out 4️⃣ places.
— BetVictor Racing (@BetVictorRacing) November 10, 2020
The opening race of the Festival is met with the traditional roar which may sadly be more virtual than audible on course this year. But the race is always huge in the build up, with plenty of discussion around whichever horse is aiming to get the week started with a winner for punters.
Ferney Hollow currently heads our betting and has Festival form with the win last year in the Champion Bumper. The win over Bob Olinger for a first start over hurdles was a big test and he is rightly favourite to me. However, looking to try and find a bit of value at the each way prices, I am going to plump for Flinteur Sacre of Nicky Hendersons at 12/1.
Beaten at Newbury on debut, he improved to win next time out at Kempton in taking fashion. Whilst the horse that beat him has disappointed so far (Your Darling), I am expecting big things from this relation to arguably the yards best ever horse, Sprinter Sacre. It would be no shock to see him come home in front come March in the Festival curtain rasier.
We have already mentioned this selection earlier in the piece. I am amazed to see Bob Olinger at 16/1 still for the Ballymore with ourselves after really impressing many when going down on his sword to Ferney Hollow at a trip that I think was never going to show him at his best.
A winning pointer over three miles, a step up in trip will be ideal. The fact they pitched him in against the Cheltenham Bumper winner displays the level of belief connections have in this horse when they could have opted for an easier maiden hurdle to start off in.
I have plenty of respect for the favourite Ballyadam of Gordon Elliott’s, but Bob Oilinger, a five year old by Sholkov, can be a player at 16/1 in the Ballymore
The Albert Bartlett is arguably the hardest race to weigh up ante post at this stage. Traditionally, you always tend to want an older horse with experience in the Bartlett. However, Monkfish last year for Willie Mullins proved that you can buck that trend with a win after just three hurdle runs prior to the race.
Holymacapony is currently heading our betting and was a good winner for BetVictor ambassador Rachael Blackmore on his first rules start. It was however another Irish based horse that went into my notebook over the weekend as the selection.
Gordon Elliott would have a fair few to aim at the race but the way Fakiera stuck on to claim the BetVictor sponsored Monksfield was really taking. He already has plenty of experience, which I still think is handy, and to the eye may well get the trip in time despite not having run further than two miles four furlongs.