The Cheltenham Festival 2018. The Ryanair Chase (registered as The Festival Trophy) is a Grade 1 National Hunt race open to horses aged five years and older. This race run over 2m 5f has seventeen fences. It takes place on the 15th March at 2:50 Cheltenham.
Inaugurated in 2005, this contest takes part on the new, left-handed course.
The most successful horse to have won this race on two occasion is Albertas Run in 2010, 2011.
The most successful jockey with four wins is Ruby Walsh, ranging from 2005 – 2017. The most recent being Un De Sceaux. Willie Mullins has proved victorious in the last two runs with the above mentioned and Vautour in 2016. Other trainers with two wins include: Paul Nicholls, Jonjo O'Neill, Nicky Henderson & David Pipe.
The youngest horse to win this race is Taranis aged six back in 2007. The oldest being ten-year-old Albertas Run (2011), Fondmort (2006) & Our Vic (2008).
2:50 Cheltenham - The Ryanair Chase (registered as The Festival Trophy). Don't miss these Cheltenham betting tips. I'm really looking forward to this race because it has a nice shape. The betting could be key for a few of the big fancies. I know a lot of punters detest taking anything less than 5/1 for each-way wagers.
The leading contenders:
Un Des Sceaux is trained by Willie Mullins, winner of this race in 2017. This French-bred gelding is a son of Denham Red who has won 20 of his 26 races and achieved total prize money over £1m. This ten-year-old kept on ''gamely'' to win this race last year by just under two lengths. It would be a brave layer to push this horse too far in the betting. With odds of 3/1 he could well start favourite. If touching an each-way price (5/1) this could be a dream bet.
It is worth noting that a lot of these horses have a number of entries across the Cheltenham Festival. It is one reason to take care when considering ante-post bets even if the trainer suggests a particular route. Considering Un Des Sceaux won last year at odds of 7/4f (touching 15/8 in places), so it makes sense he will be heading here once more.
Other horses prominent in the betting for Willie Mullins include: Douvan 8/1, Min 10/1, Yorkhill 10/1, Benie Des Dieux, Djakadam 16/1, Killultagh Vic 20/1, Bachasson 20/1 & Bellshill 25/1. It shows how trainers have many strings to their bow and have horse in waiting if change is needed.
Waiting Patiently is trained by Ruth Jefferson. This handler from Norton, North Yorkshire must be excitement personified with this son of Flemensfirth. This seven-year-old bay gelding races in the ownership of Richard Collins. Seven straight wins have seen an official rating from 120 to 156. This progressive gelding added to his lustre beating Cue Card on last start. Bookmakers have this major hope priced at 4/1. If touching odds of 5/1+ I'd jump in with an each-way bet.
Other horses fancied in the betting include:
Fox Norton who hails from Colin Tizzards yard and 6/1 in the betting. Top Notch, trained by Nicky Henderson, at 8/1. Douvan priced at 8/1. Yorkhill, one of a number of talents for Willie Mullins at 10/1. While Mrs S Ricci's charge, Min, at 10/1. Henry De Bromhead will be hopeful with Balko Des Flos priced 12/1 with leading bookmakers.
At the time of writing, 28 horses are entered at this declaration stage which will be significantly reduced leading up to the race. Until you have firm convictions, I would be very careful taking ante-post prices. However, there are opportunities to make the your betting pay and Waiting Patiently could be a fair each-way bet if touching 5/1+.