Cheltenham Festival 2013
After yesterday's chases we are concentrating on the smaller obstacles today with the Coral Cup at 4.00 and the Fred Winter (4.40).
The Coral Cup is THE gambling race of the whole meeting — in yesterday's pullout our feature on the 10 greatest Ladbrokes gambles feature three from this race, Forgive 'N Forget (1982), Rogers Princess (1989) and Xenophon (2003).
And Ladbrokes clearly dodged a bullet last year as Son Of Flicka was backed down from 66-1 to 16-1 on theday and trotted up.
No horse with a rating of higher than 147 has been successful in our 10 year period, so that rules out the first five in the list.
Winning form over at least two-and-a-quarter miles is essential and that takes care of Cash And Go, Un Beau Matin, Hollow Tree, Mr Watson, Pendra, Tour D'Argent, Urbain De Sivola, Saphir River and Orsippus.
The times clocked yesterday suggest the ground was on the testing side while this race was dominated by horses ridden no more patiently than midfield last year, so let's see if we can latch onto the right one.
We saw on Saturday in the Imperial Cup that a decent conditional claiming 10lb makes a difference, so the eye quickly falls on Nicky Henderson's ERICHT with Gary Erwin claiming the allowance.
This lad has only had 23 rides this season with two winners, but one of those was on this horse at Fakenham before Christmas.
Go back through this one's form and you'll see he ran well at the Festival behind Cheltenian when favourite in the bumper a couple of years ago, and he has also been tried in Graded company over hurdles.
He wasn't in the greatest form last season but has really bloomed again this term and his latest Kempton win was a massive step in the right direction.
Erwin's claim puts him in this with only 10st and this forgotten horse could be lobbed in — take the 2pts ew at 20-1 with several firms.
The other big value lies with BIG EASY at a massive 66-1 with Betvictor.....Read more