National Hunt Chase Cup Tips - 5:30pm Cheltenham

2019 National Hunt Chase Preview

The National Hunt Chase is the final race on the first day of the Festival. It’s trip of four miles makes it the longest race of the week and to make it even more quirky it’s a race for amateur riders!

The Irish have won this race five times in the last eight renewals and Willie Mullins in particular has a good recent record with two winners and three places horses since 2013.

Mullins has a decent chance yet again and his 7yo Ballyward looks just the sort for this type of race. He was 4th in the Albert Bartlett Hurdle twelve months ago and then filled the same spot behind Next Destination at Punchestown an April.

This season he kicked off his chasing career with a solid effort at Punchestown behind Shady Operator, he was only beaten a short head that day and would have won but for hanging during the race.

He made no mistake next time out when taking a Grade 3 contest at Naas at the end of January. He won by 11 lengths that day although his closest rival did fall at the last leaving him clear. Regardless of that it was still a big run and looks well up to this class and wiull be ridden by Patrick Mullins.

Another runner that wears the same colours is Ok Corral trained by Nicky Henderson. He’s a 9yo now but has very few miles on the clock for his age. He has only had two starts over fences and won them both easily at Warwick and Plumpton. 

That Plumpton success puts him in line for a £60,000 bonus for any horse to win at the Sussex based track and then to follow up at the Festival. He was second in the Albert Bartlett last season and has bags of stamina. He has an official rating of 153 which gives him a big advantage over many of his rivals at level weights.

Impulsive Star is also a horse that is improving with his races and actually ran in this race twelve months ago. He was 4th to Ratvinden on that occasion beaten 24 lengths but failed to see a racecourse again last season.

He has had two starts this term and won the Classic Chase at Warwick on his last run over 3m5f. He is a thorough stayer and looks sure to run up to his mark once again.

The 6yo Discorama was in the process of running a big race on his first run of 2019 at Naas, he was challenging at the last when he came down behind Ballyward and Chris’s Dream. He would have second at least and that effort alone gives him hope here.

He was earlier 5th in the Drinmore Chase behind the very useful Delta Work, he’s lightly raced and could still be improving for trainer Paul Nolan

Gordon Elliott has won this race twice in the last four seasons with Tiger Roll and Cause Of Causes who both went on to run very well in the Grand National. This time round he saddles Gun Digger who will be ridden by Lisa O'Neill. The 7yo won at Leopardstown at the Christmas meeting over 2m5f so this big step up in trip will be a venture into the unknown. He wears a tongue tie for the first time along with his cheekpieces so he is obvioulsy not straight forward.

Jamie Codd is the man to go to in these amateur races and he rides Le Breuill for trainer Ben Palling. The 7yo has been very consisetnt thise season but has only managed to win once in his five chase starts. He is another runner who the trip is an unknown and has yet to race beyond 3 miles. He jumps well and should be therabouts turning for home.

One more to look at is the Philip Hobbs trained Jerrysback, he's had four starts over fences and managed to win at Bangor in December. Last time out he was second at Haydock over 2m5f but is a winning pointer so should have enough reserves in the tank for this marathon trip.

Punters Lounge Tip: Ok Corral 100/30 at Betfair - Click Here To Bet

National Hunt Chase Cup Latest Betting
National Hunt Chase Cup Trends
National Hunt Chase Cup Previous Winners
2019Le Breuill7Jamie CoddBen Pauling14/1
2018Rathvinden10Patrick MullinsWillia Mullins9/2
2017Tiger Roll7Lisa O'NeillGordon Elliott16/1
2016Minella Rocco6Derek O'ConnorJonjo O'Neill8/1
2015Cause Of Causes7Jamie CoddGordon Elliott8/1
2014Midnight Prayer9Joshua NewmanAlan King8/1
2013Back In Focus8Patrick MullinsWillie Mullins9/4
2012Teaforthree8JT McNamaraRebecca Curtis5/1
2011Chicago Grey8Derek O'ConnorGordon Elliott5/1
2010Poker de Sivola7Katie WalshFerdy Murphy14/1
2009Tricky Trickster6Sam Waley-CohenNigel Twiston-Davies11/1

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