Cheltenham Festival 2015: Sacre strong in Champion Chase betting
Sacre in demand for Champion Chase:
Punters are putting their faith in Sprinter Sacre regaining his 2m chasing crown in the Queen Mother Champion Chase, and Nicky Henderson’s star is now the clear 11/4 favourite (from 3/1) with Coral for the showpiece conest on Wednesday, March 11th.
The Nicky Henderson trained gelding looked one of the best two-milers seen for many a year when winning the race by 19 lengths in 2013, but missed last year’s race following a heart problem.
However, the nine-year-old returned to action with a highly creditable second to Dodging Bullets in the Clarence House Chase at Ascot and has since been delighting his handler.
Henderson issued a an upbeat report about Sprinter last week saying that he was in “seriously good shape” and his comments have seen him strengthen at the head of the market despite last year’s winner Sire De Grugy looking right back to his best when winning last time out at Chepstow.
Late decision to be made on Sizing Europe:
Irish trainer Henry de Bromhead is going to make a last minute decision whether to let Sizing Europe return to Cheltenham for another tilt at the Queen Mother Champion Chase.
The 2011 Champion Chase hero, who is currently 25/1 with Coral, looked as good as ever on his first start of the campaign when winning the PWC Champion Chase at Gowran Park for a fourth time despite his advancing years.
The 13-year-old showed all his old enthusiam to beat leading Gold Cup contender Road To Riches, but has not been seen since disappointing in the Clonmel Oil Chase in November.
De Bromhead said: “We haven’t decided whether Europe will go or not yet. It will be a late one. We’ll see how he is and what the ground is like and so on.”
The County Waterford-based trainer looks set to send a small but select team of horses across the water next week including Sizing John (Supreme Novices’ Hurdle), Smashing (Arkle Chase), Grand Jesture (Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase), Bishops Road (CHAPS Restaurant Barbados Novices’ Handicap Chase) Special Tiara (Queen Mother Champion Chase) and Supasundae (Champion Bumper).
Call The Cops all the rage for Pertemps:
Call The Cops is likely to be given the chance to follow up Saturday’s impressive Doncaster win in the Pertemps Final at the Cheltenham Festival and is the 8/1 jt-favourite with Coral for 3m handicap hurdle on, Thursday, March 11th.
The Nicky Henderson-trained six-year-old had been 20/1 in the ante post market before scoring in facile fasion at Town Moor on just his second start of the season.
Call The Cops was expected to need the outing, but travelled ominously well throughout in the hands of jockey Andrew Tinkler before pulling readily clear to win by five lengths.
The lightly-raced and unexposed gelding looks a major player in the Pertemps judged on the manner of that success, but also holds an entry in the Coral Cup over 2m 5f on Wednesday, March 11th.
Call the Cops is 8/1 jt-fav with the sponsors for the latter, and with the firm now non-runner/money back on all 27 races at the Festival his supporters can back him in both in the safe knowledge that their cash will be returned for his rejected assignment.