Our flagship racing tipster has enjoyed 25/1 and 11/1 (R4) winners at the Cheltenham Festival – he bids to sign off the week in style with two recommended bets.
- The Value Bet is designed to generate long-term profit by searching for overpriced horses in the feature weekend races and at the big Festivals in the UK and Ireland.
- Following all of Matt’s tips to advertised stakes/odds since he took over from Ben Linfoot in June 2020 would have produced well over 100pts profit.
- His winners this year include Aucunrisque in the Betfair Hurdle at 14/1, last Saturday’s 11/1 Wolverhampton bet Dubai Station, Wednesday’s Grand Annual winner Maskada at 25/1, and Stage Star at 11/1 on Thursday.
Value Bet tips: Saturday, March 18
1pt win The Bomber Liston in 2.05 Kempton at 10/1 (General)
1pt win Bushypark in 3.00 Uttoxeter at 14/1 (Paddy Power, Betfair)
No sooner than the Festival fog begins to clear, Uttoxeter’s big day comes into full view and the Boulton Group Midlands Grand National Handicap Chase is a belter of a race well worth consideration.
There are some golden oldies in here plus a few relative newbies to the marathon division and it’s one from the latter bracket who heads the betting at the time of writing.
Charlie Longsdon’s Guetapan Collonges is evidently on an upward trajectory in general terms but his stamina for this sort of examination must be taken on trust, especially as the latest chunk of improvement came when dropped back from the Classic Chase (3m5f), where he was fourth behind the reopposing Iwilldoit, to win over the bare three miles here last month.
Guetapan Collonges’ jumping has definitely improved as he’s gone along this term, though, and he seems highly likely to go well again.
Tile Tapper is another last-time-out winner now tackling an extreme trip and he’s also getting better with experience over fences, likewise the Oliver Signy-trained French Paradoxe who has gone up another 11lb in the weights for his comfortable success at Newcastle when last seen.
His jumping is efficient and low, but too low at times and he’s fallen twice in his past five outings, so you’d have to have the odd concern now he’s got 25 obstacles in front of him in Saturday’s contest.
Willie Mullins’ Captain Kangaroo is another not to be completely trusted in the fencing department, while Scipion is unexposed in the cheekpieces and hasn’t been dealt with too harshly for his nose triumph at Lingfield (up just 4lb).
However, the one who looks well handicapped and seems bound to stay every yard of the trip is up-in-class BUSHYPARK, who justified favouritism when scoring over three and three-quarter miles at Catterick last time out.
That came on the back of an encouraging Newcastle second the previous month, and he’s basically a quality – and gritty – animal who evidently has his mojo back after a year or two in the doldrums.
Still 10lb lower than his peak 2021 mark following an 8lb hike back up the ratings, Phil Kirby’s horse has never fallen in his life either, while the forecast soft ground looks spot-on for him.
I’ll happily overlook the fact he’s a couple of pounds ‘wrong’ in the handicap as he’s clearly well treated and he could capitalize on the lumps of weight he gets from those up at the top.
I’ve been a big fan of Iron Bridge for a little while now and, in the very next race, he’s got obvious claims of winning the Extra Furlong With Trinity Create Novices’ Handicap Chase, although there is just a little bit of a question mark over the form of Jonjo O’Neill’s yard at the moment.
I’ll watch with interest and keep Iron Bridge in mind for a potential shot at something like the Coral Gold Cup at Newbury in November, a double De Rasher Counter managed to pull off after he won this event in 2019.
There are three decent handicaps on ITV4 down at Kempton, including the valuable Virgin Bet Fives Handicap Chase which should be a competitive heat.
Fidelio Vallis would be top of the shortlist in typical spring conditions following his stable debut second to Pay The Piper, but further rain in the forecast is enough to put me off from striking a bet.
Instead, I’ll focus on the equally open Virgin Bet Handicap Hurdle in which THE BOMBER LISTON is too tempting to let go unbacked.
He’d be coming here right among the favourites if not for his complete no-show (PU) at Huntingdon last time out in January, but I can excuse any promising young horse one bad run, especially as he’d looked potentially very useful last season.
He ended it running a fair race in a handicap hurdle at the Punchestown Festival in April, while his comeback fourth of 15 behind Grey Dawning (stablemate Theatre Glory – a Listed winner since – finished third) was more than respectable too.
It surely wasn’t the step up to three miles that scuppered him last time as he was in some trouble long before stamina had even come into play, and I reckon he’s well worth another chance from the same handicap mark back at this venue following a 50-day break.
Preview posted at 1630 GMT on 17/03/23
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