Punchestown Festival Tips
Looking for Punchestown Festival tips? Our experts have tips for every race during the 2019 Festival and provided their NAPs for each of the five days.
|Time||Race||Our Tip||Our Tip|
2019 Punchestown Festival Ante-Post Tips
|4:20pm Herald Champion Novice Hurdle||KLASSICAL DREAM||GET 10/11 HERE|
|5:30pm BoyleSports Champion Chase||UN DE SCEAUX||GET 9/2 HERE|
|6:40pm Dooley Insurance Group Champion Novice Chase||DELTA WORK||GET 13/8 HERE|
2019 Punchestown Gold Cup Preview
I remain unconvinced that Kemboy truly is one of the best in the business and there’s plenty of value to be found backing AL BOUM PHOTO, in what is likely to be a biblical clash.
On his only outing before Cheltenham, Al Boum Photo comfortably dealt with Total Recall and Invitation Only with a composed display at Tramore. Despite Mullins’ fears that this year’s Gold Cup was coming a little early in his career, Al Boum Photo proved again he had matured and improved during the course of the last year, staying on brilliantly to hold off Anibale Fly and Bristol De Mai quite convincingly.
There’s no reason why this mercurial talent cannot progress even further over the coming seasons and I expect Al Boum Photo – and Paul Townend – to make up for that farcical exit 12 months ago by claiming Punchestown Gold Cup glory.
Punchestown Festival Day Two Tips
5:30 – Irish Daily Mirror Novice Hurdle (Grade 1) (4yo+) 3m
MINELLA INDO (10/3, Ladbrokes) travelled really well throughout the Albert Bartlett Hurdle at the recent Cheltenham Festival, appearing to readily brush aside runner-up Commander of Fleet, and Henry De Bromhead’s charge can confirm that form here.
The Beat Hollow gelding has improved with every start over hurdles, and he has plenty of further scope to improve judging on that breakthrough success where he had two lengths to spare over his nearest rival who reopposes along with Allaho who could only finish third having beaten the selection when the pair clashed previously at Clonmel.
A more patient ride by Rachael Blackmore certainly reaped dividends, and the six-year old was noted travelling strongly throughout the race if perhaps a little keen; but having jumped to the front three out, he came clear turning in and was always holding on to the line.
His task is to back up that run and prove his 50/1 win wasn’t a fluke; but he could have plenty of improvement still to come, and given the way he saw off both the runner-up and third that day – both reoppose – he is worth chancing to find another jolt of improvement to follow up.
Punchestown Festival Day Three Tips
If Defi Du Seuil was to feature in the final field here, then he would be my selection, has I think he’s been the most impressive novice chaser on the circuit this season. Sadly, his odds suggest the JLT winner hasn’t sufficiently recovered from the knock that ruled Philip Hobbs’ stable star out of Aintree.
If Hardline can return to the sort of form which saw him beat Getabird to a Grade One at Limerick over Christmas, then he could be an excellent each-way bet. He, like many of the other entrants, struggled in a messy renewal of the Arkle, with Duc Des Genievres coming out on top. Willie Mullins’ pulled away up the Cheltenham hill like a very classy horse and has to be in with a strong chance. A stronger test of stamina over two miles is what he really wants, however, and my preference is with the slightly speedier ORNUA (5/1 Paddy Power).
I had always considered Henry De Bromhead’s charge to be a little below Grade One standard and was surprised to see Ornua entered in the Henry VIII Novices’ Chase at Sandown. Despite the ground softening well beyond ideal, Dylan Robinson’s mount led the field along at break-neck speed and – despite getting caught by Dynamite Dollars in the final furlong – he didn’t wilt under the pressure in the closing stages.
Rachael Blackmore took the ride at Cheltenham, where a poor jump half-way through saw Ornua exit proceedings. De Bromhead’s charge bounced back with an impressive performance at Aintree earlier this month, holding off Us An Them and Destrier under an excellent ride by Davy Russell.
Good ground would be a huge boost to Ornua’s chances, but the eight-year-old proved at Sandown that he’s capable of running to his best on a softer surface. If he stays on his feet, then this hardy front-runner could give Duc Des Genievres quite the mountain to climb.
Punchestown Festival Schedule
|Tuesday||TBA||Growise Champion Novice Chase||Punchestown|
|Tuesday||TBA||Punchestown Champion Chase||Punchestown|
|Tuesday||TBA||Herald Champion Novice Hurdle||Punchestown|
|Wednesday||TBA||Punchestown Gold Cup||Punchestown|
|Wednesday||TBA||Champion INH Flat Race||Punchestown|
|Wednesday||TBA||Irish Daily Mirror Novice Hurdle||Punchestown|
|Thursday||TBA||World Series Hurdle||Punchestown|
|Thursday||TBA||Ryanair Novice Chase||Punchestown|
|Friday||TBA||Punchestown Champion Hurdle||Punchestown|
|Friday||TBA||Tattersalls Ireland Champion Novice Hurdle||Punchestown|
|Saturday||TBA||Champion Four Year Old Hurdle||Punchestown|
The Punchestown Festival
The Irish National Hunt racing season draws to a close around the end of April each year and traditionally closes with the five-day Irish Hunt Festival held at Punchestown Racecourse, County Kildare, Northern Ireland.
This festival is regarded as the most important in Irish National Hunt racing and includes many important races, including the Champion Chase, the Champion Hurdle and the Punchestown Gold Cup. The festival has been running in some form since the 1870s.
The racecourse at Punchestown is somewhat unique as it hosts music events as well as horse racing. World-famous acts such as AC/DC, Eminem, Bon Jovi and U2 have played at Punchestown.
As for the course itself, County Kildare is prone to bad weather so the going is more likely to be heavy than firm during the festival.
Famous Punchestown Winners
The first day of the festival features the Punchestown Champion Chase – a two mile race for five-year-olds and up. Sizing Europe is probably the most famous double winner of this race, triumphing in 2012 and 2014, but five other horses have won the race twice. The legendary Hurricane Fly is perhaps the most successful horse ever at the festival, winning the Champion Hurdle four times in succession between 2010 and 2013.
We’ve got great free tips on all of May’s biggest horse racing festivals. See our experts’s preview and get predictions and analysis of every race.
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Kentucky Derby Tips
We have tips and predictions ahead of the 2019 Kentucky Derby, which takes place on Saturday 4th of May.
2019 Kentucky Derby Preview
Preview is unavailable at this time.
Kentucky Derby Betting Tips & Predictions
Tips are unavailable at this time.
Kentucky Derby Festival
Synonymous with horse racing in the United States, the Kentucky Derby Festival is the annual festival of racing held each year in May, at the Churchill Downs racecourse, Louisville, Kentucky. Plenty of both racing events and non-racing events are held, including the Kentucky Derby itself – one of the richest races in the USA, and certainly the most well-known.
Other events include the impressive ‘Thunder Over Louisville’ fireworks display, the Kentucky Derby Marathon and miniMarathon, the Pegasus Parade and the Great Balloon Race. While the Kentucky Derby itself has been run since 1875, the associated festival has only been a regular event since 1935.
The Kentucky Derby
The Kentucky Derby actually has its origins in England. Colonel Merriweather Lewis Clark Jr was visiting Epsom in Surrey in 1872, where he witnessed the Epsom Derby. Later, Clark visited France and spoke with members of the newly-formed French Jockey Club. Once back home in Kentucky, Clark formed the Louisville Jockey Club and financed the building of Churchill Downs racetrack. He then helped organise the first Kentucky Derby in 1875.
The Kentucky Derby has now been run on a continual basis since then, even without interruption for either World War.
The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports
Over its history, the Kentucky Derby has become known as The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports. The race is run over a short course of only ten furlongs (one and a quarter miles), meaning that the leading horses cover the distance in as little as two minutes. The speed record is held by the legendary Secretariat, who broke the two-minute barrier in 1973.
Stage One of the Triple Crown
The Triple Crown in US racing is awarded to any three-year-old thoroughbred horse who wins three of the leading flat races in the Unites States each year. The Kentucky Derby is the first of these races to be held, in May. The Preakness Stakes is also held in May, and the Belmont Stakes is held in June. As of 2018, thirteen horses have achieved the Triple Crown.
Churchill Downs racecourse was expressly conceived and built for the running of the Kentucky Derby. Land was purchased by the Louisville Jockey Club for the course in 1873 from John and Henry Churchill, after whom the track is named. Churchill Downs has a staggering capacity of 170,000, and is habitually brimming with people for the running of the Derby.
Notable Kentucky Derby Winners
As the Kentucky Derby is a race for three-year-olds only, no horse has ever won the Kentucky Derby on more than one occasion. As mentioned above, the course record was set in 1973 by possibly the most famous horse in USA racing history, Secretariat. Justify broke a ‘hoodoo’ in 2018 by winning the Derby having never run as a two-year-old – something not achieved since Apollo in 1882.
The record margin of victory is eight lengths, set by Old Rosebud in 1914 and since equalled by Johnstown (1939), Whirlaway (1941) and Assault (1946).
There are three more big festivals on the horizon, including the next leg of the Triple Crown, see what our experts are predicting in the next big races.
July Festival Tips
Looking for the latest news and tips for the July Meeting? Our team of experts will cover every race during Newmarket’s premier summer Festival, reporting any breaking news, betting developments and providing expert insight into the 2019 July Meeting.
Day One Tips
|1:50pm Bahrain Trophy||EAGLES BY DAY||GET 9/4 HERE|
|2:25pm July Stakes||KING NEPTUNE||GET 14/1 HERE|
|3:00pm bet365 Handicap||MAGICAL WISH||GET 12/1 HERE|
|3:35pm Princess Of Wales’s Stakes||MASAR||GET 6/5 HERE|
|4:05pm Maiden Stakes||DAILY TIMES||GET 9/2 HERE|
|4:40pm Sir Henry Cecil Stakes||TURGENEV||GET 11/4 HERE|
|5:10pm John Deere & Ben Burgess Handicap||WINGS OF TIME||GET 4/1 HERE|
2019 July Cup Tips
It’s easy to see why Advertise heads the Newmarket betting, after his return to top form in the Commonwealth Cup at Royal Ascot. The beaten favourite that day was TEN SOVEREIGNS, who failed to live up to the hype with a rather limp display. The betting suggests the bookies have lost faith in Aidan O’Brien’s colt, which is rather unfair on the back of just one understandably poor outing and he looks the most dangerously overpriced contender in this year’s July Cup.
2019 July Meeting Day One Tips
Plenty went wrong at the start of the Hardwicke Stakes at Royal Ascot for returning Epsom Derby hero MASAR who stumbled badly and almost unseated James Doyle leaving the stalls; but the pair recovered and remained competitive until well inside the final furlong before a lack of fitness told late on.
Charlie Appleby’s charge ought to prove a lot sharper for that reappearance, and while there is a slight worry that this outing could come too soon less than three weeks on from those exertions, if he is none the worse for that reappearance effort and can build on the run then he could take plenty of beating here.
More Day One Tips
All of the previous four Bahrain Trophy winners took part in the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot. EAGLES BY DAY stayed on beyond Private Secretary and Pablo Escobar to place third in that Group Two and I think Michael Bell’s charge has an excellent chance of claiming a first major victory as he drops down in class on Thursday.
It was a performance of budding maturity in a race much deeper and more competitive than this. Eagles By Day really enjoyed the firm ground when winning nicely at Salisbury at the start of the year and this trip seems to be ideal. Michael Bell has a solid record at the July Meeting and Danny Tudhope, one of the stand-out jockeys at Royal Ascot, has been operating at a near-30% strike rate ever since. Eagles By Day looks a good-thing to me!
Day Two Tips
|1:50pm bet365 Handicap||ALLMANKIND||GET 16/1 HERE|
|2:25pm Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes||DAAHYEH||GET 13/8 HERE|
|3:00pm bet365 Trophy||BEN VRACKIE||GET 11/4 HERE|
|3:35pm Falmouth Stakes||BESHAAYIR||GET 4/1 HERE|
|4:10pm Maiden Stakes||AL SUHAIL||SP|
More Day Two Tips
3:00pm bet365 Trophy (Heritage Handicap) 1m6f
It will be very interesting to see how King’s Advice gets on after his winning run came to an end in the Northumberland Plate and it’s also worth watching the progressive Outbox very closely. Both appeal at each-way prices, yet, the stage looks set for BEN VRACKIE (NAP) to prove his class in the inaugural running on this staying handicap.
Unraced as a two-year-old, John Gosden waited until July last year to hand Ben Vrackie his stable debut. Gosden’s imposing colt got off the mark at the third time of asking with a superb 11-length triumph on the all-weather at Kempton, before following up with a narrow defeat to Maid Up in the Group Three March Stakes at Glorious Goodwood.
Ben Vrackie then made his reappearance in the Duke Of Edinburgh Stakes and, although he was defeated by Baghdad, Gosden’s colt ran a sensational race. A sluggish start saw Frankie Dettori’s mount sitting miles off the pace, treading a path some five horse widths off the rail for much of that mile-and-a-half trip. Few horses made up ground from such an unfavourable position during the entire meeting, but Ben Vrackie picked up brilliantly, powering home down the centre of the track, coming within a head of upsetting Mark Johnston’s favourite.
This four-year-old son of Frankel clocked an RPR of 109 on his final start as a three-year-old and managed an even more impressive mark of 113 when second at Ascot. This suggests Ben Vrackie could still be well-handicapped running off his official rating of 104 and I expect the favourite to score nicely over this extended trip.
The Moët & Chandon July Festival
Once the historic Epsom Derby meeting and the glitz and glamour of Royal Ascot have come and gone, Newmarket opens their famous gates to the public in the second week of July, hosting their popular The Moët & Chandon July Festival.
There are two racetracks inside the confines of Newmarket racecourse. The Rowley Mile is more celebrated, staging races like the 2000 and 1000 Guineas. The July Festival, however, will be held on the July course and a handful of top honours will be up for grabs during the three-day meeting.
Day one at the July Festival is recognised as Ladies Day, where female racegoers are encouraged to wear their finest garments and enter various style pageants. The Bahrain Trophy gets the action on the track underway, before the Arqana July Stakes and the Princess Of Wales’s Stakes provide entrants with the chance to claim a lucrative, Group Two prize.
Feel Good Friday starts with a bang, with the Silver Bunbury Cup preceding the Duchess Of Cambridge Stakes. The headline race on day two at Newmarket is the Group One Falmouth Stakes – a one mile contest which has been won by some of the sport’s finest fillies, including Sonic Lady, Soviet Song and Goldikova.
The third and final day of the July Festival opens up with the Superlative Stakes and the Bunbury Cup, two excellent races which provide a thrilling prelude to the main event of the meeting – the July Cup.
This historic sprint was first staged in 1876 and often attracts the fastest and finest sprinters from around the world. The ITV Racing team will be situated in Newmarket to capture this prestigious Group One and all the big races during the July Meeting. It truly is an event not to be missed.
2019 July Festival Dates
Two Group Ones headline the three-day Festival. Saturday’s July Cup is the premier race of Newmarket’s meeting, with Friday’s Falmouth Stakes boasting an impressive roll of honour of its own.
Four Group Twos will be up for grabs during the July Festival, with the Arqana July Stakes remaining one of the most important two-year-old contests during the season. The Group Three Bahrain Trophy will give St Leger hopefuls the chance to impress, with the Listed Henry Cecil stakes another major race during the July Festival.
Saturday’s Bunbury Cup is the biggest handicap of the meeting, along with the bet365 Heritage Handicap. July Festival dates watchers will notice another bet365 Handicap Stakes has been inserted into the July Festival and will occupy the penultimate slot on day two.
The ITV Racing team will be in attendance at Newmarket to capture the best of the action during all three July Festival dates, making the 2018 July Festival an event you really can’t afford to miss.
Thursday 11th July – Ladies’ Day
13:50 Bahrain Trophy (Group 3) (3yo) 1m5f
14:25 ARQANA July Stakes (Group 2) (2yo) 6f
15:00 bet365 Handicap Stakes (Heritage Handicap) (Class 2) 6f
15:35 Princess of Wales’s ARQANA Racing Club Stakes (Group 2) 1m4f
16:10 British Stallion Studs EBF Maiden Fillies’ Stakes (Plus 10) (Class 2) 6f
16:45 Edmondson Hall Solicitors Sir Henry Cecil Stakes (Listed) (3yo) 1m
17:20 Saeed Suhail Saeed Handicap Stakes (Class 2) 5f
Friday 12th July – Feel Good Friday
13:50 bet365 (Silver Bunbury Cup) Handicap Stakes (Class 2) 7f
14:25 Duchess of Cambridge Stakes (Group 2) (Fillies) 6f
15:00 bet365 Handicap Stakes (Class 2) (3yo) 1m2f
15:35 Tattersalls Falmouth Stakes (Group 1) (British Champion Series) 1m
16:10 Weatherbys British EBF Maiden Stakes (Plus 10) (Class 3) (2yo) 7f
16:45 Handicap Stakes (Class 2) 1m6f
17:20 Saeed Suhail Saeed Handicap Stakes (Class 3) 1m
Saturday 13th July – July Cup Day
13:05 bet365 Superlative Stakes (Group 2) (2yo) 7f
13:40 bet365 Bunbury Cup (Heritage Handicap) (Class 2) 7f
14:15 Darley July Cup (Group 1) (British Champion Series) 6f
14:50 Rossdales British EBF Maiden Fillies’ Stakes (Plus 10) (Class 2) 7f
15:20 bet365 Mile Handicap Stakes (Class 2) (3yo) 1m
15:55 Spa at Bedford Lodge British EBF Fillies’ Handicap Stakes (Class 2) (3yo) 7f
16:30 Saeed Suhail Saeed Handicap Stakes (Class 3) 1m4f