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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

DAY ONE
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

Table Title

DAY TIME RACE COURSE
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.

Punchestown Racecourse

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.

Upcoming Festivals

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.
We don’t just cover events. Find our tipsters horse racing tips, daily predictions on all the biggest races happening in the UK, Ireland and beyond.

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

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).

Upcoming Festivals

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

2017 Falmouth Stakes Replay

2017 July Cup Replay

Upcoming Festivals

July and August have plenty more great racing events, and our team will be with you for every single one, delivering our usual exhaustive range of free tips.

Japan Cup Tips

Our tipsters will share free tips ahead of the 2018 Japan Cup, check back here in October for our full preview and early tips.

2018 Japan Cup Preview

Preview not available at this time.

Japan Cup Betting Tips

Tips not available at this time.

The Japan Cup

On the last Sunday of November each year at the Tokyo Racecourse, one of the most prestigious races held in Japan is competed for. The Japan Cup, as the race is known, is one of the richest races in world, nearing the Melbourne Cup and the Dubai World Cup in terms of prize money. The race is run over a distance close to twelve furlongs (1.5 miles, 2400m) and is for three-year-olds and up.

Purse

The total prize money for the race is now over $5 million (around £3.75 million or ¥625 million), with the winning horse trotting away with $2.5 million. There are several bonuses too, added to the purse to attract the cream of foreign-based horses.

For example, a horse that wins both the Dubai World Cup and the Japan Cup acquires a bonus of ¥80 million ($0.7 million/£0.5 million).

Tokyo Racecourse

Based in Fuchu and owned by the Japan Racing Association, Tokyo Racecourse is generally regarded as the most important racetrack in Japan. It was constructed in 1933 and now, since being redeveloped in 2007, it has a capacity of 223,000 (13,750 seated). The course is turf, with a left-handed, oval track. Conditions are typically good, dependent upon the weather.

Notable Japan Cup Winners

No horse has ever won the Japan Cup twice. The inaugural meeting in 1981 was won by Mairzy Doates of the USA. Irish-based horse Stanerra was the first European winner in 1983, and one year later the first Japanese horse to win the race – Katsuragi Ace – came home in first place. Japanese horses have now won every race since 2005.

Upcoming horse racing festivals

December has a number of big racing festivals, and our expert team will be sharing free tips and predictions for all the major races.

ITV Racing Tips

Get free betting tips and advice on all the live races on ITV and ITV4 today.

Racing on ITV & ITV4

ITV Racing is the number one horse racing broadcaster on terrestrial television. Ever since purchasing the rights from Channel 4 at the start of 2017, ITV Racing’s team of presenters and analysts have been bringing us live coverage of huge racing events like Royal Ascot, the Grand National and the Cheltenham Festival.

Free tips on today’s ITV racing

Every Saturday, and for all the major horse racing meeting, ITV Racing hits our screens to provide viewers with top-quality coverage. This ITV Racing tips page will be updated on a daily basis, as our experts cast their eye through all of that week’s televised races and publish their tips, breaking news and betting suggestions.

You can also see our tipsters NAP of the day and all of our teams horse racing tips for the other races having

Welsh Grand National Tips

Check back here in December for our full preview and free betting tips ahead of the 2018 Welsh Grand National at Chepstow.

2018 Welsh Grand National Preview

I’ve long thought the Welsh Grand National would be ideal for MS PARFOIS. Despite finishing 40 lengths behind Sizing Tennessee, I wasn’t too disappointed with her run in the Ladbrokes Trophy. The going description may have read soft, but Anthony Honeyball’s mare needs it much more testing than that and she travelled well before running out of steam down the home straight.

The handicapper’s decision not to up her rating at all during the spring means she travels to Chepstow on a workable mark. Wins around Cheltenham and Newbury makes you think the testing track here at Newbury will hold no fears for Ms Parois and stats for horses running on their second start after a wind operation add another positive to her name.

Welsh Grand National

First run in 1895, the Welsh Grand National is a Grade 3 National Hunt race that’s run at Chepstow Racecourse every year, typically just after Christmas Day. It’s run over three miles and five and a half furlongs and is for horses aged four years and above.

The race was first run at Ely Racecourse in Cardiff, but was forced to find a new home after the closure of this course in 1939. It moved to Caerleon, close to Newport, in 1948, and to its present home of Chepstow one year later.

It has taken place every year since, aside from 1969, 1975, 1977, 1978, 1995 and 1996 when cancelled due to poor weather conditions. It was also delayed until January because of course condition in 2010, 2012, 2015 and 2017.

Chepstow Racecourse

Chepstow is one of the most well-known racecourses in the UK, and is the leading racecourse in Wales. It opened in 1926, although racing close to the course had been organised from as early as 1892. The course fell into financial difficulties almost immediately but survived, then survived being taken over by the RAF during the Second World War.

Chepstow returned to normal service as a racecourse in 1949, and was immediately handed the running of the Welsh Grand National.

Greatest Welsh Grand National Winners

1. Burrough Hill Lad

Undoubtedly the greatest ever winner of the Welsh Grand National and the second entrant trained by the legendary trainer Jenny Pitman, Burrough Hill Lad claimed Chepstow glory in the winter of 1983, as he justified favouritism with a dominant display.

Burrough Hill Lad then travelled to Cheltenham as the horse to beat in the Gold Cup. Regular jockey, John Francombe elected to ride market rival, Brown Chamberlain, which proved to be a terrible decidision, as Phil Tuck guided Burrough Hill Lad to a tremendous success in Cheltenham’s showpiece event.

Many horses found winning difficult after claiming Gold Cup glory, but not Burrough Hill Lad. Pitman’s stable star won the Charlie Hall Chase on his reappearance the following season. He then scored in the Hennessy Gold Cup carrying 12-00 on his back, before rounding off a monumental year with a sparkling victory in the 1984 King George at Kempton.

Next Racing Festivals

Only two horses have managed to win the Welsh Grand National on more than one occasion – that being Limonali in 1959 and 1961, and the Martin Pipe-trained Bonanza Boy in 1988 and 1989. Rag Trade won the race in 1976, the same year it won the Grand National run at Aintree.Peter Scudamore is the most successful jockey at the Welsh Grand National, winning on Run and Skip in 1985, the afore-mentioned Bonanza Boy in 1988 and 1989, and Carvill’s Hill in 1991.

Betfair Chase Tips

2018 Betfair Chase Result

? Bristol De Mai 13/2
? Native River 5/2
? Thistlecrack 10/1

The first major Grade One of the British National Hunt racing season is almost upon us and racegoers in the Merseyside area can look forward to a stellar renewal of the Betfair Chase this weekend.

Race organisers and sponsors created the Betfair Chase in 2005 and it was instantly included as the first leg of the Chasing Triple Crown. Kauto Star became the first, and only, horse to claim the £1m bonus a year later, when Paul Nicholls’ legendary chaser followed his triumph at Haydock with victories in the King George and the Gold Cup at Cheltenham.

The Betfair Chase

The Betfair Chase is a Grade One steeplechase race held at Haydock Park racecourse over a distance of three-miles each November for horses aged five years or older. It stands as the first Grade One contest of the British National Hunt season and is renowned for being the curtain-raiser for the new jumps campaign.

Founded in 2005, the Betfair Chase, registered as the Lancashire Chase, is a three-mile contest featuring 18 steeplechase fences. It was introduced by bookmaking heavyweights Betfair with a view to promoting a new ‘Betfair Million’ initiative in which the horse that won the three biggest chase’s of the season, the Betfair Chase, King George and Cheltenham Gold Cup, would gain a £1 million bonus.

One year after its introduction, the ‘Betfair Million’ was claimed by jump racing great Kauto Star as the Paul Nicholls-trained gelding went on to triumph in each of the three premier steeplechase races that season. Bookmakers Betfair later ended their £1 million incentive in 2009. During the 2015/2016 National Hunt season, the Jockey Club introduced their own £1 million initiative for the three leading races, naming it jump racings Triple Crown.

Despite the Betfair Chase boasting a short history, the race has quickly climbed the National Hunt hierarchy and is now viewed as one of the leading trials on route to the Cheltenham Gold Cup in March. Haydock may not possess the demands of Prestbury Park, but the track’s left-handed set-up gives connections a guide to whether their horse can handle such a task.

Purse

Betfair Chase day is renowned for being one of Lancashire’s finest afternoons of sporting action as thousands flock to Haydock to witness the best National Hunt horses do battle for the £200,000 prize-fund. It is the first Grade One opportunity for Britain and Ireland’s steeplechase heavyweight to clash and place down their own early marker for the campaign ahead.

Famous Lancashire Chase Winners

Despite only being a dozen or so years old, the Betfair Chase has been dominated by three horses whom between them have won the race nine times. The Paul Nicholls-trained Kauto Star has four victories – 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2011 – while Cue Card, trained by Colin Tizzard, has won the race three times, in 2013, 2015 and 2016.

Another Paul Nicholls-trained horse – Silviniaco Conti – has won the race twice, in 2012 and 2014.

Breeders’ Cup Tips

2018 Breeders’ Cup Preview

The highlight of the American racing calendar is almost upon us, as Churchill Downs gears up to stage the 35th Breeders’ Cup. Over the two days, 14 Grade Ones will be up for grabs on both dirt and turf and the successful horses will win themselves a share of the massive, $30m Breeders’ Cup prize pot.

Juveniles take centre-stage on day one, in what Breeders’ Cup organisers are dubbing Future Stars Friday, with Soldier’s Call and Anthony Van Dyck heading out to Kentucky to try and beat their American counterparts.Classic Saturday features no less than nine Grade Ones and all eyes will be on John Gosden, as Roaring Lion and Enable look to claim victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic and the Breeders’ Cup Turf respectively.

Breeders’ Cup Betting Tips

Four Grade One winners will lock horns in this contest, with Bellafina’s Chandelier Stakes victory looking like the best piece of form in the race. Serengeti Empress romped to a 20 length victory in the Grade Two Pocahontas Stakes here at Churchill Downs and looks open to further progression, but it’s another course winner who gets my vote.

After securing a lengthy victory in a six furlong Listed race on this dirt track, RESTLESS RIDER entered Grade One company for the first time in the Spinaway Stakes. Kenneth McPeek’s filly ran well from a wide draw in stall eleven, but couldn’t match Sippican Harbour for pace in the closing stages of that seven furlong contest.

Stepping up to eight-and-a-half furlongs worked a treat for Brian Hernandez’s mount at Keeneland, as Restless Rider tackled Breeders’ Cup rival, Reflect in the Grade One Darley Alcibiades Stakes. This time, McPeek’s charge was handed a kind inside draw and she made the most of it, hitting the front rounding the turn and Hernandez could afford to ease his mount down in the final 100 yards and still win by a comfortable margin.

Restless Rider has landed a nice draw in stall four. Serengeti Empress, who’s drawn one from the rail, could give the selection a lovely toe into the race and Hernandez could find himself in the perfect position as the field turn to face the winning post.

Day Two – Saturday 3rd November

Many of the names in this Grade One will be familiar to British fans, with Freddie Head’s Polydream leading the betting ahead of the likes of Expert Eye, Gustav Klimt and One Master. None of the raiders at the head of the field, however, are proven over a mile and – while I’m finding it hard to get the image of I Can Fly powering home to almost snatch the QEII away from Roaring Lion out of my head – I fancy OSCAR PERFORMANCE will outshine his European adversaries.

Bryan Lynch’s charge is the highest-rated horse in the field and has claimed four Grade Ones on home soil. His most recent top-level success came at Woodbine in September, where he comfortably saw off a field containing 166-rated Lord Glitters to claim the $282k first prize.

At last year’s Breeders’ Cup, Oscar Performance finished well down the field in the mile-and-a-half Turf. Dropping down in trip has clearly done the trick for Lynch’s classy four-year-old and I fancy he will teach his European counterparts a lesson.

The Breeders’ Cup World Championships

The Breeders’ Cup was first held in 1984 as a one-day meeting full of lucrative races, hosted at the now defunct Hollywood Park Racecourse in California. The meeting has since been expanded to two days, and is usually held at a different racetrack each year, although from 2008 until 2016 it was mostly held at the Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California.

Several top-class events are held over the Breeder’s Cup meeting, with the minimum prize fund for each race being $1 million.

Where is this year’s Breeders’ Cup?

This year’s Breeder’s Cup will take place at Churchill Downs for the first time since 2011. The event has also been held in recent years at the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, Keeneland, Santa Anita Park and Monmouth Park.

Churchill Downs

Churchill Downs is a highly-renowned thoroughbred racetrack at which the Kentucky Derby is held each year, and has been since the race’s first running in 1875. It also hosts the Kentucky Oaks, the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, the Stephen Foster Handicap and the Clark Handicap.

It is one of the largest-capacity racecourses in the world, with room for around 170,000 eager punters.

Notable Breeders’ Cup Winners

The Breeders’ Club Classic is one of the most notable races held at the event, and has only been won once by the same horse twice – Tiznow in 2000 and 2001. Only two non-North American horses have ever won this race – Invasor (Argentina) in 2006, and Black Tie Affair (Ireland) in 1991.

The second-most prestigious race run during the two days is the Breeders’ Cup Turf. Famed Irish trainer Aidan O’Brien had an amazing run of winners in this event, winning with High Chaparral in 2002 and 2003, St Nicholas Abbey in 2011, Magician in 2013, Found in 2015 and Highland Reel in 2016.

What are the next racing events?

November is packed with festivals and we’ve got a whole host of free tips for you. You can also see all of our racing tips for today.

Cambridgeshire Meeting Tips

Need some tips for this year’s Cambridgeshire Meeting? Our team of experts will have every race over the three days covered, providing readers with the betting suggestions for the various pattern races and handicaps, whilst reporting any breaking news pieces.

Jon Vine’s Ante-Post Tips

2019 Middle Park Stakes EARTHLIGHT GET 5/2 HERE
2019 Cheveley Park Stakes RAFFLE PRIZE GET 9/4 HERE
2019 Cambridgeshire Handicap Tips LORD NORTH e/w GET 11/1 HERE
PETRUS e/w GET 33/1 HERE

Brian’s Day Three Selections

1:50pm Royal Lodge Stakes PYLEDRIVER e/w GET 8/1 HERE
2:25pm Cheveley Park Stakes RAFFLE PRIZE GET 11/10 HERE
3:00pm Middle Park Stakes SISKIN GET 9/2 HERE
3:40pm Cambridgeshire Handicap JAZEEL e/w GET 14/1 HERE

2019 Middle Park Stakes Ante-Post Tips

Ger Lyon’s identified this race as the target for Siskin after the Phoenix Stakes and I don’t think he’ll have any problems dealing with the challenges posed by the Rowley Mile. However, considering how workmanlike his victory was on soft ground last time out, the weather forecast won’t fill Lyons and his team with much joy.

Andre Fabre, on the other hand, will be licking his lips at the prospect of soft ground and I think EARTHLIGHT could take all the beating when he makes his British debut in the Middle Park Stakes.

It’s been 20 years since Andre Fabre won the Middle Park Stakes. Lycius and Zieten claimed victory on the Rowley Mile in 1990 and ’92 respectively, and neither boasted the form Earthlight brings to Newmarket. Fabre hasn’t sent a runner to the Middle Park since Zieten’s triumph, so there must be little doubt in his mind that Earthlight will not only deal with the Rowley Mile, but that this son of Shamaradal will have too much pace and quality for his European rivals once again.

2019 Cheveley Park Stakes

In truth, this looks a fairly weak renewal of the Cheveley Park. Daahyeh is absent, Etoile will likely miss out and none of the probable runners outside the top two in the betting bring any sort of form that suggests they are up to Group One level. This really should be a walk in the park for RAFFLE PRIZE and she could be the best bet of the entire meeting.

Only Pinatubo, Mum’s Tipple and Threat boast a higher rating than Raffle Prize in the juvenile ranks here in Britain. Johnston’s filly is the highest-rated juvenile filly in the sport and there’s absolutely no reason to suggest she has reached her peak. Raffle Prize has run well on the Rowley Mile, won previously here at Newmarket and goes on any type of ground. She is, quite frankly, unopposable.

2019 Cambridgeshire Meeting Schedule

Day One – Thursday 26th September

2:00pm The Bonhams EBF Maiden Stakes (Plus 10 Race) (Class 4) 1m

2:35pm The Bonhams Nursery Handicap Stakes (Class 2) 1m

3:10pm The Bonhams Fillies’ Handicap Stakes (Class 3) 7f

3:45pm Tattersalls Stakes (Group 3) (Colts & Geldings) (Registered As The Somerville Stakes) 7f

4:20pm Jockey Club Rose Bowl Stakes (Listed Race) 2m

4:55pm Weatherbys General Stud Book Online Handicap (Class 2) 1m4f

5:30pm Molson Coors Handicap (Class 3) 1m

Day Two – Friday 27th September

1:50pm Tasleet British EBF Rosemary Stakes (Listed Race) (Fillies & Mares) (Class 1) 1m

2:25pm Princess Royal Muhaarar Stakes (Group 3) (Fillies & Mares) (Class 1) 1m4f

3:00pm Shadwell Rockfel Stakes (Group 2) (Fillies) (Class 1) 7f

3:35pm Shadwell Joel Stakes (Group 2) (Class 1) 1m

4:10pm Derrinstown British EBF Maiden Stakes (Plus 10 Race) (Class 4) 7f

4:45pm Mukhadram Godolphin Stakes (Listed Race) 1m4f

5:15pm Shadwell Farm Handicap (Silver Cambridgeshire) (Class 2) 1m1f

Day Three – Saturday 28th September

1:50pm Juddmonte Royal Lodge Stakes (Group 2) 1m

2:25pm Juddmonte Cheveley Park Stakes (Group 1) 6f

3:00pm Juddmonte Middle Park Stakes (Group 1) 6f

3:40pm bet365 Cambridgeshire Handicap (Heritage Handicap) (Class 2) 1m1f

4:15pm Blandford Bloodstock Maiden Fillies’ Stakes (Plus 10 Race) (Class 4) 7f

4:50pm British Stallion Studs EBF ‘Jersey Lily’ Fillies’ Nursery Handicap (Class 2) 7f

5:25pm Newmarket Journal Handicap (Class 2) 7f

Cambridgeshire Meeting Preview

Racing returns to Newmarket’s world-famous Rowley Mile at the end of the month, as flat racing headquarters stages their popular Cambridgeshire Meeting. A real ale Festival runs alongside the racing throughout the meeting, but it’s the on-track action that will draw a capacity crown to Newmarket over the three days and the ITV Racing team will be in place to capture all of the best racing.Read our full preview of this year’s Cambridgeshire Meeting…

Cambridgeshire Meeting Betting Tips

Tips will be available when the racing schedule is announced.

The Cambridgeshire Meeting

The Cambridgeshire meeting is a three-day festival raced at the home of British flat racing, Newmarket racecourse, hosted each September. Held on a Thursday through until a Saturday, the Cambridgeshire meeting is viewed as one of the major autumn festivals’s in the flat calendar, and is headlined by the ultra-competitive nine-furlong handicap, the Cambridgeshire.

Day 1

Over £1 million in prize-money is on offer across the three-days, which begins with a stellar card on the opening Thursday featuring a number of intriguing two-year-old contests. It stands as a pivotal day for the future Classic generation, where the Group Three Tattersalls Stakes over seven-furlongs is raced as the juvenile crop seek to position themselves ahead of the next season.

The two-mile Listed Jockey Club Rose Bowl over two-mile also features on the first day of the Cambridgeshire meeting and is viewed in many quarters as a possible pointer to a leading staying contender later in the campaign.

Day 2

Day two of Newmarket’s three-day autumn meeting is topped by a pair of fascinating Group Two contests for two-year-old fillies’ and the elder generation, respectively. The Shadwell Rockfel Stakes, for juvenile fillies’, is a seven-furlong race that is widely-regarded as one of the premier trials for the 1000 Guineas the following year. In 2014, the Godolphin-owned Lucida won the Rockfel before going mightily close to winning the next season’s second Classic.

Later in the card is the Group Two Shadwell Joel Stakes for horses aged three and older. It is a significant one-mile contest that sees a number of the division’s leading contenders do battle before targeting premier end of season engagements – most notably at British Champions Day.

Day 3 – Cambridgeshire Handicap

The third and final day of the Cambridgeshire meeting is without doubt the best of the week. Two Group One races and one of Europe’s biggest handicaps dominate an unmissable card. It is one of the biggest race-days of the season and routinely produces a star two-year-old colt and/or filly.

The Group One Cheveley Park Stakes is a contest for two-year-old fillies’ raced over Newmarket’s straight six-furlongs. It is the first of two major trials for the following year’s Classic races, which are raced on the same Newmarket Rowley Mile course. The next is the Group One Middle Park Stakes, this time for two-year-old colts over six-furlongs. The race is renowned for producing both milers and sprinters of the future. In 2012, Reckless Abandon won the Middle Park before embarking on a solid career in the sprinting sphere.

The three-day meeting is built towards the mouth-watering 1m1f Cambridgeshire handicap, which sees 35 horses aged three and older engage in a thrilling cavalry charge down the Rowley Mile. First run in 1839, the Cambridgeshire stands as part of the famous ‘Autumn Double’, alongside the Cesarewitch which is run each October over 2m2f.

The Cambridgeshire is the ultimate horse race in that it boasts excitement, adrenaline and drama as the very best one-mile handicappers go toe-to-toe on the world famous Rowley Mile for a share of the lucrative prize-money on offer.

Newmarket Racecourse

The Rowley Mile

The Cambridgeshire is held in such high-regard due to the unique test that Newmarket hosts. The settings exclusive undulating downhill nature forces its runners to possess good balance, speed and agility to match its demands. The straight mile is set at a gradual descent until the one-furlong pole where there is a significant dip before a steady climb to the finishing line.

Newmarket’s hidden undulation 200 yards can catch many horses off-guard, ultimately costing them a winning chance. Such a layout of a course ensures thrilling race-day excitement for spectators as Europe’s leading thoroughbred horses seek glory at Britain’s finest flat racing venue.

Add to this the immense horse racing history that surrounds Newmarket, which includes the National Horse Racing Museum, National Stud and world famous Tattersalls sales ring, then it makes for an incredible three days of sport. Newmarket racecourse is home to nine of Britain’s 32 Group One races throughout the campaign, making it the centre-point of British flat racing.

Famous Cambridgeshire Handicap Winners

Several horses have succeeded in winning the Cambridgeshire Handicap twice, with four mounts winning in consecutive years. Unusually, Rambo’s Hall won the race in 1989 as a four-year-old and again in 1992 as a seven-year-old, beating many much younger horses. This handicap race is often prone to surprise results, such as when Dolphin Vista won in 2017 with a starting price of 50/1.

BetVictor Gold Cup Tips

2018 BetVictor Gold Cup Preview

Preview unavailable at this time.

BetVictor Gold Cup Betting Tips

Our expert’s tips will be available when markets open.

The BetVictor Gold Cup

One of the most eagerly anticipated and hotly contested handicaps on the jumps racing calendar is undoubtedly the BetVictor Gold Cup (formerly known as the Paddy Power Gold Cup).

Run over a distance of two and a half miles on the old course at the hallowed Cheltenham track, this race brings together battle hardened handicappers with younger, unexposed horses in their second season over fences. The clash produces a fantastic spectacle, and is always one of the keenest betting heats of the season.

This event came into being in 1960, and has been run at Cheltenham Racecourse ever year since. It has had a number of sponsors, originally being sponsored by the brewery Mackeson, famous for their milk stout alcoholic beverage. BetVictor took over from PaddyPower as the sponsor of the race in 2016.

The November Meeting

While not quite as exciting as March’s Cheltenham Festival, the November Meeting is one of the most popular events in the UK National Hunt Racing calendar. Held over three days in the middle of November, the meeting typically commences on the Friday and ends on the Sunday.

The BetVictor Gold Cup is the feature race on the second day of the festival, which has now come to be known as ‘BetVictor Gold Cup Day’.

Cheltenham Racecourse

The long-established Cheltenham Racecourse is viewed as one of the most important racecourses for National Hunt racing in the UK, and of course is most famed for March’s annual festival. There are several more important meetings annually at Cheltenham, of which ‘The November Meeting’ is one.

There are two courses at Cheltenham, the ‘old course’ and the ‘new course’. The BetVictor Gold Cup is run over the old course over a distance of two miles, four furlongs and 110 yards.

Notable BetVictor Gold Cup Winners

Perhaps the best winner of the race in over fifty years of its history was the 2008 victor Imperial Commander. He stormed up the hill that day to a two length victory over the Queen’s horse Barber Shop, but maybe few could foresee his rise through the ranks over the next couple of seasons, culminating in a magnificent win in the 2010 Gold Cup at the Cheltenham festival. Back in second that day was none other than the mighty Denman, in one of the most thrilling Gold Cups in years.

Plenty of horses have won the race twice, most recently Cyfor Malta in 1998 and 2002. It was a race that was farmed by Martin Pipe in his heyday, and he leads the most successful trainers in the race with eight wins. Lady Cricket, Shooting Light and Cyfor Malta rattled off three consecutive wins for Pipe between 2000 and 2002. Martin Pipe’s son David has also won the race since his father retired, his Great Endeavour was successful in 2011 when ridden by Timmy Murphy.

Coral-Eclipse Tips

Looking for tips for this year’s Coral-Eclipse? Our expert have the ante-post market covered and will update their previews as we get closer to the race, which takes place at Sandown on Saturday 6th July.

2019 Coral-Eclipse Tips

Jon’s Ante-Post Tips MAGICAL GET 7/1 HERE

Three-year-olds may have come out on top in three of the past four editions of the Coral-Eclipse, but I’m finding it very difficult to weight up Circus Maximus and I wouldn’t want to back him at such a short price. Enable will likely be pushed into an odds-on price when Frankie Dettori is declared in the saddle. There was, however, only three-quarters of a length between her and MAGICAL at the Breeders’ Cup and, with race-fitness and ground in her corner, I fancy Aidan O’Brien’s filly could turn the tables on Enable at the weekend.

Eclipse Stakes (Coral-Eclipse)

Founded in 1886, the race was established after a famous 18th century horse named Eclipse who won all 18 of his outings throughout 1779 and 1780. The first running of the contest was won by Bendigo and at the time was ranked as Britain’s richest ever horse race with a prize-pool of £10,000.

Since then, the Eclipse has developed into one of the most highly-regarded races of the campaign and was enhanced further by the sponsorship from bookmaking giant Coral in 1976. Coral’s support has helped attract some of the world’s best racehorses to Sandown each July as the contest’s purse continues to grow year-on-year.

The race has a rich history of winners. The likes of Mill Reef, Brigadier Gerard, Sadlers Well and Dancing Brave have all graced the Sandown turf on route to cementing legendary careers. It is evidence to the strength that this ten-furlong contest is held across Europe with some of the continent’s leading operations regularly making the trip to Britain in search of engraving their name on the rich list of honours.

Famous Coral-Eclipse Winners

2009 – SEA THE STARS

The Investec 2000 Guineas and Epsom Derby winner came into the Coral Eclipse seeking to add another Group One title to his name, and John Oxx’s star didn’t disappoint supporters as the Cape Cross entire battled to a one length victory over Rip Van Winkle.

Despite meeting a wall of horses as the three trailblazers ahead of the Irish star came to the end of their respective tethers, jockey Mick Kinane pulled out his charge from potential trouble and was forced to send his dual-Classic winning partner for home earlier than he would have wanted.

Aidan O’Brien’s Rip Van Winkle came to win the race and avenge defeats behind Sea The Stars in both Classics; but the Galileo colt would find Oxx’s superstar too strong once again, and Sea The Stars found plenty for his rider’s urgings to hold off the Ballydole charger and collect another big prize with a one length winning margin.

Further Group One success would follow for Sea The Stars who would go on to collect further wins in the Juddmonte International, Irish Champion Stakes and Arc in a memorable campaign before retirement.

Sandown Park Racecourse

Sandown Park racecourse is situated just a 25-minute train journey from London, making it a hugely popular venue for the casual racegoer. The Coral Eclipse meeting is renowned for being a day of top-class flat racing as well as a fantastic social occasion.

Attendees are accustomed to rubbing shoulders with many celebrities as they flock to the track in search of witnessing a great day of British horse racing tradition. Many of the sporting sphere’s biggest profiles also descend upon the Surrey track in early July as the Eclipse headlines horse racing’s calendar.

It is not only a grand racing occasion but also a fantastic opportunity to showcase a mix of the best summer fashion. With the national exposure that the race attracts, those from the fashion industry seek to use the event as a platform for their work which enhances the overall star-power than Coral Eclipse day possesses.

It is this fine blend of Europe’s best thoroughbred racing, leading fashion and summer sunshine that makes the Eclipse at Sandown Park one of the outstanding racedays of the flat campaign. The meeting is not only a centrepiece for the racing and breeding industries, but it is an attraction for the wider public as horse racing breaks out into the mainstream media for a celebration of a race that dates back to 1886.

Who was Eclipse?

Eclipse was a legendary racehorse trained by Sullivan, who won all 18 of his career starts between 1769 and 1770. Such was the power and presence of Eclipse, eight of his victories were walkovers, with the other entrants in the race refusing to start fearing an embarrassing defeat.

Such was Eclipse’s supremacy, the phrase Eclipse first and the rest nowhere was coined during his time on the track. This idiom is still used commonly in Britain and America sport today, with Eclipse’s name replaced my another dominant figure in the sport in question.

Not only was the Coral-Eclipse named in the horses’ honour, but French course Maisons-Laffitte have hosted the Prix Eclipse every season since the late 1880’s, with the American Horse Racing Authorities naming their annual awards after the great Eclipse.

Coral-Eclipse Memories

Only seven horses have ever won the Coral-Eclipse (or Eclipse Stakes) more than once, and each time this has happened it has been achieved in successive years.

The first horse to do this was Orme, winning in 1892 and 1893. Orme also won the Middle Park and the Dewhurst Stakes (both held at Newmarket).

The other mounts to have won the Coral-Eclipse twice are Buchan (1919, 1920), Polyphontes (1924, 1925), Mtoto (1987, 1988) and, most recently, Halling (1995, 1996).

Upcoming Festivals

There are plenty more major festivals coming up this July, check out our tipsters predictions and racing previews ahead of the next meetings:

Dubai World Cup Tips

Find our expert’s betting tips and preview for the 2019 Dubai World Cup at Meydan Racecourse.

2019 Dubai World Cup Preview

You’ll find our preview of the 2019 World Cup in February please check back then.

Dubai World Cup Tips & Predictions

There are no tips available at this time.

Dubai World Cup

A thoroughbred horse race first run in 1996, the Dubai World Cup is part of a one-day racing event that consists of nine races in total. The event is held on an annual basis at the Meydan Racecourse in Dubai, part of the United Arab Emirates.

With a staggering prize pot of around $10 million, the Dubai World Cup attracts the leading owners, trainers, riders and racehorses from all four corners of the globe.

The World’s Richest Horse Race

For many years the Dubai World Cup was known as the richest horse race in the world, a title it first earned in 2010 when the prize money topped $10 million. It lost this title in 2017 though, with the inauguration of the Pegasus World Cup in Florida, USA.

Meydan Racecourse

Meydan Racecourse in Meydan City, Dubai, opened in 2010. It replaced the former Nad Al Sheba Racecourse, which had been open since 1986. The Dubai Cup transferred from Nad Al Sheba to Meydan upon the new park’s opening.

Meydan originally had an artificial, all-weather surface but this was replaced in 2015 by dirt due to high maintenance costs and pressure from North American participants. Because of the heat of Dubai the course is usually in firm condition.

Notable World Cup winners

No horse has ever won the Dubai cup on more than one occasion. The course record at Meydan is held by Thunder Snow (2018 winner) at 2:01.38. On the synthetic track the course record was 2:01.61 achieved by African Story in 2014, and at the previous Nad Al Sheba Racecourse Dubai Milennium held the record of 1:59.50, set in 2000.

The most successful trainer at the Dubai Cup is Sareed bin Suroor, with eight wins.

Dublin Racing Festival Tips 2019

Join us for free tips and analysis of every race at the 2019 Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown.

Race

2019 Unibet Irish Gold Cup Tips

It’s no surprise to see Kemboy sit atop the betting after that seven-length triumph at Christmas. I, however, still have my doubts as to whether he genuinely is a top-class stayer and Willie Mullins charge won’t be allowed to dictate the race this time around. Gigginstown will be out for revenge and they will try to put the favourite off his game, leaving the door open for ROAD TO RESPECT – who, for me, remains the best staying-chaser in Ireland today – to pick up the pieces and win the Unibet Irish Gold Cup.

After cruising to victory in the JNWine Champion Chase on his reappearance, much was expected of Noel Meade’s stable star in the Savills Chase. Sean Flanagan looked cool and composed under his lucky yellow cap near the rear of the field, but a series of unfortunate events followed, with Road To Respect slipping up twice as the field turned for home.

Day 2 Race-By-Race Tips

Sir Erec made a good impression when beating Tiger Tap Tap at this venue over Christmas; but COEUR SUBLIME (13/2, Unibet) could be worth siding with again having looked set to win the Grade Two Knight Frank Hurdle here on Boxing Day when falling at the last.

Gordon Elliott’s Elusive Pimpernel gelding won on the flat for Peter Fahey prior to joining this yard, and he made the perfect transition to hurdling when beating Our Legend at Down Royal, scoring by just over one length.

More Day 2 Tips

Klassical Dream and Vision D’honneur may be unexposed and will be gaining a couple of pounds at the weights, but ARAMON has the form in the bag and experience on his side. I expect him to claim victory at Leopardstown on Sunday before a bold bid in the Supreme.

True, he did finish third behind Quick Grabbim and Triplicate in the Royal Bond, but his victories either side of that have been excellent. Especially his most recent triumph in the Future Champions at Leopardstown, where Ruby Walsh held his mount up at the rear for much of the race before finding some clear air on the run to the last. Sancta Simona jumped it the better, but Aramon had plenty of gas left in the tank, bolting up to win by six lengths.

2019 Dublin Racing Festival Schedule

Day one’s card kicks off with a bang, as a field of promising staying hurdlers take part in the Grade One Nathaniel Lacy & Partners Solicitors Novice Hurdle. We then have a double-header of two mile chases to enjoy, with the Grade Two Dublin Chase leading perfectly into the Arkle Novices’ Chase, a race which could see Mengli Khan and Le Richebourg renew rivalries once again. Full schedule here…

The Dublin Racing Festival

Last year saw the inaugural Dublin Racing Festival hit our screens and the meeting was an unprecedented success. Leopardstown racecourse outdid themselves once again, displaying the best in Irish music, culture and, of course, racing.

Irish National Hunt racing’s elite will once again travel to Leopardstown for two days of scintillating action between the 2nd and 3rd of February. Prize money for all seven of the Grade Ones and many of the surrounding contests have been boosted, so there’s plenty for viewers to look forward to during this year’s Dublin Racing Festival.

Dubling Racing Festival Schedule

See the full schedule of races for the 2019 festival:

Saturday 2nd February

TIME RACE
12:50 Nathaniel Lacy & Partners Solicitors Novice Hurdle
1:25 Ladbrokes Dublin Steeplechase
2:00 Frank Ward Solicitors Arkle Novice Steeplechase
2:35 Matheson Handicap Steeplechase
3:10 BHP Insurance Irish Champion Hurdle
3:45 Ladbrokes Hurdle
4:20 Goffs Future Stars (C & G) I.N.H. Flat Race

Sunday 3rd February

TIME RACE
12:40 Irish Stallion Farms EBF Paddy Mullins Mares Handicap Hurdle
1:15 Tattersalls Ireland Spring Juvenile Hurdle
1:50 Chanelle Pharma Novice Hurdle
2:25 William Fry Handicap Hurdle
3:00 Flogas Novice Steeplechase
3:35 Unibet Irish Gold Cup
4:10 Abbey International Leopardstown Steeplechase
4:40 Coolmore N.H. Sires Irish EBF Mares I.N.H. Flat Race

York Ebor Festival Tips 2020: Your Tipping Guide To August’s Big Horse Racing Meeting

Looking for this year’s York Ebor Festival tips? You’ve come to the right place. Our team of experts will provide you with tips for every race on each of the four days at York, along with ante-post angles, news pieces and betting updates ahead of the week’s major races!

York Ebor Festival Day Four Tips

Time Race Our Tip Place Bet
1:50pm  Sky Bet & Symphony Group Strensall Stakes  Beringer Place Bet
2:25pm  Sky Bet Melrose Handicap  Bodyline Place Bet
3:00pm  Sky Bet City Of York Stakes  San Donato Place Bet
3:35pm  Ebor Handicap  Pondus Place Bet
4:10pm  Julia Graves Roses Stakes  Lauded Place Bet
4:40pm  Sky Bet Handicap  Cape Cavalli Place Bet
5:10pm  Sky Bet Apprentice Handicap  Wonderwork Place Bet

The York Festival closes on Saturday where there are certain to be a wide range of Ebor tips on day 4 of the York Ebor Festival. Favourites have a terrible recent record in the feature race and the early market leader is impressive Ascot winner Fujaira Prince. There has also been support for the William Haggas-trained Hamish and Alan King’s Trueshan. Jane Chapple-Hyam won the Ebor in 2006 with 100-1 outsider Mudawin. Her ex-husband Peter has designs on the prize this year with Old Newton Cup winner Deja.

The last three-year-old to win the Ebor was Mediterranean in 2001 and they were excluded from the race from 2019. This age group will contest the valuable Melrose Handicap over the same distance, one mile and three-quarters. The Group 2 City Of York Stakes over seven furlongs and the Group 3 Strensall Stakes over a mile will also be popular for York bets on a thrilling finale to York Festival week.

York Ebor Festival 2020

The 2020 York Ebor Festival will take place over four days from Wednesday 22nd to Saturday 25th August at York Racecourse. The popular summer fixture goes ahead behind closed doors, in line with Government advice due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The Ebor Festival meeting carries the name of Europe’s richest handicap race on the flat which is the highlight on the final day.

The Group 1 Juddmonte International kicks off the Group 1 action on Day One, a race won by racing legend Frankel in 2012. The Yorkshire Oaks is the feature event on Thursday while the sprinters take centre stage for the Nunthorpe Stakes on Friday. Enable, Love and Battaash are all expected to make an appearance at this year’s York Festival. 

York Races

The Juddmonte International regularly attracts some of the best middle-distance horses in training. Aidan O’Brien equalled Sir Michael Stoute’s record six winners in the race when Japan edged out Stoute’s Crystal Ocean in a thrilling finish in 2019. The race was famously won by the brilliant Frankel in 2012 while other notable winners include Authorized (2007), Sea The Stars (2009) and Roaring Lion (2018).

Stoute is also leading trainer in the history of the Yorkshire Oaks with nine winners, although his most recent was Quiff back in 2004. Enable won this race as a three-year-old in 2017 and returned to win it again at the age of five last year. Aidan O’Brien’s Love is certain to be feature in plenty of York racing tips, a brilliant winner of the 1000 Guineas at Newmarket and the Oaks at Epsom.

Friday’s Nunthorpe Stakes is one of the most prestigious sprint races in the calendar. Battaash is dominating the sprint division this season and is on course to follow up last year’s success. The son of Dark Angel has yet to be tested this season with a smooth victory in the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot and a record-breaking fourth success in the King George Stakes at Goodwood.

The Ebor Handicap is the big betting race of the York festival and takes place over a mile and three-quarters on Saturday. Prize money reached a staggering £1million for the Ebor in 2019 with three-year-olds no longer allowed to enter. The last twelve Ebor favourites have all been beaten with 16-1 shot Mustajeer claiming the prize 12 months’ ago. He continued a good run in the race for Irish-trained horses with five winners in the past 11 years.

York Racing Tips

You can enjoy our free York Racing Tips through the main page by clicking the links on our easy-to-follow layout. Our free York tips are calculated to provide you with the best value bets on offer, all updated with the best available odds and linked to the relevant bookmaker site.

We also provide previews and analysis of all the top York races from our experienced team of racing experts. We will have our York tips online 24 hours ahead of post time but are always mindful of going changes, non-runners and other factors that affect our predictions. The day’s best bets have a short explanation for each selection and there is also a handy guide on how we pick our York best bets.

York Betting Offers

As always, Racing Tips will be bringing you blanket coverage for the York Festival meeting. Our popular NAP of the day and Daily Double will be backed up by the Daily Treble and Lucky 15. Our Lucky 15 selections are picked in order to maximise your chances of a winning return. We firmly believe that the big win is the ultimate prize so we give special attention to our horse racing accumulator tips.

We will also have our free big race previews with odds boosts and special York bookmaker offers. New customers can click direct through Racing Tips to take advantage of sign-up bonuses throughout the York Ebor Festival. Bookmakers will be offering daily price boosts and enhanced each-way betting on the big York handicaps. If there is a special bookmaker offer for York races, we will make sure you hear about it on Racing Tips.

York Free Bets

The York Festival is a great time to be opening a new betting account. Bookmakers will be making their usual array of special bet offers and York free bets across the four day meeting. We will display the best offers on our dedicated free bets page.

William Hill York offers include £30 in free bets when you open a new account and bet £10. The free bets are paid as 2 x £15 bets with a 30-day expiry. Sky Bet are one of the leading sponsors at this year’s York Ebor Festival and will provide new customers with £20 in free bets for a £5 initial stake. Betfred are offering £40 in free bets for a £10 opening wager while new customers to the Tote can have a risk-free £10 bet on York races with losses returned as a cash bet. 

New customers can earn themselves up to £100 in free bets with Bet365 who will match your initial deposit, provided that the bets are settled within 30 days. Importantly, you do not need to rush back in to place your free bets before they expire. Your free bets will remain available to you, provided your account is not inactive for 90 consecutive days.

 

York Ebor Festival 2020 Frequently Asked Questions

Is York Ebor Festival going ahead?

Yes, the 2020 York Ebor Festival is going ahead as planned but there will be no spectators as a retult of government restrictions over coronavirus.

What date is the York Ebor Festival?

York Ebor Festival 2020 is scheduled for Wednesday, 19th August to Saturday, August 22.

Where is the Ebor Festival?

The 2020 Ebor Festival takes place at York Racecourse which is situated in the middle of the historic city of York.

What is the best enclosure at Glorious Goodwood?

The Premier Enclosure is located around the County Stand  and offers viewing lawns in full view of the winning post

Can you buy tickets for Ebor Festival 2020?

No. The York Ebor Festival 2020 is closed to the public due to the coronavirus pandemic.

York Ebor Festival Day One Tips

Time Race Our Tip Place Bet
1:45pm  Skybet & Symphony Group Stakes  Arecibo Place Bet
2:15pm  Tattersalls Acomb Stakes  Gear Up Place Bet
2:45pm  Skybet Great Voltigeur Stakes  Juan Elcano Place Bet
3:15pm  Juddmonte International Stakes  Magical Place Bet
3:45pm  Sky Bet Stakes  Indianapolis Place Bet
4:20pm  Sky Bet Sprint Handicap  Pink Sands Place Bet
4:50pm  Sky Bet Nursery  Toussarok Place Bet

The York Festival opening day features the Juddmonte International and a potential repeat of the Eclipse Stakes clash between Ghaiyyath and Enable. If Godolphin’s front-runner can repel his old rival, he may still have to face a late challenge from Royal Ascot winner Lord North in what promises to be the race of the week.

The supporting card includes the Group 2 Great Voltigeur Stakes which could see a clear favourite emerge for the St Leger at Doncaster. Aidan O’Brien has a plethora of possible candidates here including winners and placed horses from both the English and Irish Derby. Santiago currently heads the St Leger ante-post market after finishing third in the Goodwood Cup behind Stradivarius.

York Ebor Festival Day Two Tips

Time Race Our Tip Place Bet
1:45pm  Skybet Lowther Stakes  Sacred Place Bet
2:15pm  Goffs UK Premier Yearling Stakes  Happy Romance Place Bet
2:45pm  Clipper Logistics Stakes  Top Rank Place Bet
3:15pm  Darley Yorkshire Oaks  Love Place Bet
3:45pm  Sir Henry Cecil Galtres Stakes  Bharani Star Place Bet
4:20pm  Sky Bet EBF Stallions Nursery  Mayaas Place Bet
4:50pm  British Stallions EBF Fillies Stakes  Dancing Vega Place Bet

The highlight of Day 2 at the York Festival is the Group 1 Yorkshire Oaks and the eagerly anticipated reappearance of Love. Aidan O’Brien’s filly romped to a nine lengths victory at Epsom and is now being aimed at the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. Waiting for her at Longchamp could well be Enable, already a two-time Arc winner but thought more likely to tackle Wednesday’s Juddmonte International Stakes on her way to Paris.

Ladies’ day at York will also feature some smart juvenile fillies in the Lowther Stakes. This race has been won by 1000 Guineas winners Harayir (1994), Cape Verdi (1997) and Russian Rhythm (2002) in the past. The competitive Clipper Logistics Handicap and Goffs UK Premier Yearling Stakes will also attract plenty of York tips on a day packed with top class racing.

York Ebor Festival Day Three Tips

Time Race Our Tip Place Bet
1:45pm  Sky Bet Handicap  Alfaatik Place Bet
2:15pm  Weatherbys Hamilton Lonsdale Cup  Dashing Willoughby Place Bet
2:45pm  Al Basti Equiworld Gimcrack Stakes  Mohawk King Place Bet
3:15pm  Coolmore Nunthorpe Stakes  Battaash Place Bet
3:45pm  EBF Convivial Maicden  Broomy Law Place Bet
4:15pm  British Stallions EBF Fillies Handicap  Virgin Snow Place Bet
4:50pm  Nationwide Accident Repair Services Handicap  Magnetised Place Bet

The Group 1 Nunthorpe Stakes tops the billing on day 3 of York’s Ebor Festival as Battaash bids to underline his claims to be champion sprinter. Charles Hills has produced him in excellent form to win decisively at Royal Ascot and Goodwood, most recently claiming a record fourth consecutive King George Stakes. His biggest danger may be Tim Easterby’s Art Power, yet to be seriously tested in three outings so far this season.

The Lonsdale Cup would appear to be a logical target for Ascot Gold Cup and Goodwood Cup runner-up Nayef Road. He gamely fought off Irish Derby winner Santiago at Goodwood but could not repel the late challenge of Stradivarius, a likely absentee at York. The Gimcrack Stakes and the Convivial Maiden Stakes could produce some exciting prospects for the big juvenile races this Autumn.

Epsom Derby Tips

Table Title

Jon’s Ante-Post Selections MADHMOON GET 14/1 HERE
Brian’s Derby Selection BANGKOK GET 9/1 HERE

2019 Epsom Derby Previews

Jon’s Derby Tips

Legendary trainer, Kevin Prendergast stated before the Guineas that MADHMOON’S performance in that Classic would dictate whether he would head to Epsom or not. Following a fourth-place finish, Prendergast stated that it would be all systems go for the Derby and this multiple Classic winning trainer wouldn’t send Madhmoon to Epsom if he wasn’t sure he was a stayer.

The track at Epsom should suit Madhmoon much better than the Rowley Mile. Leopardstown, like Epsom, is a turning left-handed track Prendergast’s charge showed a great liking to last season, comfortably seeing off Broome to win the Group Two Champion Juvenile Stakes back in September. Yes, Madhmoon has been defeated twice since then, but he was nabbed by a race-fit rival over seven furlongs on soft ground on his reappearance and that run in the Guineas was extremely encouraging.READ: Jon’s full Derby preview and a second 16/1 tip…

Brian’s Derby Tip

Improving Telecaster represents the Dante form, having ended Too Darn Hot’s winning record, and Hughie Morrison’s charge can post a big run; but BANGKOK had his measure when the pair met at Doncaster earlier in the season, and Andrew Balding’s charge stepped up on that performance to win the Bet 365 Classic Trial in impressive fashion next time at Sandown.

The Australia colt only needed to be pushed out by Sylvestre De Sousa on that occasion, and there is surely plenty of further improvement to come especially over this longer trip which ought to suit. He travelled powerfully at Sandown before showing a good turn of speed to readily assert, and he can make his presence felt for his in-form yard.

Strictly on the book, he does have something to find with a few of these, but he looked very progressive last time out and every chance he can find further improvement to feature prominently here.

2019 Epsom Derby Final Field

*Number. NAME (draw) rating, trainer, jockey, best current odds*

1. ANTHONY VAN DYCK (7) 118, Aidan O’Brien, Seamie Heffernan (7/1 BetVictor)

2. BANGKOK (12) 104, Andrew Balding, Silvestre De Sousa (9/1 Ladbrokes)

3. BROOME (8) 114, Aidan O’Brien, Donnacha O’Brien (9/2 Unibet)

4. CIRCUS MAXIMUS (5) 110, Aidan O’Brien, Frankie Dettori (20/1 BetVictor)

5. HIROSHIMA (3) 87, John Ryan, Brett Doyle (250/1 William Hill)

6. HUMANITARIAN (9) 95, John Gosden, Robert Havlin (100/1 Ladbrokes)

7. JAPAN (11) 111, Aidan O’Brien, Wayne Lordan (10/1 Unibet)

8. LINE OF DUTY (1) 114, Charlie Appleby, James Doyle (33/1 BetVictor)

9. MADHMOON (6) 113, Kevin Prendergast, Chris Hayes (11/1 Ladbrokes)

10. NORWAY (10) 104, Aidan O’Brien, Jamie Spencer (40/1 William Hill)

11. SIR DRAGONET (13) 115, Aidan O’Brien, Ryan Moore (3/1 Ladbrokes)

12. SOVEREIGN (4) 105, Aidan O’Brien, Padraig Beggy (100/1 Unibet)

13. TELECASTER (2) 115, Hughie Morrison, Oisin Murphy (11/2 Unibet)

Odds correct as of 31/5/19

2019 Derby Trials Results

Blue Ribband Trial (Epsom) CAPE OF GOOD HOPE GET 33/1 HERE
Ballysax Stakes (Leopardstown) BROOME GET 7/1 HERE
Classic Trial (Sandown) BANGKOK GET 16/1 HERE
Feilden Stakes (Newmarket) KICK ON No Derby entry…
Craven Stakes (Newmarket SKARDU No Derby entry…
2000 Guineas (Newmarket) MAGNA GRECIA No Derby entry…
Chester Vase (Chester) SIR DRAGONET GET 7/2 HERE
Dee Stakes (Chester) CIRCUS MAXIMUS GET 20/1 HERE
Lingfield Derby Trial (Lingfield) ANTHONY VAN DYCK GET 8/1 HERE
Derrinstown Stud Trial (Leopardstown) BROOME GET 7/1 HERE
Dante Stakes (York) TELECASTER GET 7/1 HERE
Cocked Hat Stakes (Goodwood) PRIVATE SECRETARY No Derby entry…

The Epsom Derby

The Epsom Derby is the blue riband race for the thoroughbred flat racing horse. Held at Epsom Downs each June, the Derby is a Group One over 1m4f for three-year-old colts and fillies. It is the fourth classic contest of the season, preceded by the 2000 Guineas and Epsom Oaks, and is the second leg of the Triple Crown.

The Derby is Britain’s richest race and the most prestigious of the five classic’s. A prize fund of over £1.3 million ensures the contest is the grandest of the season and one in which is viewed by millions around the world. It is widely-regarded as Britain’s biggest race-day and has become one of the nation’s greatest yearly occasions.

The Epsom Derby has welcomed some of the world’s very best thoroughbred racehorses throughout its rich history. The contest is not only a momentous occasion for horse and connections, but the Derby also stands as a pivotal contest for the breeding industry. Victors of the Epsom classic routinely move on to enjoy lucrative careers at stud as leading stallions. The great Galileo, winner of the 2001 Derby, has progressed to become Britain and Ireland’s top stallion. Fellow Derby victors Sea The Stars and New Approach have also cemented their position in the breeding ranks with many more expected to do so in the future.

Many of the world’s leading operations including Coolmore and Darley specifically target the Epsom Derby as the centre-point of a thoroughbreds breeding careers. Winning the lucrative 1m4f classic catapults a horse’s worth at stud and in turn increases the revenue each breeding establishment generates.

Winning the Epsom Derby is not a straightforward task, however. The Surrey setting is renowned for being one of Europe’s most unique tracks and requires a certain mixture of attributes to succeed.

The World’s Most Prestigious Race

Epsom Derby day is also a fantastic celebration of British tradition and fashion. A number of Royal family members, including Her Majesty The Queen, routinely make the trip to the Surrey track each year for the flat season’s premier race. Celebrities from all industries follow thousands of enthusiastic racegoers in experiencing a part of the day’s unparalleled atmosphere.

Every year the Epsom Downs are made open to the general public who can enjoy the leading horse racing action for free whilst indulging in the day’s traditional family fair entertainment. Record suggests over 100,000 in total descend upon Epsom for their showcase afternoon and each play a major role in cementing the Derby’s position as one of the country’s leading yearly events.

The incredible combination of Europe’s best thoroughbred flat racing, rich British tradition and leading fashion

and entertainment makes the Epsom a sporting event like no other. Its prominent position in the sports calendar showcases its importance as the three-year-old colts and fillies seek to cement further memories in the race’s long-standing history.

Famous Derby Winners

Epsom Derby winners tend to become well-known beyond the sphere of UK horse racing. The Epsom Derby was the most famous race that Shergar won (by a record ten lengths in 1981) before the horse’s ‘mysterious’ disappearance in 1983. Other well-known Derby winners include Nijinsky, Mill Reef, Grundy, The Minstrel and Commander in Chief.

Epsom Oaks Tips

Jon’s Ante-Post Oaks Tip PINK DOGWOOD GET 9/2 HERE
Brian’s Oaks Tips MAQSAD GET 7/1 HERE

Epsom Oaks Betting Tips

Jon’ Ante-Post Oaks Preview

Mehdaayih was impressive at Chester and Maqsad has been progressing very nicely this term. However, I’m not sure the form of either of their recent wins is going to hold up particularly well and, heading into the new campaign, my feeling was that the Irish fillies were quite a distance clear of their British counterparts.

Despite Joseph O’Brien concerns, I think Iridessa could improve for a step up in trip and, if Hermosa was to swerve the Irish 1000 Guineas to have a crack at the Oaks, she would almost certainly go off as the favourite. However, with money likely to come for Mehdaayih, PINK DOGWOOD could drift out to a more appealing twice and Aidan O’Brien’s filly looks the most solid ante-post option.

Brian’s Oaks Preview

Aidan O’Brien has another strong Oaks candidate in Pink Dogwood, but the Ballydoyle representative – one of four in the race – looks plenty short enough in the betting given her achievements.

Meanwhile the John Gosden-trained pair of Mehdaayih and Anapurna both have solid claims; but the ground could prove an unknown factor to both, and MAQSAD is taken to hand trainer William Haggas a first Oaks win since 2011.

There could be even more to come over this longer trip which looks sure to suit, and she ought to find further improvement; she can strike again to land a three-time and give her in-form handler some overdue Classic success.

Oaks Trials Winners

Fred Darling Stakes (Newbury) DANDHU No Oaks entry…
Pretty Polly Stakes (Newmarket) MAQSAD GET 8/1 HERE
1000 Guineas (Newmarket) HERMOSA GET 15/2 HERE
Athasi Stakes (Curragh) HAPPEN GET 7/2 HERE
Cheshire Oaks (Chester) MEDAAYHI GET 25/1 HERE
Lingfield Oaks Trial (Lingfield) ANAPURNA GET 10/1 HERE
Musidora Stakes (York) NAUSHA GET 25/1 HERE
Height Of Fashion Stakes (Goodwood) ALOE VERA No Oaks Entry…

2019 Epsom Oaks Confirmed Runners

*Number. NAME (draw) rating, trainer, jockey, best current odds*

1. ANAPURNA (3) 103, John Gosden, Frankie Dettori (6/1 bet365)

2. BLUE GARDENIA (11) 96, David O’Meara, Jamie Spencer (100/1 BetVictor)

3. DELPHINIA (13) 98, Aidan O’Brien, Seamie Heffernan (66/1 Ladbrokes)

4. FLEETING (10) 105, Aidan O’Brien, Wayne Lordan (40/1 BetVictor)

5. FRANKELINA (14) – , William Haggas, James Doyle (14/1 BetVictor)

6. LAVENDER’S BLUE (4) – , Amanda Perrett, Silvestre De Sousa (16/1 Ladbrokes)

7. MANUELA DE VEGA (1) 99, Ralph Beckett, Harry Bentley (12/1 Paddy Power)

8. MAQSAD (5) 109, William Haggas, Jim Crowley (7/1 bet365)

9. MEHDAAYIH (6) 105, John Gosden, Robert Havlin (3/1 BetVictor)

10. PEACH TREE (9) 103, Aidan O’Brien, Donnacha O’Brien (50/1 Paddy Power)

11. PINK DOGWOOD (9) 104, Aidan O’Brien, Ryan Moore (9/4 bet365)

12. SH BOOM (2) 90, Peter Chapple-Hyam, Tom Queally (200/1 BetVictor)

13. TARNAWA (7) 101, Dermot Weld, Chris Hayes (25/1 Paddy Power)

14. TAUTEKE (8) 90, Roger Varian, Andrea Atzeni (50/1 BetVictor)

Odds correct as of 30/5/19

The Epsom Oaks

One of the highlights of the Epsom Derby meeting, which takes place over two days in early June; the fillies’ Classic, the Investec Oaks spearheads the opening day of the top-class fixture.

The third of the season’s ‘Classics’ – and the second for fillies only – the race can be considered the middle leg of the Fillies’ Triple Crown, which also incorporates the 1000 Guineas and the St Leger. However, very few attempt the feat of winning all three contests.

The race is named after the Earl of Derby’s estate ‘The Oaks’ which is situated around four miles to the east of Epsom Downs. The race came about during a dinner party discussion held at the retreat where e the Earl and his friends planned a sweepstake for three-year-old fillies over a distance of what is now the Oaks distance of one and a half miles.

The Oaks was first run in 1779, one year earlier than the colts’ Classic ‘the Derby’, and the inaugural running of the race was won by Bridget. The race subsequently became one of the Britain’s leading events for three-year olds, retaining the name ‘The Oaks’.

While the Epsom renewal is the jewel in the Oaks Crown, the concept of the race has been copied several times over, with equivalent Oaks races being held in several European and worldwide countries, giving rise to the likes of the Irish Oaks, Preis der Diana (German Oaks), Prix de Diane (French Oaks) and even the Yushun Himba (Japanese Oaks).

There are also Oaks races at a regional level, with the likes of the Lancashire Oaks at Haydock, the Yorkshire Oaks at York, and the Cheshire Oaks at Chester.

Famous Winners of The Oaks

The Oaks has enjoyed a long and successful history, throwing up top class winners down through the years with recent big names including Taghrooda, Snow Fary, Ouija Board, User Friendly, Unite and Oh So Sharp from the 1980s to the present day.

Further back in time, the names of Sweet Solera, Musidora, Sun Chariot, Pretty Polly and Rockfel are just a few of the big names who feature on an illustrious roll-of-honour.

The leading trainer in Oaks history is the late Robert Robon, who saddled an impressive tally of 13 winners between 1802 and 1825; while the most successful trainer in recent history is the late Sir Henry Cecil, who won the race eight times in his career, saddling the likes of Oh So Sharp, Diminuendo, Snow Bride and latterly Light Shift, who gave the trainer his final success in the race in 2007.

The 2014 renewal of The Oaks was named after the legendary trainer following his death in 2013; with the race being won by John Gosden’s Taghrooda.

The Field

Contested by the best fillies across the UK, Ireland and France, the race can occasionally draw runners from further afield and raiders from countries such as Germany and Italy have descended on Epsom to mount their challenge for the premier fillies’ test.

Aidan O’Brien, Andre Fabre, Alain Du Royer Dupre, Dermot Weld and Christian Von Der Recke are some of the trainers who traditionally send runners into the Oaks field, and both Aidan O’Brien and Andre Fabre have each won the race in the past.

Epsom Downs Racecourse

The one and a half mile Epsom course represents a stern challenge for young horses, and its undulations have notoriously caught out many a runner in the Oaks. The course provides a unique test that is unrivalled and unmatched anywhere else, with runners racing uphill from the stalls until sweeping down and around the famous Tattenham Corner into the unevenly cambered straight.

2019 Grand National Tips

Join the experts at RacingTips for the world’s most famous handicap. Our tipsters managed to tip the winner at 14/1 last season and they have published their ante-post tips for this year’s feature race at Aintree.

2019 Grand National Ante-Post Tips

Brian’s Two Against The Field Rathvinden 12/1 HERE
Vintage Clouds 14/1 HERE
Jon’s Three Against The Field Vintage Clouds 14/1 HERE
Rock The Kasbah 20/1 HERE
Go Conquer 40/1 HERE

Brian’s 2019 Grand National Tips

Eleven-year olds won three consecutive renewals of the Grand National between 2012 and 2014, and it could prove significant that RATHVINDEN (12/1, William Hill) was kept out of trainer Willie Mullins’ Cheltenham Festival team to potentially spearhead the Closutton trainer’s assault on Aintree instead.

The Heron Island gelding might be an eleven-year old, but he remains a relatively lightly-raced horse for his age, and he could thrive for this longer test having seen off the challenge of Ms Parfois in last season’s National Hunt Chase.

He had been campaigning over shorter trips prior to that success, but he apeared to relish the marathon trip as he battled Anthony Honeyball’s charge to the line, prevailing by a half-length.

Fourth subsequently in the Growise Novices’ Chase behind The Storyteller at Punchestown, he wasn’t seen out again until readily beating Alpha Des Obeaux to win the Bobbyjo Chase at Fairyhouse.

Pleasant Company, who finished runner-up to Tiger Roll in last season’s Grand National had won the Bobbyjo Chase twelve months prior, and Rathvinden could be set to follow a similar path.

Initially allocated 10-10 from his 154 mark when the Grand National weights were announced, he is now rated 159 following that Bobbyjo Chase success, and he is another who looks weighted to post a big run.

Jon’s 2019 Grand National Tips

VINTAGE CLOUDS (14/1 William Hill) missed out on entering last year’s Grand National by a single place. The Trevor Hemmings-owned chaser may currently be sitting five places outside the top 40, but I’d be flabbergasted if he didn’t make the final cut and Sue Smith’s nine-year-old looks primed for a big run at Aintree.

Consistency is a wonderful quality for any staying chaser to possess and Vintage Clouds, although only winning twice over fences, has registered a hatful of impressive results. Smith’s charge placed in the Ultima at Cheltenham and the Welsh Grand National as a second-season novice last term, rounding off his campaign with another strong performance in the Scottish National at Ayr.

Victory on his reappearance back in November was followed by a second outing in the Welsh National, but an uncharacteristic mistake early on saw Vintage Clouds fail to finish the race. A decent break and a wind-op followed and Smith’s chaser returned with a bang at Cheltenham, finishing strongly to push Beware The Bear right to the line in the Ultima.

Vintage Clouds has strong form here at Aintree, claiming a maiden victory over fences by 18 lengths in October 2017. Smith’s nine-year-old has tons of National form in the book and looks extremely well-handicapped carrying just 10-4.

In 16 runs over fences, Vintage Clouds has finished outside the places on just four occasions. 14/1 remains an excellent each-way price.

Brian’s Day Two NAP

3:25pm JLT Chase (Registered As The Melling Chase) (Grade 1) 2m4f

Politologue and Min renew rivalry having finished 1-2 in this race twelve months ago; but while the ground may prove a shade quick for WAITING PATIENTLY (5/2, William Hill) it could be Ruth Jefferson’s star which shines brightest here with first-time cheekpieces applied.

The Flemensfirth gelding lost his unbeaten record over fences when he was brought down by the fall of Bristol De Mai in the King George VI Chase at Kempton; he subsequently travelled well for a long way at Ascot in the Ascot Chase behind Cyrname where he shaped as if he might have been in need of the run.

He didn’t have much of an answer to the bold-jumping front-runner in that contest, who kept up a strong gallop throughout and jumped with aplomb; but while well-beaten, he had Politologue two places behind him and having also beaten the same horse previously he could prove a tough nut to crack here if the ground doesn’t prove an inconvenience.

He should be much sharper now following that Ascot run which in essence was his first of the campaign following his early departure at Kempton, and we could see a different horse now to the one that was beaten last time.

Jon’s Day Two NAP

4:05pm Randox Health Topham Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 2m5f

Janika has finished second in three high-quality handicaps for Nicky Henderson this season and clearly has the class to cope with the Grand National obstacles. Top-weight hasn’t stopped Janika from challenging for victories so far this term, but only three horses have carried more than 11-00 to victory in the Topham since the turn of the Millennium, so it certainly pays to look towards the bottom half of the weights to find an each-way punt.Ultragold could bid to follow in the footsteps of Always Waining and claim a hat-trick of Topham titles and Colin Tizzard’s eleven-year-old shouldn’t be overlooked. Call It Magic jumped beautifully over these fearsome fences during the Becher earlier in the season and could be a big player should Ross O’Sullivan leave his nine-year-old in the running. While both hold significant appeal, BALLYHILL (12/1 William Hill) looks like he’s been laid out for a tilt at the Topham and Nigel Twiston-Davies’ chaser could be the best-handicapped runner in the field.

This reliable jumper has found a new level of consistency this term and a very taking triumph here at Aintree in December helped Ballyhill reach a career-high mark of 144. Since then, Twiston-Davies’ eight-year-old has finished third behind Aso and Siruh Du Lac in Grade Three Handicaps at Cheltenham. Ballyhill was then thrown in with Clan Des Obeaux in the Denman Chase and ran a decent enough race to pass the post third once again.

Twiston-Davies will have been pleased with that effort, as he had no real chance of challenging the King George winner and Ballyhill stuck to his task well. The team decided to skip an outing at the Cheltenham Festival in favour of an appearance at Aintree and, with just 10-6 on his back, Ballyhill returns to Merseyside with serious winning claims.READ: Jon’s tips for every race on day two at Aintree…

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Grand National Trends

No race captures the imagination of the general public year after year quite like the Grand National.

Run over a gruelling 4 miles and 514 yards, with 30 intimidating fences to jump, it provides a spectacle like no other, with around 40 runners each year bidding for glory. Trying to find the Grand National winner can feel like an impossible task. Thankfully, there are recurring trends which can help point us in the right direction.

Grand National Trends

AGE The prime age for the Grand National is between 8 and 11
WEIGHT Those weighted between 10-07 and 11-04 have a strong record
RATING Between 143 and 153
COURSE FORM Previous experience running at Aintree is important
DISTANCE FORM Winning form over three miles is a must
SEASONAL FORM Most National winners run at least 3 times during the season
CHELTENHAM EXPERIENCE Good form at the Cheltenham Festival is a big plus
GRAND NATIONAL EXPERIENCE Horses making their first start in the Grand National do best

The Grand National

The sporting universe will come to a standstill on Saturday afternoon, with the eyes of millions from around the world fixed on Aintree as the Merseyside venue hosts the Grand National.

Some of the horse racing’s greatest names have claimed victory in this most famous of races during its long, storied history and a high-quality army of challengers will be battling for the famous trophy in just over a weeks’ time.

This four-and-a-quarter-mile marathon is the most daunting punting puzzle on the calendar and finding the winner of Saturday’s race is almost as challenging as the National course itself.

Every year, horse racing fanatics spend hours on end ploughing through form figures and online forums, trying to get an edge on the layers. The bookmakers estimate that over £100 million will be gambled on the world’s most famous contest. So, if you’re fortunate enough to back the winner, you’ll earn legendary status with your friends and colleagues, along with a pocketful of profit!

Hong Kong International Races Tips

2018 Hong Kong International Races Preview

Our preview of the 2018 international races will be available in November.

Hong Kong International Races Betting Tips

Our expert tips will be available when the betting markets open.

Hong Kong Cup Tips

Hong Kong Mile Tips

Hong Kong Vase Tips

Hong Kong Sprint Tips

Hong Kong Cup

Of the fabulous foursome, the Hong Kong Cup is arguably the jewel in the crown, and the Group One contest takes place over a 2000 metre distance – around ten furlongs – for the race which is the richest race in the world over the trip.

First run in 1988, making it the oldest of the four races which make up the Hong Kong International Races, the race has progressed not only in distance – it was first run over 1800 metres – but also in prestige, opening its’ doors to international contenders the following year for runners from Australia and New Zealand.

From 1990, European runners were invited to participate; while following years saw first horses from the United States, and then Canada and Japan also invited to join the fray for the top-class prize.

The race has produced notable winners, over the years with the likes of A Shin Hikare, California Memory, Snow Fairy, Vision d’Etat, Fantastic Light and Falbrav all feature amongst a classy list of winners; while there is sure to be many more top-class winners in the years to come.

Hong Kong Vase

The third of the four top-class contests that make up the Turf World Championships, the Hong Kong Vase was first introduced into the line-up in 1994.

Taking place over the longest trip of 2,400 metres – 1.5 miles – the race wasn’t always a Group One contest, attaining that lofty status in 2000. Throughout its’ years to date, thee race has held a particular affinity for European raiders, and the late Clive Brittain won the race twice in succesive years with the high-class Luso.

There have been plenty of significant winners of this race over the years, many of whom have enjoyed plenty of international success with the likes of Highland Reel, Flintshire, Red Cadeaux, dual-winner Doctor Dino and Oujia Board all featuring on a star-studded roll-of-honour.

The Ivan Allan-trained Indigenous became the first Hong Kong-trained runner to win the Vase, taking the top-class prize in 1998.

Hong Kong Mile

First introduced in 1991, the 1600 metre – one mile – Hong Kong Mile contest is the second of the top-class quartet of races that make up the Hong Kong International Races meeting.

However, the classy contest was once known by a different title – the Hong Kong International Bowl – and took place over a distance short of one mile with a 1400 metre trip. However, the race took its new incarnation, changing its’ name and distance in 1999.

Having attained Group One status in 2000, the race carries a huge winners’ purse, and has produced such winners as the mighty Able Friend, Able One, three-time winner Good Ba Ba and Firebreak amongst others.

Hong Kong Sprint

The baby of the quartet, the Hong Kong Sprint is the most recent addition to the line-up, and the top-class dash held its’ first running in 1999, where it was contested over a trip of 1000 metres.

The richest race in the world over that distance up until 2006, the race changed in 2002 where it was awarded Group One status; although the race didn’t change in distance until 2006 when it was increased to its’ current trip of 1200 metres, or six furlongs.

Remaining as one of the richest sprints over the trip or shorter, the race is the final leg in the Global Sprint Challenge, which also includes races such as the Golden Shaheen at Meydan; the King’s Stand Stakes at Royal Ascot; the July Cup at Newmarket; and the Age Classic at Flemington.

History has shown a penchant for the race to throw up multiple winners of the race, with Falvelon, Silent Witness, Sacred Kingdom and Lord Kanaloa all capturing the top-class sprint on more than one occasion; while other notable winners include Peniaphobia and JJ the Jet Place.

Sha Tin Racecourse

Sha Tin is one of only two racecourses in the whole of the small territory of Hong Kong, the other being Happy Valley. Established in 1978, the course has capacity for 85,000 racegoers, and holds most of Hong Kong’s leading horse-races. Typical conditions for the course are dependent upon the weather.

Famous Winners

Three horses have won the event twice: Falvelon (2000, 2001), Silent Witness (2003, 2004), Sacred Kingdom (2007, 2009), Lord Kanaloa (2012, 2013) and Aerovelocity (2014, 2016). The course record of 1:07.80 was set in 2006 by the David Hall-trained Absolute Champion.

No horse has, as yet, won the Hong Kong Sprint and gone on to win the Global Sprint Challenge. The challenge itself was not run in 2018, but is hoping to resume in 2019.

Irish Champions Weekend Tips

Looking for tips during Irish Champions Weekend? Our expert tipsters will cover every race over the two days at Leopardstown, providing readers with their selections in huge races like the Matron Stakes and the Irish Champion Stakes.

Table Title

2019 Irish Champion Stakes Ante-Post Tips MADHMOON e/w GET 8/1 HERE
2019 Irish St Leger Tips CROSS COUNTER GET 7/2 HERE

2019 Irish Champion Stakes Tips

Aidan O’Brien clearly has a strong hand to play in this year’s Irish Champion Stakes. However, the chances of both running in the race seem quite slim. I’m hoping Japan will skip Leopardstown to prepare for the Arc, leaving Magical to head Ballydoyle’s squad. This would be, by some distance, the strongest field of challengers she has faced on Irish soil though, so I’d be keen to take Magical on and the one that stands out in opposition is MADHMOON (8/1 William Hill).After coming up just short in the Derby, this race would have been at the forefront of Kevin Prendergast’s thinking. The long-term weather forecast suggests the ground will come up favourably good and I feel Madhmoon still has untapped potential to fulfill over this ten-furlong trip. At 8/1, he’s the best ante-post bet in this year’s Irish Champion Stakes.

2019 Irish St Leger Tips

There’s a name closer to the head of the betting that simply cannot be overlooked and that’s reigning Melbourne Cup winner, CROSS COUNTER (7/2 Coral). After losing out to Stradivarius on both his starts this term, Charlie Appleby has decided to swerve another clash with the best stayer in the business and, away from John Gosden’s superstar, I fancy Cross Counter could be too strong for his rivals this weekend.

I’m hoping James Doyle will be able to replicate the nerveless ride he gave the ill-fated Sea Of Class in last year’s Irish Oaks, where he knew he was on the strongest stayer in the race and timed his late charge to absolute perfection.

Irish Champions Weekend Preview

While British fans are eagerly anticipating a fantastic afternoon of action on St Leger day at Doncaster, flat racing aficionados on the other side of the Irish Sea are in for a bumper couple of days on Irish Champions Weekend.

Capacity crowds are expected at Leopardstown on Saturday, and on the Sunday as the Curragh opens it’s gates. One Classic and five fantastic Group Ones will be up for grabs over the two days, along with a whole heap of other lucrative prize pots.

The highlight of the afternoon at Leopardstown on Saturday is the Irish Champion Stakes. Run over ten furlongs, many of Europe’s top horses have claimed victory in this Group One, with Dylan Thomas, Almanzor and Sea The Stars featuring on the illustrious roll of honour.

Before we get to the Champions Stakes, Leopardstown attendees will take in the Group One Matron Stakes, won last year by British fan’s favourite, Laurens. Surrounding the Group Ones there’s the Future Champions Stakes, the Boomerang Stakes and another Grouped contest run over a-mile-and-a-half.

Sunday’s card at the Curragh features four fantastic top level races, starting with the thrilling Flying Five Stakes sprint. Juvenilles will then get the chance to bolster their Guineas credentials, starting with the fillies in the Moyglare Stud Stakes, before the colts take to the track to contest the Vincent O’Brien National Stakes.

The Group One action on Irish Champions Weekend is drawn to a close by the Irish version of the St Leger. Unlike the British St Leger, older horses are free to take on the three-year-olds in the Irish St Leger, a fact which has led to some truly memorable showdowns, with greats like Yeats, Order Of St George and four-time winner, Vinnie Roe shining bright on the famous trophy.

Irish Champions Weekend Schedule

Day One (Leopardstown) – Saturday 14th September

3:20pm Ballylinch Stud Irish EBF Ingabelle Stakes (Listed) (2yo) 7f
3:50pm Irish Stallion Farms EBF “Petingo” Handicap (Premier Handicap) (3yo+) 1m5f
4:25pm KPMG Champions Juvenile Stakes (Group 2) (2yo) 1m
4:55pm Paddy’s Rewards Club Stakes (Group 3) (3yo+) 1m4f
5:25pm Coolmore Fastnet Rock Matron Stakes (Group 1) (Fillies & Mares) (3yo+) 1m
6:00pm Clipper Logistics Boomerang Stakes (Group 2) (3yo+) 1m
6:35pm QIPCO Irish Champion Stakes (Group 1) (3yo+) 1m2f
7:10pm Irish Stallion Farms EBF “Sovereign Path” Handicap (Premier Handicap) (3yo+) 7f

Day Two (Curragh) – Sunday 15th September

2:00pm Irish Stallion Farms EBF “Bold Lad” Sprint Handicap (Premier Handicap) (3yo+) 6f
2:35pm Moyglare “Jewels” Blandford Stakes (Group 2) (Fillies & Mares) (3yo+) 1m2f
3:05pm Derrinstown Stud Flying Five Stakes (Group 1) (3yo+) 5f
3:40pm Moyglare Stud Stakes (Group 1) (Fillies) (2yo) 7f
4:15pm Goffs Vincent O’Brien National Stakes (Group 1) (Entire Colts & Fillies) (2yo) 7f
4:50pm Comer Group International Irish St. Leger (Group 1) (3yo+) 1m6f
5:25pm Tattersalls Ireland Super Auction Sale Stakes (2yo) 6½f

Leopardstown Racecourse

Located just south of Dublin City Centre, Leopardstown racecourse has been one of the most popular venues for fans of both jumps and flat racing to flock to since opening in 1988.

Many tremendous race meeting take place at Leopardstown throughout the year. Over jumps, the Christmas Festival and the newly formed Dublin Racing Festivals are amongst the most popular fixtures on the National Hunt racing calendar. Leopardstown also plays host to the first day of Irish Champions Weekend during September, staging two fantastic Group One races on the level.

Curragh Racecourse

Curragh racecourse, simple called The Curragh, is one of Ireland’s most historic racetracks. Opened in the mid 1800’s, the Irish Derby was first staged here in 1866 and the Curragh soon became home to all five of the Classic race on Irish soil.

The Curragh underwent a major redevelopment in 2017, with a new grandstand and other racecourse facilities opening in time for the 2019 flat racing campaign to begin.