November 18 / 14.55 Cheltenham

14.55

Good To Soft

Paddy Power Games Handicap Hurdle (GBB Race)

  • Prize money: £15609
  • 2m 7f 208y
  • Class 2
  • 15 runners
ITV
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Paddy Power Games Handicap Hurdle (GBB Race)

Runners: 15 runners

Type: Hurdle Turf

Surface: Turf

Weather: Light rain

11/2 (Won)

  • Win: £3.25
  • Place: £1.60

Form: 32-431

Last run: 21 days

W: 12st 0lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 147

Form & Verdict
Went handicapping in January; placed over 2m4f last term at the Cheltenham (hung left on run-in, then rallied) and Aintree festivals; took the step up to 2m6f in his stride when clearcut winner at Galway (soft) three weeks ago; usually ridden by Jack Gilligan; up the weights again and not totally sure to be suited by 3m but he's reliable and highly progressive.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

0

4

28th Dec 2023

Yielding

2m 7f 80y

13:50 Leopardstown

Buddy One

11st 10lb

J: Jack G Gilligan

T: Paul John Gilligan

Good handicap form last season, third in the Martin Pipe and second to fellow Irish raider Fennor Cross at Aintree; improved in recent months when upped in trip, winning over 2m6f at Galway and 3m at Cheltenham; failed to cope with rise in class when last of five in the Hatton's Grace; faces less formidable opposition now and the longer trip will suit.

7/1

5th

1

3rd Dec 2023

Soft

2m 4f 70y

14:35 Fairyhouse

Buddy One

11st 12lb

J: Jack G Gilligan

T: Paul John Gilligan

C&D maiden winner who has climbed the handicap ladder since narrowly beaten in Thurles Grade 3 event in February, third in the Martin Pipe, second to fellow Irish raider Fennor Cross at Aintree; ran well in defeat at Galway and Listowel festivals and has improved again since upped in trip, winning over 2m6f at Galway and 3m at Cheltenham; vulnerable at this level.

12/1

1st

1

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Buddy One

12st 0lb

J: Jack G Gilligan

T: Paul John Gilligan

Went handicapping in January; placed over 2m4f last term at the Cheltenham (hung left on run-in, then rallied) and Aintree festivals; took the step up to 2m6f in his stride when clearcut winner at Galway (soft) three weeks ago; usually ridden by Jack Gilligan; up the weights again and not totally sure to be suited by 3m but he's reliable and highly progressive.

11/2

16/1

  • Place: £4.90

Form: 5P223- D

Last run: 231 days

W: 10st 2lb

8 yo Gelding

OR: 119

Form & Verdict
Best form and sole win (2021) is over fences but he ended last season with three places at about 3m as a hurdler (two novice events and a handicap); needs to improve on that form, including as he's 2lb out of the handicap, and his best efforts have been on good or good to soft.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

3rd

9

27th Jan 2024

Good

3m 0f 84y

Class 1

14:40 Doncaster

The Newest One

11st 0lb

J: Finn Lambert

T: Nigel Twiston-Davies

Winning chaser who belatedly got off the mark over hurdles in a Chepstow novice (2m7f, heavy; 11-8f); only seventh next time in a 3m Cheltenham handicap and he's not got the obvious profile for a race of this nature.

12/1

7th

6

1st Jan 2024

Soft

2m 7f 213y

Class 2

14:40 Cheltenham

The Newest One

10st 13lb

J: James Turner

T: Nigel Twiston-Davies

Chase win in 2021; kept to hurdling over about 3m last year, knocking on the door before he justified 11-8 favouritism by 19l in a novice at Chepstow (heavy) on latest outing; a career best is probably needed on this return to a handicap (off 7lb higher than when second here on penultimate start, under James Turner) but he needs respect.

6/1

8/1

  • Place: £3.00

Form: 1P/UF- C

Last run: 327 days

W: 12st 0lb

9 yo Gelding

OR: 147

Form & Verdict
Dual Grade 1 winner as a novice chaser and also took the 3m1f Grade 2 Cotswold Chase here in January 2022; latter is the only completion in his last five starts and he took a heavy fall when last seen on Boxing Day 2022; acts on soft; not seen over hurdles since March 2020 but he's thrown in judged on at least five chase efforts.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

4th

1

25th Jan 2024

Good

3m 1f 10y

Class 2

15:45 Huntingdon

Chantry House

12st 0lb

J: James Bowen

T: Nicky Henderson

Top chaser in his prime; has had some setbacks since latest win in early 2022 (first-time cheekpieces) but he crept into a late third back hurdling at Cheltenham (3m, soft) in November and perhaps heavy ground was just too taxing next time; not ruled out with cheekpieces refitted for the first time this season.

10/1

7th

1

9th Dec 2023

Soft

2m 7f 98y

Class 2

12:40 Sandown

Chantry House

12st 0lb

J: Nico de Boinville

T: Nicky Henderson

Acts on soft, unraced on heavy; very smart at his best as a chaser but completed only one of his last five runs in that sphere; his first run since last Boxing Day, and over hurdles since March 2020, came at Cheltenham (3m, soft) three weeks ago and it was promising, as he stayed on from the back for third of 15; thrown in on best chase efforts; one to take seriously.

5/2

3rd

2

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Chantry House

12st 0lb

J: Nico de Boinville

T: Nicky Henderson

Dual Grade 1 winner as a novice chaser and also took the 3m1f Grade 2 Cotswold Chase here in January 2022; latter is the only completion in his last five starts and he took a heavy fall when last seen on Boxing Day 2022; acts on soft; not seen over hurdles since March 2020 but he's thrown in judged on at least five chase efforts.

8/1

Form: 909-P2

Last run: 14 days

W: 10st 2lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 121

Form & Verdict
Left Gordon Elliott after some disappointing runs last winter; tongue tied for new yard this term when both pulled up in September and back-to-form second at Ayr (3m) two weeks ago; seemed in charge at the final flight in the latter, which may explain the resort to cheekpieces this time; peak efforts on good or good to soft.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

1st

15

25th Feb 2024

Soft To Heavy

2m 6f 147y

15:55 Naas

Noble Birth

10st 0lb

J: Daniel King

T: E McNamara

Two wins for Gordon Elliott; a couple of good runs at Ayr and Cheltenham in November; soundly beaten at Musselburgh last time; 2lb wrong and others preferred.

25/1

9th

12

4th Feb 2024

Good To Soft

2m 7f 180y

Class 2

15:00 Musselburgh

Noble Birth

10st 6lb

J: Conor McNamara

T: E McNamara

Tongue tied for new yard this term and back-to-form second at Ayr (3m) on second occasion, when he seemed in charge at the final flight; raced a bit freely up front in first-time cheekpieces (dispensed with today) at Cheltenham two weeks later but not disgraced; peak efforts on good or good to soft; place chance.

12/1

4th

13

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Noble Birth

10st 2lb

J: Conor McNamara

T: E McNamara

Left Gordon Elliott after some disappointing runs last winter; tongue tied for new yard this term when both pulled up in September and back-to-form second at Ayr (3m) two weeks ago; seemed in charge at the final flight in the latter, which may explain the resort to cheekpieces this time; peak efforts on good or good to soft.

16/1

Form: 10P-46 D

Last run: 27 days

W: 10st 7lb

10 yo Gelding

OR: 126

Form & Verdict
Not the force of old in form terms but prevailing by a short head in a top 3m handicap chase at Leopardstown last Christmas was easily his biggest payday; ran creditably in a Grade 3 four weeks ago and has a chance even on that form, but this is his first run over hurdles since 2018.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

3rd

23

27th Dec 2023

Yielding

3m 0f 100y

15:00 Leopardstown

Real Steel

10st 10lb

J: Conor McNamara

T: E McNamara

towards rear, headway but still plenty to do home turn, ran on well from last, went third towards finish

20/1

5th

9

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Real Steel

10st 7lb

J: Danny Mullins

T: E McNamara

Not the force of old in form terms but prevailing by a short head in a top 3m handicap chase at Leopardstown last Christmas was easily his biggest payday; ran creditably in a Grade 3 four weeks ago and has a chance even on that form, but this is his first run over hurdles since 2018.

16/1

6th

9

22nd Oct 2023

Heavy

3m 0f 0y

16:15 Limerick

Real Steel

10st 8lb

J: Conor McNamara

T: E McNamara

Won an ultra-competitive Paddy Power at Leopardstown last December; well held in Leopardstown Chase won by The Goffer, pulled up in Irish Grand National; beaten 20l in fourth behind Mars Harper at Listowel.

14/1

Form: /152P/ C

Last run: 611 days

W: 10st 13lb

9 yo Gelding

OR: 132

Form & Verdict
Won here in December 2020 and third in that season's Pertemps Final, both over 3m on the New Course; ran over fences two seasons back and has not been seen since pulled up here in March 2022; dropped 5lb for this reappearance but perhaps best watched this time.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

2nd

3

21st Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 84y

Class 3

14:35 Doncaster

Come On Teddy

11st 13lb

J: Cameron Iles

T: Tom George

took keen hold, held up in rear

6/1

6th

6

25th Jan 2024

Good

3m 1f 10y

Class 2

15:45 Huntingdon

Come On Teddy

10st 12lb

J: Jonathan Burke

T: Tom George

Close third in the Final at Cheltenham (3m, good to soft) in 2021; unknown quantity now, having been well held in two starts back from an absence, and dropped just 3lb for those defeats.

20/1

8th

5

1st Jan 2024

Soft

2m 7f 213y

Class 2

14:40 Cheltenham

Come On Teddy

11st 3lb

J: Jonathan Burke

T: Tom George

Probably acts on heavy; won here in December 2020 and third in that season's Pertemps Final, both over 3m on the New Course; missed last season and well beaten here on return in November (25-1); should have come on since that run but others have more pressing claims in this strong field.

10/1

Form: /22222 D

Last run: 60 days

W: 10st 3lb

8 yo Gelding

OR: 122

Form & Verdict
Runner-up on all five starts since rejoining Fergal O'Brien this season, over fences on last two occasions; stays well and acts on soft, but this race promises to be a bit too competitive.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

8

1st Feb 2024

Good To Soft

3m 1f 30y

Class 5

16:15 Wincanton

Polish

11st 12lb

J: Mr Tom Broughton

T: Fergal O’Brien

Kept finishing second last year after rejoining Fergal O'Brien, including on his chase debut (3m, soft); below par in his last two races (3m/3m6f) and may be found wanting on hunter chase debut.

12/1

Form: 113312 D

Last run: 21 days

W: 11st 0lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 133

Form & Verdict
In a solid spell from May onwards, including three good-ground wins but also placed on soft and heavy; wore cheekpieces on last two starts, showing career-best form on latest when strong-finishing second of 20 over C&D; up another 3lb but will probably get in the shake-up.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

5th

2

10th Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 52y

Class 3

13:30 Newbury

Judicial Law

11st 10lb

J: Jonjo O’Neill Jr

T: Jonjo O’Neill

Three good-ground wins last year (2m7f-3m2f) and fine second of 20 at Cheltenham (3m, good to soft) in October; below par at Cheltenham (3m, soft) in November last time out and perhaps he wants better ground, but he's shown promise on soft/heavy in the past and is not ruled out after a break.

9/1

8th

6

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Judicial Law

11st 0lb

J: Jonjo O’Neill Jr

T: Jonjo O’Neill

In a solid spell from May onwards, including three good-ground wins but also placed on soft and heavy; wore cheekpieces on last two starts, showing career-best form on latest when strong-finishing second of 20 over C&D; up another 3lb but will probably get in the shake-up.

6/1

2nd

11

28th Oct 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

15:00 Cheltenham

Judicial Law

11st 2lb

J: Jonjo O’Neill Jr

T: Jonjo O’Neill

Rallied well to lead close home in first-time cheekpieces at Kelso (3m2f, good) last month and is now 5-14 over hurdles; needs to find something extra to overcome latest 3lb rise but enters calculations.

14/1

OUR TIP

Form: 10-171 D

Last run: 80 days

W: 11st 9lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 142

Form & Verdict
Had a fruitful summer with two wins on the Flat (2m/2m1f) and two over hurdles (3m/2m4f); all those were on good or good to yielding, whereas he was well beaten in his three Irish runs on soft or heavy, so that's the worry.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

9th

3

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Dartan

11st 9lb

J: James Smith

T: Matthew J Smith

Had a fruitful summer with two wins on the Flat (2m/2m1f) and two over hurdles (3m/2m4f); all those were on good or good to yielding, whereas he was well beaten in his three Irish runs on soft or heavy, so that's the worry.

14/1

12th

5

(12)

13th Oct 2023

Standard

1m 4f 0y

19:45 Dundalk (AW)

Dartan

9st 8lb

J: Ben Coen

T: Matthew J Smith

Dual-purpose sort had been in good form over the summer, winning twice over 2m on the Flat and twice over hurdles; below form on soft last time; might find this trip a bit sharp.

9/1

12th

22

(23)

24th Sep 2023

Yielding To Soft

2m 0f 165y

16:10 Curragh

Dartan

9st 4lb

J: Leigh Roche

T: Matthew J Smith

prominent, went second after 2f, led 4f out

66/1

Form: 12P153

Last run: 68 days

W: 10st 2lb

8 yo Gelding

OR: 113

Form & Verdict
Won twice over hurdles at Stratford (2m6f and 3m2f) this summer but he's an inconsistent sort, with more to prove on worse than good to soft; he's also 8lb out of the handicap.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

0

1

22nd Jan 2024

Good

3m 0f 217y

Class 4

15:20 Plumpton

Hunting Percival

12st 1lb

J: Freddie Gingell

T: Syd Hosie

Dual winner at Stratford last summer (2m6f/3m2f), latterly off today's mark; drops in grade after respectable fourth at Wincanton (3m, good to soft) on Boxing Day and will be suited by the forecast good ground here; high on the list.

8/1

4th

7

26th Dec 2023

Good To Soft

3m 0f 150y

Class 2

15:13 Wincanton

Hunting Percival

10st 11lb

J: Sean Houlihan

T: Syd Hosie

Won twice at Stratford (2m6f and 3m2f) this summer but he's an inconsistent sort, with more to prove on worse than good to soft; 150-1, tailed off from 8lb out of the handicap at Cheltenham (soft) on latest outing.

25/1

Form: 1/170- D

Last run: 217 days

W: 11st 4lb

9 yo Gelding

OR: 137

Form & Verdict
Prolific over fences from August 2021 until June 2022; had a run over hurdles this March (first for two years, well beaten) before remote 15th in the Grand National, in touch for a long way; unraced on soft (has won on it) or heavy since May 2021, having been withdrawn from an Aintree chase last week; well treated on best chase efforts but still has plenty to prove.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

2nd

1

12th Feb 2024

Heavy

3m 1f 54y

Class 3

16:00 Catterick

Minella Trump

12st 0lb

J: Theo Gillard

T: Donald McCain

Has a fine record over fences, winning eight of his 15 races; not at his best this season but has been running in much stronger races; well handicapped and has possibilities now down in grade but testing ground is a concern (has won on soft).

9/4

5th

2

13th Jan 2024

Good To Soft

3m 0f 0y

Class 2

13:30 Kempton

Minella Trump

11st 8lb

J: Theo Gillard

T: Donald McCain

Very productive in 2021 and 2022, winning numerous times, but lost his form badly (over hurdles/fences) in 2023; big revival is required.

20/1

9th

1

16th Dec 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 214y

Class 2

15:15 Doncaster

Minella Trump

12st 0lb

J: Theo Gillard

T: Donald McCain

Has won eight of his 13 chase starts and ran creditably for a long way in last season's Grand National, before fading; he may have needed his reappearance over hurdles at Cheltenham four weeks ago and has won off this mark in the past; not ruled out.

16/1

Form: 3FP-53

Last run: 25 days

W: 10st 4lb

5 yo Gelding

OR: 123

Form & Verdict
Surged back to form when close third of ten in handicap at Exeter (2m7f, good) on latest start; one of his two good runs last season was at Cheltenham (soft) and he could still have more to offer with a serious stamina test; not entirely dismissed.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

5

21st Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 84y

Class 3

14:35 Doncaster

Moka De Vassy

11st 11lb

J: Ciaran Gethings

T: Jane Williams

in touch with leaders, jumped left 1st

7/1

9th

6

21st Jan 2024

Good To Soft

2m 7f 0y

Class 2

14:25 Lingfield

Moka De Vassy

10st 9lb

J: David Noonan

T: Jane Williams

Not one to set your clock by but he has flashes of good form and had one of his better days when beating three rivals at Taunton (3m, good to soft) three weeks ago; 2lb rise is nothing to get down about but this is appreciably tougher than that.

6/1

1st

2

30th Dec 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 198y

Class 3

14:45 Taunton

Moka De Vassy

11st 9lb

J: David Noonan

T: Jane Williams

jumped left on occasions, raced wide, raced in third, not fluent 6th, pressed leaders after 8th, not fluent 2 out, awkward jump last, led final 110yds, won going away

5/1

Form: F62/P- D BF

Last run: 327 days

W: 11st 7lb

9 yo Gelding

OR: 140

Form & Verdict
In the process of registering a big career best when he fell in Grade 2 chase at Wetherby (3m, good to soft) in October 2021; has run only three times since and pulled up when favourite back at Wetherby last Christmas on latest start; has big-race entries over fences next month but there are questions to answer on this first hurdles run since March 2020.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

3rd

3

17th Feb 2024

Good To Soft

2m 7f 180y

Class 1

15:00 Ascot

Shan Blue

11st 5lb

J: Harry Skelton

T: Dan Skelton

disputed lead

6/1

3rd

2

23rd Dec 2023

Good To Soft

2m 2f 175y

Class 2

13:50 Ascot

Shan Blue

11st 8lb

J: Harry Skelton

T: Dan Skelton

High-class chaser at 2m4f-3m in his prime but he took a terrible fall at Wetherby two years ago and hasn't been the same since; easily excused a pulled-up run over hurdles in November and it's just possible he didn't act on the track when back over fences at Chepstow since, but the fitting of cheekpieces adds to the doubts.

6/1

Form: P-8924 D

Last run: 30 days

W: 11st 0lb

8 yo Gelding

OR: 133

Form & Verdict
7-53 overall and he's proved himself thoroughly at about 3m on testing ground; creditable second at Gowran Park (3m, heavy) in September, before his form dipped in a conditions event on latest start; needs to find extra to win this.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

0

7

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Walking On Glass

11st 0lb

J: Aidan Kelly

T: Padraig Roche

7-53 overall and he's proved himself thoroughly at about 3m on testing ground; creditable second at Gowran Park (3m, heavy) in September, before his form dipped in a conditions event on latest start; needs to find extra to win this.

25/1

4th

5

19th Oct 2023

Yielding

2m 7f 0y

16:00 Thurles

Walking On Glass

11st 0lb

J: Aidan Kelly

T: Padraig Roche

raced lazily at times, in touch with leaders early, dropped to last after 1st, mistake 4th

12/1

2nd

3

30th Sep 2023

Heavy

3m 0f 0y

16:00 Gowran Park

Walking On Glass

11st 1lb

J: Aidan Kelly

T: Padraig Roche

Running well in defeat on the Flat of late; out of form when last seen over jumps though and still seems on a stiff enough mark.

14/1

Form: 142124

Last run: 71 days

W: 10st 5lb

6 yo Gelding

OR: 124

Form & Verdict
8-18 over hurdles/fences in France, where last seen in September running well in defeat; unraced over this far but 3-5 over 2m6f in the mud as a chaser and he's been running as if this extra distance may well suit him; also looks on a good mark, so he is very much one to note on British debut.
Place /
No / Draw
Date / Going /
Distance / Class
Time + Course Horse + Weight
Jockey / Trainer
Verdict Starting price

1

29th Feb 2024

Soft

2m 3f 85y

Class 3

16:00 Wetherby

Placenet

12st 2lb

J: Gearoid Harney

T: David Pipe

Multiple French winner over 2m1f-2m6f on soft-heavy ground; pulled up/well beaten on his two British starts but he was still in touch turning for home at Sandown (3m, soft) a fortnight ago and could benefit from this drop back down in trip; not ruled out in first-time cheekpieces.

9/2

7th

1

15th Feb 2024

Soft

3m 0f 37y

Class 3

16:15 Sandown

Placenet

12st 2lb

J: Jack Tudor

T: David Pipe

8-18 over hurdles/fences in France; 3-5 over 2m6f in the mud as a chaser there and looked very interesting for British debut in 3m handicap hurdle at Cheltenham (3m, soft) three weeks ago but he was hugely disappointing; has had wind surgery since and now tries British fences; it will be interesting to see if his backers return.

9/2

0

10

18th Nov 2023

Good To Soft

2m 7f 208y

Class 2

14:55 Cheltenham

Placenet

10st 5lb

J: Jack Tudor

T: David Pipe

8-18 over hurdles/fences in France, where last seen in September running well in defeat; unraced over this far but 3-5 over 2m6f in the mud as a chaser and he's been running as if this extra distance may well suit him; also looks on a good mark, so he is very much one to note on British debut.

5/1

+o+e Accumulators

Payout
Exacta £43.80
Straight Forecast £39.32
Tricast £284.81
Trifecta £366.30

Selections

SPOTLIGHT:

Placenet

TOPSPEED:

Judicial Law

Telegraph:

Buddy One

POSTDATA:

Chantry House

Daily Mail:

Real Steel

The Star:

Noble Birth

Daily Mirror:

Buddy One

The Sun:

Judicial Law

Daily Record:

Judicial Law

RP RATINGS:

Placenet

WEST COUNTRY:

Placenet

The Times:

Placenet

The Guardian:

Placenet

LAMBOURN:

Chantry House

D Express:

Real Steel