2021 Cheltenham Festival tips – Top 10 “Win Any Race” bets
We take a look through William Hill’s “Win Any Race at the 2021 Cheltenham Festival” market and highlight our top ten bets.
No sooner had the final race at this year’s Cheltenham Festival been run, thoughts turned to the 2021 edition. The likes of Al Boum Photo and Epatante are likely to play a starring role once again, but who else will make the headline at the “greatest show on turf” next year?
William Hill was the first bookmaker to open a “win any race at the 2021 Cheltenham Festival” market and, with the world on lockdown for the coming weeks and months, punters are sure to delve into this special market. Here are our top ten 2021 Cheltenham Festival tips in the “Win Any Race” betting.
Win Any Race at the 2020 Cheltenham Festival tips – Top Ten Bets
10 – Benie Des Dieux 7/2
Willie Mullins’ plan to help Benie Des Dieux regain her Mares’ Hurdle crown was thwarted by Rachael Blackmore and Honeysuckle. A breakdown in communication between Paul Townend and Robbie Power allowed Blackmore to sneak through on the inside turning for home, and Benie Des Dieux was unable to peg her rival back.
The newly added Mares’ Chase could be the goal for both Honeysuckle and Benie Des Dieux in 2021. There’s also a strong chance that Mullins could keep his top mare over hurdles, and return for a fourth crack at the Mares’. If that is the plan, and Benie Des Dieux does indeed line up in the 2021 Mares’ Hurdle, 7/2 will be a distant memory.
9 – Pic D’Orhy 12/1
Having arrived at Ditcheat with a huge reputation, it took Pic D’Orhy a while to settle into his new surroundings. Underwhelming displays at Cheltenham, Auteuil and Ascot were left well-and-truly behind at Newbury this year, as Paul Nicholls’ charge flew home under Harry Cobden to win the Betfair Hurdle.
That victory could kick-start a fantastic career for this talented gelding. Pic D’Orhy’s sire, Turgeon has spawned many outstanding chasers, including former Gold Cup runner-up, Exotic Dancer. This big, rangy horse clearly has a bright future over fences, and could be a leading contender in either the 2021 Arkle or Marsh Novices’ Chase.
8 – Micro Manage 25/1
Micro Manage caught the eye during the 2019 flat racing season in Ireland. First, beating future Royal Ascot winner South Pacific in a maiden under Rachael Blackmore, before a resounding handicap success over a mile-and-a-half at the Curragh. A gelding operation followed, after-which Willie Mullins’ youngster was made the early favourite for the 2020 Triumph Hurdle.
Sadly, Micro Manage met with a set-back, meaning he could take no part in the 2019/20 National Hunt racing campaign. He still remains a thoroughly exciting prospect, though, and he’s sure to make up into a very effective jumper under the masterful eye of Ireland’s Champion Trainer. All three of the Grade One novice hurdles will be taken into consideration.
7 – The Big Breakaway 20/1
Colin Tizzard’s horses were in dreadful form during the 2020 Cheltenham Festival. Lostintranslation was the only horse from Tizzard’s stable to run up to anything like his rating. This has meant a number of Tizzard’s most talented youngsters have been overlooked in the ante-post betting for future events. For me, the most exciting horse in his Dorset barracks is The Big Breakaway.
This son of Getaway went into the Ballymore on the back of two bloodless victories in maiden hurdles. Robbie Power’s mount, like so many of his stablemates, never looked to be travelling at Cheltenham, and its testament to this horse’s ability that he managed to stay on and place fourth. Anything The Big Breakaway achieved over hurdles was always going to be a bonus, and he could be a big player in the novice chasing scene next season.
6 – Malone Road 16/1
Malone Road burst onto the bumper scene in 2018/19, trouncing good quality rivals in two contests on the level. Such was the magnitude of those performances, Gordon Elliott and Gigginstown were considering sending Envoi Allen to either the Supreme or the Ballymore, leaving the 2019 Champion Bumper free for Malone Road to claim.
Injury struck in the build-up to that year’s Cheltenham Festival, allowing Envoi Allen to springboard himself towards stardom in the Champion Bumper. Heading into this season, Malone Road sat prominently in the betting for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, only for a further set-back to rule him out for the entire campaign. When Malone Road finally returns, he’ll be much shorter than 16/1 for both the Supreme and the Ballymore, so you better jump on while you can!
5 – Klassical Dream 12/1
Willie Mullins’ former Supreme Novices’ winner entered the 2019/20 season as the favourite for the Champion Hurdle. What followed was a forgettable campaign, featuring defeats in two Grade Ones, before an injury ruled Klassical Dream out of a return to Cheltenham.
Last season’s form led to many questioning the validity of his Cheltenham win. Yet, it’s easy to forget the dominance in which Klassical Dream saw off the likes of Thomas Darby, Itchy Feet and Fakir D’Oudairies, all of whom claimed big prizes last season. The 2021 Champion Hurdle is an option, as is a tilt at the Stayers’ Hurdle. Klassical Dream could even go over fences, bringing the Arkle, Marsh and RSA into the equation. Do not give up on this talented horse. 12/1 to win any race is a fantastic price.
4 – Shishkin 4/1
Shishkin set the tone for a fantastic Cheltenham Festival for Nicky Henderson in 2020. Despite an alarming drift before the off, and a very slow jump in the middle of the race, Shishkin proved himself a horse of the highest calibre, seeing off a spirited challenge from Abacadabras to win his first Grade One title.
The plan is to start Shishkin out over fences when the new National Hunt season commences, and the Supreme champion already sits atop the early betting for the Arkle. Henderson does, however, have previous when it comes to rerouting his best novice chasers to the Champion Hurdle, so a tilt at that Championship race cannot be completely ruled out. Taking everything into account, 4/1 looks a very good price.
3 – Envoi Allen 9/4
When ranking the top performances at the 2020 Cheltenham Festival, Envoi Allen must be involved in the discussion. Gordon Elliott’s charge may have been the odds-on favourite to win the Ballymore, but there were question marks around his staying ability. Those doubts were well-and-truly put to bed as Envoi Allen cantered up Cleeve Hill, sweeping Easywork and The Big Getaway aside before powering past the post.
I’m praying Gordon Elliott and Gigginstown don’t pull a Samcro-style move and aim Envoi Allen at the Champion Hurdle. He’s clearly a top-quality chaser in the making. The fact he only really has one probable target in 2021 – the Marsh Novices’ Chase – combined with his exceedingly short price means I cannot hand Envoi Allen the top spot in this list of 2021 Cheltenham Festival tips. Yet, I can’t see his unbeaten streak ending any time soon.
2 – A Plus Tard 8/1
Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and I think – if he had known both Altior and Chacun Pour Soi would pull out – Henry De Bromhead would have sent A Plus Tard to the Champion Chase. At Christmas, Rachael Blackmore sat comfortably on the coat-tails of Chacun Pour Soi over two miles, before pulling clear after the last to win in good style. De Bromhead would have asked Blackmore to employ those same tactics as Politologue set the pace, and I’m sure A Plus Tard would have been more than a match for the winner on the run to the line.
As it was, A Plus Tard went down to Min in the Ryanair, where he simply couldn’t find the turn-of-foot needed to pick up his front-running rival. De Bromhead’s charge is only six, so there’s obviously plenty more improvement to come as he matures and strengthens further. 8/1 on A Plus Tard to win either the Ryanair or the Champion Chase in 2021 looks an excellent price to me!
1 – Monkfish
Sitting on his current price of 10/1, I think Monkfish is the best 2021 Cheltenham Festival tip in the “Win Any Race” market. Despite being passed jumping the last in the 2020 Albert Bartlett, Willie Mullins’ novice showed guts, determination, and a whole heap of class to reel in Latest Exhibition and Fury Road to win.
Every time I’ve seen Monkfish this season, I’ve thought to myself “I can’t wait to see this boy jump a fence”. I have no doubts at all that he’ll make a up into a strong staying chaser during the 2020/21 campaign. Whether he’s pointed at the Marsh, the RSA or even the National Hunt Chase, I’ll be wary of siding against Monkfish next season. He takes the number one spot!