5 Value Bets for the Cheltenham Festival 2019
British and Irish racing fans are counting down the days to yet another thrilling Cheltenham Festival (12th-15th March), but they have been given plenty to think about with some puzzling performances from supposed contenders over the last few months.
Indeed, there is a lot of debate about the debate in the betting markets, with some horses like Faugheen and Lalor being cited as too short in the odds, whereas others look to be way too big to ignore.
Below we will take a look at a handful of names who look like top value in the lead up to the Festival. If you want full coverage of the 28 races, plus the latest free bets and promos, check out these expert Cheltenham betting tips from the team at Free Bets.
Clan Des Obeaux – Cheltenham Gold Cup – 10/1 (Betfair)
Starting with the biggest race of all, the Cheltenham Gold Cup looks really open this year. The favorite, Presenting Percy, is just 5/2 with some bookies but, to be frank, you would need rocks in your head to back him at those prices. A better option is the 2018 King George VI Chase winner, Clan Des Obeaux, who is a stunning price of 10/1 with Betfair and a couple of others.
Sharjah – Champion Hurdle – 10/1 (William Hill)
It seems like pundits are always talking about someone challenging Buveur D’Air, then end up looking foolish when the star hurdler takes yet another win. However, he finally tasted defeat at Christmas, and that pushed his odds to 7/4 for the Champion Hurdle. Buveur D’Air is the rightful favourite for a third successive Champion Hurdle, but who could give him a challenge? Don’t be fooled by the paltry 3/1 offered for the untested Laurina, and instead go for the gutsy Sharjah at 10/1.
Bachasson – Stayers Hurdle – 25/1 (William Hill)
Like the Gold Cup, the Stayers’ Hurdle has a favorite who does not warrant being as short as 2/1. Sure, Paisley Park has had some good results in recent weeks, but this is the most prestigious long-distance hurdles event of the year and it’s not as if he is Big Buck’s. Bachasson looks like he can get his once-promising career back on track. If you want proof that 25/1 is good value for Willie Mullins’ horse, consider that bookies like Ladbrokes and Sky Bet have him at just 10/1.
City Island – Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle – 20/1 (Various)
There is always a bit of a puzzle about which race horse will enter, so make sure you get non-runner no bet from your sportsbook if betting ante-post. Regardless, the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle might be an option for the interesting City Island. A very consistent horse in his short career (three wins and one second place from four runs), it will be a huge step to contest the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle against the likes of Champ (3/1 fav). However, there is nothing in City Island’s previous performances to suggest he will be fazed by the field at Cheltenham.
Aso – Ryanair Chase – 20/1 (Betfair)
3rd in this race in 2017, Aso has bounced back after a long lay-off with a couple of excellent wins in good handicaps. The Ryanair Chase has pushed its way up to becoming one of the more prestigious races at the Festival (it has Grade 1 status) since its inception back in 2005, thus Aso could have plenty of top-class challengers like Min and Waiting Patiently. However, he retains each-way hopes – or could go one better.