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National Hunt Challenge Cup tips 2020

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View Keith’s tips for the National Hunt Challenge Cup

When is the National Hunt Challenge Cup 2020?

Cheltenham Tuesday 10th March 5.30pm

National Hunt Challenge Cup Chase (Grade 2) (5yo+)

Distance: 4 miles

Weights – 11st 4lbs (5yo), 11st 6lbs (6yo+), 7lb allowance for mares

The final race on day one is the National Hunt Challenge Cup for amateur riders, it is a novice chase over four miles, and they jump 25 fences.

It is a true test of stamina and it takes a lot of these staying chasers out of their comfort zones.

As the race is confined to amateur riders and Cheltenham is a tricky track to ride, it is worth siding with riders who have a bit of experience on their side.

Despite the competitive nature of the race, no winner has returned at higher than 16/1 in the last twelve years.

National Hunt Challenge Cup Trends and Statistics

Here are National Hunt Challenge Cup Chase 12 Year Trends and Statistics

  • Age – Ten of the last twelve winners were aged between six and eight.
  • Starting Price – Just three winning favourites in the last twelve years . All of the last twelve winners returned a starting price of 16/1 or less.
  • Last Run – Eight of the last twelve winners finished in the first three last time. Eight of the last twelve winners had their last run within the last 47 days.
  • Course Form – Nine of the last twelve winners had at least one previous run at Cheltenham, only two had a previous win at Cheltenham.
  • Distance Form – Eleven of the last twelve winners had run over at least 3 miles once. Ten of the last twelve winners had at least one previous win over at least 3 miles.
  • Chase Form – All of the last twelve winners had at least three previous chase runs. Nine of them had at least 1 previous chase win.
  • Official Rating – Nine of the last twelve winners had a rating between 139 and 152.
  • Season Form – Ten of the last twelve winners had at least four runs in the current season. Nine of them had at least one win that season.

Who are the National Hunt Challenge Cup Leading Contenders?

 

Currently the leading contenders for the National Hunt Challenge Cup Chase 2020 are:

  • CAREFULLY SELECTED – Runner up in the Champion Bumper here in 2018 and Grade 1 placed over hurdles last term Has taken well to fences winning three from three and it seems the further he goes the better he gets.
  • CHAMPAGNE CLASSIC – Won the Martin Pipe Conditional Handicap Hurdle at the 2017 Festival. Has made the frame in all five Chase runs winning twice and asolid second in a Punchestown Grade 1 over 3 miles in December.
  • DANNY WHIZZBANG – Only has two Chase runs to his name (at time of writing). Won a Grade 2 at Newbury in December but was less convincing at Kempton a month later when 20 lengths behind the winner.
  • BATTLEOVERDOYEN – Was going the right way over fences winning his first three, then came his race at Leopardstown which was won by the mighty Faugheen he was beating a retreat in fourth place when falling at the last.
  • SAM BROWN – Two from two over fences including a Grade 2 at Haydock, may find this too much of a stamina test.
  • TWO FOR GOLD – Unbeaten since switched to fences including when battling right to the line in a Grade 2 at Warwick in January.

 

What’s Keith’s National Hunt Challenge Cup Tips for 2020?

Here is Keith’s tip for the 2020 National Hunt Challenge Cup Chase:

Try as I might I can’t get away from the ante-post favourite CAREFULLY SELECTED for this race. His trainer, Willie Mullins knows exactly what is needed to win this race, having won it four times – twice as a trainer, and twice as a jockey.

First of all I will eliminate his rivals.

CHAMPAGNE CLASSIC is passed over on being too old at nine and lacks a recent run, whilst DANNY WHIZZBANG is inexperienced having only run twice over fences.

BATTLEOVERDOYAN was struggling and beaten when falling last time. SAM BROWN is likely to find this trip too far. TWO FOR GOLD possibly definitely (hedging my bets there!) has place claims based on the way he refused to give up last time and he should see the trip out.

So as you can see I’ve carefully selected (see what I did there?) my tip for this race and CAREFULLY SELECTED is the stand out choice – he is likely to be even better than he has shown before he stepped up to this marathon trip.

My selection for the National Hunt Challenge Cup Chase 2020 is: CAREFULLY SELECTED 4/1.

As this article is written in advance of the 2020 Festival, the likely contenders are expected to change as we get closer to Champion Day. The picture also starts to get much clearer as we approach the festival, with trainers starting to show their cards in the weeks leading up to Day 1. 

To get Keith’s very latest, up-to-date thoughts on the Day 1 card, and his final Day 1 tips, simply register as a FREE FRT member here, and Keith will email you the full Day 1 tips (including for this race) on the morning of Champion Day.

What was Keith’s National Hunt Challenge Cup Tip for 2019?

FRT Tipster Keith’s wrote this for the 2019 Narional Hunt Challege Cup Chase:

OK CORRAL trained by Nicky Henderson has been laid out for this race, Irish amateur Derek O’Conner (who rode the winner of this in 2011) has already won on him but at 100/30 there is little value and at 9 years old he may be vulnerable to younger legs.

The one I am taking to beat him is Gordon Elliott’s DELTA WORK, who won the Pertemps Handicap Hurdle at last year’s festival and has been thriving over fences this winter his victories include a Grade 1 novice at Leopardstown. 

My selection for the race is DELTA WORK 16/1 each way.

Result: DELTA WORK was a non-runner

Look out for Keith’s day one tips in your inbox on March the 10th*

Keith’s Inner Circle members will get priority access to the tips the night before racing – usually by 7pm.

VIP club members also get informed of Keith’s tips the night before – usually by 9pm.

Standard FRT members will receive Keith’s tips on the morning of the races – usually by 9am.

National Hunt Challenge Cup Previous Winners

  •  2008 Old Benny 7 Charlie Huxley Alan King
  • 2009 Tricky Trickster 6 Sam Waley-Cohen Nigel Twiston-Davies
  • 2010 Poker de Sivola 7 Katie Walsh Ferdy Murphy
  • 2011 Chicago Grey 8 Derek O’Connor Gordon Elliott
  • 2012 Teaforthree 8 JT McNamara Rebecca Curtis
  • 2013 Back in Focus 8 Patrick Mullins Willie Mullins
  • 2014 Midnight Prayer 9 Joshua Newman Alan King
  • 2015 Cause of Causes 7 Jamie Codd Gordon Elliott
  • 2016 Minella Rocco 6 Derek O’Connor Jonjo O’Neill
  • 2017 Tiger Roll 7 Lisa O’Neill Gordon Elliott
  • 2018 Rathvinden 10 Patrick Mullins Willie Mullins
  • 2019 Le Breuil 7 Jamie Codd Ben Pauling

As these articles are written in advance of the 2020 Festival, the likely contenders are expected to change as we get closer to Champion Day. The picture also starts to get much clearer as we approach the festival, with trainers starting to show their cards in the weeks leading up to Day 1. 

To get Keith’s very latest, up-to-date thoughts on the Day 1 card, and his final Day 1 tips, simply register as a FREE FRT member here, and Keith will email you the full Day 1 tips on the morning of Champion Day.

Who is FRT’s Cheltenham Day 1 Tipster?

Keith Bond is our resident pro tipster here at FRT Towers. Keith lives and breathes horse racing, having begun his love of horse racing over 40 years ago with a part time job at Catterick Racecourse, as one of three fourteen year-olds looking after two jumps and a hurdle.

Over the years, Keith has been a regular at the northern tracks attending countless race meetings and building up a network of contacts, and a portfolio of systems and strategies. 

He was one of the co-founders of Free Racing Tips all the way back in 2008, and his free tips are now backed by more than seventy thousand FRT members every single day.

“Thanks Keith – It’s great to be part of an amazing group of people all after the same thing, passing on tips to beat the bookies” 

Colin Parkinson, Harrow.

The FRT community love Keith’s attention to detail, knowledge of past races, and ability to pick horses…

“You offer some great tips, some fantastic outsiders tipped up as well. Most tipsters just put up favourites. Well done and keep up the good work”

John Woolley, Stockport

Look out for Keith’s day one tips in your inbox on March the 10th*

Keith’s Inner Circle members will get priority access to the tips the night before racing – usually by 7pm.

VIP club members also get informed of Keith’s tips the night before – usually by 9pm.

Standard FRT members will receive Keith’s tips on the morning of the races – usually by 9am.

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