Coral Cup (Grade 3 Handicap Hurdle) – Cheltenham Day 2
14.50 Coral Cup (Grade 3 Handicap Hurdle) (Class 1) (4YO plus) 2m 5f
A cracking field of 20+ will go to post over the same 2m 5f trip as the earlier Neptune. With only one winning favourite in the last 16 years…. a favourites graveyard, we welcome looking outside the leading fancy Diamond King.
Let’s check the stats and trends for this one….
- 14 from last 17 winners were top 6 LTO
- Favours 2nd season hurdlers and LTO winners ( 6 winners from last 13)
- Aged 5-9
- Only 2 from last 15 have one more than one handicap
- 0-7 runs this season
- 0-3 previous course Cheltenham runs
- Betfair Hurdle has produced three winners and two runners-up from the last 11
- Nicky Henderson has won two of the last six runnings
- Philip Hobbs: 2/22 with 5 top 6 finishers
- Jonjo O’Neill: 0/14, 5 places
The pace is likely to be set by Baron Alco who has progressed well up the ratings, he’s been progressive this season, moving up from 116 to 140 in the ratings.
Diamond King heads the market for Gordon Elliot who was previously a promising novice hurdler for Donald McCain and heads the market following an easy win at Punchestown LTO.
Arbre De Vie reportedly carries a lot of stable confidence and ran a cracker on chase debut and who finished fourth in the Albert Bartlett last year. It will be no surprise to see him in and around the places at a best 12/1.
Philip Hobbs has two runners and his second string Brother Tedd looks cracking value at 25/1 after showing progressive form throughout last season. He made a winning comeback at Kempton in beating Silviniaco Conti by four lengths barely coming off the bridle.
Hiked 11lb for that he has run twice since finishing fourth in the valuable Lanzarote Hurdle at Kempton, he was earlier talked up as a World Hurdle sort this term and with a good turn of foot has a great EW shout.
Hunters Hoof is a notebooker going off bottom weight……despite being progressive and going on the surface….he hasn’t really proved himself on anything other than a flat course like Aintree or Donny…..hope that doesn’t bite us on the proverbial….although we will definitely be looking at where his next outing is or if lining up at Aintree?
Politologue represents Paul Nicholls and is unproven on this faster going to warrant a bet.
ROCK THE KASBAH is Philip Hobbs’ other charge who has won five of his ten, including his last two, and will be close up from the off alongside the previously mentioned Baron Alco who he beat LTO.
The fact that Richard Johnson takes this over Brother Tedd just gives us the nod on RTK but we will have a nibble about this one as well.
BLAZER could provide another festival winner from the Mullins bunch of four going here. He disappointed in the Betfair Hurdle last month but his easy ‘pre-requisite’ big field win at Leopardstown is fresh in the mind and will hopefully produce something more akin to that.
ROCK THE KASBAH 0.5pt EW @ 12/1 with SkyBet in the Coral Cup
BLAZER 0.5pt EW @ 14/1 with Bet365 in the Coral Cup
BROTHER TEDD 0.25pt EW @ 25/1 with Bet365 in the Coral Cup
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