Wash down the caviar with Champagne in Saturday's big race at Cheltenham

Bill Esdaile
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Cheltenham Races
Champagne West has a good record at CHeltenham (Source: Getty)

The biggest betting race of the weekend is the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup (Saturday 1.50pm) which features plenty of those that ran in last month’s Paddy Power Gold Cup.

Annacotty did this column a favour in that race, but this is a very hard double to pull off. Buywise is respected, as he will surely win a big handicap one day. That said, he’s just an unlucky horse and I don’t like backing them at single-figure prices.

Nigel Twiston-Davies’ Little Jon is feared following his gutsy win at Newbury last time out. He hasn’t been the most consistent, though, and his record at Cheltenham isn’t fantastic.

The one for me is CHAMPAGNE WEST for Philip Hobbs even though Richard Johnson has opted for Village Vic.

My selection won on his seasonal debut at this course in November 2014, followed up a month later and then finished second to Ptit Zig on New Year’s Day.

He suffered an injury when he fell at Sandown in late January and his trainer has put him away since then.

If there is one horse who has the potential to be a long way clear of his mark, I think it’s this one and he is worth backing at 8/1 with Betway.

Don’t look any further than PEACE AND CO in the International Hurdle (3.00pm).

A hugely impressive winner of this year’s Triumph Hurdle, Nicky Henderson has been careful not to overface him this campaign.

This looks a good starting point and I expect him to have too much for Old Guard and Sempre Medici.

Tickets are selling fast for the William Hill King George Festival at Kempton and it’s advisable to buy premier tickets soon for Boxing Day to avoid disappointment.


Champagne West e/w, 1.50pm, Cheltenham

Peace And Co, 3.00pm, Cheltenham

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