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Close Brothers Novices` Handicap Chase Preview- Cheltenham Festival

Published on: 13/03/2018

Close Brothers Novices` Handicap Chase Preview- Cheltenham Festival

March 13, 2018 17:30pm - Cheltenham

Cheltenham Festival

Distance: 2m 4f 78y

Grade: Listed (Class 1)

Winner: £39,865

Going: Heavy (soft in places)

Any Second Now has been prepped with this race in mind, so his mark should be appreciated as such. During a steady winter, he has placed in the top three in five of six races but without registering a win. However, expect him to be unleashed here against a tight field and what should be a welcome step up in trip.

There is a long list of other potential contenders here and the money seems to be spread across at least half a dozen horses. Of those, De Plotting Shed is one that has been well-fancied in the build-up and will also be staring off a favourable mark.

Having sneaked in at the bottom of the handicapping, Mister Whitaker could bring some joy to the each-way punters. There is a question mark over whether the ground will suit him but he is a tidy jumper and could prove a threat. He idled his way to victory last time out, suggesting that he had plenty more left in the tank. He is certainly worth looking at with prices as high as 8/1 available.

Close Brothers Novices` Handicap Chase Winners - past five years:

2014: Present View (6) - Brendan Powell (Jamie Snowden)

2015: Irish Cavalier (6) - Paul Townend (Rebecca Curtis)

2016: Ballyalton (9) - Brian Hughes (Ian Williams)

2017: Tully East (7) - Denis O`Regan - Alan Fleming

Latest Betting odds:

Any Second Now 6/1

Mister Whitaker 8/1

De Plotting Shed 8/1

Barney Dwan 10/1

Rather Be 11/1

Testify 12/1

Livelaughlove 14/1

Le Rocher 16/1

Tycoon Prince 16/1

Report to Base 18/1

Demi Sang 18/1

20/1 bar

You can back Any Second Now at 6/1 and Mister Whitaker (E/W) at 8/1.

By Neil Morris

Published on: 13/03/2018

Any odds displayed within this preview were correct at the time of publishing (13/03/2018 12:04:38) but are subject to change.