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Nicky Henderson Set to Rule Cheltenham 2018

March 13, 2018 02:11:30 PM
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"Nicky Henderson" by Carine06 (CC BY-SA 2.0)

If there is one man who looks sure to have a great week at the Cheltenham Festival, then that would be Nicky Henderson. Going into the festival he has many chances, including live chances in all of the four main races of the week. This really could be a week to remember for Henderson, and those who decide to follow his horses with their money throughout the week.

From a punting point of view, Cheltenham could be decided by the amount of winners that Nicky has. He has so many fancied runners during the week that many punters will end up backing a whole load of his horses. If they win, the punters are likely to have a great week. Lose, and it will be the bookmakers smiling at the end of each day.

For those who think there is such a thing as a racing certainty, the Henderson duo of Buveur D'Air on day one and Altior on day two will be vital to the week. Altior has recently pleased Henderson in the build up to this race and many people will be backing those two horses, both on their own and in a double - they could get punters off to a great start. Henderson isn’t just for favourite backers though; he has many other great chances throughout the week, including the two young horses Terrefort and We Have A Dream, who both put winning records on the line in novice company. He also has Apples Shakira, a lovely mare who is only going to improve with age; she has already won around Cheltenham, and knows her way home there.


"Action from the Cheltenham Festival" by Carine06 (CC BY-SA 2.0)

One of the most talked about outsiders of the week is L’Ami Serge, also trained by Henderson. This talented, but very quirky horse goes for the Stayers' Hurdle, and will have to be produced right on the line by jockey Daryl Jacob if he is to get his head in front in this one. Those looking for an outsider punt could be tempted to back the bay gelding in the Cheltenham 2018 exchange markets - a result that would surely pay dividends, should it come off.

Rounding off the week is another slightly quirky horse, Might Bite. He nearly threw away his chance at the festival last season, before getting back up on the line to win a dramatic RSA Chase. This year it is the Gold Cup for him, and after winning the King George over Christmas, he is sure to be a popular horse with punters. Should Henderson fire in plenty of winners before the Gold Cup, Might Bite is sure to go off a strong favourite to record a win that would sink the bookies.

As ever with the Cheltenham Festival, every horse, trainer and jockey goes into the meeting believing that they are the best and that they can win. However, there appears to be something special about the string that Nicky Henderson has assembled this year, and we could be about to see him have a huge week. From the top races to the handicaps and novice events, Henderson has a great group of horses that are ready and waiting to take everyone on at the Cheltenham Festival. Punters will be on his side and, if Henderson has a good festival, it is likely that the bookmakers will have a bad one.

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