Welsh Grand National Betting Tips – 27th December 2017
At this time of year we’re well into the National Hunt season. The leading horses have all shaken off the cobwebs with a competitive run and punters are turning their attentions to the big meetings in the near future.
For many people that means getting some early groundwork in for their Cheltenham Festival bets.
The Boxing Day meeting at Kempton does a good job of teeing up many of the big Cheltenham races but don’t write off the form lines from the Welsh Grand National.
The winner of last year’s big race at Chepstow, Native River, went on to finish third in the Gold Cup the following March and some horses have been good enough to win both over the years.
With a bumper field of quality long distance chasers set to do battle, we’ve got the makings of a great betting heat on our hands.
There are 33 horses left in the @coral Welsh Grand National after today's final forfeit stage with Beware The Bear, Rock The Kasbah & Chase The Spud heading the market - here's the complete list - https://t.co/4yAR2ZnkL9— Chepstow Racecourse (@Chepstow_Racing) December 21, 2017
Past Five Winners
2016 – Native River, aged 6, ridden by Richard Johnson, trained by Colin Tizzard
2015 – Mountainous, aged 11, ridden by Jamie Moore, trained by Kerry Lee
2014 – Emperor’s Choice, aged 7, ridden by Aidan Coleman, trained by Venetia Williams
2013 – Mountainous, aged 8, ridden by Paul Moloney, trained by Richard Lee
2012 – Monbeg Dude, aged 8, ridden by Paul Carberry, trained by Michael Scudamore
Blend of Youth and Experience Needed at Chepstow
When it comes to big field, stamina sapping handicaps the general thinking is that they favour older horses. There is no doubt that a certain amount of experience is vital when it comes to the Welsh Grand National (especially experience at Chepstow) but younger horses actually have a strong record.
Mountainous is the only winner aged over nine since Bindaree way back in 2003. Moreover, 11 of the last 12 winners were aged six, seven or eight and that looks to be the sweet spot in terms of age.
The other slight contradictory trends to follow surround recent form.
Each of the last 20 winners of the Welsh Grand National finished sixth or better in their most recent start. However, alarm bells should start ringing about horses who have raced too recently. This is a very challenging race to win at a tricky course and it’s not one for overworked horses.
Back This Chepstow Specialist for the Win
The undulating nature of Chepstow has caught out many a well fancied horse before. We’re certain to see horses underperform on the 27th but one horse who you can guarantee will have no problems with Chepstow is Rock The Kasbah.
Philip Hobbs’ seven-year-old has won on each of his last three trips to Chepstow including in his latest outing in the toteexacta Handicap Chase. There could be as many as 20 more runners in the Welsh Grand National than there were that day but that won’t trouble this experienced gelding.
The distance shouldn’t be a problem either so everything is pointing towards a big run from Rock The Kasbah at 10/1 with 888Sport.
Two Tempting Each-Way Plays
The size of the field and the competitive nature of those making the trip to Chepstow makes this the perfect race for a couple of each-way bets.
The first horse that catches our eye in that regard is Vintage Clouds at 20/1 with William Hill.
Sue Smith’s seven-year-old has done very well for connections. He’s far from a prolific winner but rarely is he a disappointment and we get the feeling he may be about to do something special.
He’ll enjoy the long trip and the cut in the ground so make sure to get Vintage Clouds on board.
Finally, have a small stakes bet on Sir Mangan at 25/1 with Ladbrokes. The nine-year-old is a classy jumper who will surely last the trip. If the pace isn’t too quick for him, Sir Mangan may just spring a surprise.