Bookies split on Sire chances

  • By: Andy Schooler
  • Last Updated: December 7 2013, 16:43 GMT

Sire De Grugy won Saturday's BetVictor Tingle Creek Chase but the layers had different reactions in their Queen Mother Champion Chase markets.

Sire De Grugy: Winner at Sandown
Sire De Grugy: Winner at Sandown

Some firms slashed their price but others were happy to leave Gary Moore's hopeful unchanged with 16/1 still on offer after Saturday's race.

Ladbrokes said their market was never going to move much due to the fact that Sprinter Sacre is such a hot favourite for the Cheltenham Festival showpiece. The reigning champion chaser missed the Tingle Creek due to illness.

Their David Williams, whose firm left Sire De Grugy at 16/1, said: "The Tingle Creek winner was never likely to cause anything more than a ripple in the Champion Chase market. Sprinter Sacre remains the 1/3 favourite and we'll happily lay the 16/1 about Sire De Grugy."

Boylesports made the same call, perhaps taking into account trainer Garry Moore's post-race comment.

Moore said: "He won't necessarily go to Cheltenham as I think he needs a more conventional track."

However, several firms were quick to cut. Sky Bet slashed their price from 16s to 8s, while Stan James went into 10/1 from 16s.

Sky Bet's Michael Shinners said: "Sire De Grugy looks the nearest thing to a challenger to Sprinter Sacre and was extremely impressive in beating the useful Somersby and Captain Conan."

Stan James' Rory Jiwani agreed with those sentiments, saying: "He's almost certainly the best two-mile chaser outside of Seven Barrows and we cut Gary Moore's stable star from 16/1 to 10/1 for the Queen Mother."

Sprinter Sacre remained largely unchanged.

Last year's winner was lengthened slightly by BetVictor and bet365 but 888sport stood firm with their standout 4/9.

Meanwhile, Hinterland and Felix Yonger were both cut for Arkle glory at the Festival after posting victories.

Hinterland won the Racing Post Henry VIII Novices' Chase at Sandown, edging out Grandouet in a tight finish, and both horses were cut for success at Prestbury Park next March.

Hinterland was moved into 8/1 by several firms, although Sky Bet were prepared to dangle 14/1.

Grandouet was also cut in places, but was also left unchanged at 12s by the likes of Coral and Sky Bet.

Most firms were more impressed by Felix Yonger, a winner on the card at Navan for Willie Mullins, who was cut across the board for the two-mile chase.

Any 16/1 on offer disappeared with a general 12/1 left available after the race.

Some layers saw fit to trim favourite Champagne Fever as a result of the action - last year's Supreme Novices' Hurdle winner was moved in to 3/1 by Sky Bet and Paddy Power. Others left the horse at 7/2; nothing bigger is available.

Unioniste won at Aintree and was subsequently cut for the Cheltenham Gold Cup. However, at a best of 40/1 (888sport) he remains a big outsider.

Also on the Aintree card, Chance Du Roy - a 20/1 tip in our Ben Linfoot's Value Bet column - won the feature Betfred Becher Chase to earn quotes for the Crabbie's Grand National. Paddy Power stuck their neck out at 40/1.

Finally, another Mullins horse, Faugheen caught the eye at Navan and was cut for the three novice hurdle races at the Festival.

He is shortest for the three-mile Albert Bartlett, with nothing bigger than 12/1 available in the wake of his victory at 1/9.

  • Preview posted at 1636 BST on 07/12/2013.