Value Bet: Tour a Bright bet
Ben Linfoot seeks out the value from the feature races at Kempton and Newcastle on Saturday.
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Nigel Twiston-Davies has dominated the big Saturday handicaps in recent weeks and his TOUR DES CHAMPS looks a decent bit of business in the Bet Bright Chase at Kempton on Saturday.
After being widely available at double-figure prices on Friday morning I've watched his odds tumble throughout the day and though I've looked long and hard for a value alternative, in a pretty average renewal he looks the standout bet even at 9/1.
- 2pts win Tour Des Champs in 3.50 Kempton at 9/1 (William Hill) - given a real chance by handicapper while headgear should help him focus; standout chance at the weights
- 1pt e.w Presented in 2.55 Newcastle at 16/1 (Coral 1,2,3,4 1/4) - improving with every run since switching yards and ground/track hold no fears
The handicapper has given him a real chance after dropping him 5lb following the Welsh National, a race in which his chance went after a bad mistake at the eighth.
However, he was well backed from big prices that day and if he can cut out the errors he has a fine chance of scooping a prize his handler is no stranger to winning.
The first-time visor looks a good move with regard to him focusing on his obstacles, while heavy ground and the consequent test of stamina hold no fears for this seven-year-old who stays four miles.
Rated 139 when lining up in a handicap at last year's Cheltenham Festival, off 127 he's got the best chance at the weights on all known form and the 9/1 could have some juice in it yet.
Most of his rivals have either gone up plenty in the ratings or have something to prove, though Bury Parade and Ardkilly Witness are obvious dangers.
I was tempted by Baile Anrai too after his Sky Bet Chase second, but it puts me off he's underperformed around Kempton before.
Venetia Williams' Niceonefrankie finished behind Baile Anrai at Doncaster and is another to consider, but he has stamina to prove as does Grandioso.
All things considered, Tour Des Champs is the only one I want to be with so instead of splitting stakes we'll double up on him with plenty in his favour.
Up at Newcastle the Betfred Eider Chase is set to be an almighty test of stamina and I wouldn't expect many of the 16 to finish.
It's a race for small stakes but I'll be having just that on Brian Ellison's PRESENTED at 16/1.
He's racing from 8lb out of the handicap which is an obvious concern, but Harry Challoner takes off 5lb which helps and I think Ellison could squeeze a bit more out of him yet having transformed his fortunes since getting hold of him at the start of the season.
He responded well to first-time cheekpieces last time and they're retained, while heavy ground poses no problems, he's won at Newcastle and looks all over a dour stayer.
It's not going to be pretty, but 16/1 about an in-form horse at the right end of the weights looks a tad too big in a contest where if you finish you should have a good chance of being placed.
Ben Linfoot's Value Bet Aim: The Value Bet is designed to generate long-term profit by searching for overpriced horses in the feature weekend races and at the big Festivals in the UK. Running total: +249.81pts to advised stakes/prices (from inception of Value Bet column in January 2010 to current).