Chelkar favourite with sponsors for £500,000 Sky Bet Ebor

The Ebor Festival: Coming soon..
The Ebor Festival: Coming soon..

Chelkar has been installed as the sponsor's 10-1 favourite for the £500,000 Sky Bet Ebor at York on August 25 after 100 entries were revealed for Britain's richest handicap.

Chelkar is one of 13 entries for Irish trainer Willie Mullins. The five-year-old made his debut for Mullins when fourth in the Ascot Handicap at the Royal meeting, having formerly been trained in France.

The County Carlow handler is seeking his second Ebor success, after taking the honours with Sesenta in 2009.

Three horses are on 12-1 - David Elsworth's Dash Of Spice, who is set to contest the John Smith's Cup at York on Saturday, Saeed bin Suroor's Game Starter and Northumberland Plate scorer Withhold, trained by Roger Charlton.

There has been no French-trained winner of the Ebor, but Christophe Ferland is aiming to change that with Funny Kid, winner of the All-Weather Marathon Championship at Lingfield.

Ferland said: "He had a problem as he hurt himself when racing at Belmont Park last month, a bruise, but the horse is OK now. He will be ready to run again by the time of the Ebor in late August.

"He has done well this year, winning the All-Weather Championships Marathon at Lingfield Park in March and then the Group Three Prix de Barbeville at Longchamp the following month. The shorter distance of the Ebor will not bother him and the prize money is very good."

Funny Kid (far left) wins the Marathon
Funny Kid (far left) wins the Marathon at Lingfield

Irish trainer Gordon Elliott took the Ebor in 2010 with Dirar and has another live contender this year with Cartwright.

Flint Jack (1922 and 1923) is the only dual winner of the Ebor, but Nakeeta might try to join him as trainer Iain Jardine reports last year's hero to be on course to defend his title.

"Nakeeta is in good form at home and he has come out of his latest run fine," he said. "It's all systems go for York and the plan is definitely to head back for the Ebor. I don't think he will run again beforehand.

"We'll freshen him up and hopefully he can win the race for the second year in succession. I've been happy with him this season and we'll be finely tuning him for York."

Nakeeta (nearside) denies Flymetothestars in the Ebor
Nakeeta (nearside) denies Flymetothestars in the 2017 Ebor

Sky Bet Ebor – Sky Bet prices:

10/1 Chelkar; 12/1 Dash of Spice, Game Starter, Withhold; 14/1 Cartwright, Elgin, First Nation, Funny Kid, Gustavus Vassa, Limini, Low Sun, Royal Line; 16/1 Atty Persse, Lagostovegas, Light Pillar, Marmelo, Melting Dew, Stratum, Walton Street, Whiskey Sour; 20/1 Amazing Red, Count Octave, Crowned Eagle, Dal Harraild, Dubawi Fifty, Exchange Rate, Eynhallow, Hamada, Housesofparliament, Muntahaa, Nakeeta, Nearly Caught, Platitude, Prize Money, Rainbow Rebel, Sea The Lion, Sharjah, Sir Chauvelin, Tigris River, Top Tug, Weekender, Law Girl, Laws of Spin; 25/1 Blakeney Point, Buzz, Euchen Glen, Good Run, Lord Yeats, Maths Prize, Meri Devie, Mountain Bell, Mustajeer, Natural Scenery, Quloob, Restorer, Saroog, Saunter, Stars Over The Sea, Teodoro, Time To Study, Twilight Payment, Uradel, What A Home, White Desert; 33/1 Alwaysandforever, Cosmelli, Dance The Dream, Dylan Mouth, Erik The Red, Euro Nightmare, Financial Conduct, Fun Mac, Golden Wolf, Hochfeld, Humble Hero, Montaly, My Reward, On To Victory, Saigon City, Shraaoh; 40/1 Eddystone Rock, Guns of Leros, Kelly's Dino, Percy's Word, Reshoun, Scotland, Temple Church, Watersmeet, Zeelander; 50/1 Arch Villain, Blue Rambler, Curbyourenthusiasm, Golden Birthday, Island Brave, Mirsaale, Speedo Boy; 66/1 Eye Of The Storm, Long Call, Mount Tahan, Tommy Docc

Leeds-based Sky Bet is now in its 15th year of sponsorship at York and extends its support to six of the seven races on Saturday, August 25, at York:

  • £100,000 Sky Bet Strensall Stakes (Group 3) 1m f
  • £125,000 Sky Bet Melrose Handicap (0-105) 1m 6f
  • £180,000 Sky Bet City of York Stakes (Group 3) 7f
  • £500,000 Sky Bet Ebor Heritage Handicap 1m 6f
  • £70,000 Julia Graves Roses Stake (Listed) 5f
  • £70,000 skybet.com Handicap 1m 2f
  • £70,000 Sky Bet Apprentice Handicap 5f

In addition, Sky Bet is also pleased to support the £170,000 G2 Sky Bet Great Voltigeur Stakes (Wednesday, August 22), the £225,000 Sky Bet Lowther Stakes (Thursday, August 23) and the Sky Bet First Race Special Handicap (Friday, August 24) at the Welcome To Yorkshire Ebor Festival.

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