The Grade 2 Betbright Trial Cotswold Chase (Saturday 26 January) is a recognized trial for the Cheltenham Gold Cup which is open to horses aged five and older. It takes place on Cheltenham’s New Course over a distance of 3 miles 1½ furlongs and horses have to jump 21 fences.
It has been won by some very smart horses since the race began in 1980 (under the banner of the Tote Double Chase) including several horses that went on to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup or the Grand National. Those horses include Master Oats, See More Business, Looks Like Trouble, Neptune Collonges, and Many Clouds
Betbright Trial Cotswold Chase 10-Year-Trends
- Seven winners have been aged 9, with two aged 10, and one aged 7
- Winners have carried between 11-0 and 11-10
- Winners have been rated between 151 and 168
- None of the last 10 favourites have won
- SP’s of the winners have ranged from 4/1 to 16/1
Chase Main Contenders
Paul Nicholls has trained four winners of this race and his seven-year-old Frodon has a good record at Cheltenham with three wins and two places from nine runs. The positives are he’s officially the best horse at the weights and he goes extremely well for jockey Bryony Frost. The negatives include that his best form has come over shorter distances and favourites have a poor record in the race.
This Colin Tizzard trained seven-year-old won the 2018 Welsh Grand National off a big weight and that’s usually the sign of a horse that is going to take high-rank over fences. That win over 3 miles 5 furlongs also highlighted he has more than enough stamina for this contest. Whether he’s quick enough is another matter, but he was good enough to run third in the 2018 RSA Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
Only a six-year-old and would be the first horse that young to win this race, but some of his novice chase form from last year entitles him to respect. He also needs to put a poor first run of the season behind him, when he was 50 lengths last behind Elegant Escape, though it’s worth remembering he was the 4/6 favourite that day and Elegant Escape was 100/30. He’s also 1lb better off with Elegant Escape here.
Nine-year-old who has won the four-mile National Hunt Chase at the Cheltenham Festival and finished second to Sizing John in the 2017 Cheltenham Gold Cup. Would have outclassed these at his best and he gets weight from the three market principals. Negatives are he hasn’t run since February 2018 and connections may be trying to get him well-handicapped for the Grand National.
Betbright Trial Cotswold Chase 2019 Summary & Tip
Favourites have such a poor record in this race in recent years that it could be worth taking a chance on Minella Rocca, who would be too good for these if returning anywhere near his best after a long lay-off. He’s also aged nine, like seven of the last 10 winners. However, make it a small bet as connections may well be just using this as a prep race for bigger targets in the spring.
Tip: Minella Rocco