*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at time of publication but subject to change
The fifth qualifying race for Paddy’s Millionaire Chase sets off this Saturday at Cheltenham, with Goshen making his seasonal reappearance in the 3.00pm International Hurdle.
Expert tipster Frank Hickey and Paddy Power ambassador Ruby Walsh have given their take on the race, which is serving as one of six events giving punters the chance to start 2021 in style at Cheltenham on New Years Day.
Not sure what we’re on about? You’re going to want to know. It’s your chance to turn £5 into £1m. Get the low down on everything you need to know here.
Speaking on the latest episode of our twice-weekly From The Horse’s Mouth podcast, Frank and Ruby agree on their expected winner of the 2m1f Grade 2 event – but will you follow their advice or go your own way?
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Frank Hickey – Goshen
I had it in my head that I wanted to take GOSHEN on, when I started pricing the race. But the more I looked at it, the more I thought that this is a race with all the horses rated in the 150s – with Sceau Royal top rated on 158, and that is probably the limit of his ability – and I don’t think anything else can run above 160.
If there is one horse in the race that could be a Champion Hurdle horse, and could run to a mark of 165+, it is Goshen. If he was coming here without running twice on the flat, he would be even money and possibly even odds-on. Those two flat runs were a bit disappointing, but he was running off 88 in decent handicaps. They weren’t weak races, and if you go back to the Triumph he was going to absolutely bolt in.
Now that form looks stronger, with Aspire Tower beating Abacadabras in the WKD Hurdle at Down Royal and Allmankind winning the Henry VIII Grade 1 over fences last week. Goshen was going to annihilate the two of them and I think it’s hard to look beyond him. We’re a little under 11/5 but I would make him shorter than that again. He’s the one horse who is a potential Champion Hurdle horse and until he gets beaten, I’m not going to oppose him.
Ruby Walsh – Goshen
Sometimes when juvenile hurdlers get out of juvenile company and go up against older, harder horses some of them aren’t capable of making the step up. The trends are there for everyone to see, and more don’t make the step up than those that do. But GOSHEN’s performance in last year’s Triumph was just incredible and after Jamie Moore switched him out down the hill to the third hurdle, from thereon he put his foot on the accelerator. This horse just kept going, and going faster! He was going to win really impressively and I think he’s win here.
I think the only danger is Song For Someone, but I wouldn’t be worried about Goshen’s flat runs. If you look at Sharjah, who was second in last year’s Champion Hurdle, his flat runs were worse than Goshen’s. Some horses are just better jumpers than they are flat horses. I think Goshen is one of those and I think he will be impossible to beat here with 11st on his back, getting 6lbs off all the field. I would fancy him, even giving these horses 6lbs.
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PADDY POWER MILLIONAIRE CHASE QUALIFIER 5 (Cheltenham, 3.00PM) TIPS
*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while in-copy odds are accurate at time of publication but subject to change
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