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The Paddy Power Handicap Chase is the feature race on the opening day of the Cheltenham November Meeting and we’re giving money back as a free bet on all losers!
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Last year’s winner Magic Saint is back to defend his title but faces eight rivals and must lug top weight over two miles on the Old Course at Prestbury Park.
It’s a real punting puzzle due to the quality of the runners, but fear not because our main men have delivered their top tips for the Paddy Power Handicap Chase at 13:45.
Matt Chapman: “A pretty open event where slick jumping will be key. There should be a very strong gallop with both Stolen Silver and Editeur du Gite natural front runners. That sets it up for the closer MAGIC SAINT for Paul Nicholls and Angus Cheleda. Off a mark of 152 my hope is by no means a well handicapped horse but the make-up of this race suits and he has won off this mark here before. It’s also a second run after a wind operation which might be key.”
Mick Fitzgerald: “EDITEUR DU GITE was a very impressive winner at Newbury and Aintree last season, and was putting in a decent shift at Ascot last month until he unseated his rider at the last fence. He jumped left-handed at Ascot, so Cheltenham should suit. He looks to be fairly handicapped still with good conditional jockey Niall Houlihan taking 5lbs off. Paul Nicholls’ Magic Saint rates the danger as he has slipped back to the same winning mark when victorious in this contest last season.”
Paddy Power: “HATCHER ran pretty well here in October when third to Before Midnight. It’s really interesting that he ran in the Elite Hurdle last weekend, maybe that was seen as a sharpener for this?”
Ruby Walsh: “I fancy EDITEUR DU GITE, who’s trained by Gary Moore. He beat Sully D’Oc at Aintree in April and looked impressive. He tipped up on his first start of this season at Ascot in October but that run will have brought him forward. Niall Houlihan is on board and he takes 5lbs off. Editeur Du Gite could still be on the rise so he’s worth looking at.”
Timeform: “MAGIC SAINT took this race off this mark on his second start of last season and is fancied to repeat the feat. Gary Moore has his team in excellent form so Editeur du Gite is feared most on the back of an encouraging reappearance run at Ascot. Kap Auteuil should also have a say as he bids to make it 5 in a row.”
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