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The Ladbrokes Trophy is one of the big handicaps of the National Hunt season and this year’s race is a real punting puzzle after a field of 21 runners was declared.
Cloth Cap will attempt to become the first horse since the legendary Arkle in 1965 to win consecutive renewals but Jonjo O’Neill’s ace is 18lbs worse off in the ratings compared to a year ago.
NEW TO PADDY POWER?
Willie Mullins saddled Total Recall to victory in 2017 and will be hoping Munster National hero Ontheropes can provide the yard with their second winner in the race but fellow Irish trainer Henry de Bromhead has the lightly raced Eklat De Rire prominent in our betting market.
Paddy is paying a stonking six places for the Ladbrokes Trophy 2021 but who do his panel of pundits fancy? You’ll find their best bets and predictions below!
Matt Chapman: The Irish raiders could do anything, but I’m sticking with ENRILO for champion Paul Nicholls and Harry Cobden. My hope was given a great ride by Harry Skelton to land the big chase at Sandown at the end of last term and was very unlucky to be disqualified for causing interference as he was easily the best horse. He’s only up 4lbs and as he doesn’t do much when hitting the front might have more up his sleeve. Off 11st 1lb I expect a big each-way run.
Mick Fitzgerald: I can’t get away from last year’s novices, so I am drawn to Fiddlerontheroof, EKLAT DE RIRE, Remastered and Demachine. Eklat De Rire won his race at Wexford (which was the same race Minella Indo won) in good style and this contest has been the plan for a while. Henry De Bromhead and Rachael Blackmore are a great team and they unite against here. Eklat De Rire blotted the copybook at Cheltenham in March when he unseated his rider behind Monkfish, but he had jumped really well up to that point and is normally pretty solid.
Paddy Power: Hopefully the ground stays decent, as many of the other top guns in this contest want really deeper ground than is currently forecasted. If it stays goodish that’s great news for KITTY’S LIGHT, as the Christian Williams-trained gelding like better ground. We are also offering six places in this race, which adds to the appeal of Kitty’s Light.
Ruby Walsh: I reckon there is one in this field with the potential to be a Grade 1 horse and that what this Ladbrokes Trophy can throw up – what could be a Gold Cup horse. EKLAT DE RIRE ticks all those boxes for me. I know he is pretty high in the weights, with 11st 8lbs on his back. But, off a mark of 152, he could still be well handicapped for this contest. He could well be a horse that is capable of winning off a rating in the mid-160s. He has done nothing wrong in his life and you can see that when he travelled behind Monkfish in the Brown Advisory Novices’ Chase this year.
Timeform: “Lots with a chance in an ultra competitive Ladbrokes Trophy, so at the likely odds it is worth siding with DANNY WHIZZBANG to capitalise on a much-reduced mark and bounce back in style on his debut for the resurgent Milton Harris. Improving second-season chasers Eklat de Rire and Fiddlerontheroof are both greatly feared, while Remastered, Kitty’s Light and Enrilo all figure on the shortlist too.”
Ladbrokes Trophy Tips Summary
- Horse Racing Tips: Matt Chapman’s 8 slick picks for Saturday’s ITV races
- Horse Racing Tips: Mick Fitzgerald’s best bets for Saturday’s ITV races
- Horse Racing Tips: 8 plays Paddy Power rates for Saturday’s ITV races
- Horse Racing Tips: Ruby Walsh’s 8 sweet picks for Saturday’s ITV races