Horse Racing tips: Our Pundits’ Glorious Cheat Sheet for ITV Racing on New Year’s Day

Could you think of a better way to start the year? Me neither.

Cheat Sheet New Year's Day Cheltenham1

Comments

* All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.

A new year is upon us, folks. And New Year’s Day means putting the feet up and doing nothing but watch the footy, the racing, and then the darts in the evening – day sorted! ITV have a cracking schedule of racing in store at Cheltenham, Musselburgh, and Tramore.

And, in case you didn’t know *shameless plug* we have three sponsored races over at Cheltenham, The Paddy Power Novices’ Chase (1.25pm), the Paddy Power New Year’s Day Handicap Chase (2pm), and the Paddy Power Handicap Hurdle (2.35pm). What a day to be alive!

On the hunt for winners, we’ve pulled Ruby Walsh, Mick Fitzgerald, Matt Chapman, Trader extraordinaire Frank Hickey, and the Timeform crew together to give us their tasty tips.

NEW TO US? CLICK HERE FOR OUR £/€20 SIGN-UP OFFER

LIKE PADDY POWER NEWS? OR MAYBE YOU JUST LIKE TO WHINGE? TELL US WHAT YOU THINK IN OUR READER SURVEY

Matt Chapman

Frank Hickey

Ruby Walsh

Mick Fitzgerald

Timeform

Matt Chapman

MILLERS BANK was poor when unseating rider at Newbury last time. That said, the Alex Hales-trained gelding would probably have won that day without the accident and he clearly has loads of ability. I’ll take the chance Harry Bannister gets a good tune.

Frank Hickey

I think a drop in trip here might suit OSCAR ELITE. He handles bad ground, as he won his first two hurdles starts on heavy ground.  While the Tizzard yard form is a huge concern, a double figure price will definitely tempt me in.

Ruby Walsh

I wouldn’t oppose L’HOMME PRESSE. I actually think he’ll be a better horse going left handed as he jumped out to his left all the way at Ascot. I think going left at Cheltenham will suit him and I couldn’t oppose him.

Mick Fitzgerald

My selection is MILLERS BANK but you may be watching from behind the sofa. I feel this lad should come with a health warning for punters. He is talented and he is proven on a soft surface.  I think he is the best of these but you are taking a gamble on his jumping.

Timeform

L’HOMME PRESSE has made an excellent start over fences, maintaining his 100% record with plenty to spare at Ascot on his latest start in December. He gets the nod to continue the good work now tackling this higher grade.

Matt Chapman

KAVANAGHS CROSS has been dropped 1lb despite winning last time and now gets Angus Cheleda taking 5lb off so is technically 6lb better in. That said, I’m not absolutely sure he’s a strong stayer but it gives him a chance each-way at the very least. 

Mick Fitzgerald

STONERS CHOICE has form on soft ground and I feel back at this trip he will be better suited. He ran very well at Kempton and is still handicapped to be bang there.

Timeform

KAVANAGHS CROSS has a steadily progressive profile since moving to Iain Jardine and can add to last month’s Kelso maiden success despite being 2lb out of the weights here.

Matt Chapman

This might be the day for ZANZA to come through late. All he needs is for there to be a strong pace – if he gets that it’s hard to see him out of the frame.

Frank Hickey

SIMPLY THE BETTS is 2-2 on the new course in Cheltenham. I’d be surprised if Nicholls couldn’t get a decent handicap out of him off with the mark he’s on. 14/1 would look a cracking price to me.

Ruby Walsh

Venetia Williams and Charlie Deutsch are having a great season and I think FUNAMBULE SIVOLA is better than 155. There’s a race in him off that mark.

Mick Fitzgerald

Philip Hobbs has his team in very good form and they have stuck cheek pieces on ZANZA and I’m hoping that might just sharpen him up , along with the fact that we have softer ground. Coole Cody is a solid alternative but I am happy to stick with Zanza.

Timeform

Venetia Williams’ upwardly-mobile FUNAMBULE SIVOLA looks the way to go given he resumed with a promising second in Huntingdon’s Peterborough Chase and is attractively weighted back in handicap company.

Matt Chapman

FIRST IMPRESSION was 5-4 off this mark at this track last time but jumped badly and unseated rider early. Obviously he will have to leap much better here and this is tougher but he gets plenty of weight from the other fancied runners and should go well.

Frank Hickey

TOMMY’S OSCAR is quite progressive. Trainer Ann Hamilton is very good despite only having a small string. She is operating at a 35% strike rate this season so that’s good enough for me.

Ruby Walsh

John McConnell’s horses are in good form so it’s ANNA BUNINA for me. The run in the Scottish Champion Hurdle behind Milkwood was really good so we’re taking it on trust that she’s ready enough.

Mick Fitzgerald

Tommy’s Oscar and CHRISTOPHER WOOD met at Kelso but on very different terms. Paul Nicholls charge is 2lbs better off. Chuck In the fact that Christopher Wood has run twice at the track and won both times so I’m siding with him.

Timeform

TOMMY’S OSCAR continues to go from strength-to-strength for Ann Hamilton and is fancied to defy top weight and rattle off his hat-trick.

Matt Chapman

AL BOUM PHOTO is the forgotten horse of the Gold Cup field and my advice is back him for Cheltenham today before he hacks up here. At 16-1 he’s still a great each-way bet and if you have to take 14-1 take that.

Frank Hickey

AL BOUM PHOTO is going for his fourth win in this race and despite the fact that he probably isn’t quite as good as he was, he should prove too good for these here.

Ruby Walsh

We’ve had a dry autumn so AL BOUM PHOTO hasn’t run as of yet he looks to be in really good form at home but he’s going to be that kind of price. I wouldn’t put anyone off backing him each-way for the Cheltenham Gold Cup. I’d prefer to back him for the Gold Cup before he runs at Tramore.

Timeform

This race is firmly established as AL BOUM PHOTO’s Cheltenham Gold Cup aperitif, and he should have little trouble in winning it for the fourth consecutive season before attempting to regain his Gold Cup crown in March.

Matt Chapman

ASK DILLON is a stronger stayer than most and has been dropped 1lb after his third at the track last time. That might not be enough to allow him to score here, but he should still run well so I’ll go with him each-way.

Frank Hickey

BOTOX HAS proved he stays 3m when second to Kansas City Chief on his first start at 3m. He’s up 3lbs but unexposed at 3m and with the ground in his favour, he looks to have solid each way claims.

 

Ruby Walsh

Now they know BOTOX HAS stays after fishing second over 3m last time out, they’ll be a bit more positive with him and not be thinking about the trip. I think he’s the most likely improver in the field.

Mick Fitzgerald

Fergal O’Brien is fast approaching 100 winners for the season and ART APPROVAL went up 8lb for winning at the track last time. He was value for a lot more than the winning distance after a blunder at the last. He has form on heavy ground so that is not an issue.

Timeform

SPIRITOFTHEGAMES’ strike rate will put a few off but from a handicapping perspective he has been given a massive chance back over hurdles so at the forecast odds, he is worth siding with.

Matt Chapman

I’m amazed we haven’t seen MCFABULOUS over fences yet as he’s a great big beast built like a chaser. I presume he’s schooled badly. What we do know is that he’s a pretty talented hurdler on a going day and he could well be hard to beat for the champion Paul Nicholls and Harry Cobden.

Frank Hickey

BREWINUPASTORM’s return to hurdles last season proved fruitful, winning a Taunton handicap in a canter off 148 and then easily accounting for McFabulous in the National Spirit Hurdle at Fontwell. No reason MacFabulous should reverse here.

Ruby Walsh

STORMY IRELAND has a great chance here. The opposition’s style of running will suit as she likes to go along at the front. She never got going at Fairyhouse. I think with that run under her belt she’ll be able to dictate things here.

Mick Fitzgerald

MCFABULOUS has had a wind op since disappointing at Aintree. He got in a real muddle that day and made two real howlers as he he was trapped on the inside. I am happy to take a punt on him turning the tables on Brewinupastorm with a trouble free round.

Timeform

BREWIN’UPASTORM looked better than ever when winning on his Aintree reappearance and is fancied to confirm his National Spirit superiority over McFabulous, who took this race last season (at Kempton).

CLICK THIS LINK FOR ALL THE HORSE RACING FAST RESULTS 

    New Year’s Day horse racing tips

      Read More

        The latest racing odds are on PaddyPower.com now

        The Paddy Power Guide To Safer Gambling – Everything You Need To Know

        What do you think?