Paddy Power New Year’s Day Handicap Chase tips and runner-by-runner guide to Cheltenham 1.55 on Sunday

A big-field contest to kick off 2023 in style!

*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

We’re sponsoring the big race at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day – and a fantastic field of 17 will go to post at 13:55.

A whole host of runners boasting recent track-and-trip form over the New Course are set to take their chance in the Paddy Power New Year’s Day Handicap Chase including last season’s runner-up Simply The Betts, Silver Trophy winner Stolen Silver and Paddy Power Gold Cup third Midnight River and fourth Il Ridoto.


The threat of rain in the build up to post time could turn the 2m4½f Premier Handicap, worth a tidy £56,950 to winning connections, into a bit of a slog so it’s worth watching the weather before plumping for a selection.

Paddy Power New Year’s Day Handicap Chase odds can be found on the Paddy Power website, Paddy Power app or via our snazzy betting widgets, otherwise Timeform’s horse-by-horse guide to the runners and betting tips from the racing boffins are below.

Paddy Power New Year’s Day Handicap Chase runners

Brave Seasca

Trainer: Venetia Williams Jockey: Charlie Deutsch Age: 8 Weight: 12st 0lbs

12/1, career best when easily winning 13-runner handicap chase at Aintree (19.9f, good to soft) 29 days ago, plenty in hand. Makes plenty of appeal despite 9lb rise.



Trainer: Kim Bailey Jockey: David Bass Age: 9 Weight: 11st 11lbs

Useful hurdler and fine start over fences during 2020/21, runner-up in the Ultima here prior to success in Grade 3 handicap at Aintree. Missed last term but produced a most encouraging comeback run when third in last month’s Rehearsal. Very much respected.


Stolen Silver

Trainer: Sam Thomas Jockey: Sam Twiston-Davies Age: 8 Weight: 11st 9lbs

Did well over C&D last spring, fourth in Plate handicap at the Festival prior to running out an impressive winner of the Silver Trophy in April. Yet to be asked for effort when unseating 3 out in Paddy Power Gold Cup here on reappearance. Worth another chance.


Simply The Betts

Trainer: Paul Nicholls Jockey: Mr David Maxwell Age: 10 Weight: 11st 8lbs

Won the Plate handicap at the Festival in 2020 and more good efforts here last term, including 11 lengths second to Stolen Silver in Silver Trophy over C&D final start. Respectable seventh of 14 in Paddy Power Gold Cup on reappearance.


War Lord

Trainer: Joe Tizzard Jockey: Brendan Powell Age: 8 Weight: 11st 7lbs

Took very well to fences last term, winning 3 times and also fourth to Edwardstone in the Arkle at the Festival here. Below-form third of 5 in Haldon Gold Cup at Exeter on reappearance but he could be sharper for the run.



Trainer: Joe Tizzard Jockey: Tom Cannon Age: 11 Weight: 11st 6lbs

Top-class chaser at best (Betfair Chase winner and third in Cheltenham Gold Cup in 2019/20). Lost his way after an Ascot reappearance win last season but best not judged too harshly on last month’s return in Coral Gold Cup (inconvenienced by standing start). Cheekpieces back on.



Trainer: Tom Lacey Jockey: Stan Sheppard Age: 9 Weight: 11st 6lbs

Smart chaser who proved better than ever when seeing off Stage Star in a Grade 2 novice at Newbury last month and worthy of interest back in handicap company.


Midnight River

Trainer: Dan Skelton Jockey: Harry Skelton Age: 8 Weight: 11st 4lbs

Useful novice hurdler who gained second victory from 5 starts in this sphere on return at Stratford and did well under the circumstances when a staying-on third in the Paddy Power Gold Cup here last time. Obvious claims from the same mark.


Fantastic Lady

Trainer: Nicky Henderson Jockey: Nico de Boinville Age: 8 Weight: 11st 1lbs

Useful chaser who arrives on the back of a reappearance win in 3m Market Rasen listed mares’ chase last month. This demands more of her again but certainly not discounted.



Trainer: Gary Moore Jockey: Jamie Moore Age: 6 Weight: 11st 1lbs

5-y-o who enjoyed a good first season over fences, taking Newbury Grade 2 and ending campaign with success at Fontwell (19.5f) in February. Not seen to best effect faced with a big field for the first time over fences when sixth in the Paddy Power here last month and now has cheekpieces on.



Trainer: Kerry Lee Jockey: Jonathan Burke Age: 9 Weight: 10st 13lbs

Low-mileage 8-y-o who gained third victory over fences following second breathing op at Uttoxeter in May. Solid showing at Newbury last time and remains unexposed at this sort of trip.


Il Ridoto

Trainer: Paul Nicholls Jockey: Harry Cobden Age: 6 Weight: 10st 12lbs

Useful novice chaser last term and shaped well when 5 lengths fourth of 14 in Paddy Power Gold Cup here on his reappearance 4 weeks ago. Merits plenty of respect.


Shakem Up’arry

Trainer: Ben Pauling Jockey: Luca Morgan Age: 9 Weight: 10st 12lbs

Lightly-raced chaser who, like several from his yard, returned better than ever when landing an 11-runner event at Exeter a month ago. Has the potential to do better still.


Eden Du Houx

Trainer: David Pipe Jockey: Tom Scudamore Age: 9 Weight: 10st 6lbs

Benefited from a return to chasing when putting up a career best to win handicap chase (3/1) at Ffos Las (19.4f, soft) 37 days ago, easily. This is more competitive but he deserves respect.



Trainer: Milton Harris Jockey: Paddy Brennan Age: 8 Weight: 10st 5lbs

Dual winner around this trip last term but he’s been operating below his best so far this season, again not seeing his race out when sixth of 10 at Newbury latest. First-time visor needs to help with his finishing effort.


Coconut Splash

Trainer: Evan Williams Jockey: Adam Wedge Age: 8 Weight: 10st 5lbs

Maiden hurdle winner who has shown useful form in defeat over fences, running close to his best when 4 lengths third of 7 in 19f Wetherby handicap on his reappearance 2 months ago. One to note.


Deyrann De Carjac

Trainer: Alan King Jockey: Alexander Thorne Age: 10 Weight: 10st 1lbs

Smart novice chaser in 2019/20. Seemingly not the force of old but handicap mark reflects that and he’s run 2 sound races this season, narrowly denied at Wetherby before fifth in the Paddy Power Gold Cup here. Not discounted.


Paddy Power New Year’s Day Handicap Chase tips

Timeform: BRAVE SEASCA resumed progress in emphatic fashion at Aintree 29 days ago and his smooth-travelling style will lend itself to this race so he takes preference over Midnight River, who shaped so well in the Paddy Power Gold Cup. Il Ridoto and Stolen Silver also merit consideration in what looks a fiercely-competitive renewal.

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