Cheltenham Tips: Ruby Walsh’s Champion Chase bets including a 20/1 each-way antepost play

Ruby fancies Edwardstone as an each-way punt in the Champion Chase behind the big two in the market.

Ruby Walsh El Fabiolo

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*Odds quoted on the widget are Future Racing / Antepost prices which means that if your selection does not run in the race for whatever reason – you will lose your stake under traditional Antepost rules.

Ruby Walsh’s Champion Chase Antepost Tips

El Fabiolo
Jonbon
Edwardstone

In the second of this year’s Paddy Power Media’s ‘From The Horse’s Mouth’ podcast Cheltenham Countdown’, host Tom Nugent together with former champion jockey turned tv pundit Ruby Walsh and well-known journalist and broadcaster Rory Delargy, look at the Champion Chase on day two of the 2024 Cheltenham Festival.

RUBY WALSH

It looks to be all systems go for El Fabiolo, he’s in good nick and sets a really high level of form. He looks to have the beating of Jonbon as a chaser, I know as a hurdler Jonbon beat El Fabiolo at Aintree, but they’re two very, very good horses.

You could argue that El Fabiolo’s has room for improvement in the jumping department, more so than his ability or the way he gallops. He does take the odd chance and he can get quite low so somewhere along the way that’s going to catch you out.

You’re hoping it won’t be in the Clarence House Chase at Ascot if racing goes ahead this Saturday or in the Champion Chase. Somewhere along the way though it’s maybe his jumping that’s going to catch him out. He seems to be in great form.

I don’t think the real Jonbon showed up in the Arkle last year when El Fabiolo beat him by more than five lengths. Jonbon never attacked his fences or jumped well.

We’ve seen him this year in the Schloer Chase at Cheltenham and the Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown and he’s been good in both races.

      El Fabiolo’s Hilly Way win at Cork was fine and a good starting point to the season. It’ll be a great race on Saturday at Ascot if they both line up. It’s an interesting clash and I would favour El Fabiolo but I expect Jonbon to give him more of a race than he did in the Arkle Chase last March.

      Of the others, Dinoblue was very good at Leopardstown over Christmas when she beat Gentleman De Mee who was having his first run of the season. Gentleman De Mee should improve a hell of a lot for that run.

      He showed last year that he needed a couple of runs to get up to top gear. He’s dodged the Cheltenham Festival in the past – he skipped it as a novice and after that went to Aintree where he won. He didn’t get there last year because he got injured.

      Personally, I’d prefer Dinoblue to run in the Mrs Paddy Power Mares’ Chase. At the odds on offer now, and this is ahead of what could happen in Saturday’s Clarence House Chase at Ascot, can you really see more than eight runners (from the 19 entries) on the day?

      I can’t, so you’re looking for the each-way angle there and I think at 25-1 Gentleman De Mee is a great each-way bet in this. I would expect Gentleman De Mee to have improved fitness wise for that run at Christmas and I wouldn’t be surprised if he overturned Dinoblue at the Dublin Racing Festival in early February and ended up third favourite for the Champion Chase on the day. At 25-1, the first three in the betting now, that to me is an ante-post bet.

      However, when you’re trying to figure out a race, you’re looking at it and thinking, ‘well if Jonbon, El Fabiolo, Gentleman De Mee line up, Gentleman De Mee is a front runner and he’s going to jump and go.’

      That guarantees a bit of speed and if Jonbon and El Fabiolo push Gentleman De Mee because they’re a bit better than him, does he fall in a hole and that opens the door for the horse coming from the back of the field? In that case it would be Edwardstone at around 20/1.

      Edwardstone was given an easy ride [last time] once he was beaten. The more we discuss this though the more I’m siding with Rory Delargy and Edwardstone as well. With Editeur Du Gite and Gentleman De Mee  as front-runners and then you’ve got El Fabiolo and Jonbon to take them on at the business end.

      El Fabiolo and Jonbon are going to push Editeur Du Gite and Gentleman De Mee and it really opens the door for a closer, so ast 20-1 Edwardstone could be the one to fill the places.

      For me it’s 1. El Fabiolo 2. Jonbon and 3. Edwardstone in the Champion Chase.

            Ruby Walsh’s Champion Chase Ante-post Tips

            El Fabiolo
            Jonbon
            Edwardstone

            *Odds quoted on the widget are Future Racing / Antepost prices which means that if your selection does not run in the race for whatever reason – you will lose your stake under traditional Antepost rules.

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