CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL SPECIAL 2024Tuesday 12th March - Friday 15th March 2024 - With JPW Racing Tipster
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I will start of by saying that this Thursday (8th February) will be the start of the Cheltenham Festival Ante Post which will be included within the Cheltenham Festival 2024 Package.
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We give a very in depth analysis for every race we tip in, accompanied by a selection. The write ups show the massive amount of work that goes in and exactly how thorough we are, in the work we produce, keeping it professional from start to finish.
The winning write ups from previous Cheltenham Festivals that our members received –
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SIRE DU BERLAIS ADVISED AT 50/1 STORMS HOME IN THE 2023 STAYERS HURDLE – AS I SAID NOTHING WILL GET HOME BETTER THAN HIM
I am going to have a small stake on SIRE DU BERLAIS at a ridiculous price. He loves the Cheltenham Festival and has won 2 Pertemps Hurdles and finished 2nd in this race in 2021. He may be past his best but it is this time of year that he comes alive. He won the Stayers Hurdle at Aintree last year and you can literally write off anything he does over the winter, as Gordon Elliott trains him to peak in the Spring. I am not saying he is going to win this but I would not be at all surprised if he plugged on for a place here. If he is close enough after the last hurdle, not many will get home better than him.
CORACH RAMBLER 7/1 WINNER OF THE CHELTENHAM 2023 ULTIMA HANDICAP CHASE
CORACH RAMBLER is just a solid pick to start off our Festival Handicap. This is not to say come the day we won’t have other selections in the Ultima, but this would be my strongest selection in the race.
He was the winner of this race last season off a mark off a mark of 140 and he was doing all his best work at the end of the race. He is now up to a mark of 147 but I think he can defy a 7lb rise in the weights, especially as this race this year, is going to be an even more test of stamina with the ground being soft. The more a test of stamina the better for CORACH RAMBLER.
He has not been seen since the Coral Gold Cup (Hennessy) back in November, when an excellent 4th of 15 to Le Milos. The ground was good that day so it would have been against him, but he still stayed on from the last fence, in his usual fashion, and it just left me feeling he may have more up his sleeve. He has not been seen since as he is being aimed at the Grand National where he is currently 12/1 2nd fav. If he is 12/1 for that race with 40 runners, the 7/1 here in a weaker race looks decent. Lucinda Russell knows the time of day with her horses and clearly did not want to ruin his handicap mark prior to weights being released in the National. That is a sign that she still thinks he is ahead of the handicapper and given the National is just 1 month away, he will be a very fit horse. Following this race she will want to just keep ticking him over so she won’t have left much training in the horse. Besides CORACH RAMBLER won this race last year and the pot is worth £70k to the winner. Surely it is a case of, win this race first and then on to the National. Derek Fox takes the ride and he knows this horse inside out. He was on him last year when winning the race and in fact is the only jockey to ride him, in 11 races under rules. He is a 9 year old who only 11 races under rules, so very lightly raced.
For me CORACH RAMBLER will be staying on up the hill late in the race and in my mind, I have a placed finish at the very least. E/W.
A PLUS TARD ADVISED AT 4/1 TO WIN THE 2022 GOLD CUP – ABSOLUTELY NAILED THE RACE PERFECTLY WITH THE WRITE UP
A horse who we sent out a few weeks ago and I still think he is the horse they all have to beat. I thought the ground would have been quicker but obviously a lot of rain fell yesterday, more than predicted but even so the forecast is dry from here so it should dry out enough. The more it dries the more chance he has.
This is the write up sent out 2 weeks ago:
I think the key to this race is going to be the conditions and at what pace the race is run at. From my reading of the race everything about this race is going to suit A PLUS TARD. As far as I can see after looking at many different angles, the pace is virtually non-existent. There is not one horse in the race in which you look to and immediately think they will take them along at a nice pace. The slower the pace the more it will suit A PLUS TARD as I really feel that the way you have to try to get A PLUS TARD is by making it a stamina test. Sure the horse who wins this race will have stamina on his side but I don’t think the race will be that type of race where the whole emphasis will be on stamina and once again it all comes down to the pace. You have not got a Frodon, a Denman, a Native River or a Coneygree this year and I can’t tell you how much that will play to the strengths of A PLUS TARD.
Secondly another play to get A PLUS TARD beat would be the ground. In Soft or Heavy ground it would again test his true stamina no matter what pace they went but the forecast is dry from Sunday afternoon, leading all the way up to the Gold Cup, which tells me the ground come Friday will be an absolute minimum of Good To Soft.
It now becomes a race where you are trying to get a classy horse like A PLUS TARD, who has so much speed. We know this because he beat Chacun Pour Soi over 2m 1f, he was 2nd to Min in the Ryanair Chase in 2020 and you don’t run big races against those horses if you don’t have speed. Back in November he absolutely bolted up in the Betfair Chase at Haydock, by 22 lengths, on ground which was riding very quick. A PLUS TARD was just impeccable in the jumping department and jumped as well as I have seen any horse in a long long time. He travelled with such zest on decent ground and pretty much won on the bridle. It really was a wow moment for me and it was in the mould of how Kauto Star used to win those Betfair Chases on decent ground.
In all fairness Kauto Star and A PLUS TARD are quite comparable and I am not comparing them in terms of ability as A PLUS TARD has got a long way to go to be in Kauto Star league, but I do feel they are very much the same horse, in that they were both speedy horses, both very very classy, both won over the minimum trip, both excelled on decent ground and both travel with zest.
I just think everything about this race screams A PLUS TARD and you will see him cruising to 3 out and then 2 out, before being sent on to jump the last in the lead.
I also think he is a much better horse this season than last year, when he came home 2nd in the Gold Cup to Minella Indo. I have watched the replay back and last year he didn’t jump with the fluency he does this season, yet only went down by 1 length and was actually closing on Minella Indo going to the line. A PLUS TARD also loves it around Cheltenham, coming alive in the spring time and his form at the Cheltenham Festival in the last 3 years, reads 132, it is in line with Minella Indo form at the Cheltenham Festival whose form reads 121 in the last 3 years, yet our selection form never gets a mention.
Of the opposition I have no doubt last year’s winner Minella Indo will be at his peak in this race but I am just not sure the race will be run to suit this year. Will he have to make the running to ensure he gets the stamina test that is needed? If that is the case that is surely a negative. Will the ground be a bit too quick for him and play into the hands of ”faster horses” such as A PLUS TARD.
The same could be said about Galvin who beat our selection by a short head last time out, in the Savills Chase over the Christmas period. He was taken along by Kemboy that day but we don’t have that type of horse in the race this year, so will he have to make his own pace? Will it be the stamina test that he needs if he doesn’t make the running? We heard it recently from Gordon Elliott that Galvin is showing them speed they never thought he had. To me that is a negative as they have always felt he was a slow horse whereas our horse, we always knew he had the speed.
I also feel A PLUS TARD did a lot wrong last time out and went to the front too early and I don’t see Rachael Blackmore making the same mistake again and if that Savills Chase was run again, A PLUS TARD would win 9 times out of 10.
Of the rest I couldn’t have Protektorat on decent ground and I really don’t think he is up to this level. While Al Boum Photo has won this race 2 times, is not getting any younger and it would be hard to see him turning the form around from last season.
A horse who I do think will run well on decent ground is Chantry House but again I couldn’t have him in the league of A Plus Tard.
A PLUS TARD is remarkably only an 8 year old. He has been around for a number of years yet is only just at his peak. I think you are going to see him at his absolute best here and I would not be at all surprised if he won the race by a good few lengths.
The 4/1 looks a great price as with everything we have talked about, down to the pace of the race, to the ground, to how they will travel, I would actually make him a 9/4 shot.
We saw Rachael Blackmore become the first female jockey to win the Grand National last year and this year I think we are going to see our first female jockey win the Gold Cup. WIN.
VINTAGE CLOUDS 28/1 WINNER AT THE 2021 CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL
Can’t quite believe I am here typing this but after the Gold Cup last year I got speaking to someone very well connected to VINTAGE CLOUDS. I won’t mention any names but let’s just say ‘very closely connected’. It wasn’t just a 5 minute conversation either it was over many hours over the course of the evening, and after a few too many drinks.
We got on to the subject of handicap horses who may have ‘got away’ at the Cheltenham Festival and VINTAGE CLOUDS pops up. He finished 2nd of 24 to Beware The Bear in this race back in 2019 rated 144 and then was 8th of 23 in this race last year, rated 151. It was mentioned in our conversation that the year he came 2nd, connections really fancied his chances and it was a horse who so nearly won.
Anyway I said my opinion was 151 was a handicap mark way too high (last year) and you got one more shot at the Ultima Handicap Chase with this horse next season, but he needs to come down to a handicap mark of 142 and given he had a wind operation just before he finished 2nd in this race in 2019, this time I would give the horse a wind operation one race prior to this race, so VINTAGE CLOUDS learns that he can actually breathe better, before the race and don’t get caught by surprise during the race, that he actually can breath, which probably was what happened in 2019, as he stayed on after coming off the bridle.
I woke up the next morning and said to my wife, can you believe the nerve of me, suggesting stuff to the person, well connected to VINTAGE CLOUDS, what to do with the horse.
12 months on and exactly what we discussed has happened with the horse. I can’t say it was because of me as I have not seen the person again, or probably ever will again, with it being a random meet in the first place. What I do know is I have seen something unfold in front of my eyes and I have to practice what I preached and he comes into the race rated 143 (1lb higher than what we discussed) and a wind operation (in November, with one run since). Not only that but they are also putting on first time cheekpieces, just to help that bit more.
VINTAGE CLOUDS is an 11 year old who is now 1lb lower than when he finished 2nd in this race in 2019 and this year’s renewal is not as competitive. This is a horse who won the Peter Marsh Chase last season off today’s mark of 143. It ruined his handicap mark for this race last year, but every run this season has been with a view to getting his mark down to 142.
He is going to have to roll back the years but I am sure he has been trained to the minute and this is one of only two horses trained by Sue Smith coming to the Cheltenham Festival. A bold front running ride I am sure will be attempted and if he can start to get a few of these working hard in behind, he will stay all day long up the hill. Can I really practice what I preached, a year on?…
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