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  • Chester Best Bets: All Signs Point To Magellan Strait For Bold Chester Cup Bid

Chester best bets: All signs point to Magellan Strait for bold Chester Cup bid

After his trends-based tip suffered an agonising near miss on Thursday, racing expert Andrew of Fiosrach runs his analysis over the feature race of the Chester May Festival - The Chester Cup.

15:40 Chester: Duke Of Westminster Supporting The Chester Cup (2 miles 2½ furlongs)

It was another case of “close but no cigar” for our selections in Thursday opener, with 12/1 shot Copper Knight coming second by a neck to short-priced favourite Democracy Dilemma, with one of our three shortlisted picks, Vintage Clarets (8/1) the width of a horse’s nostril further back in third.

Copper Knight had been available as high as 25/1 on Wednesday, so we hope you enjoyed even better each-way returns than those yielded by the healthy starting price.

On Friday, we're hoping we can go one better in the Chester Cup, which is always the highlight of the meeting as one of the most historic handicaps in Britain, dating as far back as 1824.

With 17 runners going round the tight turns of the famous course, the draw can be critical as horses and riders quite literally jockey for position, and the race has been known to throw up its fair share of surprises down the years.

PlanetSportBet Daily Special: Bet £20+ cash on any runner in the race and if Zoffee finishes in the first 4 places, get a £5 Free Bet

I will use the trends below to try and reduce the big field to a more manageable four selection:

  • 20/21 – Aged 7 years-old or younger 
  • 18/21 – Winning distance – 2 lengths or less 
  • 15/21 – Aged 5, 6 or 7 years-olds 
  • 15/21 – Officially rated between 93-99 
  • 14/21 – Finished unplaced last time out 
  • 14/21 – Returned 10/1 or shorter in the betting 
  • 14/21 – Carried 9st-2lb or less 
  • 14/21 – Had raced within the last 2 months 
  • 12/21 – Had won previously over at least 2 miles on the flat 
  • 12/21 – Won from stall 7 or lower 
  • 11/21 – Favourites were unplaced 
  • 11/21 – Irish bred 
  •   4/21 – Ran at Newmarket last time out 
  •   3/21 – Had won at the track before 
  •   3/21 – Ran at Aintree over hurdles last time out 
  •   3/21 – Won their previous race 
  •   2/21 – Trained by Donald McCain 
  •   2/21– Trained by Richard Fahey 
  •   2/21 – Trained by Ian Williams 
  •   2/21 – Won by the favourite 
  •   2/21 - Irish-trained winners 
  • The average winning SP in the last 21 years is 12/1

Magellan Strait is the highest weighted of those in the shortlist and previously this burden would be a negative, but with six of the last eight winners carrying more than nine stone that old trend has changed. 

William Buick has been booked by Joseph O’Brien and the Champion Jockey has an excellent race clock in his head and I expect Magellan Strait to make all.

Suggested best bet: Magellan Strait each-way in the 15:40 at Chester


Emiyn is a course and distance winner and was seventh in this race last season off a two pounds lower mark.

Declan Carroll’s seven-year-old goes well for his claiming jockey Zak Wheatley, but is more exposed than most of these, so the application of a first-time visor may bring about better concentration and further improvement..

Aqwaam has a better record on all-weather surfaces than on turf and, like Emiyn, is pretty exposed. 
Connections stepped him up in trip and that has brought about improvement, but his wins have been in lower-class races, and his subsequent career-high mark makes this a difficult task for the Ian Williams-trained six-year-old.

Forza Orta comes from the in-form Kevin Ryan stable and won a decent staying race at York last season and only carries two pounds more in this race. 

Despite having had plenty of racing he has only been tried once over two miles or further, so the six-year-old has scope to improve further.

Based on the trends I was torn between Forza Orta and Magellan Strait, but based on the changing weight trends and jockey booking, I have selected the latter. 

Please look around for best prices and extra places from your bookmaker before backing Magellan Strait each-way.

Suggested bet: Magellan Strait each-way


READ MORE: Friday ITV racing tips: Best bets for Chester and Ascot on May 10

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