Coral Cup race analysis and tips

Coral Cup race analysis and tips

Mount Mews

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Betting Tip: @ Mount Mews each-way @ 16/1 with paddypower

2:50 2m5f (2m5f26y) (Old) Coral Cup Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) (Class 1) (4yo+)

Last year (horse – trainer – jockey – SP):
1. Supasundae – J Harrington – R Power – 16/1
2. Taquin Du Seuil – J O’Neill – A Coleman – 12/1
3. Who Dares Wins – A King – W Hutchinson – 33/1
4. Monksland – N Meade – D Meyler – 66/1
(25 ran)

Nature of the race
The quality has definitely gone up in recent years, like all the Festival handicaps, and anything rated below 136 last year (down from 139 in 2016) didn’t get in. As the race tends to be steadily run, it favours the speedier types and especially if the ground is riding on the good side.

Trends analysis
Class has come to the fore in more recent runnings with seven of the last nine winners coming from the top eight in the weights. Freshness is also key, with nine of the last ten winners having had no more than four runs over hurdles that season and they were all relatively unexposed types (no more than nine runs over hurdles). Strong recent form is key too, with five of the last nine winners successful last time out and only two were unplaced. Only one outright and one joint-favourite have won this tricky handicap in its 24-year history.

Festival form
This is not a huge race for Festival form, although there have been some decent clues: last year’s winner Supasundae was seventh in a red-hot Supreme, Son Of Flicka (2012) had been second off 5lb higher in the previous Martin Pipe and Carlito Brigante (2011) had been fourth in the Triumph.

Trainer watch
The bigger stables have tended to dominate in recent years, with Nicky Henderson and Gordon Elliott bagging two apiece. The latter trainer is perhaps the man to watch as he’s had just eight runners and two of his six losers were placed.

Best of the Irish
A full field of 26 has been declared and the layers have unanimously landed on Willie Mullins’ Max Dynamite as favourite. That was predictable, really, given his powerful connections and that Ruby Walsh will be on board, not to mention his superior Flat form which includes a third in last year’s Melbourne Cup and a subsequent sixth in a Sha Tin Group 1. However, jumping hurdles around here is another matter entirely and his record in this sphere (1-8) doesn’t look as impressive. Granted, it’s mostly been over 2m and he’s entitled to improve stepping up in trip, but he doesn’t give his hurdles enough respect, in my opinion.

Best of the home challenge
The British challenge is headed by William Henry, at least according to the betting, and he too represents a powerful stable, being one of four Nicky Henderson-trained runners. His hurdles form is right up there too as he has won three of his five starts, culminating in a narrow defeat of Spiritofthegames in January’s Lanzarote, the form of which looks even stronger after the runner-up’s subsequent third in the Betfair Hurdle. He’s gone up a further 6lb, though, and while half of that is taken care of by the brilliant James Bowen’s claim, it leaves him just 2lb off top weight, carried by Diamond King.

Others to consider
Le Breuil has always been highly regarded by Ben Pauling but he’s yet to do it on the track and I suspect we won’t see the best of him until he goes chasing and on better ground than he’s going to get here. Topofthegame is another embryo chaser but that didn’t stop him winning a nice race over hurdles at Sandown in February and he’s still feasibly weighted.

There are plenty of others with a good shout, as you can imagine, but one who really grabs the eye is Ruth Jefferson’s Mount Mews, who is reverting to hurdles after three chase starts, winning the first of those and chasing home Black Corton last time. His jumping is not the best, though, and the decision by connections to switch grades with him is easy to understand as he’s potentially well treated on a mark of 142. Certainly a CV that contains a Grade 2 success at Kelso, by 29 lengths no less, and a defeat of Sam Spinner as a novice reads very well and, crucially, he’s effective on soft/heavy.

Best bookmaker offers
Both Betfair and Paddy Power are paying out on five places, albiet at one fifth the odds, but I would imagine other firms will beat that – watch this space!

It’s quite possible I haven’t mentioned the winner but I’m not going to waste any more time looking as I think MOUNT MEWS has it what it takes to win this and while he’s had more runs this season than is the norm, three of those were over fences. At 16/1 with Paddy Power, he rates a cracking each-way bet.

Betting Tip: @ Mount Mews each-way @ 16/1 with paddypower

All odds were correct at time of posting.

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