Sandown 3.15 tips – Nicholls’ record a big pointer to ‘Century

Sandown 3.15 tips - Nicholls' record a big pointer to 'Century

Paul Nicholls


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Betting Tip: Minellahalfcentury @ 7/2 with betvictor

Small fields predominate at today’s jumps cards and it’s hard to get too excited about what’s on offer with the greatest show on turf just four days away.

That said, any opportunity to boost the Cheltenham Festival betting bank should be seized upon and the record of Paul Nicholls in this afternoon’s feature at Sandown, the Grand Military Gold Cup (due off 3.15pm), sways me towards backing his representative, MINELLAHALFCENTURY.

The champion trainer loves to have a crack at the race which is restricted to military amateur riders, with his runners since 2005 achieving finishing positions of 111231425. His go-go jockey is L/bdr Jody Sole and they successfully teamed up with Merrion Square in 2013, with Sole also victorious on Blu Teen two years previously.

It’s safe to say then that the selection has been laid out for this race and for that reason we can ignore a couple of modest efforts this season, most recently when finishing fifth of six at Taunton 38 days ago. To be fair to the horse, though, that run may have been needed as he’d last been seen finishing midfield in a handicap at the Cheltenham November meeting.

As a three-time winner, including once over fences, he undoubtedly has the ability to land this and he looks to have Jennys Surprise to beat. That horse came from a mile back to win a similar race over track and trip last month having looked well beaten, and it was more down to the fact her rivals, who had set a strong pace, tired badly close home. There is also a suspicion the mare will prove getter served going left-handed, and she’s opposable for those reasons.

Betting Tip: Minellahalfcentury @ 7/2 with betvictor

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