Festival Challenge Cup Open Hunters’ Steeple Chase

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We preview the Foxhunter Steeple Chase which is scheduled to take place on Day 4 of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival.

Southfield Theatre leading the 2019 Foxhunter Steeple Chase

Jump to: Tips and Predictions | Betting Odds | Recent Winners

DateFriday, March 19, 2021
Start Time15:40 (GMT+0)
Distance3m 2½f
Where to WatchCheltenham live stream at MansionBet
Horses’ Age5+ Years.
Cheltenham Festival Day 4: Foxhunter Chase

The St. James’s Place Steeple Chase Challenge Cup is a prominent, ungraded National Hunt chase for amateur riders. The event traditionally takes place on the last day of the Cheltenham Festival. In 2021, it’s set for Friday, March 19th, after the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

It’s held on the same track as the Gold Cup. That, combined with its ungraded status and amateur riders, have earned it the nickname “amateur Gold Cup.” It’s quite a historic race, dating all the way back to 1904. As with all events at Cheltenham, it draws considerable attention from punters.

Open Hunters’ Steeple Chase: Tips and Predictions

While the Open Hunters’ Steeple Chase is an ungraded National Hunt race, it’s by no means lacking in quality. Like most Cheltenham Festival events, the race has considerable prestige and a long history. As the “amateur Gold Cup”, it’s often a showcase for new top-shelf talent in the sport.

In 2021, the field is looking quite competitive, with many interesting horses and riders to look at. However, one horse stands above the crowd, both on paper and with the bookmakers. Billaway is coming into the race as a clear favourite.

The 8-year-old horse has racked up nine top-three finishes in 10 races, which is an impressive feat. After coming in second at last year’s Foxhunter Chase, Billaway took a 242-day break before coming in second at Fairyhouse. At the time of writing, bookies give Billaway 7/1 odds across the board.

Other horses worth keeping an eye on this year are It Came To Pass (last year’s winner), Jatiluwih and Stand Up And Fight. While they’ve had mixed performances in recent events, they round off of the favourites for the biggest Cheltenham bookmakers.

Open Hunters’ Steeple Chase: Betting Odds

HorsesCurrent Odds
Bob And Co9/2
Staker Wallace9/1
It Came To Pass10/1
Red Indian11/1
The Worlds End12/1
Stand Up And Fight12/1
Caid Du Berlais12/1
Mighty Stowaway14/1
Hazel Hill14/1
Shantou Flyer14/1
Cat Tiger14/1
Highway Jewel14/1
Minella Rocco14/1
Jury Duty14/1
Porlock Bay16/1
Law Of Gold22/1
Mr Mantilla22/1
Duhallow Tornado25/1
Solomn Grundy25/1
Winged Leader25/1
Wishing And Hoping33/1
Monbeg Gold33/1

Open Hunters’ Steeple Chase: Recent Winners

2020It Came to PassMaxine O’SullivanEugene O’Sullivan
2019Hazel HillAlex EdwardsPhilip Rowley
2018Pacha Du PolderHarriet TuckerPaul Nicholls
2017Pacha Du PolderBryony FrostPaul Nicholls
2016On The FringeNina CarberryEnda Bolger
Source: Wikipedia

Previous Race: Gold Cup

Next Race: Mares’ Chase

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