Cheltenham Festival 2019: Punters latch on to Bristol De Mai ahead of Gold Cup as rain falls

BRISTOL DE MAI has become a surprise Festival gamble as punters hope bookies will end up with mud on their faces.
Nigel Twiston-Davies’ runner thrashed reigning Gold Cup king Native River by four lengths in the Betfair Chase.

Daryl Jacob and Bristol De Mai salute the crowd after their victory in the Betfair

The eight-year-old then fell when in the middle of the pack at Kempton in the King George won by Clan Des Obeaux.

With plenty of top form in the mud, and with soft ground now forecast for Cheltenham week, punters have waded in with their wallets.

Betway’s Tom Marriott said: “We’ve seen a lot of money for Bristol De Mai and have been forced to cut him from 33s to 22-1.”

Ladbrokes are shortest of all at 16-1.

Twiston-Davies says the cash is well placed. He said: “He is overpriced for the Gold Cup, for sure.
“He is in great form and has beaten most of the others this season.

“He’s had a nice break and we certainly have no worries about the ground. I’m pretty hopeful.”

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The bad news for Bristol De Mai backers is rain will also suit the likes of Native River and big Irish challenger Presenting Percy.
William Hill’s Rupert Adam said: “We have seen money for Native River and expect plenty more.”

Ladbrokes are looking to the gods to help them with Angel’s Breath, who has been punted for the opening race of the Festival, the Supreme.

The Magic Sign’s Nicola McGeady said: “Nico De Boinville has chosen to ride Angel’s Breath and the ground is set to be in the horse’s favour. He has been very well backed and we are now just 4-1.”

Cheltenham clerk of the course Simon Claisse said: “We’ve had plenty of rain in the last week and the outlook is unsettled with more rain to come.”


Gold Cup: Native River, Presenting Percy, Bristol De Mai

Champ Hurdle: Apple’s Jade, Laurina

Coral Cup: Ballyandy

Supreme: Angels Breath

National Hunt Chase: Ballyward

RSA CHA: Santini

Ultima Handicap: Mister Whitaker

JLT: Defi Du Seuil

Grand Annual: Le Prezien

Albert Bartlett: Derrinross, Relegate

Arkle: Hardline

Champion Chase: Un De Sceaux

Sun Racing Stayers Hurdle: Black Op, Faugheen

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Gold Cup: Clan Des Obeaux, Might Bite

Albert Barlett: Birchdale

Ballymore: City Island

Foxhunters: Wonderful Charm

Ultima: Minella Rocco, The Young Master

Arkle: Lalor

Champion Hurdle: Brain Power, Verdana Blue

Ryanair: Road To Respect

Sun Racing Stayers Hurdle: Paisley Park

Supreme: Thomas Darby


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