Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase

A 3m1/2f Handicap Chase which often features past and future Grand National runners.

Despite being a handicap this has been a good race for punters over the years with horses near the front of the market showing a good return.

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JLT Specialty Handicap Steeple Chase
Last year's race

Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase Trends

10/10were aged seven to ten
10/10were rated 129-143
9/10carried no more than 10st 12lb
9/10won over at least three miles
8/10had a top three finish last time out
7/10had no more than nine starts over fences

Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase Trends Analysis

The Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase has been an excellent race for horses that have run well at previous Festivals with some managing to perform well in this race more than once. (Bensalem won here in 2011 and would have gone very close but for falling in 2010 and Ad Hoc, Juveigneur and Irish Hussar were all recently placed twice in this race).

So focus on any Festival winner or previously placed horse from this race who are targeted here.

The favourite has a poor record in this race with only two outright favourites winning since 1977.

Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase Last Ten Winners

Table below shows the last ten winners of the race, their age/weight at the time of winning, trainer, jockey and odds (starting price).

2013Golden Chieftain8-10-2C TizzardB Powell 28/1
2012Alfie Sherrin9-10-0JJ ONeillR McLernon14/1
2011Bensalem8-11-2A KingR Thornton5/1
2010Chief Dan George10-10-10J MoffattP Aspell33/1
2009Wichita Lineman8-10-9JJ ONeillAP McCoy5/1F
2008An Accordion7-10-12D PipeT Scudamore7/1
2007Joes Edge10-10-6F MurphyD Russell50/1
2006Dun Doire7-10-9A MartinR Walsh7/1
2005Kelami7-10-2F DoumenR Thornton8/1
2004Fork Lightning8-10-5 A KingR Thornton7/1

Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase Preview

Alan King has had two winners and a placed runner in the last eight years in this race and that score could be even better if the 2011 winner Bensalem had not come down at the old second-last fence here in 2010.

Nicky Henderson has had five horses placed in the equivalent race since 2005 and also recorded a victory with Marlborough in 2000. Horses from the Seven Barrows yard will definitely be worth considering for the 2014 renewal.

Novices also have a great record in this race so keep an eye out for any decent prospects who have taken a while to get their act together in their novice year as they could be well handicapped.

Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase Tips

Much has been written and discussed about the importance of previous course form when making a selection at the Cheltenham Festival so any horse who can be described as a Cheltenham specialist must definitely receive close inspection.

One horse in the Baylis & Harding Handicap Chase boasts the following impressive course statistics:


Eye-catching as these figures are it doesn’t tell the whole story by any means. The first runner-up spot was in a World Hurdle behind Big Bucks, the first 5th placing was in the RSA where the distance of defeat was only six lengths and the second 5th spot was in the Gold Cup, beaten less than ten lengths by Synchronised.

The horse in question is of course TIME FOR RUPERT and cynics will point to the fact that the last of the highlighted runs is from nearly two years ago so the relevance of the form can be called into question.

That of course is true but the handicapper has given Paul Webber’s horse some respite to coincide with TIME FOR RUPERT’s decline in form since 2012 and he now finds himself on a handicap mark of just 138.

Webber's ten-year-old gelding last ran in a handicap at Cheltenham (the Argento in Jan 2012) off a mark of eighteen pounds higher (finished 4th) and has recently shown his well being by finishing second in a veterans chase at Doncaster. Again the cynics will question the value of ‘oldies’ form in a Festival context but this is the same event that Chief Dan George won before going on to take the equivalent running of this Festival race in 2010.

Handicaps in this week tend to go to unexposed horses but this version of the premier three mile handicap chase at the Festival does not appear to be a vintage renewal and there seems every chance that TIME FOR RUPERT could run into a place here at the very least.

Back TIME FOR RUPERT at 25/1 each-way with William Hill(price available at time of writing)

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Baylis and Harding Hcap Chase Chase Odds

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