As the greatest show on turf swings into clear focus, Ladbrokes are laying down a marker five days before the Cheltenham Festival with their latest offering.
Always a highlight of the Cotswold-based festivities, the Queen Mother Champion Chase brings together the cream of the 2-mile crop over the bigger obstacles and the 2015 edition promises to be a barnstormer.
It’s the showdown between favourite Sprinter Sacre and Sire De Grugy – the last two winners of the race – facing off for the first time over Prestbury Park’s fences which has breath bated.
Luckily for Ladbrokes customers the bookmakers appeared to have been caught up in all the hysteria as they plan to refund all losing stakes on every horse in the race if Sprinter Sacre wins the Queen Mother Champion Chase or finishes second, as a free bet up to £25.
This even applies to bets on race Sprinter Sacre should he finish second. For full terms and conditions on this promotion please click here.
Most fans of National Hunt racing will need little convincing of just how generous this offer is, however, it’s worth a gentle reminder of why this horse has such star quality.
Although Nicky Henderson’s stable gem missed the chance to defend his Champion Chase crown through injury last season, based on TimeForm ratings Sprinter Sacre is third only to Arkle and Flyingbolt as the highest-rated chaser of all time.
Due to an extended period away from the track the two-time Festival winner and veteran of 10 Chase victories from 12 starts to date was always going to need a warm-up race to step up Festival preparations.
Consequently, being nudged out of it by Tingle Creek winner Dodging Bullets in the Clarence House Stakes back in January should be seen as a healthy stepping stone towards another tilt at Cheltenham glory.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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