It is 6/4 that the biggest-priced winner at this year’s Cheltenham Festival is 40/1 or over and this looks a big price given the results in recent years.
In four of the last five Festivals, at least one horse across the four days has landed a shock victory at odds of 40/1 or above.
Back in 2007, this bet would have been landed in the very first race, with Ebaziyan getting the bookmakers off to the perfect start with victory at 40/1 in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.
Baby Shine is currently 40/1 to win this year’s Supreme Novices’ and should have arrived at Cheltenham with an unbeaten record over hurdles, had it not been for masses of bad luck in running on her latest start when finishing second.
She looks a lively outside contender with at least each-way options.
In 2009, it seems hard to believe that Cue Card was sent off at 40/1 to win the Champion Bumper when winning with ease to beat Al Ferof.
Strangely the pair will clash again this year in the Arkle Chase, with Cue Card 8/1 in the Cheltenham odds and Al Ferof at 4/1.
The Champion Bumper may prove a good race for outsiders with so many unproven runners that have maybe only had the one racecourse appearance.
Cool George was an easy winner of a modest race on his debut and may be worth keeping an eye on nearer race day if taking part in the Champion Bumper.
Last year’s big winner was Oiseau De Nuit, who left it until the final race of the Festival to land the Grand Annual at 40/1.
Alternatively, it is 13/8 that the biggest-price Cheltenham winner is between 25/1 and 33/1, while 2/1 is the price that punters enjoy a strong Festival with the top-price victor being less than 25/1.