Hinterland well fancied in five ante-post Cheltenham bets

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In two weeks time the greatest jumps racing showcase in the land will be getting underway to the famous roar of the Cheltenham crowd.

With that in mind, be sure to get on our five best ante-post bets before the first race gets underway:

Fingal Bay to win the Pertemps @ 8/1

After a 14-month layoff, Fingal Bay returned to racing action with a half-length win in the Pertemps qualifier at Exeter last time out and is favourite to take the Final at Prestbury Park come March.

Trainer Phillip Hobbs has never won the listed three-miler, but lays claim to the first three in the ante-post betting and will have a superb chance for a maiden victory with this high-class hurlder who’s won five of his six career starts.

Hinterland to win the Arkle @ 10/1

In winning the Henry VIII Novices Chase at Sandown in December, Hinterland put a large marker down for his Arkle credentials.

Nine of the last 10 Arkle winners have been between the ages of five and eight while finishing in the first two in all of their completed chases. Boxes which Hinterland ticks.

Benefficient to win the Ryanair @ 4/1

Victorious at two miles in a Grade 1 over Christmas, there’s no doubting Benefficient’s ability to stay, having almost scored 3m at Newbury in the past. He’s also the only horse in the top four to have won last time out.

Captain Cutter to win the Neptune @ 14/1

Nicky Henderson’s seven-year-old is undefeated in three runs over hurdles, including a four-and-a-half length win at this distance in a novice Grade 1 at Newbury last time out.

Cockney Sparrow to win the Mares Hurdle @ 7/1

Quevega has romped home in the previous five renewals, however, the ageing mare won’t be at the head of the pack forever and Cockney Sparrow has a great chance of topping her.

An impressive second in the Fighting Fifth at Newcastle, staying on past Grumeti, John Quinn’s five-year-old can show the kind of pace needed to change the guard of the Mares Hurdle.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.