The Foxhunter Chase is the Cheltenham Gold Cup for amateur jockeys, run over the same course and distance as the Festival’s showpiece event.
Tracking form can be difficult because the majority of horses have been running in hunter chases on point-to-point courses, while there can be huge differences between the experience and quality of some of the jockeys.
Taking everything into consideration, there are three runners that need to be added to the Cheltenham betting portfolio, from different tiers of the betting.
Paint The Clouds @ 4/1
Paint The Clouds has taken to hunter chasing like the proverbial duck to water and is 4-4 in this sphere, while he is a previous Cheltenham victor.
Sam Waley-Cohen is certainly among the best, if not the best, jockey in this field and has partnered the horse to all four victories, which have arrived by a combined 56 lengths.
He is a worthy favourite and a solid trends selection in terms of age and preparation.
Vital Plot @ 25/1
Jamie Codd is another of the top amateur jockeys in the field and has already tasted Cheltenham Festival success on the opening day when partnering Cause Of Causes to victory in the National Hunt Chase. He then followed up in the Kim Muir on The Package.
Vital Plot was travelling upsides Paint The Clouds and still going well when falling three out in the big Foxhunter renewal at Stratford last season.
A repeat of his performance up until that point would certainly appear to give him each-way claims here and this fall is the only time Vital Plot has been out of the first three on his last 11 starts.
Following Dreams @ 50/1
It is a massive surprise to see Following Dreams priced up as the rank outsider in the field.
He was third in the John Corbet Cup at the back end of last season and looked the winner that day for much of the race, before never truly getting home. The Cheltenham Foxhunters is, beneficially, over 2f less.
Following Dreams won on his latest start over an inadequate trip and has a far better jockey on board this time, in comparison to when unseating on his previous visit to Cheltenham in 2013.
That day he was ridden by Mr LR Payter, who has only ridden seven winners in his career, according to the Racing Post. This time Mr T Weston climbs into the saddle having previously ridden 30 winners, including when on Following Dreams at Leicester last month.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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