A total of 10 horses have stood their ground at the early declaration stage for this year’s Betfair Chase with Coneygree and Cue Card just two of the star names set to feature.
Add in the likes of Silviniaco Conti, Cue Card-conqueror Irish Cavalier and dark horse Seeyouatmidnight and we’ve got ourselves a contest.
Naturally, a lot of the pre-race focus is on the first two of those names mentioned.
Mark Bradstock’s 2015 Gold Cup hero Coneygree only made one brilliant appearance last season before a forced absence through injury.
Meanwhile, Cue Card came agonisingly close to securing the Jumps Triple Crown with his 2015 win in the upcoming race at Haydock the first step on the road to a £1m payday.
A dramatic King George success at Kempton followed, before falling three out in the Gold Cup when travelling well.
Another Triple Crown bid is on the horizon but what can we expect from Colin Tizzard’s stable star this time round?
He has at least one advantage over Coneygree, that of a prep run in the Charlie Hall Chase a fortnight ago.
However, a three-and-a-quarter length defeat to the re-opposing Irish Cavalier might be enough to put a few off the 13/8 antepost favourite.
That result at Wetherby was the first Graded success for Rebecca Curtis’ charge and there’s likely to be plenty of each-way interest in the seven-year-old’s odds of 8/1.
The same can be said of old stager Menorah, runner-up in the Charlie Hall and a horse whose consistency remains admirable. At 20/1, there’s plenty of value to be had.
Elsewhere, Silviniaco Conti is Paul Nicholls’ sole entry for this year’s running on Merseyside. Conti finished a disappointing 11 lengths behind Valseur Lido on his recent seasonal reappearance and it’s difficult to gauge how competitive the 6/1 shot will be in the upcoming contest.
The same perhaps can’t be said about Scottish raider Seeyouatmidnight with Sandy Thompson’s entrant hammering Bristol De Mai last time out at Carlisle.
He’s now four from seven over fences and could well be the joker in the pack at double-figure odds.
Latest Ladbrokes Betting:
Cue Card – 13/8
Coneygree – 9/4
Silviniaco Conti – 6/1
Irish Cavalier – 8/1
Seeyouatmidnight – 10/1
God’s Own – 16/1
Outlander – 16/1
Menorah – 20/1
Roi Des Frances – 33/1
Vezelay – 50/1
Click here for the latest Betfair Chase odds.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing