The Cheltenham Festival is one of, if not the most competitive meeting of the year and betting at short prices there can be fraught with danger, if you are going in for any of the short priced ones this year, you may like to take a look at these seemingly cast iron “certs” that managed to get beaten.
We’ll start with one of the biggest and most crushing odds-on defeats of all with the darling of the chasing world Kauto Star and his beating in the 2010 Gold Cup. Kauto Star was bidding for his third Gold Cup in this year having won the race in 2007 and 2009 and been second in 2008 – this was billed as the showdown/decider with his stable mate Denman.
Coming into the race after winning a fourth King George by 36 lengths the stage was set for him to show off his superiority, but it never worked out like that as the head-to-head between the two Ditcheat superstars was spoilt by Imperial Commander with Kauto Star the 8/11 favourite falling four out when well beaten by the eventual winner. Those looking for tips for racing will have been stunned.
Dunguib’s defeat in the opening race in 2010 probably sent home plenty of punters skint after the very first race of the Festival. He had been a runaway winner of the Champion Bumper in the previous year and he enjoyed a very smooth build-up to the Festival.
However in the race itself events proved very different and the exacting pace and subsequent pressure that put on his jumping saw the 4/5 chance fail to perform to the required standard and he finished a disappointing third to Menorah and Get Me Out Of Here. Fans of Cheltenham betting need to bear this in mind.
2010 was a very bad year for odds-on punters at the Festival as they suffered another body blow when another of the Nicholls team – Master Minded – was defeated in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. Master Minded was chasing a third victory in the race and was on course to equal the record set by Badsworth Boy and few could see him not attaining that lofty peak after a couple of imperious victories in the two preceding seasons.
He had suffered some problems earlier in the season but all seemed to be well as he came into the race off the back of a 19 length romp in the Game Spirit Chase at Newbury. But all was not as it seemed and the Irish in the shape of Big Zeb took the honours in the 2M championship with Master Minded a very disappointing fourth after starting as 4/5 favourite.
2010 was not a good year for odds-on backers and with a few short priced favourites around at the 2012 Cheltenham Festival that 2010 experience may just be worth thinking about when getting stuck into the short priced favourites this year.