The big field handicap season gets into full swing this weekend with Newmarket holding the prestigious Bet365 Cambridgeshire Handicap. It’s always a hotly contested affair and this year’s renewal is no exception as four entries vie for favouritism in what looks like a very open race. We’ll take a look at these four market leaders and check out any exciting each way possibilities at more enticing prices.
This Roger Varian trained three year old drops down to handicap class for the first time after running creditably in Group 3 and listed company. According to his assigned jockey Andrea Atzeni, he will relish any cut in the ground and with the weather forecast predicting rain all week, he should get ideal going for the race on Saturday.
He will also appreciate a strong gallop, which he should get in this kind of race. 10/1 with Bet Victor, Unibet, Coral, Betfred
John Gosden has a cracking record in this race with three previous wins including last year’s victor, Wissahickon. For this year’s renewal he brings Star Of Bengal and Lord North. The latter ran a decent race at Ascot several weeks ago, finishing runner up to Bless Him in a decent handicap after a break of 106 days.
He is sure to improve on that and a Gosden entry always has to be respected. 10/1 with William Hill, Coral
LE DON DE VIE
This Hughie Morrison trained 3 year old has been the subject of some hefty market activity in recent days, his price having almost halved from 16/1 to 10/1 (and mostly 8/1 now with a lot of firms).
This is definitely a three year old improving all the time and on the right side of the handicap. He’s had two cracking runs this season, including a decent handicap win at Goodwood and most interestingly, getting within 3 lengths of St Leger runner-up, Sir Ron Priestley at the same track. Has to be the form choice in the race and sure to give a good account of himself. 10/1 still available with Betfair.
Andrew Balding’s improving three year old comes in the reckoning after a superb win in the William Hill Silver Cup Handicap at Beverley at the end of August. This was a difficult race in running and he did exceptionally well to come through after being squeezed on the inner rail.
He wont be inconvenienced by similar problems in a tough 35 runner handicap like The Cambridgeshire. Another one for the notebook and currently being well backed. 9/1 still available with William Hill.
OTHERS TO CONSIDER
Star Of Bengal, the John Gosden second string is great value with William Hill at 14/1. Bedouin’s Story is a tough handicapper who will relish any further rain and he is being very well backed at the moment: 20/1 is available with Betfair Exchange.
Finally, Jazeel trained by Mick Channon is well worth a mention as the course and distance specialist. He’s put up some great performances down on the Rowley Mile and great each way value at 16/1 with Coral.
A mighty difficult puzzle to unravel with many in with legitimate shouts in this wide open affair. However, seizing upon one of the improving three year olds is a trusted strategy for this kind of event and with all four of the front leaders in the market reflecting this, it might pay to settle on one of these. Le Don De Vie has excellent form on the book and this is the selection for me.
More place offers should be available nearer to the race with often up to 8 places paid with some firms, therefore it might pay to wait rather than place the bet now.
SELECTION: LE DON DE VIE, EACH WAY, 10/1, BETFAIR
Please note all odds are correct at the time of publishing (18:00 24th September 2019) and are subject to change