14:15 Aintree: Arkle form holds the key to finding the winner
The Arkle at the Cheltenham Festival is the best guide when finding the winner of the Maghull Novices’ Chase and in Finian’s Rainbow, Ghizao and Dan Breen, we have the shortlist.
Starluck’s (5/1) entry is interesting but the stat regarding the Arkle runners cannot be overlooked and while Alan Fleming’s six-year-old is in the first three of the betting – the last 13 winners have come from the first three in the betting – it’s his two market rivals who should be favoured.
Dan Breen’s position as fourth in the betting at 8/1 means we can focus all our attention on Arkle runner up Finian’s Rainbow and beaten Arkle fancy Ghizao.
The Arkle was billed as a two-horse race but both market leaders Ghizao and Medermit were disappointing at Cheltenham as Captain Chris strode home to beat Finian’s Rainbow by 2 1/2 lengths.
One stat in Ghizao’s favour is that his trainer Paul Nicholls has saddled five winners and five seconds since 1999 and Twist Magic, Le Roi Miguel, Armaturk and Flagship Uberalles all contested the Arkle before winning here.
On Arkle form Finian’s Rainbow is the horse to beat and this is reflected in the odds in which he is the 4/6 favourite.
But while Ghizao was disappointing in the Arkle, he beat winner Captain Chris on both of his previous two starts and as his trainer knows how to keep his star two milers fresh after Cheltenham, Ghizao looks the pick of the paddock.
Another trend in Ghizao’s favour is that eight of the last 11 winners have been continental-bred and the German-bred Ghizao is looking to improve on the German record of two winners and two places from small representation.
Ghizao can reverse the Arkle form and can provide punters with a big win at 3/1.
A £20 stake on Ghizao winning the Maghull Novices would return £XX. Take advantage of Ladbrokes’ Grand National odds.