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14:40 Cheltenham: White Star Line more than a generous price

| 12.03.2013

With the likes of Midnight Chase and Tour Des Champs in the field, they are sure to go a testing gallop for all of the 3m of the JLT Speciality Handicap Chase and this could play right into the hands of White Star Line, who looks overpriced at 11/1 to get recompense for his Festival showing of 12 months ago.

On that occasion, he took part in the Pulteney Land Investments Novices’ Chase and having been patiently ridden in midfield, picked them all off barring Hunt Ball to finish second.

The step up to 3m here from 2m4f should play to his strengths as a decent stayer, while the anticipated soft ground would also seemingly work in his favour.

The fact he is still winless after nine chase starts is a bit of a concern, but seven of the last 15 winners of this race had placed at the Festival before, while White Star Line has finished in the each-way money in two of his three career starts at Cheltenham.

Given that he will be carrying bottom weight here, and has 3lb less on his back than when finishing behind Hunt Ball, his each-way claims look fair.

Towards the head of the market at 7/1 is Our Mick, who was third in this race last year and runs off only 1lb more this time.

His only start this season since was a pleasing one at Cheltenham when bang in contention alongside the progressive Katenko before unseating Jason Maguire three out.

Between 2008 and 2011, it is also worth noting that the favourite won once and placed on the other three occasions so his claims look strong.

Of the remainder, Jonjo O’Neill has trained two of the last four winners and Merry King (7/1) is not without a chance, but will have to cope with a rise in the weights, as will Loch Ba (12/1), who has been hiked 12lb for the easiest of victories last time.

Fruity O’Rooney is the other worth a mention at 9/1, given that he finished ahead of Our Mick in second last year and re-opposes on 2lb better terms this time.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.



Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.