After a week full of Festival hopefuls strutting their stuff we look at the five who have attracted the most interest in the betting
Petit Mouchoir – 18%
Henry de Bromhead’s grey made the perfect start to life over fences when he sauntered to a bloodless victory at Punchestown on Wednesday. The manor of the win led to bookmakers cutting last season’s Champion Hurdle third from 12/1 to as short as 7/1 for the Arkle in March (best price 8/1).
Now clear favourite for the race with the bookies, the six-year-old has also proven to be the favourite of Oddschecker punters this week with the Gigginstown runner the most popular ante-post.
Samcro – 13%
Another impressive winner for the Gigginstown stable over in Ireland this week, the three-time bumper winner was seriously impressive when winning his first start over hurdles at Punchestown this week. Already one of the most popular horses in the ante-post betting before this week’s win, the nature of his Punchestown performance had punters piling in again with one bookmaker cutting him into just 4/1 for the Neptune!
Death Duty – 8%
Another one for Gordon Elliot and Gigginstown, Death Duty made it two novice chase wins in the space of 16 days with his win on Thursday. The six-year-old has always been the apple of his trainer’s eye and he’s beginning to show glimpses of why that is the case over fences. Much-improved from his debut effort at Tipperary, he jumped much more fluently second time around with some bookmakers suitably impressed to cut him into just 8/1 for the RSA (best price 14/1).
Road To Respect – 6%
Noel Meade’s six-year-old put himself in the Gold Cup picture this week with a smooth success in what on paper looked a competitive Grade 3 chase. Held up behind the leaders throughout, his jockey Sean Flanagan took him to the front on the run-in before surging clear after the last. A six length winner of the Brown Advisory Handicap chase at the Festival last season, he followed that victory up with a win in the Ryainair Gold Cup Novice Chase at Fairyhouse the following month. Yorkhill, who he beat that day, is prominent at the top of the Gold Cup betting at 8/1 whilst Road To Respect is over three times that price despite being cut following his most recent win.
Lil Rockerfeller – 5%
A real fans’ favourite, the six-year-old ran a storming race in last season’s Stayers’ Hurdle at the Festival to finish second to Nichols Canyon beaten under a length. Neil King’s tenacious competitor is yet to be seen this season but that hasn’t stopped a large number of bets in the ante-post markets. Currently 20/1 in the betting, we’ve seen one punter place a three figure sum on the Grade 2 winner.