Cheltenham Festival 2019: Cross Country betting preview: Latest runners, riders, odds and trainer quotes for the final field


IT’S the crowd favourite as the cross country comes to town at the Festival on Wednesday.

We’ve put together all the important info to help you pick the winner.

Tiger Roll won the Cross Country last year
Tiger Roll won the Cross Country last year
PA:Press Association

1. Amazing Comedy – David Cottin/Jonathan Plouganou (40-1)

Ran a good race over these fences in December when behind Fact Of The Matter.

Previously finished fifth in this race in 2017 so needs to find something extra.

2. Aubusson – Jane Williams/Chester Williams (50-1)

Not as good as he used to be and likely to find things a bit tough here.

Hasn’t shown enough to be considered.

3. Auvergnat – Enda Bolger/Donal McInerney (8-1)

Amazing servant who won the very valuable Paddy Power Chase at Leopardstown last time.

Fourth in last two runnings here but could improve for first-time blinkers.

Enda Bolger on Auvergnat

“I would say this year’s Glenfarclas Chase is the best renewal of the race. Obviously, Tiger Roll is the one we all have to take on and is the standard bearer.

“There’s 32 fences to be jumped and we’re looking forward to the race.

“Auvergnat won a nice pot over Christmas at Leopardstown and we intentionally have kept him fresh for this event.

4. Ballycasey – Willie Mullins/Paddy Mullins (20-1)

12-year-old isn’t getting younger and very much up against it here.

Beaten nearly nine lengths here in December and needs more.

Download the new Sun Racing app today

THE new Sun Racing app is here – and it's sent the bookies running for cover.

The brilliant new app, which is free to download ahead of the Cheltenham Festival, features:

  1. Best Odds – our odds comparison tool keeps the bookies honest
  2. Predictor – rank the field by 18 different categories, such as weight, draw, career prize money and jockey wins
  3. Tips & news – get a steer from the best tipsters in the business in our news tab

Head over to the App Store to download it for free.

5. Bless The Wings – Gordon Elliott/Davy Russell (33-1)

Has run some cracking races around here in the past but is certainly not as good as he once was.

Will stay alright but likely to find a few have a bit more gas.

6. Devils Bride – Henry De Bromhead/Rachael Blackmore (66-1)

Not shown any worthwhile form for a good while and doesn’t look capable of winning this.

Needs the Cheltenham banks to spark him up with Rachael up top.

7. Fact Of The Matter – Jamie Snowden/Jamie Snowden (14-1)

Had a first-time wind op since winning over this course in December.

That was good form and although he needs to find a bit, must have a good chance at a decent price.

8. Hurricane Darwin – Alan Fleming/Donagh Meyler (33-1)

Ran a very good race over the banks at Punchestown last month and deserves respect of that.

Likely to make a good fist of it but probably not good enough to win.

9. Jarob – Gearoid O’Loughlin/Mark Enright (40-1)

Third to Josies Orders at this track in November and could have more to offer at the trck.

Lowly rated though, and work to do with the principles.

10. Josies Orders – Enda Bolger/Mark Walsh (9-1)

Loves this course and soared to victory here in February.

Likely to be the one to beat if Tiger Roll comes a cropper.

Enda Bolger on Josies Orders

“Josies Orders also won nicely at Punchestown on his latest start. Both of the horses know their way around here well and we’re looking forward to good runs, but Tiger Roll is the horse you have to seriously respect.

“I haven’t had a winner at the Cheltenham Festival since On The Fringe won the Foxhunter three years ago.”

11. Kingswell Theatre – Michael Scudamore/Tom Scudamore (50-1)

Has had a wind op after finishing fourth here last time.

Previously put up a big performance over the course and distance and could be a big price.

12. Tea For Two – Michael Scudamore/Lizzie Kelly (25-1)

Former Grade 1 winner hasn’t been in great form of late and needs to rediscover his former zip.

If he does then he’ll be a decent price but these fences aren’t sure to suit.

13. Tiger Roll – Gordon Elliott/Keith Donoghue (11-10)

Won the Grand National last year after triumphing in this contest and is the one they all have to beat.

Warmed up for this with a magnificent victory over hurdles and has oodles of class.

Keith Donoghue on Tiger Roll

“I don’t think there’s any more pressure on him this year despite being a short price, you want to be coming to Cheltenham riding those horses.

“You’d rather be riding an even money favourite than a 33-1 chance.

“I’m looking forward to it. He’s in great form and if we can get a run around like we did last year and with a bit of luck, you’d be confident.

“There’s an argument for saying he’s a better horse this year. His form is better coming in this year as since he won it last year, he’s won the Grand National and a Boyne Hurdle. Last year he’d lost his form and it was this race that sparked him back.”

14. Ultragold – Colin Tizzard/Harry Cobden (11-1)

Pretty classy operator who has been successful over the National fences in the past.

Definitely good enough to land a blow, though has a bit to find with the favourite.

15. Urgent De Gregaine – Emmanuel Clayeux/Felix De Giles (12-1)

Only just beaten by Tiger Roll in this race last year and has a big shout on that.

Needs to return in top form but knows these fences well and deserves respect.

16. Vyta Du Roc – Nicky Henderson/Daryl Jacob (40-1)

Smart hurdler in the past but has never quite made it over fences.

This is an intriguing switch but he has a bit to prove.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here