Native River can confirm Cheltenham form in Betfair Chase

Ceebee looks at the Betfair Chase and he thinks Native River is the bet at the prices.

15.00 Betfair Chase 3m1f

First, the easy bit - let’s rule out two. Clan des Obeaux is well out of his depth here, he has 10lbs to find. Thistlecrack is turning 11 and hasn’t won for 2yrs – in this company it’s hard to see that changing. That was easy.

Bristol de Mai is next to go. Ignore his win in this last year (for a moment) and none of the rest of his form is good enough. 7L behind Might Bite last April and twice well behind Native River in 2017. I’d also expect that the big two will put his jumping under pressure like last year’s King George. He was dominant here last year on heavy ground but it’s very easy to pick holes in that win when you look at those who chased him home. He’s only won 3 of his last 13 and they all came on soft or heavy ground. It’s unlikely to be slow enough for him to thrive.

That leaves two and its Native River over Might Bite for me.

This race will be about 100yds shorter than last year’s Gold Cup – that’ll suit Might Bite but if last year’s Gold Cup was 100yds shorter the result would’ve been the same. The better ground will also suit Might Bite who didn’t truly see out the Gold Cup run on heavy. Native River won a Welsh National so obviously the greater test of stamina the better but he’s not slow. He set a right good clip in the Gold Cup that had most in trouble early. I’d expect the 4.5L gap may be tighter under these conditions but I wouldn’t be backing Might Bite to go past him.

Native River is the fresher horse having not gone to Aintree in April. He had just two starts last season to Might Bite’s four. He has been on the go longer and more often but he’s actually the younger horse. He is also the more straightforward of the two. Might Bite has won 6 of his last 7 but it’s hard to erase that RSA memory.

Slight preference for Native River’s form when fresh rather than Might Bite’s. I think the ground angle is being overplayed. Native River is the better horse of the two and should be backed at 11/4.

Advised Bet:

2pts win Native River at 11/4 with Paddy Power and William Hill