Horse Racing Betting News – 12 December 2016

Frodon Claims Caviar Gold And The New One Still An International Star

Only one four year old had previously won the Caspian Caviar December Gold Cup headed into Saturday’s renewal, which may have put some off the chances of the Paul Nicholls runner Frodon. It was however Champion Trainer, Nicholls, who sent out Unioniste to win as a four year old in 2012 and he duly repeated the trick here.

The youngest runner in the field showed plenty of heart to prevail in a driving finish from the Venetia Williams trained Aso at rewarding odds of 14/1. This win was certainly a welcome one for jockey Sam Twiston-Davies, as it marked a first major success since returning to the saddle following an injury to his spleen.

The New Old Show Old Style

The good times continued to roll for the Twiston-Davies family, as Sam’s father, Nigel Twiston-Davies, landed the second major contest on the Cheltenham card with one of the real stars of his stable. With The New One having taken the International Hurdle in both 2013 and 2014, connections were optimistic of further success ahead of the 2016 renewal.

This optimism seemed to spread to the betting markets with the eight year old being backed into 13/8 favourite come the off. It seems runner up My Tent Or Yours is nothing like the force of old at present, but this must nevertheless go down as a smart performance by The New One. To give 8lbs and a beating to a dual Champion Hurdler runner up certainly augurs well for the season ahead.


The main action on Sunday took place over in Ireland with both Punchestown and Cork playing host to excellent Graded action. It was the famous pink and green colours of Rich Ricci who came to the fore in the day’s major events, with the Willie Mullins trained pair of Djakadam and Douvan each notching their first wins of the campaign.

Having now finished second in two Gold Cup’s, Djakadam is an established performer at the top level and began this current season in perfect fashion when seeing off Outlander in the John Durkan Memorial Chase. It all went a bit wrong for him after taking this race last year, so it will be interesting to see where he goes next with an eye towards a possible third Cheltenham Gold Cup tilt. A race for which he is now a 10/1 shot.

Douvan Still Winning

For the remarkable Douvan it is now 12 wins in 12 starts since joining Willie Mullins, as he continues to look simply untouchable wherever he turns up. The 22 length winning margin posted in the Kerry Hill Group Hilly Way Chase is the largest of his career to date, and at this stage it is difficult to see what will stop him in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. He’s 4/7 to land a third Festival success in that race.

Looking Ahead

Looking ahead to the coming weekend, Unowhatimeanharry looks set to go off a warm order in the Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot. Arriving here seeking a seventh win on the spin, last season’s Albert Bartlett winner looked better than ever when hacking up at Newbury last time out.

The second major contest of the weekend looks far more open on paper, as the handicappers take to the track in the Listed Lavazza Jolie Silver Cup. Saphir du Rheu may well go off favourite for Paul Nicholl’s but does need to bounce back to form, with a fall in the Hennessy Gold Cup last time out being just the latest in a string of disappointments.