Queen Mother Champion Chase Preview: Tips, Betting Offers and Odds, Cheltenham, 3.30, 14th March 2018
Staying chasers get to claim many headlines over the year with races like the Grand National and the Cheltenham Gold Cup. The Queen Mother Champion Chase provides an opportunity for the minimum distance chasers to claim the limelight for an afternoon.
This Grade 1 contest is as good as it gets in terms of chases over two miles. It’s an incredibly popular race which creates heroes such as Sprinter Sacre and Master Minded and we have the potential for a ding dong battle between Altior and Min ahead of us.
Queen Mother Champion Chase Betting Tips
Odds correct at time of writing and are subject to change.
- Altior to win 50/1 special offer (see below!)
- Min to win at 4/1 with Betfair
- Special Tiara each way at 33/1 with Betfred
Queen Mother Champion Chase Betting Offers and Free Bets
- Ladbrokes – 50/1 on Altior to win – 18+ UK+IRE only. Min deposit £5. Available for a limited time only. Winnings paid in cash based on normal odds and additional enhancement paid in free bet tokens of £5. Free bet valid for 4 days. Free bet stake not returned. T&Cs apply. – check out the full details of the 50/1 Altior Offer from Ladbrokes
- Betfair – 30/1 Altior to win the Champion Chase – New Customers can get Altior at an enhanced 30/1 to win the Champion Chase. Max Stake £1. Winnings paid in free bets, valid for 7 days, only deposits with cards/Paypal count. Exchange and multiple bets excluded. T&C’s Apply. 18+|Gamble Aware.
- Betfair – 66/1 Douvan to win the Champion Chase – New Customers can get Douvan at an enhanced 66/1 to win the Champion Chase. Max Stake £1. Winnings paid in free bets, valid for 7 days, only deposits with cards/Paypal count. Exchange and multiple bets excluded. T&C’s Apply. 18+|Gamble Aware.
- Coral Money Back if Your Horse Falls – Important Info: 18+. UK+IRE only. Min bet £1. Get max £25 back as free bet next day by 12pm. Free bet valid for 24 hrs. Must use in entirety on single racing bet. Applies to losing ‘win part’ of win & E/W singles. One free bet per customer per horse that falls. T&Cs Apply
- Ladbrokes £50 Free Bet Offer – 18+. New customers only. Promo code ‘F50’ required. Certain deposit methods excluded. Min £/€5 on win or each-way bet excluding Tote or pools = match max £/€50 free bet. Min odds 1/2 (1.5). Bet must be made within 14 days. Free bet valid for 4 days. Free bet stake not returned. Single bets only. Free bet cannot be used on certain markets. T&Cs apply.
More Queen Mother Champion Chase offers and bonuses will appear very soon, but take a look at the latest Cheltenham Festival free bets and promos to see what the bookies are already dishing out!
Queen Mother Champion Chase Tips and Race Preview 2018
Will Altior be the Favourite that Falls?
Nicky Henderson is happy with Altior’s preparations for the Champion Chase. The eight-year-old has made just the one appearance this season after being forced to miss the Tingle Creek with a wind operation. That race, however, saw him beat the winner of the Tingle Creek, Politologue, over two miles at Newbury.
Altior’s position at the head of the market was set in stone after he beat the winner of last year’s Champion Chase, Special Tiara, at Sandown last season. You can’t question his ability, nor his knack for winning, but you can question Altior’s price of a general 4/6 when Min is priced at 11/4 with Bet365.
Altior would prove to be a very popular winner among the punters but there is always a big favourite who fails to get the job done at Cheltenham and Henderson’s charge may be that horse this year. Min has only seen action three times this year due to slight injury concerns but Willie Mullins is confident those problems are behind his seven-year-old.
Fast tracked through the chasing division with just one novice appearance, Min showed he belongs at the top level of these short chases by winning at the Dublin Racing Festival where he beat some excellent rivals. A rerun of that sort of performance could prove too good even for Altior.
Still Something Special About Tiara
It’s been a tough run for Special Tiara since his Champion Chase win in 2017. The 11-year-old has not won since the Festival but trainer, Henry de Bromhead, and jockey, Noel Fehily, are both confident he has one more big run in the locker.
Special Tiara was third to Min in the Coral Dublin Chase but Fehily said that he the horse ran a good race that day. He’s the sort of horse who just runs as hard as he can and usually jumps well. While he’s likely to find Altior and Min too good, a place is a genuine option and would be a decent return for an each way bet at 16/1 with Betfred.
Altior and Min Can Provide One of the Battles of the Festival
If Altior is to be beaten by Min it’s not going to be as disappointing a performance as Douvan in last year’s Queen Mother Champion Chase. There are no real concerns about injuries, just a few about whether his lack of action will leave him lacking that extra spark to beat Min. Either way, it should be a hell of a battle all the way to the line.
Queen Mother Champion Chase Previous Winners
- 2017 – Special Tiara – jockey Noel Fehily, trainer Henry de Bromhead
- 2016 – Sprinter Sacre – jockey Nico de Boinville, trainer Nicky Henderson
- 2015 – Dodging Bullets – jockey Sam Twiston-Davies, trainer Paul Nicholls
- 2014 – Sire De Grugy – jockey Jamie Moore, trainer Gary Moore
- 2013 – Sprinter Sacre – jockey Barry Geraghty, trainer Nicky Henderson
- 2012 – Finian’s Rainbow – jockey Barry Geraghty, trainer Nicky Henderson
- 2011 – Sizing Europe – jockey Andrew Lynch, trainer Henry de Bromhead
- 2010 – Big Zeb – jockey Barry Geraghty, trainer Colm Murphy
- 2009 – Master Minded – jockey Ruby Walsh, trainer Paul Nicholls
- 2008 – Master Minded – jockey Ruby Walsh, trainer Paul Nicholls
- 2007 – Voy Por Ustedes – jockey Robert Thornton, trainer Alan King
- 2006 – Newmill – jockey Andrew J. McNamara, trainer John Joseph Murphy
Queen Mother Champion Chase History
Up until 1980 this contest had the simple title of the National Hunt Two-Mile Champion Chase. The Queen Mother, an ardent racing fan and owner, was granted the honour of having this race named after her in 1980. No commercial sponsorship was given to the race until the year 2007 when Seasons Holidays lent their support. Sportingbet and Betvictor later sponsored the race and another betting firm, Betway, took over in 2015.
It takes a special type of animal to be able to travel and jump at the speed required to land this event, and some real superstars have taken the contest over the years. It has proven relatively common for such a star chaser to take this prize on more than one occasion. In total 10 horses have twice taken home the prize, including dual Cheltenham Gold Cup runner up Fortria, the brilliant Master Minded and 13 time Grade 1 winning Irish superstar, Moscow Flyer. Topping the lot though is Badsworth Boy who took this race in 1983, 1984 and 1985 for Michael and Monica Dickinson.
The class of a performer has occasionally been well known in advance of this race, resulting in some pretty short priced winners. Sprinter Sacre more than lived up to his status as 1/4 favourite in 2013 when demolishing the field by 19 lengths without apparently breaking sweat. Shortest price of all though was Tom Dreaper’s Flyingbolt, who won at 1/5 in 1966.
The biggest priced winner arose in controversial circumstances. Chinrullah passed the post first in 1980 but was found to have run under the influence of a banned substance and disqualified. Second place finisher Another Dolly was promoted to first at the rewarding odds of 33/1.
The youngest winner in the races history was also one of its most impressive. No five-year-old had previously come home in front when Master Minded lined up for this in 2008. In a race billed as one of the clashes of the festival with the previous year’s winner Voy Por Ustedes sent off favourite, Master Minded produced one of those performances which simply takes the breath away. A winning margin of 19 lengths could have been so much more as Ruby Walsh no more than coasted home in a race that had long been over as a contest.
Advancing years doesn’t appear to be as much of a barrier to success here as in some of the festivals other two mile contests. 12 winners have been aged 10 or above in the first 56 editions of the race. Mouse Morris’s Skymas joined this club when coming home in front in 1976 and repeated the trick in 1977 at 12 years of age to become the oldest winner in the history of the race.
Paul Nicholls’ 2015 victory with Dodging Bullets was his fifth in the race, putting him one behind Tom Dreaper on the list of leading trainers. Barry Geraghty’s 2013 romp on Sprinter Sacre was also his fifth here putting him level with Pat Taaffe as the leading jockey in this race. The amazing victory by Sprinter Sacre in 2016 – this time with Nico de Boinville in the saddle – was a sight to behold and cemented Sprinter’s place as one of the very greatest horses there has been!
In 2017 there was a surprise winner in the form of Henry de Bromhead’s Special Tiara, who ran in at 11/1 as stong odds-on favourite Douvan was well off the pace.