Topham Chase Betting Tips, Odds and Offers
The big one – the Grand National itself – of course falls on the concluding Saturday of the three day National meeting, but we are given an early sight of the trademark fences in Friday’s main event; the Topham Chase. Here we take a look at the best odds and offers surrounding the contest, and provide our betting tips for the race.
Held over a trip of 2m 5½f , this Grade 3 handicap contest was first run at Aintree in 1949. Open to runners aged five and older, this race is always an excellent spectacle and now offers £120,000 in total prize money.
Topham Chase Tips and Race Preview 2019
The lead up to the Grand National has been dominated by Tiger Roll. The nine-year-old is not the only horse looking to defend a big handicap at Aintree this year though. Ultragold is the two time defending champion of the Topham Chase and is getting support in the betting at a general 14/1 to make it three in a row. 14/1 is around about the average price for a winner of this 2 mile 5 furlong chase but can Ultragold hold off a very strong challenge for a third year in a row?
Winning Favourite as Unlikely as Ever
Janika is the favourite for the Topham Chase and will carry top weight of 11st 12lb following some eye catching performances since joining Nicky Henderson’s yard from France. He’s finished second in each of his three performances in Britain and may well miss out again as favourites do not have a good record in this race.
Moreover, just three of the last 12 winners carried over 11st 1lb. It’s by no means the longest handicap at the Grand National Festival but the Topham Chase is often run at quite a pace. That puts a premium on stamina and makes it tough to see Janika winning with such a heavy penalty.
Adrien Du Pont Looks Well Treated
Paul Nicholls has not won the Topham Chase since 2008 but has every chance of ending that barron run on Friday. Nicholls’ yard is in a rich vein of form and he currently tops the Jumps Trainers’ Championship.
Adrien Du Pont has done his bit for Nicholls’ tally of wins this season. It took him a couple of attempts to get over the line but Harry Cobden clearly learned the lessons from those near misses and gave the seven-year-old an excellent commanding ride at Kempton in the 3 mile 32Red.com Handicap Chase which he won in style.
Adriend Du Pont returned to Kempton for his next assignment where he defied the 7lb rise from the handicapper to finish third in the Grade 3 888Sport Handicap Chase. Again, that run came over 3 miles but his strong finish showed he has the combination of pace and stamina required to win a Topham Chase so back him at a generous 16/1 with bet365.
How Will Born Survivor Cope in His Major Aim for the Season?
Connections of Born Survivor have always had the Topham Chase firmly on the radar. His work during the rest of the season was undertaken to ensure that he is ready to compete in the Topham Chase and connections are happy with the work he has done so far, especially at Wetherby in November when he won a decent handicap over 2 miles 3½ furlongs.
He didn’t quite get the trip next time out over a furlong further at Cheltenham but the return to a flatter track at Aintree should ensure that he is still very much in the race come the closing stages. It’s a big ask but Born Survivor can make all the prep work worth it by claiming a place at 25/1 with Ladbrokes.
Topham Chase Previous Winners
- 2018 – Ultragold – jockey Harry Cobden, trainer Colin Tizzard
- 2017 – Ultragold – jockey Harry Cobden, trainer Colin Tizzard
- 2016 – Eastlake – jockey Barry Geraghty, trainer Jonjo O’Neill
- 2015 – Rajdhani Express – jockey Mr Sam Waley-Cohen, trainer Nicky Henderson
- 2014 – Ma Filleule – jockey Barry Geraghty, trainer Nicky Henderson
- 2013 – Triolo D’Alene – jockey Barry Geraghty, trainer Nicky Henderson
- 2012 – Always Waining – jockey Tom O’Brien, trainer Peter Bowen
- 2011 – Always Waining – jockey Tom O’Brien, trainer Peter Bowen
- 2010 – Always Waining – jockey Brian Hughes, trainer Peter Bowen
- 2009 – Irish Raptor – jockey Paddy Brennan, trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies
- 2008 – Gwanako – jockey Ruby Walsh, trainer Paul Nicholls
- 2007 – Dunbrody Millar – jockey Jamie Moore, trainer Peter Bowen
Topham Chase History
The likes of, “The Chair”, “Bechers Brook” and “Valentines” will forever be associated with the Grand National. Aintree’s most famous contest isn’t the only race in which they feature however. The Becher Chase and Foxhunter Chase each take place on the Grand National course, as does this popular event which takes place a day before the National itself.
It takes a certain type of horse to prevail here and experience has generally proved to be an advantage in this toughest of jumping challenges, with the older runners holding sway overall. That fact didn’t stop either Cyfor Malta (1998) or Gwanako (2008) winning this as a five year old though. The oldest winner came in 1993 when the Toby Balding trained Sirrah Jay came home in front at the grand old age of 13.
Culworth (1950,1951) and Roughan (1957,1958) were impressive dual winners here, but both were put in the shadow by Always Waining’s remarkable three on the bounce between the years of 2010 and 2012.
It takes great skill in the saddle to safely negotiate these most notoriously difficult of obstacles. It should therefore come as little surprise to see a number of the most talented riders of modern times featuring on the roll of honour here. The greatest ever Tony McCoy and his big rival and friend Ruby Walsh boast two wins in the race. The pair sit one behind Richard Dunwoody and Barry Geraghty, who lead the way with a total of three.
Jonjo O’Neill is worthy of a special mention here, with the Irishman following up his two wins in the saddle with another two as a trainer. The trainer of Always Waining, Peter Bowen boasts four wins in the race, as does W Hall. Leading the way with five successes though is Nicky Henderson. These five wins include an impressive three in succession between 2013 and 2015, achieved with three different horses.