Cheltenham Cross Country Chase Tips: 2024 Betting Preview & Trends

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Cheltenham Cross Country Chase Tips: 2024 Betting Preview & Trends
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Cross Country Chase betting is always hugely popular each year as punters enjoy a wager this unique Cheltenham Festival race - the only one run on the cross-country course.

Only one horse has won the Cross Country Chase on three occasions and that is the great Tiger Roll, who will take some beating again this year. However, we've gone in search of better value with these Cross Country Chase tips, so read on to get the lowdown before visiting the best horse racing betting sites.

Cheltenham Cross Country Chase Tips

Cross Country Chase Runners in Focus

Here's a detailed look at some of the big players in Cheltenham Cross Country Chase betting:

Can Tiger Roll Roar Once Again?

If Tiger Roll turns up at Cheltenham in the same form as last year, then this is an open and shut case. However, he’s come nowhere near that level in any of his three runs since and a 12-year-old hasn't won this race since 2010.

Tiger Roll took the 2021 Cross Country Chase apart, thrashing the reigning champion Easysland by an emphatic 18 lengths. That took his Cheltenham Festival record to five wins and there can be no doubt that the dual Grand National winner’s form improves markedly in the spring, especially on some nice ground.

However, it’s asking a lot of a 12-year-old to come back and produce his best once again, especially when Cross Country Chase trends point punters in the direction of horses aged a good bit younger.

Read More: Get the top Cheltenham offers for betting on the 2022 Festival

Not So Easy Any More

Easysland wins the Cross Country Chase in 2020

Legendary owner JP McManus has won this race seven times, so his runners can't be ignored when considering Cross Country Chase tips. This year, he has a five-strong squad in this race.

Easysland was so impressive when winning in 2020 that it looked like he would dominate the race for years to come. But he’s not been able to reach anything like that level since and his efforts this season effectively suggest he’s gone at the game.

This eight-year-old has a lot to prove now and that’s why he doesn’t make our Cross Country Chase tips shortlist.

Read More: Stayers' Hurdle tips, Betting Preview & Trends

More McManus Contenders

McManus appears to have a stronger challenger in the shape of young French recruit Prengarde, who joined Enda Bolger in February.

Prengarde is only six and the only horse of that age ever to win the Cross Country Chase was the aforementioned Easysland in 2020. But Prengarde has already won seven races under rules, including five chases.

His latest eight-length romp in a Listed Cross Country Chase at Compiegne was a career-best effort and the way he powered through the closing stages of that three-mile, three-furlong event suggested he’d have no problem seeing out an extra three furlongs at Prestbury Park.

Bolger has two other big players in his yard in the shape of Punchestown one-two Midnight Maestro and Shady Operator. The latter was edged out by his stablemate that day but would have sound prospects of reversing the form on some better ground. He is trading at around 9/1 with the best betting sites.

Read More: Queen Mother Champion Chase Tips

2022 Cheltenham Cross Country Chase Tip: Diesel D’Allier

Diesel D’Allier heads the home challenge and, in what looks an open renewal, he is the value play at 12/1 given he got up right on the line to win a course and distance contest in December.

He might well have won that a shade more comfortably had he jumped the second-last better and he looks right back to his best for his new trainer after going off the boil in France.

Versatile ground-wise, his course record reads two wins and a third. Indeed, this nine-year-old has comparable form to everything in this contest other than peak-form Tiger Roll, and that makes him a very appealing each-way play at the prices. That is why he tops our Cross Country Chase tips shortlist.

Cheltenham Cross Country Chase Odds

Tiger Roll11/4 with 888sport
Delta Work7/2 with 888sport
Prengarde13/2 with 888sport
Diesel D'Allier10/1 with 888sport
Shady Operator12/1 with bet365
Easysland9/1 with 888sport
  • Odds correct as of 16/03/2022 - For full latest odds head over to 888sport

Cheltenham Cross Country Chase Trends

  • Irish dominance: 14 of 17 Cross Country Chase winners were trained in Ireland, including six of the last seven. Philip Hobbs (2012 and 2014) is the only British trainer ever to have won the race.
  • Avoid British-bred horses: No winner of the Cross Country Chase was British-bred.
  • Course form: Since 2008, 11 Cross Country Chase winners had previously been at least placed around Cheltenham’s cross-country course.
  • Age range: Easysland (2020) is the only horse younger than eight years old to have ever won this race. Seven of the last 11 winners were aged eight or nine.
  • Market prominence: Eight of the last 10 winners were sent off 7/1 or shorter, while five of the last six winners had an SP no bigger than 9/2.
  • Ratings band: Every winner since 2012 was rated at least 134 and seven winners in that period were rated 140+.
  • Stamina counts: Every Cross Country Chase winner’s previous success came over at least two-mile, five-furlongs.

Read More: How to Pick a Winning Horse

Recent Cross Country Chase Winners

2021Tiger Roll
2019Tiger Roll
2018Tiger Roll
2017Cause of Causes
2016Josies Orders
2015Rivage d'Or
2014Balthazar King
2013Big Shu
2012Balthazar King

Cheltenham Cross Country Chase Verdict

If it wasn’t for his age, Tiger Roll would be the obvious call here. He might still do what he’s regularly done throughout his career and leave his winter form behind with some spring sunshine on his back, but it’s a stretch to expect a 12-year-old to keep repeating that trick.

French recruit Prengarde has loads of potential but Cross Country Chase trends raise doubts about him, considering he’s never been around Cheltenham.

One horse that has no such worries is DIESEL D’ALLIER. He goes into the festival off the back of a last-gasp success around the Prestbury Park cross-country course and might still have more to offer for his new yard, having only switched to Richard Bandey in November. At 12/1, he rates a solid each-way play in what looks on paper like an open race.

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Gavin Beech

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