Saturday, March 16, 2024

2024 Cheltenham Festival Betting Diary

It ia now over a day since the conclusion of the 2024 Cheltenham Festival. For all of those days of the meeting, I updated this post with all of my bets and the results. Here is the full 'diary' from the week along with some post-festival betting notes that were written today.

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If you read some of my previous posts about the 2024 Cheltenham Festival, you'll be aware that I have placed a trio of Lucky 63 bets across the four days of the race meeting. All of the horses I have backed are with the Non-Runner, No Bet term. This has turned out to be a benefit, of sorts, because a lot of the horses I have backed this year have either been entered into a different race or have been pulled from the entire festival.

With that warning out of the way, here is the 2024 edition of my Cheltenham Festival Betting Diary. It'll be updated each day this week. 

Tuesday 12 March
Here are the horses I have backed. These include the non-runners.

1:30 Supreme Novices Hurdle
I had Ballyburn in one of the Lucky 63s. However, the horse has been entered into the Gallagher Novices Hurdle that will be run tomorrow.
There is a backup plan, however.
I have staked £5 single on Firefox at odds of 5/1 on Sky Bet because the firm will refund losing wagers - up to £5 - on the first race of the day. I have everything to gain and nothing to lose by doing this.

RESULT: Slade Steel won. It looks like Firefox finished in third place, but - seeing as I had it to win outright - I'll have my £5 stake returned due to the promotion from Sky Bet.

2:10 Arkle Trophy
I have Hunters Yarn at 6/1 in one of the Lucky 63s.

RESULT: Gaelic Warrior won. Hunters Yarn finished in fourth place.

2:50 Ultima Handicap Chase
I am covered in this race as well because I have Chianti Classico at 8s in another Lucky 63.

The three horses I have just mentioned have all been placed in a £1 each-way treble using a free £2 bet token.

RESULT: Chianti Classico was a WINNER

3:30 Champion Hurdle
This is the race Constitution Hill was set to defend last year's win in but has been pulled. I didn't have any wagers on this race until this morning. 

I have a £3 each-way gamble on Iberico Lord at 11/1.

RESULT: The favourite, State Man, won. 

4:10 Mares Hurdle
I have the favourite - Lossiemouth - in one of my Lucky 63s.

RESULT: Lossiemouth was the WINNER.

4:50 Juvenile Handicap Hurdle
I have placed a £2.50 each-way free bet on Batman Girac. As well as that, I felt compelled to put a £1 each-way punt on Eagle Fang for one reason and one reason only: that is the name of one of the karate groups in Cobra Kai and I didn't want a kick myself if it placed at odds of 14/1.

RESULT: Lark on the Mornin won, my two horses didn’t!

5:30 National Hunt Novices Chase
I've placed a £2.50 each-way wager on Embassy Gardens in the last race of the day.

RESULT: Embassy Garden finished in second place to Corbetts Cross.

Wednesday 13 March
I start off today £9.56 in the red following the losses of singles/each-way bets yesterday. In the bigger picture, I am down £28.46 because - to balance the books - I have put the cost of my three Lucky 63 bets under Friday's 'Staked' column of the spreadsheet because I won't fully know how much I have returned until after all those multiples have been settled at the end of the festival.

Cheltenham Festival 2024 Betting

There are many selections in the Lucky 63s which are non runners, so I am expecting some returns as voided wagers. 

To be frank, the Lucky 63 idea turned out to be somewhat pointless, but I'll plough on as best as I can.

All the times are going to be a quarter of an hour off due to one 

1:30 Novices Hurdle
The first non runner of the day is Readin Tommy Wong.

Instead, I have placed a £3.44 single on Ballyburn because I took advantage of a boost price at EVENS.

RESULT: Ballyburn was the WINNER.

2:10 Brown Advisory Novices' Chase
Broadway Boy is the next non runner.

RESULT: Race favourite Fact to File won.

2:50 Coral Cup
I have used a free £5 bet on the Coral Cup placing a £2.50 each-way on Langer Dan.

RESULT: Langer Dan was the WINNER.

3:30 Queen Mother Champion Chase
Yet another non runner in Jonbon, who was pulled this morning due to health concerns.

RESULT: Captain Guinness won.

4:10 Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase

4:50 Grand Annual Handicap Chase
I had backed My Mate Mozzie, but the horse ran in yesterday's Arkle.

RESULT: Unexpected Party won.

5:30 Weatherbys Champion Bumper
I have Jalon D'oudairies in one of the Lucky 63s. 

RESULT: Jalon D'ondairies finished in third place.

Thursday 14 March
I had a fortunate day yesterday despite the non-runners and the abandoned race. The biggest win came in the form of the £2.50 each-way free bet on Langer Dan in the Coral Cup - the first horse to ever do a double in that race.

There was a doubling up of my £3.44 bet when Ballyburn won the opener for me at EVEN money (I used a special boost from my bookmaker).

Cheltenham Festival 2024 Betting

So, after two days I am at -2.52 for the week. That number includes the three Lucky 63s that will be settled tomorrow.

Now, let's get to today.

1:30 Turners Novices Chase
I have Ginny's Destiny in one of the Lucky 63s.

RESULT: Grey Dawning won. Ginny's Destiny finished second.

2:10 Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle
Icare Allen is the horse I have in this race. It also appears in one of the Lucky 63s.

RESULT: Nonmiral won.

2:50 Ryanair Chase
I have a long shot in this race. It's Fugitif and - just like the previous two horses - is one of the selections in one of the multiples I have for the entire festival.

RESULT: Protektorat was the winning horse. I think Fugitif either finished last or didn't finish at all.

3:30 Stayers' Hurdle
I had backed Irish Point antepost, but this is the first non-runner of the day.

RESULT: The favourite - Teahupoo - won.

4:10 TrustATrader Plate Handicap Chase
I have used a £2.50 each-way free bet on Il Ridoto.

Ginny's Destiny, Icare Allen and Il Ridoto have been placed in a £1 each-way free bet treble.

RESULT: Shakem Up 'arry was the winner.

4:50 Ryanair Mares' Novices' Hurdle
I was drawn to Mollys Mango. It could only be because of the name (I have been eating/drinking a lot of things with Mango in it lately). With that in mind, I was only compelled to wager £1 each-way in the hope of a place because I think Brighterdaysahead will win.

RESULT: Golden Ace won, Brighrerdaysahead finished second. My bet lost.

5:30 Kim Muir Handicap Chase
I had backed Good Time Jonny in one of the Lucky 63s, but this is a non-runner.

RESULT: Inothewayurthinkin won.

Friday 15 March
1:30 Triumph Hurdle
I had Sir Gino in a Lucky 63, but the horse was finally pulled out yesterday. Therefore, I have another non runner.

With Sir Gino out, I have placed two wagers. One is a £5 win on Majborough because Sky Bet will refund any losing bets on the first race (up to £5). So, if the horse loses, I'll get my money back.

I have also bet £2 each-way on Kargese.

2:10 County Handicap Hurdle
Iberico Lord was my pre-Festival bet, but it ran a different race on Tuesday.

2:50 Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle
The first eligible Lucky 63 entry I have for the day is Johnnywho.

3:30 Gold Cup
The final Lucky 63 selection I have for the 2024 Cheltenham Festival is Corach Rambler because I liked the 20/1 odds for a placed finish.

I have Galopin Des Champs in a free £1 each-way double. See immediately below for the second selection.

4:10 St. James' Place Hunters' Chase
The second horse in the multiple, along with Galopin Des Champs to win the Gold Cup, is Ferns Lock.

4:50 Mrs Paddy Power Mares' Chase
To close out the festival, I have placed a real money 'any order' forecast with Limerick Lace and Harmonya Maker.

5:30 Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle
My last wager is a £2.50 each-way free bet on Quai De Bourbon.

As it stands, I am £15.52 in the red ahead of the final day. Today's stakes includes the money I spent on the three Lucky 63s last week. I expect some money back from those because of the plethora of non-runners (as well as a few wins and placed runners). So, even if I am unlucky today, I expect to leave this week in the black albeit barely.

Cheltenham Festival 2024 Betting

Results from Friday's card
1:30  - Majborough won and Kargese finished in second. So, I had a WINNER and a PLACE. 
2:10 - Absurde won
2:50 - Stellar Story came first
3:30 - As I expected, Galopin Des Champs won.. and - most importantly - Corach Rambler placed by finishing in third place (I was surprised at this finish because the horse was at the back for the majority of the race)
4:10 - Sine Nomine was the winner. Ferns Lock led for most of the race, but I was not confident at all during the race because the horse was a bit boisterous before the off
4:50 - Limerick Lace won, but I also needed Harmonya Maker (finished in 7th)  for the forecast
5:30 - Better Days Ahead won. Quai De Bourbon finished third.

Saturday 16 March
After doing all the calculations, it looks like I ended up £48.98 in profit after all of the bets I placed during the festival.

It should be noted that a lot of my returns from yesterday were in the form of refunds from voided bets because my ante-post wagers were placed with the 'Non Runner, No Bet' term. As you've seen above, I had a ton of non-runners.

Cheltenham Festival 2024 Betting

I think the best course of action, if I decide to go with the multiples ahead of the festival, next year is to wait until I have a better grasp of where the respective horses are likely to run. Therefore, the Monday before the festival might put me in a better position.

With that said, some of the free bets and customer offers were a benefit to me as well. I particularly enjoyed Sky Bet's offer from yesterday's opener which offered me a £5 return should my horse lose. Well, I had Majborough win for me and that returned a profit of £27.50. It was the result which confirmed I would walk away from the week of betting fully in the black. 

So, to close, I thought I would share with you some photographs I took of the infamous three Lucky 63s I had beside me all week. 

Cheltenham Festival 2024 Bets

The first Lucky 63 was the most successful of the trio returning a profit of £7.59 from my £6.30 stake.

Cheltenham Festival 2024 Bets

Another profitable one. This returned £8.16 from my £6.30 punt, so a +1.86c comeback.

Cheltenham Festival 2024 Bets

I'm finishing off this picture display with the worst of the lot. A return of seventy Pence from my wagers meaning a loss of £5.60.

And that's all for Cheltenham 2024. I'll be back (hopefully) more prepared in '25!

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