ūüŹá Cheltenham: An Expert’s Guide From ‘No Foto Needed’

With Cheltenham upon us, preview nights, ‘tip lists’ as long as your arm and antepost portfolios (with past selections that are now non-runners removed!) have dominated the run up to the curtain raiser on Tuesday 12th March.

There is so much noise that finding quality content is tricky. To help with this, we have prepared some special content with four professional punters who have excellent Cheltenham records. All of them also tip, with special Cheltenham offers and exclusive discounts available with SBC Membership.

After our Andy Holding SBC Podcast release  yesterday, next up is No Foto Needed, the SBC Premium Tipster who has been in sparkling form so far in 2024!

To promote the service before Cheltenham, a 10% discount is available up to midnight on Monday 11th March. To access this offer, just visit the No Foto Needed page and follow the sign up instructions using the promo code CHELTENHAM. Please be aware that this code is available to everyone Рboth SBC Members and non-members alike! 10% will be knocked off any and every package available on site.

Here is an interview with the mysterious maestro where we quiz him about how he finds those long-priced winners:

1. Under the moniker ‚ÄėNo Foto Needed‚Äô, you have an excellent ROI of¬† 11% ROI from nearly 2,500 bets and 2024 has started brilliantly with nearly 50 points of profit delivered, with ROI running at 33.69% for the year. Can you summarise how you approach finding value in the racing markets?

‘On the National Hunt I will be honest, it is a lot harder than the Flat but I do stick to the same approach. The first thing I always do is check the possible pace in a race (you can see a free guide on this on the At The Races website). Once I have that, it’s very important to have a profile on all horses and because I only concentrate on the better class racing (0-120 Handicaps + over jumps and 0-70 Handicaps + on the flat), it does make it easier to keep on top of things.

When I use the word concentrate, keeping a Horse Tracker is key. I re-watch races every day and take notes on each horse I wish to put into my Tracker. That means that when they are due to run I already have an edge on the race. Not starting the race from scratch is always a help! 

I use my Racing Post account the most and it is money well spent because it’s very user-friendly. The main function for me is the Pro Card section, which covers an awful lot I want to see on the same page (Topspeed of their last six efforts, RPR, Postdata, Stats, and much more) and that’s before I click onto their form. The most important function there is re-watching the videos of their races.¬†

You could ask 10 people to re-watch a horse race and it’s possible you could get many different answers about what to take away from that race for the future. I’m saying this because most form students have different ways, opinions, and ideas about this sport and the key is to stick to the way you want to do it and listen to nobody else. That is of course if you have the time to do it properly (which you can take from me is at least 6 hours a day to keep on top of things!).

I know I got a bit away from the question, but when you’re clicking through a race, looking at the previous form of each runner here is key to find the right ingredients and make sure that are ticked. Flat=(Distance, Ground (check current weather), Pace, Draw, Grade of race, How the horse travels, Tracks, i.e. Course Form, Trainers Form, Time since its last run, and believe me there are many other nuggets I look at but those are the main ones for each horse I concentrate on. Jumps= ( Everything I mentioned on the Flat except the Draw of course, and you add-in how the horse jumps. I know the National Hunt will take longer to watch a previous race but the hours you put in will get paid-off in the long run.

So, to answer the question, when you do all of the above you will start to form a market in your head which leads to possible value that might be available on a particular horse you feel is over-priced compared to your own tissue prices.’¬†

2. Do you have any pointers for those getting ready to pick their own selections for the action at Prestbury Park?

‘(a) If you haven’t already played Ante-Post on any particular contest it’s best to wait until the final declarations are out. They are out 48hrs in advance of the race which I feel is plenty of time, because I’m sure most punters would have studied most of the 28 races long before that and now they just have to go over the exact runners and riders in front of them, which shouldn’t take too much time.¬†

(b) Betting firms: when you are finalising your selections it’s mightily important you check Oddschecker before you place a bet. There is no doubt that many of the top firms will be trying to outdo one another, especially with Extra Places, Bigger Prices, Special Offers, Money-Back specials, If your horse finishes 2nd to the Fav etc. So bottom line, if you are in a position that you have different betting accounts, make sure you shop around for that extra value or those extra places.

(c) Many horse racing followers think that Cheltenham is a very stiff track- but keep this mind- the first two days the races are run on the Old Course and there are many tight turns around the galloping track which has a major outcome on results at times- mainly because hold-up horses get poorly positioned, especially if the pace up front is not too strong and they have so much ground to make-up on the leaders before they turn for home.

On the 3rd and 4th days the horses run on the New Course, which is the stiffer track of the two, mainly because there is a long run when they jump the third-last over the hurdle track to the second last which makes the climb-up the stiff run-in that more demanding. On the Jumps Course the bends are not as tight as the Old Course which makes it a proper test.

(d) Handicaps: with many firms paying Extra Places on these contests it could work out in your favour, because we all know most trainers/connections will be targeting these events from many months ago and they are ultra-competitive, so every extra place you get can pay dividends considering most of the runners will be 100% fit and trying to win and the odds should be rewarding.

Mentioning trainers,¬† the same names pop-up every year in the winner’s enclosure in these tough handicaps. Here are a few to concentrate on when you are narrowing down the fields to a selection (yes, they are well-known to us but it’s important to remember these guys have the best percentages over the past 20 years in these kind of races): Gordon Elliott, Paul Nicholls, David Pipe, Dan Skelton (mainly hurdles) Jonjo O’Neill, Willie Mullins, Nicky Henderson, Kim Bailey (mainly chases), Joseph O’Brien. Of course, we see them win races on a daily basis but they are masters at doing it on the big stages so please give extra attention to their runners, even if the recent form of the horse is not that colourful.¬†

(e) When you are looking through the form book, a horse that has previous form at the track has a massive advantage in certain races. If you go over the past results, you will see plenty of horses that had solid form at Cheltenham )but more importantly form from Cheltenham Festival’s) stand head and shoulders above most criteria and this repeats in most of the results every year at the Festival.’

3. Do you have a favourite Cheltenham winner which stands out, where everything went as you expected or you landed a juicy priced winner?

‘There are loads of great memories, but none more so than trying to crack those very difficult handicaps when you land on one at a huge price and it goes off shorter and gets the job done. The one I loved more than others was in 2014 (can’t believe it’s 10-years-ago!). The horse in question was Savello- trained by Tony Martin at the time – for the Grand Annual, I tipped it up at 40/1 went off at 16/1 and “Mr Cool”- Davy Russell passed the post first which was amazing scenes.

There were many Ante-Post bets that went our way also- two that will always stick in my mind. Un De Sceaux (2015- Arkle), tipped-up in November, at 7/1, wins at 4/6f in March (by 6L), and one a little more recent Envoi Allen (2020- Ballymore), tipped-up in October at 8/1 wins at 4/7f in March (by 4.5L). 

Those thoughts (well in advance) are always good for the any tipster, when their opinion clearly turns out to be correct having spotted the talent of an animal very early in their career, getting the rewards at massive odds compared to the SP.’

4. There are a lot of races with short-priced favourites this year. Will you be looking at every race or will you ignore races where you think a horse ‚Äėjust wins‚Äô?

‘There are races I know already I won’t be getting involved in, not because of a short-priced Fav but because I know they are very difficult to narrow down for one reason or another. The few I won’t be looking at are the Kim Muir, the Cross Country and the Foxhunters.

Regarding the races that have short-priced Favs, yes there are ones that if the same horse turns-up from their recent form they should win- Constitution Hill, Ballyburn, El Fabiolo, Lossiemouth look certain to win barring mishaps but the other 21 races might need a lot of form studying that may work out to be well rewarded.

I want to make sure I mention this well-known saying- “a 2/1 winner at Cheltenham is the same as a 2/1 winner at any other track”. So please remember, Cheltenham will always throw-up strange results and don’t up your stakes just because it’s Cheltenham. There will always be better betting opportunities at the same odds against weaker rivals in the very near future.’

5. Cheltenham is seen as the pinnacle of the National Hunt season but we still have lots of big races yet to come. What are you looking forward to most in the remainder of the season?

‘It`s a great question, mainly because not all the best horses meet each other at Cheltenham. We still have Fairyhouse, Aintree, Punchestown, Ayr and Sandowns’ Festivals yet to come this term and I’m sure there are a few more T.V weekends not mentioned (Newbury and Haydock spring to mind) where we can still use our team of horse trackers from previous meetings that need to run before the season is over in a few months’ time.

So, it’s another way of reminding everyone that yes, Cheltenham is a fantastic 4-day spectacle. but it’s not the end of the season, far from it. The few horses that are lucky enough to run well there we will have the chance to see them again, but will they be the same horse after a gruelling test at Cheltenham when they arrive at Aintree or Punchestown later in the season? All that is ahead of us and I am one who can’t wait!’

ūüö® NEW REVIEW ALERT: Andy Holding – The UK’s Most Well Known Horse Racing Tipster?ūüŹá

Andy Holding is one of the most well known and respected horse racing tipsters in UK betting circles.

William Hill Radio, regular podcast appearances and a daily Oddschecker column have propelled him into this position and as the feature review in the February SBC Magazine for February, we have published our findings from proofing his personal tipping service, Andy Holding Speed Figures.

Alongside our review, a unique and *considerable* discount has also been made available for all SBC Members, with subscriptions using our discount code costing just £25 Рa saving of £14 a month!

This means that if you¬†sign up with SBC today¬†and avail this offer to join Andy’s service, you will save the cost of an annual SBC subscription in just under 8 months – and that’s before you use anything else that we have to offer!

What Does The Service Do?

Tipping makes up a portion of what is on offer at Andy Holding Speed Figures, with the majority of our review looking at performance, odds movement, advanced analytics and how this all compares with what gets released for free on Oddschecker each and every day.

Alongside that, this service offers much more, including:

  • Speed Figure sheets that are a great source of information to find your own bets
  • A weekly blog that highlights horses of interest
  • The ‘Irish Racing Podcast’, where Andy discusses any racing from the Emerald Isle when there are meetings

We will be following up with a fresh SBC Podcast in the next month or so, which will give me a chance to quiz Andy about his methods, how he identifies edges and all things betting when it comes to the sport of kings.

For those of you who want a preview, in this interview, Andy joined friend of the show, Simon Nott, to talk about his betting and tipping:

Is This For Everyone?

Like with any tipster service, workload, variance, price sensitivity and access to bookmaker accounts are all questions that need answering when considering whether said service is suitable for you.

We discuss all of these issues in our review, with our advanced analytics and commentary making it very clear who this service will work for, who it won’t work for and how to maximise any subscription to benefit from what is on offer.

One thing I can share is this РAndy Holding Speed Figures is more than a tipster service Рthe wealth of information that comes with a subscription can help you find your own selections too!

Sign Up To Read This Review

To read our review of Andy Holding’s service and all of our expert content, you will need a¬†Smart Betting Club membership, with different subscription options available to view¬†here.

This will provide you with¬†instant access¬†to every report we have ever written, alongside a wealth of other benefits including discounts to services like Andy’s.

With Cheltenham approaching we will be as active as ever helping our members to profit from their betting, with some excellent offers and promotions already in the works.

How to have a Fantastic Cheltenham Festival: SBC’s Top Tipsters & Strategies To Win With!

The Very Best Tipsters for the Very Best Races

The Cheltenham Chatter has (hopefully!) reached it’s peak with just a few days until the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle will be met with an excited roar at Prestbury Park.

The ground, handicap plots, declarations and leaked marks have all been in the headlines but we have one objective here at the SBC –¬†making profits from our betting!

With that in mind, we have collected some of the most suitable services for you to consider below and have concentrated on those that are best placed to help you make money at the Cheltenham Festival.

Free Tipsters

SBC Membership provides access to nine free tipsters and we have selected the three that we feel are best placed to help you profit next week:

  • ‚ÄčPricewise With PCB¬†is a constant source of generously priced winners as Paul Chandler-Burns curates Tom Segal’s Pricewise tips, reading between the lines to adjust the bets take and tweak the standard staking plan.¬†92 points profit¬†and a¬†12% ROI¬†over the last 2 years suggests that the service is well worth a follow.
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  • Kieran Ward 13/2 – 8/1 tips¬†has a solid and consistent record with¬†10,143 bets¬†providing¬†1,055 points of profit¬†at¬†11% ROI.¬†12 years of proofing has seen just¬†one¬†losing year as an impressive profit chart keeps going in one direction – upwards!
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  • ‚ÄčAchievable Value¬†is the newest member of the Free SBC Tipster ranks and a 6 month proofing period has shown a¬†10.43% ROI¬†at¬†BSP!¬†This is quite the feat and we can report that the brains behind the service is¬†disappointedwith these returns! Covering a wide range of races, Achievable Value is an excellent option for any bettor, especially those limited to exchanges.

Premium Services

Another benefit of SBC membership comes in the form of considerable discounts for the very best services. Of our 7 Premium Racing Services, we have selected two that have shown a considerable edge at Cheltenham before:

  • ‚ÄčOptimum Racing, run by podcaster, Andrew Lowrie, promises to be ready for every chase race at the festival. This service’s specialism, selectivity & aim of a 20%+ edge before selecting horses makes it a solid addition to anyone’s portfolio. 8 years of proofing has shown a¬†165 point profit¬†and a¬†23.3% ROI, all from just¬†508 bets. There is currently 20% off his service ahead of Cheltenham starting!
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  • ‚ÄčNo Foto Needed¬†is a hidden gem that keeps beating the bookmakers and exchanges alike. Over 1,600 bets has resulted in a¬†16.21% ROI¬†to advised prices and remarkably, this figure grows to¬†25.62%¬†when measuring selections against¬†Betfair SP, making this an excellent option for all punters!

Additional Cheltenham Benefits

In addition to the snapshot of SBC offerings above, we would also like to highlight some other services that we feel are perfect for profiting at the home of National Hunt Racing:

  • Northern Monkey Punter¬†has an enviable record at Cheltenham and has a¬†two week free trial¬†ready for SBC Members.
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  • Bookie Bashing¬†has so much to offer and their¬†Horse Racing Tracker¬†is perfect for exploiting all of the extra places on offer throughout festival week – SBC members can save¬†25%¬†off their first 3 months of membership.
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  • Learn Bet Win¬†is an excellent tipping service with a superb record at Cheltenham – thanks to the extremely detailed analysis provided during the festival. Run by the professional punter Declan Meagher, it is a great way to turn losing into winning – you can hear all about it in¬†SBC Podcast #47¬†where Declan talked me through the service. We also recently re-reviewed his service in SBC 131, where you can explore in-depth the edge he has and who it is suitable for.

Sign Up Now

With less than a week to go, the good news is that all of this and more is available to you with SBC Membership.

After signing up, you will get instant access to all of the free tipsters, premium discounts and discounted services that come with being part of our winning club.

3 month, 6 month and annual memberships are all¬†available here¬†– with the National Hunt season approaching it’s peak, now is the perfect time to get signed up and access what the¬†very best tipsters¬†have to offer.

 

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