Chester Vase Betting Tips & Preview – Wednesday 9th May 2018

Chester’s spectacular May Festival gets underway this Wednesday and the Chester Vase is one of the top picks of the opening day. It’s recognised as one of the trial races for June’s Derby and last year’s Vase runner-up, Wings of Eagles, went on to win the big race at Epsom.

Aidan O’Brien has eight wins to his name in this race, making him the leading trainer of the 111-year-old event. He stands the chance of claiming more glory this year thanks to his three entries but could well be denied by William Haggas and his sole runner, Young Rascal.

Top Tips

Young Rascal to win @ 9/2

Proschema @ 8/1

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Race Info

A scorching bank holiday weekend has helped firm up the turf on Chester’s sharp track. Horses will find themselves turning for large parts of this race due to the circular nature of the course so getting a spot by the rail is crucial. A low draw can often be important here and not just in short distance races.

GoingDistanceGroupPrize MoneyRunnersEW Terms
Good to soft 1m 4f 63y 3 £101,000 10 1/5 1-3

Recent Winners

The Ryan Moore & Aidan O’Brien combination has been responsible for the last five winners of this event so they have to be taken very seriously here. On each occasion it was the race favourite they were representing, meaning that this has not been a race for big priced winners in recent years.

YearWinnerSPTrainerJockey
2017 Venice Beach 5/2 Aidan O’Brien Ryan Moore
2016 US Army Ranger 4/11 Aidan O’Brien Ryan Moore
2015 Hans Holbein 7/4 Aidan O’Brien Ryan Moore
2014 Orchestra 3/1 Aidan O’Brien Ryan Moore
2013 Ruler of the World 10/11 Aidan O’Brien Ryan Moore

Analysis: Time to stop O’Brien dominance

All of O’Brien’s last five winners in this race set off 3/1 or shorter but he doesn’t quite have such a strong favourite this time with Hunting Horn available at 4/1. Alongside the favourite he is responsible for 11/2 option Flag of Honour and 10/1 outsider Family Tree, neither of which post a huge threat here.

We spoke earlier about the draw bias at Chester and it’s been telling in this race as half of the last 16 winners have been from stalls one or two. Hunting Horn enjoys the spot on the inside rail but drawn next to him is a strong rival in the form of Young Rascal.

Young Rascal set for back to back victories

No impression was made on Young Rascal’s sole appearance last year but he appears to have fared very well from the winter break. On his return in April, the William Haggas-trained horse had the better of 19 other runs at Newbury to win a one mile, three furlong contest. The colt was a cut above the Class 3 field on the day, winning by a comfortable five length margin. He’s easily ready for the step up in class and there’s plenty of reason to think he can push on from last month’s fine showing.

Hunting Horn to turn the tables on Ispolini

These two colts met at the end of April in the bet365 Classic Trial at Sandown. Ispolini missed out on victory by a short head while Hunting Horn was found over a length behind. Had the race been longer though you’d have fancied O’Brien’s horse to improve on his third place finish as he was looking strong in the final stages. The two furlongs extra we have on Wednesday will work in Hunting Horn’s favour and should help him edge out the second favourite Ispolini.

In-form Proschema one to watch out for

Only one of the last 16 winners of this race has been priced greater than 9/1 so you don’t want to look further down the betting than Proschema. Much like Young Rascal, Proschema is another who has come back from the winter break a much more threatening unit. He won his seasonal debut at Doncaster before cruising to victory in a small field at Haydock. Although not really tested that day, a recent distance win will aid his chances here. Only one other runner on the racecard (Perfect Illusion, 16/1) can boast winning experience over a mile and a half.

Final Verdict – Young Rascal to Deny Super Six for O’Brien and Moore

O’Brien and Moore look set to be denied glory as they seek a sixth consecutive Chester Vase win. Hunting Horn could well come close but expect him to be fall just short of the lightly raced Young Rascal who benefits from an ideal draw. Further down the betting and Proschema is one to consider for an each way bet as he looks for what would be a fifth successive top three finish.

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