Sea PigeonEstablished way back in 1824, the Chester Cup is a truly historic horse race won by some briliant horses, including the famous Sea Pigeon (pictured). But who in 2013 will add their name to the long list of winners? Check out our preview of the StanJames.com Chester Cup and you might just find out…

We’ve brought our usual trends based approach to the 2013 Chester Cup, building up a profile of exactly what it takes to win this Heritage Handicap. Here are the key Chester Cup trends:

Key Trends

Age

  • All of the last 27 Chester Cup winners were aged 4 to 6
  • 12 of the last 14 winners were aged 4 to 6
  • 6 of the last 12 winners were aged 6

We can comfortably eliminate any horses aged seven or older from our Chester Cup shortlist based on these trends. We might also give a nod towards the six year olds if there’s a tough choice to be made.

Official Rating / Handicap Mark

  • 10 of the last 12 Chester Cup winners were officially rated between 90 and 103
  • 10 of the last 12 winners carried 8st 9lbs or more

These two Chester Cup trends are fairly self explanatory.

Ability

  • 11 of the last 12 Chester Cup winners had won over 2m or further
  • 9 of the last 12 winners had landed a Class 2 race or better

To win the 2013 Chester Cup, our selection is going to need proven stamina as all of the last 12 winners had won over 14f or further, with the vast majority clocking up 2m successes prior to the race. Furthermore, the trends suggest that we should prefer those beasts that have already tasted victory in better company.

Fitness

  • 9 of the last 12 winners of the Chester Cup were making their first appearance of the season

It might seem counter-intuitive, but there is a strong tendency towards horses having their first run of the flat season. All of the last 8 winners tick this box.

Tactics

  • 10 of the last 12 Chester Cup heroes raced prominently

Only two hold-up horses have managed to win the Chester Cup in recent times. The layout of Chester Racecourse tends to favour prominent types.

Summary

Taking into account all of the above Chester Cup trends, there are two standout candidates to win the 2013 renewal: Richard Fahey’s Address Unknown and Dermot Weld’s Olympiad.

I am going to discount Address Unknown, currently a best price of 25/1 (26.00) with the race sponsors Stan James, due to the fact that he’s attempted quite a few of these staying races without much success, even though he did win once at Ascot over 2m. He also entered the Chester Cup last year and finished way down the field; that race came off a mark of 97, which is also his current mark, so unless this year’s field is significantly weaker or he has developed a lot in the past year, I can’t see how the son of Oasis Dream will suddenly win in 2013.

Instead I will be siding with 12/1 (13.00) shotOlympiad (Paddy Power) who was well supported in the Cesarewitch despite a horrendous draw and although he was a bit disappointing that day, he deserves another chance. He’ll act on any ground and I expect a better run this time around.

Advice

The 2013 Chester Cup
Wednesday May 8th, 15:50

Olympiad @ 12/1 (13.00) with Paddy Power

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