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Doddie may just be the bet to close out Festival in great style

Doddiethegreat finished fourth in the Betfair Hurdle on his last start
Doddiethegreat finished fourth in the Betfair Hurdle on his last start

IF YOU’VE not had much luck heading into the very last of this week’s 28 Cheltenham Festival races at 5.30pm on Friday, it could be worth heading to the car park early.

That said, there may just be a lovely bet lurking in the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle in the shape of the Nicky Henderson-trained DODDIETHEGREAT at 14/1 with Paddy Power.

Owned by Kenny Alexander, the eight-year-old is named after the late Scottish Rugby great Doddie Weir with all earnings going to his MNF charitable foundation.

He caught the eye when staying on nicely to finish fourth in the Betfair Hurdle last time and features prominently in the betting for Wednesday’s Coral Cup.


The concern is whether he will actually get into that race, as he needs plenty to come out above him in the current list.

Freddie Gordon has been linked with the ride and can obviously partner him in his Friday assignment should he not get into the Coral Cup.

If that were to be the case, then there is no way he will be a 14/1 shot, in fact I’m sure he will trade at a single-figure price.

Willie Mullins is likely to saddle the short-priced favourite Quai De Bourbon who will be very hard to beat if the rain stays around.

However, if the rain doesn’t materialise later in the week, conditions can change against him pretty quickly.

Waterford Whispers has been all the rage in the betting leading up to this and is now as short as 6/1.

He rates an obvious threat, as does stablemate No Ordinary Joe, but the time is right to side with Doddiethegreat with stakes obviously returned should he not run.


Doddiethegreat e/w          14/1              Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle (Friday)