Noel Novices’ Chase Betting Tips

Betting.org provide punters with Noel Novices’ Chase betting tips from Ascot on Friday, 21 December. Vinndication is undefeated for in-form train Kim Bailey, so looks a worthy favourite for victory in the 2m 5f Grade 2 contest. Count Meribel can give him most to think about and is a solid forecast choice. Lil Rockerfeller, meanwhile, is top on official ratings, so cannot be entirely ruled out. This 2018 Noel Novices’ Chase betting tips preview has further details of all four horses lining up in Berkshire.

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Odds
11/10
Selection
Vinndication
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Odds
100/30
Danger
Count Meribel
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Odds
4/1
E/W
Lil Rockerfeller
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Undefeated Vinndication impossible to oppose in Noel

Vinndication is unbeaten in five starts under rules, so looks a worthy favourite to land the spoils for in-form trainer Kim Bailey in the 2m 5f Grade Noel Novices’ Chase at Ascot this Friday (14:30). This five-year-old is a course hurdles winner over this trip and receives weight from his two main rivals, who are both more exposed as chasers.

The son of Vinnie Roe looks to have some smart back hurdles form and retains any amount of scope to improve. After winning his racecourse debut in a Ludlow bumper, Vinndication followed-up with a ready 4 1/2 lengths victory over Coolanly over an extended 2m 4f at Leicester.

It’s worth remembering the runner-up has come this season and landed the Grade 2 Hyde Novices’ Hurdle. Vinndication then touched Champ off by a neck here in January on similar soft going. This form has a solid look to it, because the runner-up is three from three since – winning all races with plenty in hand.

Listed hurdles winner

A drop back in trip to 2m 3f and upgrade to Listed level proved no problem for Vinndication as he stayed on gamely to beat Western Ryder more than three lengths at Huntingdon. Again, the runner-up has ran with real credit as a four-length fifth in the Greatwood Handicap and beaten the same distance in third during the Grade 2 International Hurdle both at Cheltenham this term.

As the front pair pulled 23 lengths clear of the third, the form Vinndication brings to the table is really strong. He then switched to fences on his return to action at Carlisle and endured a tough chasing debut when pressed tenaciously from three out, but regular rider David Bass didn’t panic and they fended off the sustained challenge.

Vinndication simply outstayed his rivals in Cumbria, asserting in the final 100 yards to win with a couple of lengths in hand. The assessor has him on an official rating of 149, which when adjusted to factor in the race terms, puts him well-in on Count Meribel and with just 1lb to find on the deliberate, slow jumping Lil Rockerfeller.

With further progress assured, and Vinndication fitting the age profile of recent winners, everything points to a huge run. He looks sure to make a bold bid to maintain his undefeated streak and is this rated the one to be on in our Noel Novices’ Chase betting tips.

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Count Meribel the main danger

Vinndication faces just three rivals here, and of those the one most likely to challenge him looks to be Nigel Twiston-Davies trained runner Count Meribel. This six-year-old is two from two in chases, but gives weight away to the favourite for that.

Count Meribel is another hurdles course winner over this distance, having made all to score by an easy eight lengths in a class 2 novice race here last November to complete a hat-trick. He then went on to chase home Kilbricken Storm, who in turn landed the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, in one of the official trials for that 3m stayers’ event.

Although then below par in three subsequent hurdles starts when either last to finish in a Grade 2 at Warwick and back here, or pulled up at the Aintree Grand National meeting, Count Meribel got back to winning ways when sent chasing. Carlisle is another happy hunting ground for him, and he kept on strongly to score from Jammin Masters by 2 1/2 lengths in a limited novice handicap.

Count Meribel then had it all to do at Cheltenham at the November Meeting, but reversed that Leamington Novices’ Hurdle form with Mr Whipped when a really game victor. He recovered from a bad mistake two out and rallied superbly to get up inside the final furlong under regular pilot Mark Grant and hold Le Breuil a neck in a blanket finish.

Cheltenham form reads well

The form of this Cheltenham novice chase is strong despite just a length separating the first four home. Le Breuil was far from disgraced when third behind RSA Chase ante post favourite Santini and Rocky’s Treasure in the Grade 2 John Francome Novices’ Chase – and the runner-up duly went in at that level at Doncaster last weekend.

Mr Whipped has come out and won at Haydock since, and even the distant 50-length fifth Jerrysback, who takes Count Meribel on again in this, landed his next outing at Bangor in smart style. It leaves the 148 rated son of Three Valleys with claims of his own of landing the spoils in this.

There is just one small problem; Count Meribel has to give weight away to Vinndication who is rated 1lb superior and that is a tough ask. It thus makes sense to pair them up in a straight forecast and our Noel Novices’ Chase betting tips strongly recommend this to punters.

Lil Rockerfeller could also go well

The quartet at completed by Jerrysback and Lil Rockerfeller, and it’s the latter who is the best horse on paper – having recorded three victories from four chase starts and won the Grade 2 Coral Hurdle over an extended 2m 3f here last season. Neil King’s seven-year-old has even grabbed a valuable Flat staying handicap at Glorious Goodwood over the summer.

Lil Rockerfeller is looking somewhat exposed, however, and he’s been far from foot perfect in his appearances over fences so far. The slow, deliberate nature of his jumps may easily find him out now upped in grade after wins at Uttoxeter, Cheltenham and Exeter.

He unseated long-time partner Wayne Hutchinson when back at Cheltenham just seven days ago, and there were unconvincing mistakes from him previously. Lil Rockerfeller may be seen to best effect over further, having once finished a gallant runner-up in the Stayers’ Hurdle.

If the seven-year-old runs up to his official mark of 153, however, then he should easily be able to give 3lb to Jerrysback – who has 9lb to find on BHA ratings. While Lil Rockerfeller lacks the turn of foot in this sphere to be effective over any shorter, he should prove more than a match for the Philip Hobbs trained, JP McManus owned runner and thus completes our Noel Novices’ Chase betting tips in the absence of each-way betting.

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