We take a look through the field set to run in the Grade One feature at Sandown on Saturday and provide readers with our 2020 Tingle Creek Chase
The Tingle Creek was first run at Sandown in 1979, and has been an integral race in the National Hunt racing calendar ever since. This Grade One has often been used a starting point for future Champion Chaser, with the names of Desert Orchid, Master Minded, Moscow Flyer and Sprinter Sacre standing out on the illustrious honours list.
Let's take a look through the betting and the form, before picking out our top betting tips
2020 Tingle Creek Odds
*Odds taken from Betfair on 28/11/20*
2020 Tingle Creek Favourite
Altior tops the market for Saturday's renewal of the Tingle Creek, after proving he was back to full fitness during a work session at Newbury earlier this month. Nicky Henderson's star won this race in 2018, before going on to win his second Champion Chase at Cheltenham.
The team decided to target the 1965 Chase last season, where Altior suffered his first ever defeat over fences at the hands of Cyrname. With that plan well and truly scrapped, Henderson will tread the tried and tested route with his ten-year-old this term, and a fully-fit Altior will be very hard to beat.
2020 Tingle Creek Runners
With Altior and Chacun Pour Soi out of the picture, many expected Defi Du Seuil to win the 2020 Champion Chase. Yet, as the favourite floundered, it was Politologue - winner of the Tingle Creek in 2017 - who made all to win the Queen Mother in decisive fashion.
Despite that Festival success, it's Paul Nicholls' second-string Greaneteen who sits closest to Altior in the Tingle Creek betting. Nicholls' six-year-old won the Haldon Gold Cup rather cosily on his reappearance, and clearly has more progression to find over the upcoming campaign.
Rouge Vif proved he was much better than a handicapper at Cheltenham last month, powering to a decisive win off a mark of 156. Harry Whittington's charge skipped the Shloer Chase when the ground became heavy, and will have to be watched carefully if there's dry ground at Sandown.
While clearly a very talented chaser, I'm not sure Brewin'Upastorm
has the pace for two miles. Castlegrace Paddy
ran well to beat an under-par A Plus Tard on his reappearance, but has never made an impression at Grade One level.First Flow
has been thrown in at the deep-end on his first start above handicap company, and Espirit Du Large's
jumping has gone to pot since winning the Henry VIII at this meeting 12 months ago.
2020 Tingle Creek Tips
Greaneteen may sit second in the betting, but Paul Nicholls' charge is only the fourth-best entrant in terms of rating and he's never run in a Graded Chase in open company. Rouge Vif is the other young improver in the field, but he needs good ground to be at his best, and the deluge of rain that's due to hit Sandown at the end of the week won't aid his cause.
Politologue ran out a worthy winner at Cheltenham in March and to see the reigning Champion Chaser sitting on 5/1 for the Tingle Creek seems a little strange. Yet, Nicholls' grey has come out second-best to ALTIOR on the three occasions they clashed in recent years, and I think the favourite still offers good value at 5/6.
He may be getting on a little in years now, but the fact remains that Altior has never lost a two-mile jumps race. His record around Sandown is impeccable and he's proven his quality on all sorts of ground. Altior didn't run badly in the 1965 Chase 12 months ago, he just didn't stay well enough to beat a top-quality rival in Cyrname over that trip.
Nicky Henderson has been very complimentary of the work his superstar has produced in the build-up to his reappearance. Some may see Altior as vulnerable, but I don't want to side against him.