With the Cheltenham Gold Cup around the corner, it is finally time to take a serious look at the competitors in the field to assess their chances of victory. For horse racing bettors, this also means a chance to determine which horses are the best value for their money based on their odds. One of the most interesting horses based on their pre-race betting odds has to be Minella Rocco, who enters the race at 20/1 odds to win the race. Is Minella Rocco a good value at that price heading into the Gold Cup?
Minella Rocco will appear as a part of a strong field in the 2018 Cheltenham Gold Cup, one that includes a Nicky Henderson horse in Whisper. Henderson hopes that horse will be his third to win in the Gold Cup. The field also includes last year’s third-place finisher, Native River, who finished just one spot behind Minella Rocco in last year’s race. For that reason, Minella Rocco finds himself as a sizeable underdog heading into the race.
Another reason for the 20/1 odds on Minella Rocco is the fact that the horse is coming back from suffering a fall recently. During a tune-up race at the Irish Gold Cup, he took a spill, which of course does not necessarily inspire confidence heading into a bigger race. In spite of the fall, many are not losing faith in Minella Rocco, and it is safe to say that he is a good value at 20/1 odds for the Gold Cup.
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One major reason that Minella Rocco is a good value at 20/1 odds is the fact that he has experience running well at Cheltenham. As an even bigger underdog last year, he managed to score a second-place finish that shocked those in attendance. While experience only goes so far in any sport, seeing a horse run well at a given venue on a given surface is one of the only things you can go off of when judging a horse’s past performances. Getting a horse that has run well in a race at those odds is always a good value.
Perhaps an even better sign that Minella Rocco is a good value at 20/1 odds is what the Gold Cup betting odds are looking like for other contenders in the race. For example, defending Cheltenham Gold Cup champion Sizing John is around 6/1 odds to win the race for a second time. This means that oddsmakers feel that the race is wide open to a degree, which makes a horse at 20/1 odds a good value as well.
When all is said and done, a race as gruelling as the Cheltenham Gold Cup will always be difficult to predict. But getting a horse that has shown as much promise as Minella Rocco at 20/1 odds is a good value, even if some more talented horses are favoured ahead of him. With a race as wide open as the Gold Cup, those odds are certainly worth some consideration.