The Betfred Becher Handicap Chase, which takes place on Saturday 6th December, is a 3M 2F listed contest run over the Grand National fences. Twice since 2000, the winner of this race has gone on to win the Grand National (Amberleigh House and Silver Birch in a later season).

 

Below we take a look at the trends for the past 10 years:

 

Age (Win-Place-Runners)

5yo: 0-1-2

6yo: 0-3-8

7yo: 1-2-18

8yo: 1-5-22

9yo: 4-8-44

10yo: 2-2-36

11yo: 0-4-18

12yo+: 2-1-15

6 of 10 winners were aged 9 or 10 though that age bracket accounted for just over 40% of total runners.

The only horse aged below 8 to win this since 2004 was Silver Birch who subsequently won the Grand National.

Only winner aged over 10 was Hello Bud in 2010 & 2012. Prior to his first win the race, he had finished 5th in previous season’s Becher Chase and also that year's Grand National.

 

Breeding

Irish bred: 9-17-99

French bred: 1-7-39

GB bred: 0-2-25

Chance Du Roy’s win last year has been on the only non-Irish bred winner in past 10 years.

 

Weight (Win-Place-Runners)

Horses carrying 10-9 or more: 4-11-74

Horses carrying 10-8 or less: 6-15-89

There are no very strong trends on the weights, 7 of 10 carried 10-10 or less, while the other 3 carried 11-5 or more.

Top Weight: 541FP155PP (2-1-10)

Horses racing from out of the handicap: 2-5-26

Horses racing from 7lbs or more out of the handicap: 0-1-7

 

Official Ratings

Horses rated 140 or higher: 3-7-48

Horses rated 130 to 139: 6-9-78

Horses rated 112 to 127: 1-10-37

5 of last 6 winners were racing off marks between 130 to 139.

 

Recent/Past Form

9 of 10 winners finished in the first 5 on their last completed start

10 of 10 winners had won over 2M4F+

8 of 10 winners had won over 3M+

7 of 10 winners had run in the last 45 days

10 of 10 winners made their racecourse debut in a NH race

7 of 10 winners (last 6) had run in at least 13 chases (all 3 exceptions were trained by Paul Nicholls)

7 of 10 winners had previously run in at least 8 handicap chases (all 3 exceptions were trained by Paul Nicholls)

7 of 10 winners had won no more than 2 handicap chases (2 exceptions were Hello Bud who won it in 2010 & 2012)

6 of 10 winners were 4th or 5th season chasers (3 exceptions were trained by Paul Nicholls & other was Hello Bud winning it for second time)

8 of 10 winners had won a chase at class 2 or higher

5 of 10 winners (last 4) had run over the National fences (3 of 5 exceptions were trained by Nicholls, 1 had won the Cork National and 1 had completed the last 2 Irish Nationals)

 

Other Races

Previous season's winner (Chance Du Roy): 2UP (0-1-3)

Betfair Cash Out Handicap Chase winner (Ballybough Gorta): 4 (0-1-1)

Miller Howe Cavendish Cup Handicap Chase winner (Balbriggan): 4 (0-1-1)

Foundation Developements Ltd Handicap Chase winner (Mendip Express):6 (0-0-1)

Scottish National winner (Al Co): 5F (0-0-2)

4 of 10 winners ran in that year's Grand National, finishing F5B7

3 of 10 winners (3 of last 4) ran in previous Becher Chase, finishing 5UF

3 of 3 Irish-trained winners ran in the Paddy Power Chase in December, finishing 042

3 of 3 Irish-trained winners ran in the previous year's Troytown, finishing 764

2 of 3 Irish-trained winners ran in the Leopardstown Handicap Chase, finishing 44

2 of 3 Irish-trained winners ran in the Irish Grand National, finishing P8

2 of 3 Irish-trained winners ran in the Pat Taaffe Handicap Chase, finishing 02

3 of 7 British-trained winners ran in Haydock Grand National Trial, finishing P8P

3 of 7 British-trained winners ran in Classic Chase, finishing 115

 

Racing Style
9 of 10 winners raced prominently with leaders throughout

 

Trainers

Paul Nicholls (3-5-17) has trained the winner three times in the past 10 years and had the runner-up in 4 of the other 7.

Nigel Twiston-Davies (2-1-9) saddled Hello Bud to win it in 2010 & 2012 and had Baby Run finish 2nd in 2013.

Philip Hobbs (1-0-4) trained Chance Du Roy to win this last year.

Peter Bowen (0-4-15) has saddled 4 places in past 10 years.

Venetia Williams (0-1-2), Tom George (0-1-3), Sue Smith (0-1-4) & David Pipe (0-1-8) have each trained one placed finisher since 2004.

Irish based trainers (3-2-28) have a good recent record, having won it 3 times in last 8 years.

 

Price

The last 7 winners were priced between 7/1 & 14/1

Favourites (2-1-11) have won 2 renewals in past 10 years & show a level stakes profit of 3.50.

 

Summary:

Based on trends from the past 10 years you are looking for a horse:

Aged 9 or 10

Irish bred

Officially rated 130 to 139

Finished in the first 5 on last completed start

Has run in the last 45 days

Won a class 2 or better chase over 2M 4F+ (ideally over 3M+)

Run at least 13 times over fences

Run in 10+ handicap chases (but won no more than 2)

4th or 5th season chaser (or trained by Paul Nicholls)

Made racecourse debut in a NH race

Has run over the National fences (ideally in 2013 Becher or 2014 Grand National)

Ran in Haydock Grand National Trial, Classic Chase, Troytown and/or Paddy Power Chase

Tends to race prominently

Trained by Paul Nicholls or Nigel Twiston-Davies

Carl's Analysis

The trends analysis for this race is very unremarkable, as from 10 trends the lead selection only scored , which does not give much confidence in the criteria.

5 – Balder Success
4 – Somersby, Oscar Whiskey
3 – Dodging Bullets
2- God's Own, Petite Rose, Vukovar, Williams Wishes
1 – Third Intention

Sad Ken does not point out a clear leader either, so the focus will be on the profiles.

Best in the handicap are Balder Success, Dodging Bullets, Oscar Whiskey, Pepite Rose and Somersby.

Best profiles in order belong to Oscar Whisky, Somersby, Balder Success.

In process of elimination, the only horse that has hit the first four of the primary trends, the pick is SOMERSBY.

I think the best profile horse will be worth a combo tricast, with God's Own.

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