Clear, concise, comprehensive horseracing analysis and insight from Paul Jones, former author of the Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide, concentrating on jump racing in addition to the best of the Flat and leading Sports events.
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Trials Season Already Well And Truly Arrived


The Cheltenham Trials start in earnest on Saturday with a nine-card at Cheltenham alongside the Sky Bet Chase Meeting at Doncaster followed by Irish Champion Hurdle Day on Sunday.

In fact, the trials started properly earlier today when Shaneshill won the John Mulhern Galmoy Hurdle in gutsy fashion (this x3 Cheltenham Festival runner-up won’t be far away in the Stayers’ Hurdle) and the Gold Cup and Ryanair entry, Champagne West, made all off 154 to win the Thyestes with plenty to spare. There’s no question in my mind that they should chance their arm in the Gold Cup. On His Own and Djakadam were second in the Gold Cup after they won the Thyestes as was Hedgehunter, though his Gold Cup runner-up run was the following season. Arkle won both races in 1964.

In terms of Cheltenham Festival Preview Evenings, I will be on the panel in events held in Leixlip (February 28) including Gordon Elliott, Canterbury (March 7), Banbury (March 8) and Cheltenham FC (March 13) including Davy Russell. I also aim to attend another event or two for the craic including another whilst I am in Ireland.

Before then I’ve got have a tooth out, get some new glasses, re-design my office, set up an ebay and LinkedIn account, sort out my tax returns, attend a wedding of someone I don’t know and, worst of all, upgrade my phone and work out how the hell to transfer everything over thanks to an air stewardess who smashed my current device to smithereens.

Also before the preview evenings move into full swing, as I am assisting Aintree with much of their editorial content for their big festival including providing giant posters of all the Grand National runners all over the racecourse again, I will be at the official unveiling of the Randox Health Grand National weights on February 14th at the Victoria and Albert Museum which will be an evening event for the first time.

The weights are also going to be delivered in reverse order for the first time (if it worked so well for the first time for Eurovision last year!) by Ed Chamberlin and AP McCoy live on ITV4, leaving those watching without an embargoed list of the weights guessing who the top weight will be. Ucello Conti caught the eye with the way he travelled when second in the Thyestes today which has been won by two fairly recent Grand National winners in Hedgehunter and Numbersixvalverde and I’ll be interested in what weight he is allocated amongst others.

The Racing Post’s Mares series is now in the final few days and it’s looking like a final five of Dawn Run, Pretty Polly, Miesque, Pebbles and Triptych. That’s my predicted order anyway. I’ve enjoyed their countdown of the Top 50. It wouldn’t surprise me if Pretty Polly got the number one position though. I know her career very well as the very first job I was given when I started employment two days after Maori Venture won the Grand National was to proof read Michael Tanner’s book on her called An Edwardian Heroine. Heck of a first job for a young, racing nut. She won the fillies’ Triple Crown in 1904 amongst a host of other races before finishing second in the Ascot Gold Cup.

Everton winning at Crystal Palace made it seven consecutive winning editions of Premier League Picks but it’s the FA Cup this weekend so it’s a week off the footy. Fresh from making a nice profit on the Tournament of Champions in his first golf preview for us, Ciaran Meagher has taken a look at the Farmers Insurance Open for this week and has gone for value with none of his outright selections shorter than 28/1.

Right, big weekend ahead, studying up to do.


1.     In joining Paul Jones you will have private access to the views of a trusted, reliable, profitable-to-follow analyst and author of 33 horseracing books in an absorbing and entertaining, easy-to-follow, practical format written with purpose and authority.

2.     Access to the regular Ante-Post Focus articles whch have made members huge profits since we launched in November 2015 including Rule The World at 50/1 for the Grand National and Wings Of Eagles (SP 40/1) for the Derby amongst many other big-priced winners.

3.     Access to weekend previews throughout the bulk of the Jumps Season (averaging 12 races analysed per weekly column), every race at the Cheltenham, Aintree and Punchestown Festivals and the leading 30 days of the Flat Season.

4.     Access to an 18 weeks’ build up to the Cheltenham Festival (approx. 8000 words every Monday) with ante-post recommendations (level stakes profit of 44 points to date) to assist in building a long-range portfolio and a 6 weeks’ build up to Royal Ascot (7 winners from 17 ante-post recommendations in 2016).

5.     We also have all the major sporting events covered including the very profitable Football service (Premier League Picks made a level stakes profit of 31 points in 2016/17 following on from a 45 level stakes profit on the World Cup and Euro 2016) and we also have superb analysts in the fields of Golf, (Ciaran Meagher) Tennis (Carl Redden), Cricket (Paul Smith), Darts (Mike Henderson), NFL (Andy Richmond) and Politics (Adam Hewson). Click on ‘View Example Copy’ in the right-hand menu on the Home Page if you don’t believe us!

6.     If you are familiar with Paul from his industry-respected trends-related Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide which he wrote for 16 years, you can now access his unique Race Trends for approximately 110 racesthroughout the year including all races at Cheltenham Festival, Aintree Grand National Meeting and Royal Ascot.

7.     Access to weekly Horses to Follow throughout the Flat Season and horseracing guest contributions from Alan Potts, the author of the revered Against The Crowd and The Inside Track, Andy Richmond of RacingUK and Mark Ball, formerly of Let's Live Racing.

8.     Back access to every article ever written (we’re talking over 1000) in every area of the website since our launch in November 2015.

9.     Receive a copy of Paul’s new book to be printed at the end of 2017 which is not for sale and only available to website members.

10.    Very simple to sign up – please see below.

If you decide to sign up to either service we would require your address so an Invoice (with a copy of the Terms and Conditions) can be emailed to you within 24 hours of your confirmation with details of how to transfer funds. This will preferably be via Direct Bank Transfer (a Cheque is second preference). Once payment has been received you will be sent a Username and Password to access the subscription (padlocked icons) areas of the website.

Jumps Season Service

An approximate 6 months' service running between October 20th 2022 until the end of the Punchestown Festival 2023 focussing on weekend previews, major festivals and Cheltenham Festival Ante-Post updates. Membership: £595.

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All-Inclusive Service

A 12 months’ service that can be ordered at any time featuring ALL the content encompassed within the Jumps Season Service in addition to Flat racing and Sports analysis. Membership: £895.

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