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It is coming up to that time of year when the first major National Hunt races of the season start… so now may be a good time to get pencils sharpened and find a few blank pages in the old school exercise books to get some notes down.

After all, that’s what I do every year in preparation for the big Cheltenham Festival in March and I’m very glad to say five out of the last six festivals have been profitable… as readers of What Really Wins Money will no doubt recall. So let’s hope I can make it a seventh by putting in some early groundwork!

With the above in mind, the first big meeting of the first half of the Jump season begins on 11th November with The Open meeting at Cheltenham.

This will be three days of high quality horse racing that can prove a good barometer of how the season is going to pan out.

The highlight is the BetVictor (formerly Paddy Power) Gold Cup Chase on the Saturday where More of That takes my eye at a current 6/1 [UPDATED FROM 7/1 WHEN THIS BLOG WAS FIRST PUBLISHED] for an each-way snip.

The meeting also includes a few nice Novice Hurdle races, as well as some quality handicap and Hunter Chase races.

However, it’s not a meeting to go heavy on purely because no trainer is going to want his charges to peak so early on in the season.

Yes, they want to put in a good round – but it’s still a minefield this early on. (Don Poli and Cue Cards early runnings both cases in point).

Still, it is great to keep notes and watch for rising stars.

Trial update

A major correction has been made to one of the trials due to an error that actually throws it into profit after calculating the 20/1 winner at £5 instead of £10. So get the rotten tomatoes at the ready!

The other trial also suffered a major knock. Find out more by clicking on the following links: Week 4 results Low Hanging Profits and Fantastic Eights.