As the NFL celebrates its 100 anniversary, the league welcomes the Kansas City Chiefs back to the Super Bowl for the first time in 50 years. The Chiefs, 1.5-point favorites in Super Bowl 54, won Super Bowl 4 23-7 over the Minnesota Vikings as 12-point underdogs. Their opponents, the San Francisco 49ers have won five of six Super Bowl appearances but none since a 1995 victory in Super Bowl 29.
Bovada Horse Racing Futures Watch - 2018 Ascot Gold Cup
2018 Ascot Gold Cup
The race winner in 2016 and runner-up last year, Order Of St. George heads the future odds board for the 2018 Ascot Gold Cup at odds of 3-1.
A versatile six-year-old for trainer Aiden O'Brien, Order Of St. George has won races in the UK, Ireland and France, on everything from firm to heavy surfaces, and at distances from one mile up to 2 1/2 miles. He came flying in deep stretch in last year's Gold Cup and looked every bit the winner, but couldn't get by Big Orange and finished second by a short head.
After a couple months off, he bounced back from that defeat to win next time out in the Irish St. Leger Trial Stakes over five others, and then took the St. Leger itself with ease by nine lengths. He's won three of his last four overall, and remains a serious threat here.
2017 Winner Struggles to Stay Consistant
Speaking of Big Orange, he won the race last year at 5-1, and is available today in the future bets at a similar 6-1. He was second next out after the Gold Cup in the Group 1 Goodwood Cup Stakes as the favorite, where he led late but was overtaken to finish 1 3/4 lengths behind the winner. He finished near the back of the pack in his last start, indicative of the inconsistency that has been his career. He has won nine of 25 races lifetime, but has finished out of the top three 11 other times.
Squeezed between those two on the odds board at 11-2 is another Aiden O'Brien runner in the form of Capri, who just turned four this season and took on older runners for the first time this past October in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe. That didn't go very well, as he was 17th of 18 in the race. There's also a question of distance as he has yet to race beyond 1 mile 6 furlongs, although he did manage to win at that distance.
Going deeper into the futures list to find some value, French-bred Vazirabad at 12-1 has done little wrong in his 19-race career since winning on his third lifetime start back in 2015. Racing primarily on his native soil, he's started 15 consecutive Group level races, winning 11 with two second-place finishes. He should absolutely love the distance, as he has picked up wins from 1 mile 5 furlongs right on up to 2 1/2 miles.
Throwing out his final effort of 2017, Desert Skyline (16-1) has been a consistant contender in most of his races, getting a top three finish in 8 of 11 lifetime starts, with three wins. His last five starts have been at the Group level, and two back he won the Group 2 Doncaster Cup Stakes. He's another that relishes more distance, with the Doncaster Cup win coming at just under 2 1/4 miles.
Make your future bets for the 2018 Ascot Gold Cup with an account at Bovada racebook, and keep checking back for updates as the spring European flat racing season draws closer.
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