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‘Minute’s silence’ called by punters after amazing 1,298-1 Cheltenham Festival bet goes up in flames

PUNTERS called for a ‘minute’s silence’ after seeing this amazing Cheltenham Festival bet go up in flames.

The shrewd bettor stood to win just shy of £6,500 from a lowly fiver thanks to a monster four-fold.

The punter needed red-hot Arkle favourite Ferny Hollow to win to scoop £6,500 from just a fiver – but the horse was pulled out with injury

But it all boiled down to nothing after Arkle favourite Ferny Hollow was ruled out of the Festival by injury last night.

The punter had already clocked up 10-1, 13-2 and 5-1 winners and had backed Ferny Hollow at 13-8.

There was no cash out available on the bet, but had Ferny Hollow – who was 6-4 fav when pulled out – won then they would have scooped £6,497.

The bettor’s previous winners included 10-1 Agent Of Fortune at Lingfield on January 7.

They also backed Guetapan Collonges to win at Wetherby the same day at 13-2 before the horse eventually won at an SP of 11-4.

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Strong Power was another 5-1 winner at Lingfield that day, meaning Ferny Hollow was all that stood between the punter and a 1,298-1 winner.

But Ferny Hollow’s owners Cheveley Park Stud confirmed the horse was out after suffering a ‘minor suspensory ligament issue’.

Punters paid their commiserations to the bettor, whose brilliant work ultimately boiled down to nothing.

One said: “That’s a f***ing heartbreaking bet, you deserve a good bit of compensation for that.”

Another tagged a friend in a comment saying: “Ever seen one more brutal?”

One user wrote: “Minute’s silence for this one.”

While another said simply: “Ouch.”

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Ante post punting is full of hard luck stories just like this one.

The beauty of betting on something months in advance is the horses can eventually run at much, much shorter odds.

But there is always the danger they get injured and don’t run, go into a different race or skip the Festival altogether.

Meanwhile, spare a thought for the mystery punter who saw his £540,000 winnings go agonisingly up in smoke after the horse they backed lost a thriller.

The big-spending bettor staked £360,000 on Energumene at 6-4 to beat Shishkin at Ascot last weekend.

The current Champion Chase favourite just got up in the dying strides to ruin the punter’s massive payout.

Ferny Hollow’s injury looked set to cost a punter a whopping payout after the horse was forced to miss Cheltenham

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Remember to gamble responsibly

A responsible gambler is someone who:

  • Establishes time and monetary limits before playing
  • Only gambles with money they can afford to lose
  • Never chases their losses
  • Doesn’t gamble if they’re upset, angry or depressed
  • Gamcare – www.gamcare.org.uk
  • Gamble Aware – www.begambleaware.org

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