Outsiders to Consider in the Topham Handicap Chase

Outsiders to consider in the Topham Handicap Chase main

The Topham Handicap Chase is a Premier Handicap on the second day (Ladies’ Day) of the Grand National Festival. Dating back to 1949, it is one of just three races at the Merseyside meeting that takes place over the famous Aintree fences used in the showpiece race itself.

However, with a much-shorter distance of just two miles and five furlongs, the Topham Handicap Chase is certainly not as testing on a horse’s staying power as the four-mile, two-and-a-half-furlong Grand National.

Theoretically, handicaps offer a more level playing field — which is why you often see bigger-priced winners — and six of the last 10 winners of this race have gone off at odds of 10/1 or bigger. With that in mind, read on as we take a look at some of the outsiders who could cause an upset in this year’s Topham Handicap Chase betting odds.

Final Orders

Available at best odds of 14/1, Final Orders has been on an incredible run of form since joining Gavin Cromwell from Garvan Donnelly in May 2022. The seven-year-old was second on debut for his new yard before finishing fifth next time out, but then went on a run of six wins and two seconds in his eight runs.

Final Orders’ five-race win streak was ended at the Cheltenham Festival last month, however. Backed at 15/2 for the Grand Annual Challenge Cup, the seven-year-old could fare no better than fifth. Off a lighter weight of 11-3 compared to that race (11-9), the Cromwell-trained horse could go better at Aintree.


A consistent performer for Peter Bowen over the last 12 months, Statuario is also available at a general price of 14/1. The eight-year-old started his last campaign in April 2022, finishing second by a neck at Uttoxeter and he was next best two more times before a third-place in a Grade 3 at Market Rasen in July.

However, after 18 attempts under Bowen — Statuario finally got off the mark for the Pembrokes trainer at Perth in August and he followed it up with back-to-back successes at the Scottish course the following month. The eight-year-old hasn’t been since, but he has form to compete here at 9-11.

Outsiders to consider in the Topham Handicap Chase

Bill Baxter

After finishing a distant eighth on seasonal reappearance at Bangor-on-Dee in October, Bill Baxter underwent wind surgery and has been in fine form for the best part since. The seven-year-old won at Lingfield next time out and followed up at Kelso.

The Warren Greatrex-trained horse then fell at Hereford when pressing the leader four out, but that proved nothing more than a slight blemish on his record as Bill Baxter returned to the winner’s enclosure last time out at Kelso. He’s made a habit of winning at this distance and he could be there or thereabouts at Aintree.

Al Dancer

The shortest price on our list, Al Dancer is a 10/1 shot to win the Topham Handicap Chase. Again, it took the 10-year-old a while to get off the mark when switched from Nigel Twiston-Davies to Sam Thomas in October 2021 — finishing 15th at Cheltenham, fourth at Sandown and fifth at Chepstow.

Al Dancer’s form was on a steady incline in 2022 though, finishing third back at Chepstow and second at Newbury before finally winning in November. It wasn’t just any win however, it was over course and distance in the Sefton Handicap Chase at Aintree and it was Topham favourite Gesskille who he beat.


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