Paddy Power

Royal baby watch: Buggies, birth signs and bookies - the latest regal

After what feels like a lifetime of nail-biting anticipation – is it a he or isn’t it a he? Gemini or Cancer? Bugaboo or Maclaren? – the nation could soon let out a collective sigh of relief with reports suggesting that the royal baby might be here sooner than expected, with a recent helicopter dash back to Buckinghamshire from North Wales fuelling rumours that the real due date is actually earlier than speculators had imagined.

Bog Warrior raises Irish standard in stayers' title quest

Despite the injury-enforced absence of four-time World Hurdle winner Big Buck's, the marathon crown at the Cheltenham Festival is shaping up as a fascinating contest. The latest to present his credentials for a crack at the vacant title was Bog Warrior, a wide-margin winner at Punchestown on Monday. And, given the rain-sodden conditions, an entirely appropriately named one.

William Hill, Paddy Power taking bets on Kate Middleton pregnancy

Amid the general celebration, bookmakers can feel particularly rosy at news a royal baby is on the way. It seems we'll take any excuse to wager on the sprog of Wills and Kate - and the likes of Paddy Power and William Hill have outdone themselves in touting odds on a range of bizarre possibilities.

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Hunt backed to keep the ball rolling at Festival

The racecourse land at Cheltenham is many things to many people; at the gates yesterday, for instance, hoardings advertised its use as a venue for car boot sales and conferences, and the main car park was given over to a full-scale fairground. But 12 days hence, the real helter-skelter will begin, with the opening of the place's raison d'être, the four days of top-class jump racing that is the annual Festival.

Conan goes on reconnaissance mission

It remains to be seen whether Long Run can go to Newbury on Saturday, and Oscar Whisky may yet end up running on the all-weather at Kempton the previous day. But at least Nicky Henderson appears to have guaranteed himself one key Cheltenham Festival trial this weekend, having yesterday committed Captain Conan to a race at Leopardstown on Sunday, when the weather forecast promises at least half a banquet, after a week of very cold gruel.

Gamilati hot – before a tot of Whisky?

Originally devised to keep the racing and betting industries on the move during exactly this kind of freeze, the all-weather has since evolved into a surface for all seasons. Many trainers nowadays like to start off well-bred young horses on the polytrack rather than on firm, heavy or unevenly watered turf.