The French Furze Novices’ Hurdle Tips & Betting Preview

Just the seven renewals of this race but Ballyalton took it in 2013 and Ballydine in 2015, but no Bally anything for 2016 (there was in the early entries), so no chance of a coincidence winner this season. A pitifully small field has been assembled for a Saturday which is a real shame (come on owners, you are always moaning about a lack of opportunities) but we still have some decent sorts and if you like your selections unbeaten and Dan Skelton fits the bill courtesy of Get On The Yager (8/11) who missed out the bumper route having won two point to points at Cothelstone by ten lengths and twelve lengths before a hurdling debut at Market Rasen when coming home unchallenged after making all the running to see off the Even money favourite by thirteen lengths and on that form he does look as if he may well be a good deal above average and can take this in his stride.

Spirit Of Kayf (9/4) is next on our list and although he fell in the race won by Ballycrystal it was at the second hurdle and thus far too early in the race to hold any sensible opinion about whether or not he would have got involved in the finish. Prior to that run he had won an Ayr bumper on heavy ground and a maiden hurdle over two miles at Hexham running on strongly but there is no evidence yet other than his breeding that he will stay this far, and with others arriving here with far stronger claims, on paper at least, the best he may be able to hope for is a place assuming all the major protagonists show up on the day, of course.

The first four named look as if they ought to have this race between them but if we have a couple of no shows (and in this weather all things seem possible), then Wyfield Rose (9/2) could have a chance if only a slim one. Trained in the Borders by Alistair Whillans, she has already won five of her twenty-four starts over hurdles and placed in another five, including a rallying length victory at Sedgefield over three miles three furlongs last time out at 16/1, so her stamina is not an issue. With the exception of her Towcester bumper win she had only ever scored over two miles seven and a half furlongs or further and may even find this too short for her, but she will be staying on when others cry off, and if the going gets testing she may yet be able to put that added stamina to good use.

Lastly we have Acdc (40/1) who looks as if he is here to pick up £924 for finishing stone cold last. Beaten eight and a half lengths and sixteen and a half lengths in his two bumpers, he reappeared for his hurdling debut here at Newcastle over two miles plus with a twenty-one length fifth beaten eighteen lengths at the line and clearly needs to offer up a lot more to get involved here and connections will be hoping the step up in trip brings about some improvement.

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