We are just 36 days away from the Cheltenham Festival and it’s action stations for everyone in the sport. February sees the last chance for many Festival runners to get their preparation completed and Newbury‘s Super Saturday is a great time to do just that.
The meeting is home to the Betfair Hurdle, a race that has seen some fantastic horses land the spoils. Zarkandar, My Tent Or Yours and Kalashnikov are all examples of classy recent winners.
Perhaps surprisingly, no horse has ever completed the Betfair Hurdle/Supreme double, but that could change this year. Metier is the current favourite for the Betfair and is short in the market for the Supreme too.
That being said, I believe I’ve found a horse who is overpriced in both markets, and you can find my Betfair Hurdle selection below.
Gary Moore has won the Betfair Hurdle on three occasions and has just one entry in the 2021 renewal. That horse is Fifty Ball, who dons the familiar colours of stablemate Goshen. A dual bumper winner in France, he’s come alive over hurdles in two recent starts.
Shaping with promise on two initial runs, he broke through with a gutsy success over Straw Fan Jack at Ascot in October. The pair pulled clear and that rival has subsequently bolted up by thirty lengths at Aintree. That certainly helped boost the form and he doubled up with victory at Sandown in December.
He put in a polished performance, jumping well and quickening clear impressively when asked to extend. He’s gone up eleven pounds for that success, but he’s a horse going places for a yard coming back to form.
As previously mentioned, Moore has a good record in the race, and this contest should bring out the best in him. At odds of 12-1, he looks brilliant value to run a big race.
A victory in the Betfair Hurdle would throw his name into the ring for the Supreme Hurdle. He’s a general 40-1 for the Festival contest and that price is unlikely to last if he crosses the line first on Saturday.
There’s no doubt he’d need to win this empathically to be in the discussion for the Festival opener, but that’s not out of the question. At those odds, in both races, I’m more than happy to take the chance on him doing just that.
Betfair Hurdle Trends
- 7/10 – Won or placed in their most recent start
- 7/10 – Had won at least two hurdling starts
- 6/10 – Aged six-years-old
- 5/10 – Sent off at a double-figure price
- 3/10 – Trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies
The trends pick is Nigel Twiston-Davies’ Guard Your Dreams, who arrives on a hat-trick after a pair of hurdling successes. He’s a five-year-old, but four of the last ten renewals have gone to runners of that age and he’s a tempting each-way price.
If you back any of our selections you can watch them live on the free Racing Post app or racingpost.com. Simply log in to one of your bookmaker accounts and click ‘Watch live’ on the racecards.