Last week I covered my staking plan for Cheltenham, if you missed it, you can read it here. Having decided to cover 16 races in my analysis, today I’m going to look at the first race at the festival, the Supreme Novices Hurdle.
The opening showpiece, which starts with the Cheltenham roar (a truly magnificent sound, around the racecourse!) is just over 2 miles and a Grade 1 race.
First thing on the list when analysing these big races, is to look at the trends and this is a great way to narrow down the field and give us a head start.
Here are some of the key trends in the race –
11 of the last 16 winners have been Irish trained
17 of the last 19 winners had won on their previous outing prior to the festival
14 of the last 19 winners had raced at least once within the previous 45 days prior to the festival
14 of the last 18 winners have won at odds of 3/1 or greater (not a great stat for the current favourite, Getabird!)
Going through these trends immediately reduces the field to just two runners –
The Amy Murphy trained Kalashnikov and Mullin’s Laurina.
Kalashnikov isn’t Irish trained but won on his last outing, has raced within the last 45 days and will likely go off, higher than 3/1.
Laurina is obviously Irish trained, won on her last outing, has raced within the last 45 days and will almost certainly be a decent price, come the off.
Of the two qualifiers, my preference would be for Kalashnikov purely because he’s got more experience, having won 4 out of 5 of his races over this distance. He doesn’t have to travel far and with my preference for focussing on the top of the market, he’s the one for me.
He’s available to back at 6/1 on the Ante-post market and I’ll be going each way with half of my stake. I will then wait until the day of the race and look at how I will play the second part of my stake. If he gets backed in I’ll go win only but if he drifts I’ll go each way again. I may save a few quid and cover the whole lot with a small saver bet on Laurina.
So, that’s the first race covered and I’ve got two weeks to cover the other 15!
Let me know what you’ll be backing and if you’re on the same selections as me 🙂
Next week I will have a look at Day Two of the festival and cover a race from that card.