It is the Stayers’ Hurdle that is the Feature Race on Thursday with a list of quality names having won the contest in years back. The likes of Big Buck’s, Thistlecrack and Baracouda have all triumphed in this race but the field this year seems to lack an overwhelming favourite…
A 458 day break was no problem for Blazing Khai who came off that layoff of over a year to win on his return and be catapulted to the top of the betting for the race. There had been some concerns as to whether he would even make it to the start line due to injury but late last week he was passed fit and looks set to go. That return over at Navan resulted in his best Racing Post Rating by far notching up a 164. Already a winner at the course having won twice in late 2021, you can see why he’s come from a long way back to lead the field. We go 11/4.
Whenever you beat a total legend of the sport then punters are going to sit up and take notice and that is exactly what has happened with Teahupoo. After winning the Grade I Hatton’s Grace Hurdle over at Fairyhouse as a 20/1 shot beating Honeysuckle, it was no surprise that the next time out he went off as a 4/11 shot and won once again. His Racing Post Rating in that win was 168. So both horses look classy and have good raw speed numbers. Our current price at the time of writing is 7/2.
Flooring Porter comes back to the scene of his best win in an attempt to recapture that form and retain the crown of Stayers’ Hurdle Champion. Since that day a year ago it has not been plain sailing for the Gavin Cromwell trained eight-year-old. Despite going off at very short prices, no wins have come so those backing him will surely be counting on his familiarity with the course here to take him home. 11/2 for those looking to back him.
At 6/1, Home By The Lee is priced similarly to Flooring Porter but their recent form has been the polar opposite. Whilst the former won this race a year ago, the Joseph Patrick O’Brien horse finished sixth but has won his past two including beating Bob Olinger as a 28/1 shot and beating both the other horses in this paragraph when going off at 7/1.
Willie Mullins brings Klassical Dream back for another shot at the race having finished fifth a year ago. Three strong runs since have certainly put him very much in the frame and was beaten by just a neck last time out by Teahupoo. The 9/1 price feels big.
Six other horses are set to take to the track with two-time Cheltenham winner Sire Du Berlais the longshot at 66/1. He might be 11 but does this Gordon Elliott trained horse have one more great run left in him…?
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