Supreme Novices' Hurdle Guide

Shishkin

Trainer - Nicky Henderson

Jockey - Nico De Boinville

Shishkin is the current market leader that looks to be a superstar for Nicky Henderson and this season has shown raw pace that cant be overlooked.

He fell on his hurdles debut this season which came at a massive shock to many but in a run we can put down to a blip he got back to winning ways at Newbury, exploding near the finish to bolt up.

He was stepped up in trip next time out at Huntingdon and still showed how much pace he possess again hacking up and beating a decent horse in second.

Henderson does not have a great record in this contest only winning one of the 32 he has had horses entered but that should not put you off with Shiskin being one of the stand out runners he has had for a while.

Asterion Forlonge

Trainer - Willie Mullins

Jockey - Paul Townend

The Willie Mullins trained Asterion Forlonge has sprung out of nowhere for the Cheltenham hall of fame trainer and looks a leading contender in this event

The unbeaten six year old could be the only horse entering the contest that has never been beaten with him landing his sole point to point in 2018 and since then landing his bumper and two runs over timber.

He is a gelding that has gone under the radar for Mullins who has a superb record in this contest winning five of the last 13 renewals of the Grade One.

This season over hurdles he has shown a superb attitude, winning at Naas on his jumps debut seeing off a decent Gordon Elliott trained runner who has since franked the form.

From just the one run over flights he headed to the Dublin Racing festival at Leopardstown in the Grade One Pharma Novice Hurdle and caused a shock when taking the race.

He saw off some of the elite in the novice hurdling division this season and off the back of that run he firmly enters calculations showing a gritty and determined nature that he will need up the hill at Cheltenham.

The owners also field the favourite in the Supreme with Shishkin but for us he looks to be much better value at his price.

Abacadabras

Trainer - Gordon Elliott

Jockey - Davy Russell

Abacadabras for Gordon Elliott has the pick of the form really in this field with the five year old starting his life over hurdles this season in great style has a clear pace angle in the contest.

He landed a decent contest at Gowran on his seasonal debut and then went on to take a Grade Three at Navan showing clear progression.

Although finishing second on his next start it saw him give his best performance to date when a narrow second to the superstar Envoi Allen in a Grade One at Fairyhouse.

He then headed to the Dublin Racing Festival and he landed his first Grade One of his career in the future Champions Novice Hurdle.

He finished fourth in the Champion Bumper last season showing he has form at the track and he has to be considered.

Fiddlerontheroof

Trainer - Colin Tizzard

Jockey - Robbie Power

The five year old won a good Irish bumper on his final start of last season and since then has moved to Tizzard's yard and made his debut at Chepstow in the Grade Two Persian War Novices Hurdle.

He was gambled on massively for that contest but could only finish a decent second just being outstayed by last seasons third in the Champion Bumper, Thyme Hill.

He then made his second start in England at Wincanton when again in another battle with Edwardstone who looks a smart horse and he finished second again.

In what looked his big chance to get off the mark he headed to Sandown in heavy conditions and he did not disappoint bolting up, he then went over course and distance in the Grade One Tolworth Hurdle and again bolted up.

Soft ground is the key to this horse and he has proven that he can stay further which is a massive plus up the hill at Cheltenham.

Chantry House

Trainer - Nicky Henderson

Jockey - Barry Geraghty

Chantry House has been a horse we have followed for a long time in his career since landing a smart bumper at Warwick in March last year which saw him beat two smart horses that have both gone on to win over hurdles.

He made his hurdles debut at Cheltenham just doing enough on the day to win comfortably up the hill and that race has seen second win a Grade Two and third and fourth both go on to win since.

Having only one other start before he heads into the Supreme he went to Newbury and ripped apart a decent field winning fairly well held and he looks to be a very improving type.

Captain Guiness

Trainer - Henry De Bromhead

Jockey - Rachael Blackmore

This five year old that is looking to start off a big festival for Henry De Bromhead is Captain Guinness who has ran twice over hurdles in his career and shaped nicely in both.

He won at Navan in a 23 runner race which has seen third place since go on to win twice and then next time out he backed that up at Punchestown when a very narrow second to Andy Dufresne in the Grade Two Moscow Flyer.

He does have a bit to find with some in this field but if getting soft ground could make the places.

Edwardstone

Trainer - Alan King

Jockey - Tom Cannon

Edwardstone is a horse we have mentioned a fair bit in this field having some outstanding form just unfortunately in a race where the horses that have beat him are back again.

He finished second to Chantry House in a bumper but over hurdles was unbeaten on his first two starts winning at Wincanton on debut seeing off Grade One winner Fiddlerontheroof.

He backed that up at Aintree when seeing off Harry Senior that has since gone on to land a Grade Two at Cheltenham which is remarkable form.

He was not his best on his final start when outstayed by Stolen Silver who is not the same calibre as horse like he will be against on this and although he could be in the places he needs to be better than that run.

Allart

Trainer - Nicky Henderson

Jockey - James Bowen

Henderson could field up to three horses in this contest and what looks to be his weakest chance but still a solid horse is Allart who has not done a lot wrong this season.

Like Shiskin he feel on his hurdling debut at ascot which is obviously not great but on his next two starts at Ludlow and Doncaster he has won very nicely.

Those wins did not come in the best of company and he will need to improve on them runs in this field.

Elixir D'Ainay

Trainer - Willie Mullins

Jockey - Mark Walsh

Another one of Mullins' assault on the contest and this JP McManus owned runner has a big each way chance now getting back to his preferred two mile trip.

He has shown clear promise when second in a maiden on his hurdles debut at Punchestown and on his next stab at it he got off the mark in taking style.

Since then he has been upped in trip and he finished second to the superb Envoi Allen over two and half miles and then when stepped up again in Grade One company he did not stay.

He should handle the hill but will need to be at his best to even get in the placings.

Soviet Pimpernel

Trainer - Peter Fahey

Jockey - Kevin Sexton

A horse that has been fancied by many to run a big race at a decent price is this Peter Fahey trained five year old who last time landed a Grade Three contest at Limerick in good style.

He has raced in Grade One company this season and finished a no better sixth of nine runners behind Envoi Allen and Abacadabras.

That form needs to be reversed to even think about going close but he is one of the more interesting runners from the bigger priced group.

Berkshire Royal

Trainer - Willie Mullins

Jockey - Dave Crosse

A very strange entry that has to be taken seriously with Willie Mullins having a superb record in this race and he fields this youngster on his hurdles debut.

He was useful on the flat for Andrew Balding winning at Chester before placing behind the Melbourne Cup winner Cross Counter in a Class 2 at Ascot.

He has not been seen on a racetrack since October 2018 and this looks a massive task heading straight into the Supreme.

Mario De Pali

Trainer - Sam Thomas

Jockey - Sam Twiston-Davies

This five year old looks to be a very respectable horse that is going in the right direction in his hurdling career but needs a huge bit of improvement in this field to run a big race.

He has not been out of the top two on all four of his starts this season with two of them coming in bumpers where he finished second and won nicely at Ffos Las.

In his two hurdles runs he has come on a lot in both of them, winning at Kelso on debut before just being narrowly outstayed in very heavy conditions at Chepstow and that does not look good enough form.

Hollow Sound

Trainer - Luke Comer

Jockey - Mr D T Kelly

This five year old would be a big shock winner at odds of 100/1 but has been a very consistent type for this yard racing in six bumpers and one hurdle contest and winning once whilst placing in another four of his events.

He made his hurdles debut at Navan back in February finishing third in a heavy ground 21 runner maiden and that is not good enough form to see him involved here.

Whatsnotoknow

Trainer - Mouse Morris

Jockey - Philip Enright

There are plenty of big priced shots in this seasons Supreme Novices' Hurdle and Whatsnotoknow for Mouse Morris is one of them.

This gelding finally got off the mark at his seventh attempt over rules in a maiden at Thurles last month and and before that had placed three times.

His form looks bottom of the barrel against some of these horses and looks to just be making up the numbers.

Jabbaar

Trainer - Iain Jardine

Jockey - Conor O'Farell

The big outsider on the day is this seven year old who would not be entered into a Grade One contest if it wasn't the Cheltenham festival which says plenty about the standard of this gelding.

The seven year old was not bad on the flat and has been much better since moving to hurdles winning on his debut but has since been beat twice Class 4 and 2 events.

The softer the better for this horse but he looks to be very vulnerable.

Heaven Help Us

Trainer - Paul Hennessy

Jockey - Danny Mullins

Another big outsider in the contest is this mare who will be receiving a mares allowance but even that puts her well behind on ratings compared to the top end of these horses.

Her best bits of form over hurdles have come in two runs, the first back in October when winning at 33/1 over course and distance in a maiden.

The second was when second in a Grade One behind Abacadabras at Leopardstown over the Christmas period and anything matching that may see her out run her odds but she would need a career best.

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