Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle Guide


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32. Lisnagar Oscar

Trainer - Rebecca Curtis

Jockey - Sean Bowen

This six year old has shown a lot of pace this season in his wins and looked extremely impressive at Haydock last time out which could see him go off as favourite on Friday.

He is going in search of a hat-trick in this contest but will need to step up again from his latest Grade 2 win with the Irish offering a much sterner test than the horses he has been running against.

7. Birchdale

Trainer -Nicky Henderson

Jockey - Barry Geraghty

This Nicky Henderson trained gelding looks a really progressive five year old that is currently unbeaten under rules in England and although a bit fortunate to keep that record at Cheltenham last time out he holds a lot of potential.

He is stepping up to three miles for the first time on Friday which could suit him off the back of his runs this season but he is an interesting runner.

13. Commander Of Fleet

Trainer - Gordon Elliott

Jockey - Jack Kennedy

This Irish raider last time out showed that a stamina test is exactly what he needed and being bumped up an extra two furlongs on Friday should bring even more out of him.

He won nicely at Leopardstown in a Grade 1 last time out beating a decent 16 runner field and it looks like the further he is given the better he will get.

19. Dickie Diver

Trainer - Nicky Henderson

Jockey - Aidan Coleman

Another Henderson and J P McManus recruit who is also very unexposed looks like he could have a part to play after going well in both his runs in the UK under rules, winning his last outing.

Stepping up to three miles is very much the unknown for this six year old and looks to be the yards second string in this contest but holds bags of potential.

1. Allaho

Trainer - Willie Mullins

Jockey - Ruby Walsh

One of the most unexposed horses in the race is this Willie Mullins trained five year old who got rid of his maiden tag when winning nicely over three miles at Clonmel.

He could just be a really special gelding over this trip and although he goes against all the stats you need to normally win this race, we think he has a great chance on Friday.

18. Derrinross

Trainer - J P Dempsey

Jockey - L P Dempsey

This eight year old is one of the most experienced in the field and looks to have a great shout off the back of his two runs this season over three miles, going on to win both in good style and on Friday will be going in search of a hat-trick.

This race has been the plan for a long time with this yard and fits the bill perfectly in what past race winners have been like in the lead up to the contest.

20. Dinons

Trainer - Gordon Elliott

Jockey - Davy Russell

This six year old has been a model of consistency this season, running a lot through the autumn and then stepping off for a break in preparation for this festival.

Before a disappointing run last time out he was five wins from five races and one of them came in a Grade 2 at Prestbury Park. Each way chance.

5. Cap York

Trainer - Noel Meade

Jockey - Bryan Cooper

One of Noel Meade's best chances of the week off the back his latest performance when winning well in the qualifier for this race at Punchestown.

Top jockey for the yard has jumped ship but e will definitely stay three miles and although needing to improve could find himself in the placings with certain bookmakers offering extra places.

16. Rhinestone

Trainer - Joseph O'Brien

Jockey - Mark Walsh

This six year old for the young trainer in our eyes is highly over priced compared to Commander Of Fleet when finishing a narrow second to him last time out in the Grade 1 at Leopardstown.

He has ran this season since taking to hurdles, winning on debut and then running well in defeat in his other to contests and shouldn't be to far away.

35. Nadaitak

Trainer - Ben Pauling

Jockey - Nico De Boinville

This five year old has been a consistent performer in much weaker races this season. However, he did win a Grade 2 at Doncaster over three miles last time out which will need improving on but could be decent form.

Place claims at best for this gelding but in these sorts of race you can not rule anything out.

17. Rockpoint

Trainer - Colin Tizzard

Jockey - Tom Scudamore

This gelding started his season really well with some good seconds in sharp races and then went on to win over course and distance at Cheltenham.

Recently he has been out of sorts and will need to find his form from before the turn of the year to get involved in this one.

43. Salsaretta

Trainer - Willie Mullins

Jockey - Paul Townend

There has never been a mare to go on and win this race and it means a hell of a lot that Mullins knows this and is still putting her in this race.

Her form line reads really well winning two out of her three runs this season and beating Felix Desjy who finished a good fifth in the Supreme Novices Hurdle on Tuesday.

3. Ask Ben

Trainer - Graeme McPherson

Jockey - Kielan Woods

This six year old would have to come on a hell of a lot since his latest second behind favourite Lisnagar Oscar and it looks like he won't be able to reverse the form.

Has been consistent this season and has won over this distance but its a big ask in this type of company. One to oppose.

25. First Approach

Trainer - Noel Meade

Jockey - Sean Flanagan

Has not performed to his best standard this season, being poor in Graded events that the season before he was shaping much better in.

Will be very lucky to get a place in this hot contest Friday but only positive is that the yards top jockey Sean Flanagan has chosen him over Cap York.

14. Minella Indo

Trainer - Henry De Bromhead

Jockey - Rachael Blackmore

This six year old is another that will have to come on a lot for his last run when demolished by the Willie Mullins Alaho and it looks very unlikely that the form will be reversed in that contest.

He has ran well in both events over in Ireland this season but lacks the ability to finish his races and that won't bode well with the Cheltenham Hill.

21. Dorrells Pierji

Trainer - Willie Mullins

Jockey - Noel Fehily

Ran poorly in behind many of these at the top market when seen last time out at Leopardstown and would have had to seriously come on to be involved.

Very opposable but the Mullins factor keeps him in the heads of punters.

39. Stoney Mountain

Trainer - Henry Daly

Jockey - Richard Johnson

This looks a big price for this horse who has ran creditably all season with form figures of 12123 and was just in behind the favourite for this contest at Haydock last time out.

This would be a great story for the connections if he could finish in the placings but will have to give a personal best performance but won't mind the soft ground.

19. Alsa Mix

Trainer - Alan King

Jockey - Wayne Hutchinson

This outsider was three from three this season before heading into the Grade 1 Challow Novices Hurdle where he was outclassed and finished a tame sixth.

He has a Grade 2 victory over 2 mile 4f this season and if having the stamina to step up to three miles could well be an interesting character.

7. Darlac

Trainer - Colin Tizzard

Jockey - Robbie Power

Big outsider that has only really won a weak maiden so far this season but with the mount of Robbie Power really does pose a threat at a big price.

He finished seventh in the Pertemps qualifier at Haydock and although finishing midfield might take to this track better and cause a shock.

3. Aye Aye Charlie

Trainer - Fergal O'Brien

Jockey - Paddy Brennan

This seven year old will have to have everything drop his way to land this contest after starting the season off nicely but since then faded into the background in weaker races than this.

He has undergone wind surgery which will be sure to help but it looks like not enough for him to be involved in this contest.


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