Howden Kennel Gate Novices' Hurdle Guide 2021

Ascot - December 17 2021
Ascot 14:20
3
Aidan Coleman

Jonbon

J:
 
Aidan Coleman
T:
 
Nicky Henderson
Age: 5
Weight: 11-0
OR: N/A
Days: 21

The five year old was first seen in November 2020 winning a P2P at Dromahane by 15 lengths and was then bought for £570,000 and given to Nicky Henderson.

Being a full brother to the top class hurdler/chaser Douvan, he was expected to be a superstar and was given his rules debut in March at Newbury and was a facile winner of a bumper.

Bought to be better over obstacles he made his seasonal debut over course and distance at Newbury and made an extremely pleasing start when bolting up by six lengths.

Jonbon has the world at his hooves and he could be one of the most exciting horses in national hunt racing.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
16/11/22WAR16.5Sft11-41
08/04/22AIN16.5GS11-41
15/03/22CHL16.5GS11-72
22/01/22HAY15.5Sft11-111
17/12/21ASC15.5GS11-01
Ascot - December 17 2021
Ascot 14:20
4
Harry Cobden

Knappers Hill

J:
 
Harry Cobden
T:
 
Paul Nicholls
Age: 5
Weight: 11-0
OR: 130
Days: 41

The favourite's main challenger according to the market looks to be the Paul Nicholls trained Knappers Hill who is looking to make it six wins in a row.

The five year old gelding last season was a bit of a superstar in bumpers winning all three of his events in good style, justifying his price tag of 155,000gns.

Starting his career off in October at Chepstow, he was a seven length winner on this card and then went to Ascot off the back of that in December and made it two from two in a much better Listed contest.

Having shown clear ability in both his starts he was sent to Aintree during the Grand National meeting and landed a hat-trick of wins in the Group Two bumper.

He made a fair start to life over hurdles, not blowing anyone away but getting the job done in workmanlike fashion.

Nicholls sent him out in November when last seen at Wincanton and he was an easy winner of another Noivers' Hurdle.

Needs to come on again but big player

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
08/10/22CHP19.5Gd11-101
23/04/22SAN16Gd11-121
16/04/22NAB17Gd11-121
12/03/22SAN20Sft11-1215
12/02/22NBY16.5GS11-06
Ascot - December 17 2021
Ascot 14:20
5
Harry Skelton

Elle Est Belle

J:
 
Harry Skelton
T:
 
Dan Skelton
Age: 5
Weight: 10-12
OR: 132
Days: 20

Another nice runner in the race on Friday is the Dan Skelton trained Elle Est Belle, who was a very smart bumper horse and should build from her hurdles win last time out on Saturday.

Having won an Aintree and Cheltenham bumper on her first two starts, with the latter being in Listed Company, she then went in the Champion Bumper and finished a good third behind the two Irish raiders Kilcruit and Sir Gerhard.

Looking to go better in Aintree's Grade Two bumper she had to settle for second behind another nice Irish type.

Sent hurdling this term by the Skelton's she was seen only finishing third behind two nice runners for Alan King and Nicky Henderson, but it was not a bad effort on her hurdles debut.

She took on the same two runners next time out and having stripped fitter for her debut and more experienced at her flights she went on to get off the mark in taking fashion.

Big player getting weight off the field.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
10/02/22HUN19.5Sft11-31
17/12/21ASC15.5GS10-124
27/11/21NBY16.5GS11-01
04/11/21NBY16.5Gd10-123
08/04/21AIN17GS11-02
Ascot - December 17 2021
Ascot 14:20
1
Sam Twiston-Davies

I Like To Move It

J:
 
Sam Twiston-Davies
T:
 
Nigel Twiston-Davies
Age: 4
Weight: 11-5
OR: 138
Days: 33

The penultimate runner of the afternoon is the Nigel Twiston-Davies trained I Like To Move It who is looking to make it 4/4 over hurdles this term.

Having been an above average bumper horse, winning his first two events in taking style but then faltering in his next two.

This term when sent over hurdles he has been foot perfect on all three starts, taking out a good event at Worcester before heading to Cheltenham and beating the smart Tritonic.

Looking to land a hat-trick he took on Washington back at Cheltenham and in a Grade Two event and kept his unbeaten streak going.

He holds some of the best form in the race and looks the value on what all the horses have done in their careers to date.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
18/03/22CHL17GS11-218
12/02/22NBY16.5GS11-32
17/12/21ASC15.5GS11-55
14/11/21CHL16.5Gd11-31
23/10/21CHL16.5Gd10-121
Ascot - December 17 2021
Ascot 14:20
2
Conor Orr

Colonel Mustard

J:
 
Conor Orr
T:
 
Mrs Lorna Fowler
Age: 6
Weight: 11-0
OR: 144
Days: 55

The final runner of the race is the Irish raider Colonel Mustard with the six year old making his British debut having not come across the pond.

Racing three times in bumpers last term, finishing second twice and getting off the mark, he looked a nice prospect for the Lorna Fowler yard.

In January he made his hurdles debut and was a good fourth of 20 in a nice race and off the back of that was a good third and second behind the smart Echoes In Rain.

Seen for the first time this season the gelding got off the mark over hurdles at Galway in a fair maiden hurdle and the camp obviously believes he is a smart horse.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
13/11/22NAV17Y11-124
09/04/22AIN20GS11-47
18/03/22CHL17GS10-113
06/02/22LEO16Y/Sft11-123
17/12/21ASC15.5GS11-02

James Mackie

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