Sandown Mares Listed Hurdle Guide

Sandown Mares Listed Hurdle Guide

Should Willie Mullins confirm his two star mares in Saturday's Sandown Mares Listed Hurdle, we could be set for an absolute belter of a contest.

Benie Des Dieux - last season's Mares Hurdle winner, along with Laurina - last season's Mares Novice winner, could set to clash for both of their long awaited racecourse returns.

Starting with the 8yo mare (BDD), she began her campaign last season over fences, before switching back to timber in time for the Grade One Mares showpiece on the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival.

She collected first-place-prized honours at Punchestown in the Annie Power Mares Champion Hurdle on her last start of the last campaign, and now matches up against her younger stable mate.

Laurina's trainer Willie Mullins has been chopping and changing about where her first start outside of novice company will take place, and has dodged the likes of the Coral Hurdle and the Christmas Hurdle due to concerns over the ground.

With Cheltenham now just two months away, connections need to stop messing about, and get her back on the course, where she can prove to everyone her class with her performances.

Four from four over hurdles last year, she looked in a different league to her rivals and profiles as a future star.

Should the two Mullins mares drop out, we are left with a pretty average field, where the likes of Sensulano and Momella could capitalise on weaker opposition.

Both of those just named are in particularly disparent form, with Sensulano - trained by Noel Williams winning both of her last two at Ascot and most recently Cheltenham.

Harry Fry's Momella was a shade unfortunate to fall at Newbury back in November, and was very much an unknown quantity arriving at Kempton the day after Boxing Day, but did not respond to much under pressure and was pulled up by Noel Fehily.

Nicky Henderson has Lust For Glory in the colours of Grech and Parkin, whilst Oliver Sherwood's Got Away needs to correct an unwanted record which currently sees her have more letters than numbers in her form guide.

Maebh for Seamus Mullins and Smaoineamh Alainn - which will be good fun for Simon Holt; Sandown's Saturday racecaller to pronounce, complete the current eight-runner field before the final declarations.

When The Fun Stops. Stop.