Connect with us

Races

Cheltenham Festival Race Previews: Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle

Wednesday’s action kicks off with three future prospects facing off against each other in the 2021 Ballymore

Published

on

Gaillard Du Mesnil ridden by Paul Townend (left) clears a fence on their way to winning the Nathaniel Lacy & Partners Solicitors '50k Cheltenham Bonus For Stable Staff' Novice Hurdle during day one of the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown Racecourse.

Day two’s action gets underway with the second Grade 1 Novices’ Hurdle of the week, with a trio of talented runners heading the Ballymore.

Willie Mullins holds yet another favourite at the Festival, in the form of Nathaniel Lacy & Partners Solicitors Novice Hurdle winner Gaillard Du Mesnil.

Willie Mullins
Galliard Du Mensil tops the Ballymore market for Willie Mullins following his success at the Dublin Racing Festival

The five-year-old eased to victory on his Grade 1 debut, seeing off Mouse Morris’ Gentlemangame by five lengths at the Dublin Racing Festival.

The gelding went off as favourite in his three starts over hurdles and it come as no surprise that he sits top of the betting currently.

However, he faces a much tougher task this time around, in the form of Henry De Bromhead’s Bob Olinger.

A former Irish point-to-point winner, the six-year-old bolted up on his sole bumper start before transitioning to the smaller obstacles.

The gelding finished a length behind Ferny Hollow on his hurdles debut, but he followed that up with a strong performance at Navan before landing a maiden Grade 1 in the Lawlor’s of Naas Novice Hurdle in January.

Ferny Hollow
The side-lined Ferny Hollow holds key form with Supreme favourite Appreciate It and Ballymore hopeful Bob Olinger

A strong traveller, Bob Olinger has shortened in the betting in recent weeks and is now joint favourite alongside Gaillard Du Mesnil.

Bravesmangame flies the flag for the British contenders, with the Grade 1 winner looking to make a dent in the Irish hopes in this race.

Paul Nicholls believes the six-year-old is his best chance of a winner at the Festival, and has even compared him to the mighty Denman.

Paul Nicholls’ Bravemansgame won the Grade 1 Challow after Christmas and leads the hopes for Britain in the Wednesday opener

The gelding flew to victory in the Challow Novices’ Hurdle during the Festive period, and he could be a real threat to the two joint-favourites.

The rest of the field will need to progress further to contend with these three future stars, with two current entrants possessing the potential to do so.

Nicky Martin’s Bear Ghylls is currently unbeaten after his four runs under rules and looks an exciting prospect for the Minehead trainer.

The six-year-old will make his debut in Graded company, but if he can cope with the step up in class, he could well be worth some each-way value.

David Pipe’s Make Me A Believer ran a strong third in the Leamington Novices’ Hurdle at Warwick in January, and he could produce a big effort at a big price.

An interesting contest to get the second day underway at Prestbury Park.

BEST SELECTIONS:
envoi Allen extended his unbeaten record at the 2020 Cheltenham festival in the Ballymore novices’ hurdle [racing tv]

Advertisement