Whether you’re on the back foot or counting your winnings following the opening day, Neon Wolf is the one to be on in Wednesday’s curtain-raiser at Cheltenham.
This year’s Neptune Novices’ Hurdle favourite is the most exciting novice in Britain and even the raiding party from across the Irish Sea will struggle to stop him.
The Harry Fry-trained six-year-old has done everything right this season, from a 12-length win in a bumper back in December, to going two from two over hurdles since that first success under Rules.
But it was his previous outing in particular that’s made us all stand up and take notice.
Having stalked his prey, jockey Noel Fehily then guided his effortless charge into the lead three out, before going on to rout the rest of the field in a Grade 2 Supreme Novices’ Trial at Haydock.
Any repeat and even the likes of Deloitte Novice Hurdle hero Bacardys and Challow Novices’ Hurdle victor Messire Des Obeaux will struggle to live with their precocious rival.
It should also be noted that big-priced winners are not the norm in the Neptune. With no winner more than 7/1 in the last nine renewals this has not been a race for betting outsiders.
Expect that trend to continue in 2017.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing