It’s declaration day at Cheltenham and a few surprises have been thrown up by trainers ahead of March’s Cheltenham Festival.
Despite having never run over fences, Starluck is entered for the Arkle and the surprise entry has Cheltenham Festival odds of 40/1 to win the race.
However the Alan Fleming-trained six-year-old is still expected to run in the Champion Hurdle should his run in the Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton go to plan.
And after finishing third behind Champion Hurdle favourite Binocular (11/4) at Kempton last time out, Starluck is 50/1 to win the Champion Hurdle.
While connections of Starluck are still undecided, connections of Loosen My Load will send their chaser to the Jewson Novices’ Hurdle and Ladbrokes are offering punters a best price 16/1 on the general 12/1 shot.
Trainer Henry De Bromhead has said that his horse is better suited to the 2m 4f Jewson race and as such hasn’t entered the horse for the 3m 1/2f RSA Chase.
Loosen My Load is one of 65 entries for the Jewson Novice’s Hurdle after the first declaration stage, but following De Bromhead’s comments, punters should have no worries in backing Loosen My Load ante post.
Medermit is a potential opponent for both Loosen My Load and Starluck, and while the Alan King-trained seven-year-old is the 10/1 favourite for the Jewson Novices’ Hurdle, Medermit is the 12/1 third favourite for the Arkle.
Other opponents in the ante post Jewson Novices’ Hurdle betting market are Captain Chris (14/1), Quel Esprit (14/1), Nobel Prince (14/1) and Mamlook (20/1).
A £10 stake on Starluck winning the Champion Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival would return £510. New customers can sign up here for a free Cheltenham bet worth £25.