For a two-time Grade 1 winner that has triumphed at the Cheltenham Festival before, The New One has had a rather large number of questions posed about him.
So, when the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained horse galloped to an easy win at Prestbury Park in the International Hurdle, the Naunton-based trainer felt it was enough to finally answer many of them and here at news.ladbrokes we tend to agree.
“He gets knocked the whole time. In the papers, on Channel 4. ‘He jumps to the right, he does this, he does that.’ He’s good. He doesn’t need to be knocked. Just cos he’s British doesn’t mean to say he’s bad,” the trainer said.
With his four-and-a-half length canter over Vaniteux, The New One has now won each of his last four starts and has impressed on each occasion he has raced since making his seasonal debut at Kempton in October.
Come March and the Festival, it’s likely that the six-year-old will line up for another crack at the Champion Hurdle, a race he finished third in last year, and is currently second-favourite behind Willie Mullins’ unbeaten Faugheen at 5/2.
For all the questions, the one that cannot be disputed is his ability to handle the famous Cheltenham hill, as his storming third-place finish in last year’s running, after being severely hampered by Our Conor’s fall at the third, goes a long way to prove. Had that race run for another furlong, The New One was travelling the best and would have won.
The battle with Faugheen is an interesting one and Twiston-Davies, who was clearly in a loose-lipped mood, added some spice to it’s build up with his assessment of the Irish gelding.
“Most of his form’s over longer distances. Will he have quite the turn of foot that this horse has got? I would like to think we can sit behind him, then gently overtake going to the last and … bye-bye.”
That’s provided another horse doesn’t fall in front of him, of course.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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