Champion Hurdle star with chance to lay down a marker

Cheltenham Festival is less than eight weeks away and punters can catch their final glimpses of the potential stars over the next coming weeks.

One race that is certainly building up plenty of hype is the Champion Hurdle, and two of the first four in the Champion Hurdle betting are in action this weekend.

Peddlers Cross (11/2 to win the Champion Hurdle) has the first opportunity to showcase his ability when he takes to the turf at Haydock on Saturday in the Champion Hurdle trial.

Up against Walkon, Washington Irvine and Ruthenoise, Peddlers Cross will be a short-priced favourite to win the race but in Walkon, Peddlers Cross could face a potential Champion Hurdle rival.

Walkon has been away from the racecourse for the best part of two years following a severed tendon, and the 50/1 shot for the Champion Hurdle would see his Cheltenham odds shorten dramatically should he emerge successful on his reappearance.

Trainer Alan King is undecided as too which race to aim Walkon at for the Cheltenham Festival, – Walkon is also in the World Hurdle betting at 33/1 – but a victory over Peddlers Cross would make King’s mind up for him.

Hurricane Fly is the second favourite for the Champion Hurdle at 9/2 and will have the chance to gain some admirers at Leopardstown on Sunday.

Solwhit (25/1 for the Champion Hurdle), will renew his rivalry with Hurricane Fly – in the last four races Solwhit has finished second behind Hurricane Fly on three occasions and beaten him once – at Leopardstown in what could prove to be a very competitive renewal.

Sublimity, Thousand Odds and Voler La Verdette make up the runners in the Irish Champion Hurdle in a race that is sure to alter the Champion Hurdle betting odds.

A £10 stake on Solwhit winning the Champion Hurdle would return £250. New customers can sign up here for a free Cheltenham bet worth £25.