The Grade 1 Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle takes centre stage at Sandown this weekend with its line-up chock-full of potential stars.
Paul Nicholls’ Capitaine currently heads the betting with the recent Kennel Gate Novices’ Hurdle winner in warm order heading into this latest assignment.
That run and subsequent victory at Ascot marks out Nicholls’ five-year-old as the leading contender on form, especially given the fact that he’s the only entrant with graded experience over hurdles.
But that’s not to say that the Tolworth represents an open goal for the son of Montmartre.
Seven of the last 10 renewal winners were victorious last time out which also brings in the likes of Finian’s Oscar, Charlemar and Kayf Grace.
The first name on that list is trained by man of the moment Colin Tizzard. And much like his stable the Ann and Alan Potts-owned charge is also flying following a seven-length victory on his debut over hurdles.
Aintree winner Charlemar is another to watch out for while the last of the aforementioned trio is trained by a handler well-versed in how to win this race.
Nicky Henderson’s Kayf Grace is another who made an eye-catching debut over hurdles. And with the Seven Barrows saddler taking the Tolworth in three of the last five years it’s been held at Sandown there’s every reason to believe his latest entrant will go well.
And there’s more joy for those of you hoping to take on the jolly.
Only two of the last 10 winners had previously won a graded hurdle, that being the Kennel Gate in which Capitaine found success.
Therefore, the door certainly isn’t shut on the other young hopefuls.
Having said that, it’s also worth remembering that nine of the last 10 winners were sent off at 5/1 or shorter so we’re unlikely to see a lively longshot hack up.
And for us it’s KAYF GRACE who gets the nod. Henderson’s fine recent record, coupled with his charge’s formlines, makes this mare the one to be on.
Having beaten the rest of the girls in a Grade 2 bumper at Aintree last April, including the progressive Augusta Kate, the daughter of Kayf Tara has gone on to showcase her big race credentials.
Meanwhile, her winning hurdles debut at Bangor-on-Dee is made all the more impressive by the fact that the runner-up that day went on to finish second in a Listed contest at Cheltenham on New Year’s Day.
This weekend represents another chance for this talented mare to display her talents.
Ladbrokes Latest Betting:
Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle
Capitaine – 2/1
Finian’s Oscar – 5/2
Kayf Grace – 4/1
Mohaayed – 11/2
Charlemar – 7/1
Click here for the latest Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle odds.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing