Champion Hurdle PreviewA two mile sprint race for the fastest hurdlers in national hunt racing. An ability to travel well at speed and jump without losing momentum is crucial.
Above we highlight an OLBG members tip for each of the runners in the race. To read 100s of tips on this race head over to our main horse racing section on OLBG or install the OLBG tips app by simply searching OLBG in the app stores.
Below we go into the race in much more detail. We will cover stats and trends our expert tipsters have highlighted in forum posts or blogs and pick out some of the key form points they have highlighted.
Hurricane Fly on the way to winning the Champion Hurdle
Champion Hurdle Ten Year TrendsMany of the OLBG members carry out detailed research in the race to uncover the trends of past winners. Some of Micko70's trends are in the table below.
|9/10||finished in the first 3 on their last completed start|
|9/10||had run between 2 & 4 times since 1st November|
|8/10||were aged between 6 & 8|
|8/10||were rated 163 or higher|
|8/10||had their last run that year|
|6/10||won at least 2 races since 1st November|
Rob mull has written a detailed blog entitled Champion Hurdle Key Race Trends - 15 March 2016. The blog looks at the previous ten year winners of the Champion Hurdle and shows how they each scored against the trends, before going on to look at this years major contenders. This year Nicholls Canyon and Identify Thief come out on top but there isn't much between the main market leaders.
Champion Hurdle Last Ten Winners
|2016||Annie Power||8yo||W Mullins||R Walsh||5/2F|
|2015||Faugheen||7yo||W Mullins||R Walsh||4/5F|
|2014||Jezki||6yo||Mrs J Harrington||B Geraghty||9/1|
|2013||Hurricane Fly||9yo||W Mullins||R Walsh||13/8F|
|2012||Rock On Ruby||7yo||P Nicholls||N Fehily||11/1|
|2011||Hurricane Fly||7yo||W Mullins||R Walsh||11/4F||2010||Binocular||6yo||N Henderson||AP McCoy||9/1|
|2009||Punjabi||6yo||N Henderson||B Geraghty||22/1|
|2008||Katchit||5yo||A King||R Thornton||10/1|
|2007||Sublimity||7yo||J Carr||P Carberry||16/1|
The table above shows the last ten winners of the race, their age at the time of winning, trainer, jockey and odds (starting price).
Champion Hurdle Form Tips and AnalysisWith the unfortunate withdrawal of last years winner and runner up, Faugheen and Artic Fire, much of the talk in the run up to the 2016 Champion Hurdle has been around whether Annie Power will run or not.
Even if Annie Power does make this years line up, should she be such a short price as a former World Hurdle runner up and a last fence faller last year, with a far from perfect preparation?
tomdouglas points out
"Only three mares have ever won the Champion Hurdle, most recently Flakey Dove, and before her it was Dawn Run who put the boys to the sword. The first mare, African Sister, was ridden by Keith Piggot many years earlier.
The one thing all three had in common is that they were all very useful horses, and capable of competing at a high level. They all won a champion hurdle which was devoid of a supreme champion, just as it appears to be this year.
I go along with all that's been said about the price being too short about Annie Power. On the other hand I do think she's better than quite a number of previous winners of the event, and to discount her out of hand would be foolhardy. "
Leicester Bigot wont be lumping on Annie Power at a short price
"Annie Power is almost totally unproven at 2 miles in top class races. Most of her form is at around two and a half miles.
The current favourite for the race at a best priced 2/1 has actually only run once at the 2 mile trip in her last nine starts. Yes, she won that only race over the trip at Doncaster, but she was 1/6 Favourite and arguably would have won if had been a 5f sprint. She was rated 25lbs ahead of the runner up and 18lbs ahead of the next highest rated, Cockney Sparrow, who was close up in third when falling at the second last flight.
Some people just love prolific winners but The New One has won as many times as Annie Power and trousered more than 300,000 more in prize money. He has also had more form at the trip and yet he is 7/1 while she is 2/1.
It just doesn't seem like sense to me. "
OLBG PR rep drobgod was fortunate enough to attend a recent open day at the Henderson yard where he noted
Champion Hurdle - He has five entered with Sign of a Victory only a possible runner if the ground is good. Peace and Co made a noise at Sandown and has since had a breathing op. He said he wished he had another three weeks with My Tent or Yours and that if he won it would be his best training performance ever.
Top Notch and Hargam are just below top class but both are very tough. He thinks if they met on soft Top Notch would come out on top but on good Hargam would. He actually seemed to have a soft spot for Hargam, a real battler he said.
Read other members opinions and or have yours over on the OLBG Champion Hurdle Discussion Thread
Champion Hurdle 2016 Video PreviewSteve and Sam from OLBG had a look at this race quite early on, before the unfortunate withdrawals of Faugheen and Artic Fire.
For more tips on the race please head over to the OLBG Horse Racing tips page