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18th January 2021

2020 Betfair Hurdle Free Tips and Trends

Staged at Newbury racecourse the Grade Three Betfair Hurdle is run over 2m 1/2f in February each year. First run in 1963 the contest is always a hotly-contested race, while some punters might know the race better as either the Tote Gold Trophy or the totesport Trophy, being that’s what the race was called before Betfair took over the sponsorship in 2012.

Despite more obvious Champion Hurdle trials on offer during the season the race has thrown up two horses – Persian War and Make A Stand – that went onto glory at the Cheltenham Festival in the Champion Hurdle later that season, while the 2013 hero - My Tent Or Yours - went onto be second in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. The 2003 winner, Spirit Leader, went onto land the County Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival the following month, while in 2017 the Nigel Twiston-Davis-trained Ballyandy won the race before running fourth in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, plus last year (2018) Kalashinkov won this before running second in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.

In 2019, we saw the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Al Dancer win the race under jockey Sam Twiston-Davies.

Here at TQ we look back at recent winners of the race and highlights the key stats ahead of the 2020 renewal – this year staged on Saturday 8th February.

Recent Betfair Hurdle Winners

2019 - AL DANCER (5/2 fav)
2018 – KALASHINKOV (8/1 co-fav)
2017 – BALLYANDY (3/1 fav)
2016 – AGRAPART (16/1)
2015 – VIOLET DANCER (20/1)
2014 – SPLASH OF GINGE (33/1)
2013 – MY TENT OR YOURS (5/1 fav)
2012 – ZARKANDAR (11/4 fav)
2011 – RECESSION PROOF (12/1)
2010 – GET ME OUT OF HERE (6/1)
2009 – No race
2008 – WINGMAN (14/1)
2007 – HEATHCOTE (50/1)
2006 – No race
2005 – ESSEX (4/1 fav)
2004 – GEOS (16/1)
2003 – SPIRIT LEADER (14/1)
2002 – COPELAND (13/2)
2001 – LANDING LIGHT (4/1 fav)

Betfair Hurdle Betting Trends

17/17 – Carried 11-8 or less in weight
16/17 – Aged 7 or younger
15/17 – Placed in the top 3 last time out
15/17 – Rated 130 or higher
14/17 – Won between 2-4 times over hurdles in the UK/IRE before
14/17 – Had raced within the last 8 weeks
14/17 – Came from the first 7 in the betting
14/17 – Went onto run at that season’s Cheltenham Festival
14/17 – Aged either 5 or 6 years-old
12/17 – Winning distance – 3 lengths or less
12/17 – Placed favourites
10/17 – Carried 10-9 or less in weight
9/17 – Came from the top 5 in the betting
8/17 – Won last time out
8/17 – Returned a double-figure price in the betting
8/17 – Irish bred
7/17 – Aged 5 years-old (including 7 of last 13)
7/17 – Winning favourites
4/17 – Raced at Cheltenham last time out
3/17 – Trained by Nicky Henderson (has won the race 5 times in all)
3/17 – Trained by Gary Moore
3/17 – Trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies (3 of last 6)
2/17  - Raced at Leopardstown last time out
2/17 – Owned by JP McManus
1/17 – Went onto win the County Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival that season (Spirit Leader 2003)
22 of the last 23 winners have been aged 7 or younger
The average winning SP in the last 17 runnings is 13/1

Note: The 2019 running was staged at Ascot


TQ VERDICT: Another ultra-competitive renewal of this popular handicap hurdle. There’s plenty of key trends to note though – like 16 of the last 17 winners aged 7 or younger, which would actually rule out one of the main fancies – Not So Sleepy, who is an 8 year-old. Mill Green (8), Magic Dancer (8) and Remiluc (11) are others that might be deemed too old. With ALL of the last 17 winners also carrying 11st 8lns or less then this stat knocks out the topweight – Gumball, who has 11st 12lbs to lump round. 5 year-old have won 7 of the last 11 runnings though and with that in-mind the three I like here are NEVER ADAPT, STOLEN SILVER and NEFF (e/w). The former is from the Nicky Henderson yard that have won this race 5 times in the past and is also owned by JP McManus, who also loves to target this prize. She gets in here with just 10-13 to carry and looked progressive when winning well at Kempton last time out. Barry Geraghty rides. Stolen Silver ran on really well to get up on the line to beat Edwardstown at Haydock last time out and also had another runner here – Thebannerkingrebel – back in third that day. The slightly longer trip here will help and the Twiston-Davies camp are another that have a decent record in this race – winning it three times since 2014, including 12 months ago. The final main pick – Neff – also hails from a yard that have had success in this race in the past – Gary Moore – and could go well at a bigger price. This 5 year-old ticks a lot of the main trends and even though this is a big step up in class he did it well the last day at Fontwell and could have more to offer, especially with just 10-3lbs to carry! Of the rest, the hat-trick seeking Mack The Man will have his supporters too, while Oakley, the Greatwood Hurdle winner, Harambe and the already mentioned Thebannerkingrebel, are others that can go well.






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