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2021 Champion Hurdle Tips – Three Horses To Follow

  • We take a look through the betting for the 2021 Champion Hurdle
  • The Champion Hurdle is the feature Championship race on day one of the Cheltenham Festival
  • We’ve taken a look through the ante-post betting with race-sponsors Unibet
  • While also picking out three horses to follow who could win the 2021 Champion Hurdle
abacadabras
Abacadabras (left) outjumps Shishkin at the last before finishing second in the 2020 Supreme. (Getty)

Tuesday at the Cheltenham Festival is headlined by the first Championship race of the meeting, the Champion Hurdle.

Many of the sports greatest names have claimed victory in this Grade One, including Persian War, Instabraq and Hurricane Fly. Epatante came out on top last season, and National Hunt racing fans can look forward to another cracking renewal in 2021.

2021 Champion Hurdle Odds


Name
Odds
Epatante4/1
Goshen6/1
Abacadabras6/1
Saint Roi10/1
Envoi Allen14/1
Honeysuckle14/1
Bar16/1

*Odds taken from Unibet*

Epatante ran out a comfortable winner of the Champion Hurdle in 2020. While Nicky Henderson’s mare got the job done in good fashion, it wasn’t the strongest renewal of this Championships race, and the defending champion will have a target on her back next season.

Goshen is certainly a hurdler to follow closely in 2020/21, but I would rather sit and watch how he gets on this season, as juveniles can often take time to adapt during their second season over hurdles. Saint Roi has already come out and won a Grade Three in good fashion - a win that thrusts last season’s County Hurdle winner firmly into the Champion Hurdle picture.

Here are three horses who look worthy of tracking, with the 2021 Champion Hurdle in mind.

2021 Champion Hurdle Horses To Follow


Abacadabras


Abacadabras2020 Unibet Champion Hurdle Horses To FollowGET 6/1 HERE
18+ only. Gambling can be addictive. Play responsibly.

If I had to back one horse to win the 2021 Champion Hurdle right now, it would be Abacadabras. Gordon Elliott’s charge enjoyed a strong novice campaign last season, winning a Grade One at Leoparstown over Christmas, before pushing Shishkin all the way to the line in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. 

Abacadabras travelled into the Supreme beautifully, and his jumping was extremely efficient. Landing the last, Davy Russell’s mount had opened up a small lead, only to be outstayed by Shishkin on the run to the line. 

The Champion Hurdle is a race that’s long eluded Gigginstown Stud, and Elliott would love to hand Michael O’Leary a victory in this race before his ownership operation exits the sport. Abacadabras has plenty of improvement left in his locker, and could be the one to beat when he returns to the Cheltenham Festival.

Saldier


Saldier2020 Unibet Champion Hurdle Horses To FollowGET 25/1 HERE
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Willie Mullins has only been able to get Saldier out on the track once in each of the past two seasons. In 2018, Ruby Walsh’s mount was in the process of passing future Champion Hurdle winner, Espoir D’Allen in the Fishery Lane, before crashing to the ground and suffering a season-ending nose injury.

12 months ago, Saldier returned with a bang in the Morgiana Hurdle, beating Petit Mouchoir and Klassical Dream in impressive fashion. Once again, injury struck, and Saldier was ruled out for the rest of the campaign. At the age of six, Saldier still has plenty of time to put his injury-strewn past behind him, and he’s certainly capable of winning a race like the Champion Hurdle.

marie's rock hurdle
Nico De Boinville riding Marie's Rock during her victory at Taunton last season. (Getty)

Marie’s Rock


Marie's Rock2020 Unibet Champion Hurdle Horses To FollowGET 40/1 HERE
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Nicky Henderson helped Epatante rise from a promising novice to the Champion Hurdler, and I think Marie’s Rock has the talent to reach the highest level over hurdles. Henderson’s mare was unbeaten in two starts last term, winning a Listed contest on her final start, before a setback meant she couldn’t make her Cheltenham Festival debut in the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle.

On both of her appearances last season, Marie’s Rock looked keen and green to begin with. Her jumping, however, was very slick, and once Nico De Boinville asked her to quicken, she displayed a blistering turn of foot to put both races to bed. There’s clearly plenty more to come from this classy young mare, and Marie’s Rock could easily end up joining Epatante in the feature race on day one of the Cheltenham Festival.
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