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2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Tips – Will Willie make it six-from-six in this Grade Two?

Last updated: 11 Mar 2021
Jon Vine 11 Mar 2021
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  • We’ve published our guide to the 2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle
  • This Grade Two will be run on day three of the 2021 Cheltenham Festival
  • Willie Mullins will be looking to extend his 100% record in this race
  • Glens Of Antrim is our best bet at 25/1
mares' novices' hurdle cheltenham
Concertista winning last year's Mares' Novices' Hurdle. (Getty)

The Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle is one of the newest races at the Cheltenham Festival, having been added to the schedule five years ago. Some lovely mares have won this race during its short history, including Laurina, Let’s Dance and Limini.

The betting for this year’s renewal is looking wide-open, but it’s Hook Up who’s edging favouritism.

2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Guide

2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Odds

Best Odds
Top Bookie
Hook Up6/1William Hill
Roseys Hollow13/2Paddy Power
Royal Kahala13/2bet365
The Glancing Queen10/1William Hill
Sky Ace16/1Paddy Power

*Odds taken on 24/2/21*

2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Tips – Mullins’ Mares

Hook Up2021 Mares' Novices' Hurdle FavouriteGET 6/1 HERE
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Willie Mullins has won all five renewals of the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle. Having won it with favourites the first three season, Willie watched 50/1 outsider Eglantine Du Seuil beat stablemate Concertista, who went off at 66/1. Concertista went off at a much shorter price of 9/2 when she scored last year, when Mullins saddled four of the first five horses past the post.

Hook Up looks to be Willie's main arrow in this year's race, having finished fourth behind three Supreme Novices' Hurdle contenders in the Chanelle Pharma last time out. Gauloise and Glens Of Antrim could also represent Ireland's Champion Trainer, while the likes of Pont Aval and Lady Breffni cannot be ruled out.

2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Tips – Other Irish Contenders

Royal Kahala2021 Mares' Novices' Hurdle ContenderGET 13/2 HERE
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Royal Kahala beat Hook Up by five lengths, when giving Mullins' mare two pounds at Fairyhouse earlier in the season. Peter Fahey's mare was then beaten by Roseys Hollow in a Grade Three earlier this month, and they could renew their rivalry at Cheltenham.

Sky Ace won a couple of good races in Ireland earlier in the season, and John Hanlon's mare will arrive at Cheltenham fresh. Mighty Blue and Riviere D'etel are also worth a mention and could strike a blow for the Irish.

2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Tips – Best Of The Brits

The Glancing Queen2021 Mares' Novices' Hurdle Possible RunnerGET 10/1 HERE
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This race hasn’t been kind to British horses down the years. Dusky Legend managed to place twice in it for Alan King, and King’s mare The Glancing Queen is clearly Britain’s best challenger.

The Glancing Queen has twice run in the Champion Bumper here at the Cheltenham Festival, and her performances this season have been solid. I just fancy King may opt for the Mares’ Hurdle, as the two-and-a-half-mile trip will suit her better.

King could also throw Listed-winning juvenile, Her Indoors into the mix. Martello Sky, Allavina and Aggy With It could also get a run, but I don't really fancy any of the Brits to run well, outside of The Glancing Queen, if she was to turn up.

willie mullins cheltenham
Willie Mullins will play a very strong hand in the Mares' Novices' Hurdle. (Getty)

2021 Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle Tips – Final Verdict

Glens Of Antrim E/W2021 Mares' Novices' Hurdle TipGET 25/1 HERE
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Hook Up's seventh-length defeat in the Chanelle Pharma is an excellent piece of form. I just worry about Hook Up's jumping. She didn't run well at all in the Triumph last season, and her best form has come on heavy ground, which she's unlikely to get on day three of the Cheltenham Festival.

Rosey’s Hallow was gaining weight from both Royal Kahala and Gauloise when she beat them in the Solerina. If they went off at level weights, I think any of the three could win on any given day, and it’s very hard to split them.

Sky Ace has been laid out for this race and she has the ability to put it up to the market leaders. Riviere D’etel didn’t run badly in with the colts last time out, and Gordon Elliott’s mare will have a juvenile allowance on her side.

Yet, it would be foolish not to back at least one of Willie Mullins’ runners in this Grade Two, and the one I’m keen on at a tasty price is GLENS OF ANTRIM.

Mullins has thrown his mare in with the boys on all three of her starts. Glens Of Antrim was fourth behind Blue Lord on her first racecourse appearance, before running Albert Bartlett favourite, Stattler close at Leopardstown. The odds-on favourite then looked on-course to claim her first win at Naas, but was outmuscled in the closing stages by Mr Incredible, who looked twice the size of Mullins’ mare.

Glens Of Antrim is a full sister to Minella Melody, but she couldn’t be more different in stature. She’s a speedy, athletic mare, who will be well suited by better ground and racing within her own sex. Mullins’ six-year-old hasn’t jumped well so far, but she’s only had three lifetime starts, and with only two hurdles in the final mile of the race, you don’t need to be a great jumper to win this race.

She’s clearly got plenty of ability, and the fact she’s a maiden didn’t stop Eglantine Du Seuil or Concertista winning this race in recent years. At 14/1, Glens Of Antrim is my best bet.


You simply have to back a Willie Mullins' runner in this Grade Two, and I think the inexperienced but talented Glens Of Antrim is overpriced at 25/1.

2021 Mares' Novices' Hurdle Tip: Glens Of Antrim Each-Way @25/1 at Boylesports - 10 Units
Glens Of Antrim
@25/1 - 10 Units
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