Cheltenham Preview: Take old warrior at big price in weak Champion Hurdle

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THE Voice Of Value (@TheVoiceOfValue) has been part of our Festival squad for the last two years. Here, he takes an early look at next Tuesday’s Champion Hurdle.

Champion Hurdle | 14th March 2017 | ITV1

Annie Power and Faugheen have been our last two winners but in a real shock both of these Mullins and Ricci horses will miss the race this year.

Unpredictable race

That deprives us of two absolute superstars but it has the bonus of making this race completely unpredictable. I think you can make a case for seven or eight of them but my mind keeps being drawn back to one name – The New One.

There’s nothing new about this one to be honest – this will be his fourth attempt in the Champion Hurdle and there is very little we don’t know about him. He’s honest, gutsy and talented without ever being able to match the likes of Annie Power or Faugheen at the very top level.

His best chance to win it came in his first attempt in 2014 when he was hampered by the fall of poor old Our Conor which almost stopped him in his tracks.

He lost at least six or seven lengths on the leaders there but still battled back to be 3rd by less than three lengths. He has lost by eight lengths to both Faugheen and Annie Power in the two subsequent runnings of the race but this year is not as hot.

Wide open renewal

I find it hard to believe that in a wide open race he can be backed at such a nice each way price (14/1 with 10Bet) and he is the obvious value bet for me.

Nigel Twiston-Davies has confirmed that this is the race for The New One and that he has a change of race tactics to try out this year. If those work this might just be fourth time lucky for the old warrior and it that happens there won’t be a dry eye in the house, including this old romantic.

Best Bets

Champion Hurdle – The New One (14/1 10Bet)

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'The Voice of Value’ column is written by Paul Gallagher who is an amateur tipster with a love for racing and jumps racing in particular. He caught the bug at an early age when his grandfather had a share in a winning chaser and his annual Grand National and Cheltenham guides have been well received over the last few years. Paul also enjoys the flat racing and football.

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