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Marsh Novices` Chase - Cheltenham Festival

Published on: 12/03/2020

Marsh Novices` Chase - Cheltenham Festival

March 12, 2020 13:30pm - Cheltenham

Distance: 2m 3f 198y

Grade: (Class 1) (5yo+)

Runners: 12

Winner: £84,405

Going: Soft

Day Three gets begins with The Marsh Novices` Chase. It is a Grade One chase for novices. The 2m 4f race was introduced in 2011 and has provided a springboard to the likes of Sir Des Champs, Yorkhill, Vautour and Defi De Seuil.

Willie Mullins has enjoyed some success here in recent years and has four entries this time around including the veteran hurdler Faugheen who has recently taken to fences with great success winning two Grade One races, at Limerick, where he beat Samcro by 10 lengths over this distance and at Leopardstown last month. As a result, he looks perfectly prepared for this and will be a popular pick among punters familiar with the old warrior.

Third to Faugheen in the Flogas at Leopardstown after making a mistake three out was another Mullins horse, Tornado Flyer. He was also third in the Champion Bumper in 2018. The Flogas race was his first back after an illness and he could be in the running again here. And with a price of 16/1 available, he looks to top each-way pick.

Other contenders include Mister Fisher, Itchy Feet and Midnight Shadow. Of those, we really like the look of Itchy Feet. He was third in last year`s Supreme Novices` Hurdle and has gone unbeaten in two over fences. He even recovered after a wobble at Sandown to beat Midnight Shadow by three and a half lengths in the Grade One Scilly Isles Novices` over the same distance as this and on similar ground. He is capable of pushing Faugheen all the way.

Marsh Novices` Chase Winners - past six years:

2014: Taquin du Seuil (7) - Tony McCoy (Jonjo O’Neill)

2015: Vatour (6) - Ruby Walsh (Willie Mullins)

2016: Black Hercules (5) - Ruby Walsh (Willie Mullins)

2017: Yorkhill (7) - Ruby Walsh (Willie Mullins)

2018: Shattered Love (7) - J W Kennedy (Gordon Elliott)

2019: Defi Du Seuil (6) - B J Geraghty (P J Hobbs)

Latest Betting odds:

Faugheen (5/2), Samcro (4/1), Itchy Feet (4/1), Mister Fisher (6/1), Melon (12/1), Annie Mc (16/1), Reserve Tank (20/1), Bapaume (20/1), Tornado Flyer (20/1), Midnight Shadow (20/1), Saint Sonnet (25/1), Poker Play (100/1)

By Neil Morris

Published on: 12/03/2020

Any odds displayed within this preview were correct at the time of publishing (12/03/2020 10:23:07) but are subject to change.

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