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Pertemps Handicap Hurdle Preview - Cheltenham Festival

Published on: 14/03/2019

Pertemps Handicap Hurdle Preview - Cheltenham Festival

March 14, 2018 14:10pm - Cheltenham

Cheltenham Festival

Distance: 2m 7f 213y

Grade: Listed

Runners: 24

Winner: £56,270.00 2nd: £21,200.00 3rd: £10,610.00 4th: £5,300.00 5th: £2,660.00 6th: £1,330.00 7th: £660.00 8th: £340.00

Going: Heavy (soft in places)

A tough renewal and one that is never easy to call, the Pertemps Handicap Hurdle brings together a wide open field once again. Sire Du Berlais heads the betting thanks to a blistering final lap in the qualifiers that set tongues wagging. Clearly targeted for this, If Gordon Elliott`s gelding can put a complete race together, he should be right in the mix. The stable landed a 1-2 in this last year.

Walk To Freedom has proved himself a decent handicap hurdler winning once and placing twice amongst strong fields. Still with room to improve, he looks to have put his injury woes behind him and is a great each-way shout at 20/1, even off a 3lb higher mark. He stepped up to three miles without any issues last time out coming home second.

Also running three miles for the first time that day was winner Cuneo. The seven-year-old found something extra that day, but there are still question marks over his overall consistency. However, he looked solid when fifth over the same course and distance (off a 7lb higher mark) in his next race and has plenty of admirers ahead of this.

Behind those, there are at least half a dozen runners for whom cases could be made. A Toi Phil, Aaron Lad, Not Many Left, Notwhatiam and Thermistocles are all being talked up for what should be a fascinating race.

Pertemps Handicap Hurdle Winners - past five years:

2014: Fingal Bay (8) - Richard Johnson (Philip Hobbs)

2015: Call the Cops (6) - Andrew Tinkler (Nicky Henderson)

2016: Mall Dini (6) - Davy Russell (Pat Kelley)

2017: Presenting Percy (6) - Davy Russell (Pat Kelly)

2018: Delta Work (5) - Davy Russell (Gordon Elliott)

Latest Betting odds:

Sire Du Berlais 11/2

Samburu Shujaa 12/1

First Assignment 12 /1

Notwhatiam 12/1

Thermistocles 14/1

Champers On Ice 14/1

Not Many Left 16/1

Cuneo 20/1

Abolitionist 25/1

Flemcara 18/1

Walk to Freedom 20/1

22/1 bar

You can back Sire Du Berlais at 11/2 and Walk To Freedom (E/W) at 20/1.

By Neil Morris

Published on: 14/03/2019

Any odds displayed within this preview were correct at the time of publishing (14/03/2019 09:03:44) but are subject to change.