My name is Rhys, a first time dad blogging about my adventures and experiences of being a parent. [email protected]

Cheltenham Festival 2024: Analysing the market for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle

The opening act of the Cheltenham Festival, the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, sets the stage for a thrilling display of speed, agility, and raw talent as young hurdlers vie for supremacy over the demanding two-mile course.

Throughout its storied history, the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle has been graced by champions who have gone on to etch their names in racing annals, with luminaries like Constitution Hill, Altior, Shishkin, and Klassical Dream leaving their mark on the sport.

At the helm of this prestigious Grade 1 contest stands Willie Mullins, a titan of jumps racing with an unparalleled record of 94 Festival winners. Mullins seeks to extend his dominance with an unprecedented eighth triumph in this year’s edition, wielding a formidable arsenal from his Closutton stables.

As the anticipation mounts, let us delve into the bet on Cheltenham Festival races markets, where contenders for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle emerge with their sights set on glory.

Ballyburn – 4/5

With a promising record bolstered by Point-to-Point success, Bumper wins, and a Grade 1 triumph last time out at Leopardstown, Ballyburn enters the fray with high expectations.

However, doubt is cast over the six-year-old’s participation in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, as he also holds a Baring Bingham Novices’ Hurdle entry.

At the time of writing, Mullins is still pondering over the decision — leaving ante-post bettors sweating.

Mystical Power – 7/2

Son of Derby champion Galileo and Champion Hurdler Annie Power, Mystical Power brings pedigree and potential to the table.

Under the joint ownership of esteemed figures, JP McManus, John Magnier, and Rich Ricci, the lightly raced five-year-old has impressed with victories in both Bumpers and hurdles, including the Grade Moscow Flyer — signalling his readiness to contend for victory.

With the question marks surrounding Ballyburn, Mystical Power is shortening in the market and could be worth backing with your Cheltenham offers.

Tullyhill – 9/2

Tullyhill also ignited excitement in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle market, fuelled by a spectacular showing at Punchestown when last seen.

Despite a stumbling start, finishing a distant second on his hurdle debut, the six-year-old has won back-to-back races — including the Listed Sheila Bourke Novice Hurdle.

That latest victory captured the attention of pundits and punters alike, but Tullyhill is yet to be tested at graded level.

Firefox – 5/1

With a blend of promise and unpredictability, Firefox emerges as a wildcard in the Mullins-dominated landscape.

Despite early success over obstacles, beating Ballyburn in a Maiden Hurdle at Fairyhourse in December, the Gordon Elliott-trained contender faces scrutiny after a lacklustre performance in the Lawlor’s Of Naas Novice Hurdle.

That leaves lingering doubts over the six-year-old’s prospects in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, but there’s a chance that was just a small blip and he could bounce back at Cheltenham.

The unbeaten Jeriko Du Reponet is still an interesting prospect for Nicky Henderson at 7/1, while Slade Steel is Henry de Bromhead’s leading contender at 8/1. Although, the Baring Bingham Novices’ Hurdle appears more likely for that horse.

As the countdown to the Cheltenham Festival begins, the stage is set for a riveting showdown, where contenders will clash and destinies will unfold amidst the thunderous roar of spectators. In the hallowed grounds of Prestbury Park, the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle promises a spectacle of unrivalled excitement and drama.