It’s just six days until hopefuls step out on the hallowed Cheltenham track for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. Being so close to the festival, we’re having a look at the most backed ante-post horses this week.
Samcro – Supreme Novices Hurdle
Gordon Elliott’s horse has been well supported for the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle since the turn of the year, however, this week punters have being backing the six-year old rocking up to Cheltenham a day early, and attempting to land the Supreme.
Question marks still remain regarding the ground, and these concerns sparked the initial betting on the exchange for Samcro in the opening race. This led to rumours flowing on social media, resulting in many punters lapping up Bet365’s 14/1 NRNB on Samcro in the Supreme.
He’s since been backed into 2/1, and is currently second favourite for the race.
Samcro has been hands and heels above any other ante-post horse this week, accounting for 14.5% of all Festival bets this week.
Footpad – Arkle Challenge Trophy
Leading Arkle hopeful Sceau Royal was pulled out of the Cheltenham festival by Alan King this week, sparking movement in the ante-post market. With one less threat, punters decided to opt for Willie Mullins’ Footpad to win.
The Racing Post Novice Chase winner could have been backed at 6/4 with a handful of firms for the Arkle over the weekend. Following the withdrawal of Footpad, twelve firms quickly cut the odds on the six-year-old.
This week, Footpad has accounted for a massive 40% of bets placed in the Arkle, some distance ahead of Harry Whittington’s Saint Calvados, who has taken 29% of bets.
Getabird – Supreme Novices’ Hurdle
Willie Mullins will be hoping his festival starts with a bang, with Getabird scampering up the hill to win the first race.
The six-year-old has been well supported in the market since destroying the field at Punchestown in January, and the support is showing no sign of slowing down.
Even with Samcro being rumoured to oppose Mullins’ horse, punters are still being tempted by Getabird. Just under 11% of bets in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle have been on the favourite.
Chesterfield – County Hurdle
Seamus Mullins’ Chesterfield was nowhere to be seen in the ante-post betting before this week. The eight-year-old had been off the track since finishing last at Kempton on boxing day.
However, following a 69 day break, he returned to win by a couple of lengths at Kempton on Monday, there was still 40/1 available for Chesterfield in the County Hurdle at the weekend. However, following a winning return, 19 bookmakers slashed the odds.
Chesterfield can be still be backed at 25/1 with Paddy Power, a price which punters have been tucking into this week. Seamus Mullin’s horse has accounted for 31% of all bets this week in the County Hurdle.
Kalahnikov – Supreme Novices’ Hurdle
With plenty of bookmakers supplying juicy offers on the first race of the festival, it’s no surprise our 5th most popular ante-post horse also comes in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.
As mentioned above, Samcro and Getabird have been the most backed horses in this race, but there’s also been considerable support for Amy Murphy’s Kalashnikov.
If Gordon Elliott’s horse misses the race, Kalashnikov will go off second favourite behind Getabird. The best price is currently 11/2 with Betfair, a far cry from the 33/1 available in January.