oddschecker bring you the best Mares’ Hurdle tips, offers and expert insight ahead of this year’s Festival.
Mares’ Hurdle Tips
Another year of the Mares’ Hurdle and yet again we will have a short priced Willie Mullins favourite. Benie Des Dieux missing the Festival and Honeysuckle opting for the Champion Hurdle has left Concertista at a short price at the top of the market.
Last year’s Mares’ Novice Hurdle winner has gone up another level since last season when winning the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle in impressive fashion.
She went to Fairyhouse to open her account for the season but it was what she produced at Leopardstown over Christmas that really caught the eye.
After the final flight that she showed her engine, powering clear of Minella Melody and putting the race to bed in commanding fashion.
The mare had beaten the same rival, Minella Melody, a month earlier at Fairyhouse. It was cosy enough that time but it was at Leopardstown that she really announced herself as a Mares’ Hurdle contender.
She was cut from 5/1 into the 3/1 mark after that performance. However, her price continued to tumble once it became clear Honeysuckle was going down the Champion Hurdle route.
Moreover, once it was announced that Benie Des Dieux would miss Cheltenham, her price contracted further.
She’s now the 11/10 favourite for a race in which there seems to be a real lack of serious contenders.
However, two that may be able to put it up to her are Dame De Compagnie and Roksana.
The 2020 Coral Cup winner, Dame de Compagnie, reverts back to hurdling after two chase starts this season. The first saw her run out a comfortable winner at Ayr before her race was cut short at Sandown in the Grade 1 Scilly Isles Novices’ Chase when Hitman fell and badly hampered her and she unseated.
Now she’s back hurdling and returning to her favourite track. Nicky Henderson’s mare loves Cheltenham. The form figures of her last four starts at the track read 1151. The fifth came over two miles.
Her latest victory at Cheltenham was of course in the Coral Cup which is just as strong in terms of form as Concertista’s victory at the same Festival. Clearly, Concertista has stepped forward once more but Dame De Compagnie’s is open to plenty of progression herself.
DAME DE COMPAGNIE takes the Coral Cup for Nicky Henderson and Barry Geraghty. #CheltenhamFestival— oddschecker Racing (@oddsRacing) March 11, 2020
Roksana looks set to go down this route now rather than the Stayers’ as was previously being mooted. Personally, I think the longer trip in the Stayers’ would have suited her better, as we saw when she ran a huge race in the Long Walk in December. I’d be concerned that she won’t quite have the speed over this trip to live with Concertista.
Her current price tag of 3/1 looks on the slightly short side compared to Dame De Compagnie who is available with one bookmaker at 15/2. Last year, she couldn’t get close to the front two and would have been soundly beaten by Benie Des Dieux if it weren’t for her infamous fall at the last in the 2019 renewal.
Dan Skelton’s nine-year-old has been in fine form this season but the other two look more appealing at their current prices.
Mares' Hurdle Prediction
You can still get 15/2 with one bookmaker on Dame De Compagnie for this contest which is surely overpriced. Given the lack of depth in the race, an each-way wager would be sensible with it hard to see her being out of the front three if she runs up to form.
She will have a task on her hands putting it up to Concertista but Dame De Compagnie is far from the finished article herself. There’s plenty more to come from this progressive mare and a return to a track which she relishes will hopefully see her take another step forward.
Find all the very best expert insight and predictions for this year's Festival on our Cheltenham Tips page. For special offers and bookmaker signups head to our Cheltenham Free Bets page.
Mares’ Hurdle Favourite
Concertista is the 11/10 favourite for the Mares’ Hurdle. She absolutely dominates the betting too on oddschecker in the last month. The favourite has taken 59% of all bets in the market in in the last 30 days. Roksana (10% of bets) is second-favourite at 3/1 and Dame De Compagnie (6%) is the next in the market out of those likely to run, at a best price of 15/2.
• Concertista 11/10
• Roksana 3/1
• Dame De Compagnie 15/2
• Verdana Blue 14/1
• Black Tears 16/1
Mares’ Hurdle Runners
23 horses are currently entered for the race, but it’s highly likely it will be far less than that on the day. You can see the current betting for the race here.
Mares’ Hurdle Previous Winners
|2020||Honeysuckle||Henry de Bromhead||Rachael Blackmore|
|2019||Roksana||Dan Skelton||Harry Skelton|
|2018||Benie Des Dieux||Willie Mullins||Ruby Walsh|
|2017||Apple's Jade||Gordon Elliott||Bryan Cooper|
|2016||Vroum Vroum Mag||Willie Mullins||Ruby Walsh|
|2015||Glens Melody||Willie Mullins||Paul Townend|
|2014||Quevega||Willie Mullins||Ruby Walsh|
|2013||Quevega||Willie Mullins||Ruby Walsh|
|2012||Quevega||Willie Mullins||Ruby Walsh|
|2011||Quevega||Willie Mullins||Ruby Walsh|