Scheduled to take place at 3:30pm on the third day of the upcoming Cheltenham Festival, the Stayers Hurdle has several potential winners involved, according to Upping the Ante.
Providing their weekly preview of the four-day event, with odds provided by the Racing Post’s partner bet365, Gavin Lynch and David Jennings offered differing views on who they beleive will come out on top.
With viewing figures and total bet slip numbers reaching record levels for the 2021 festival, bookmakers could expect a strong punter turnout for The Sun-sponsored Stayers Hurdle, which has several big names competing – including Klassical Dream, Champ, Paisley Park, Sporting John, Thyme Hill and Flooring Porter.
Predicting a win for Klassical Dream this Thursday – a horse trainer Willie Mullins sees ‘a lot of improvement’ for ahead of Cheltenham – but also anticipating a victory for Champ – Gavin Lynch argued that both are potential contenders for the Stayers Hurdle.
“I think Champ has a massive chance in the Stayers Hurdle,” he detailed. “Hurdles aren’t big, he was very good last time and loomed up on the outside. I think he’ll adore the fact that Flooring Porter is going to make a good gallop. I can see him travelling really strongly in the Stayers Hurdle. Champ has to have a big chance.
He did, however, find each way value in the ‘quirky’ and ‘underrated’ Flooring Porter, coming in on bet365 at 5/1, arguing that the horse has ‘a lot of talent, and his most important hurdle would be the first one’.
Lynch continued: “It’s a really good race. He was good at Aintree, and ran very well at Ascot which is a hard thing to do after going away.”
Jennings, however, maintained confidence in Thyme Hill as his number one choice for the hurdle. He explained: “I’m still pretty confident, I think the way the race is going to be run is going to suit him very much.
“Thyme Hill is a proper stayer who can travel into the race, the hill is going to suit him. We know he likes Cheltenham, and I just think Thyme Hill, it’s impossible to kick him out of the frame.”