The Ballymore Novices Hurdle (previously known as Neptune Novices Hurdle) is a Class A Grade 1 hurdle race run over two miles and five furlongs, with ten hurdles. Willie Mullins and Paul Townend teamed up for more Cheltenham Festival glory with Sir Gerhard (8/11f) in last year's edition. This article contains our Ballymore Novices Hurdle race preview with free predictions, tips, betting trends, best odds, free bets and no deposit bonuses on the 2023 Cheltenham Festival.
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BALLYMORE NOVICES HURDLE BETTING PREVIEW
The Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle will open day two of the Cheltenham Festival. The race has changed sponsor in recent years, as it had been known as the Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle. The contest is a Grade 1 hurdle race covering two miles and five furlongs, for horses aged four years and upwards. It is one of the best novice hurdle races of the season and usually brings together some of the best up and coming horses.
In the last ten years alone we have seen the likes of Faugheen, The New One, Simonsig, Samcro and Yorkhill stride to victory in the Ballymore.
We'll take a closer look at this year's Ballymore Novices' Hurdle in the coming days and try to determine which horse is likely to prevail.
Who will win the Ballymore Novices Hurdle 2023?IMPAIRE ET PASSE is the current favorite. He won his maiden at Naas by 18 lengths in December and was last seen cruising to victory in the Grade 2 Moscow Flyer Novice Hurdle at Punchestown.
HERMES ALLEN has made a perfect start to his career on British soils as having won on debut at Stratford and recorded a nine-length success in a Grade 2 trial at Cheltenham. He then impressively scored in the Grade 1 Challow Novices' Hurdle at Sandown by almost five lengths.
GAELIC WARRIOR finished runner up to Brazil in the Fred Winter last season but is unbeaten since then. The Willie Mullins' charge have recorded three straight wins, most recently in a competitive handicap hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival at Leopardstown in February.
GOOD LAND caught the eye when defeating Absolute Notions and Sandor Clegane in a Grade One at Leopardstown during the Dublin Racing Festival. That race was over 2m 6f, so could the drop back in trip hinder his chances here against a speedier rival or two.
CHAMP KIELY was a fine winner of the Grade 1 Lawlor's Of Naas Novice Hurdle - beating Irish Point by two lengths - back in January. Prior to that he was arguably slightly disappointing in finishing fourth in the Grade 1 Royal Bond Novice Hurdle.
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INTHEPOCKET suffered his first defeat when finding only Il Etait Temps too good in the Grade 1 Tattersalls Ireland Novice Hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival last month. Stepping back up to two-and-a-half miles should really suit him.
HO MY LORD fell on his Irish debut over hurdles at Leopardstown. However, he bounced right back with a smart success at Navan six weeks later. He has plenty of talent but probably lacks in experience.
DARK RAVEN, AMERIKAN MIKE and MARBLE SANDS are other potential candidates for a top 3 placement.
At the moment, the most backed horses are the following:
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BALLYMORE NOVICES HURDLE TRENDS
- 4 of the last 5 favourites won, but only 7 of the last 21
- 6 of the last 9 winners line up unbeaten over hurdles
- 22 of the last 28 winners won last time out
- 36 of the past 37 winners finished either first or second in their last start
- 9 of the lat 12 winners were in the top 3 in the betting
- 8 of the last 9 winners were Irish trained
- 7 of the last 9 winners were rated 150+
- 10 of the last 12 winners were aged 7
BALLYMORE NOVICES HURDLE PREDICTIONS
Check out below our free predictions on the Ballymore Novices Hurdle 2023. Feel free to copy our Cheltenham Festival recommended bets and get the highest odds available on the market by clicking the 'Bet' button!
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2023 BALLYMORE NOVICES HURDLE FAQs
What time is the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle?
The Ballymore Novices Hurdle is the first race run on Day 2 of the Cheltenham Festival. That falls on Wednesday March 15, 2023 and the official starting time is 1:30pm.
How many obstacles are jumped in the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle?
There are 10 hurdles to jump for the Ballymore Novices Hurdle runners
What is the distance of the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle?
The Ballymore Novices Hurdle is run on a distance of 2 miles and 5 furlongs and 26 yards
What is the prize money for the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle?
The total prize money on offer for the Ballymore Novices Hurdle at the 2023 Cheltenham Festival will be £125,000.
Who won the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle last year?
Last year's renewal was won by Sir Gerhard at SP of 8/11, trained by Willie Mullins and ridden by Paul Townend.
What weights are carried for the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle?
10st 13lbs (4yo), 11st 7lb (5yo+), wih 7lb allowance for fillies and mares.
Who is the leading jockey in the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle?
The joint-most successful jockey in the history of the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle is Ruby Walsh, who has ridden four winners of the race. His successor Paul Townend won last year's renewal. Davy Russell has won the race three times, most recently on Envoi Allen in 2020.
Who is the leading trainer in the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle?
Willie Mullins is the winning-most trainer with five winners and 10 placed in last 16 years. Gordon Elliott has won two of the last four renewals, indeed he saddled the one-two in 2020 and last year's runner up.