County Handicap Hurdle Predictions, Betting Tips & Odds (Cheltenham 2024 - DAY 4)

  • Written by David Bet
County Handicap Hurdle Predictions, Betting Tips & Odds (Cheltenham 2024 - DAY 4)

The County Hurdle (formerly known as Vincent O Brien County Handicap Hurdle) is one of the oldest races at the Cheltenham Festival, a class A grade 3 hurdle for horses aged five and over, run on the Cheltenham New Course over a distance of 2 miles and 1 furlong. Dan Skelton's Faivoir - ridden by Bridget Andrews - was an impressive winner of last year's County Hurdle at odds of 33/1. Find below our Cheltenham 2024 McCoy Contractors County Handicap Hurdle race preview, with odds, tips, predictions, trends, free bets and betting promotions.

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The County Hurdle is one of the most difficult races to back a winner at the Cheltenham National Hunt Racing Festival. It's a Grade 3 National Hunt handicap hurdle race, run over two miles and one furlong, for horses aged five years and upwards. The race always attracts the maximum field, making it full of potentially well handicapped horses, who all will fancy their chances of winning.

Willie Mullins and Dan Skelton have saddled eight of the last nine winners so expect them to have a good chance in the 2024 County Handicap Hurdle once again.

And now we take a closer look at this year's McCoy Contractors County Handicap Hurdle  and try to determine which horse is likely to prevail.

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Who will win the County Handicap Hurdle 2024?

KING OF KINGSFIELD heads the market at time of writing. Gordon Elliott's novice finished runner-up to stablemate Farren Glory in the Royal Bond and was a brilliant third last time out - behind Ballyburn - at the Dublin Racing Festival. He has been running in Grade 1 company and the handicapper has left him off his Irish rating.

PIED PIPER, runner-up in last year's renewal, will again carry top-weight off a two-pound higher mark. Herrives fresh and that could be helpful.

Henry De Bromhead's MAGICAL ZOE look King of Kingsfield's main threat. She was second in the Mares' Novices' Hurdle here last season, and enjoyed success at Gowran Park in September. She was last seen when second in a 21-runner ultra-competitive handicap at Leopardstown last month.

LEAU DU SUD, for multiple winning trainer Dan Skelton, left behind a poor showing in the Greatwood Hurdle to be a close 2nd in the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury in his most recent outing. Coming from the race's top stable, the six-year-old can't be overlooked off a mark of 135.

SO SCOTTISH produced his best hurdles effort when coming fourth at the Dublin Racing Festival last time out, against some of the runners in this race while defending champion FAIVOIR caught the eye once again when fifth under the inexperienced Heidi Palin in the Betfair Hurdle.

Willie Mullins has entered the classy mares ZENTA and RISK BELLE, as well as other interesting horses such as ABSURDE and BIALYSTOCK, who finished only a length-and-a-half behind King Of Kingsifeld off level weights in the Grade 1 Royal Bond Novice Hurdle at Fairyhouse earlier this season.

ZENTA finished third behind stablemate Lossiemouth in the Triumph Hurdle last season, before winning a Grade 1 contest at Aintree in April. She delivered another solid performance few weeks ago when finishing third in a competitive race at Leopardstown.

Harry Fry's ALTOBELLI, Gary Moore's pair of HANSARD, Ben Pauling's BAD, Sam Thomas' LUMP SUM, Olly Murphy's GO DANTE, and PANJARI for Paul Nicholls are other possible contenders.

At the moment, the most backed horses are the following:

  • LiveScoreBet Horse RacingLeau Du Sud5/1Bet
  • BetUK Betting BonusKing Of Kingsfield11/2Bet
  • Coral betting bonusAbsurde 13/2Bet
  • Bet365 Betting BonusZenta  11/1Bet
  • Ladbrokes Betting BonusSo Scottish12/1Bet
  • Betfred Betting BonusFaivoir12/1Bet
  • ThePoolsMagical Zoe  12/1Bet

All the bookmakers we recommend are offering No Runner No Bet on every Cheltenham Festival race.


  • Just 2 of the last 17 favourites won (2 of the last 4)
  • Just 3 of the last 17 winners returned at single figure odds
  • 12 of the last 17 winners failed to win last time out
  • 7 of the last 10 winners had run at Cheltenham before
  • 11 of the last 17 winners were Irish trained
  • 14 of the last 18 winners were rated in the 130’s
  • 11 of the last 12 winners carried 11st 5lbs or less
  • 13 of the last 18 winners were aged 5 or 6 years-old



Find below our free betting tips on the McCoy Contractors County Hurdle 2024. Feel free to copy our Cheltenham Festival expert predictions and get the highest prices available on this race by clicking the 'Bet' button! Plus, we invite you to take a look at our NAP of the Day section everyday.

  • BetUK Betting Bonus
    Kings Of Kingfield  *
  • LiveScoreBet Horse Racing
    Leau Du Sud  *
  • Coral betting bonus
    Each Way
    Bialystock *
* tipped on 26th February 2024

Ruby Walsh's Tips

"Zenta is Willie Mullins’ best chance but I’m with Leau Du Sud. Dan Skelton told me he really fancies him, as he did with Unexpected Party who bolted up on Wednesday, so I’ll side with him!"

  • Ruby WalshRuby Walsh's County Handicap Hurdle Tips
    Leau Du Sud (Winner)


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What time is the County Handicap Hurdle?

The McCoy Contractors County Handicap Hurdle is the 2nd race run on Day 4 of the Cheltenham Festival. That falls on Friday March 15, 2024 and the official starting time is 2:10pm.

How many obstacles are jumped in the County Handicap Hurdle?

There are 8 obstacles to jump for the County Handicap Hurdle runners

What is the distance of the County Handicap Hurdle?

The County Handicap Hurdle is run on a distance of 2 miles and 179 yards

What is the prize money for the County Handicap Hurdle?

The total prize money on offer for the County Handicap Hurdle at the 2024 Cheltenham Festival will be £100,000.

Who won the County Handicap Hurdle last year?

Last year's renewal was won by Faivoir at SP of 33/1, trained by Dan Skelton and ridden by Bridget Andrews.

What weights are carried for the County Handicap Hurdle?

As it is a traditional National Hunt handicap hurdle, weights range from 11 st 12 lb for the top weight, to 10 st for the bottom weight.

Who is the leading jockey in the County Handicap Hurdle?

Ruby Walsh has ridden the winner of the race on four occasions. Since his retirement, Paul Townend, now first jockey to Willie Mullins, has ridden three winners. Harry Skelton and Bridget Andrews have won twice.

Who is the leading trainer in the County Handicap Hurdle?

The most successful trainer in the County Hurdle (since 1946) is Willie Mullins with six wins, while Paul Nicholls and Dan Skelton have won this race four times. No other trainers have recorded multiple wins in the County Handicap.

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