YOU could be forgiven for scratching your head at some of the horses left in the Ladbroke World Hurdle. Seasoned chasers like Grand Crus, novices such as Back In Focus and unexposed types like Whispering Gallery are among the 33 entries. It’s all because of the enforced absence of the beast that is Big Buck’s. He has a habit of scaring away the opposition but without him owners and trainers are sensing the possibility of Grade One glory. The upshot is that there is a lot of value for punters…
OSCAR WHISKY will go off favourite but 7/2 is not for me. He does stay but will he get up the hill as well as others? REVE DE SIVOLA has the form to win after excellent victories in the Long Walk and Cleeve hurdles but I doubt whether he will be as effective on ground that is likely to be livelier than he would like.
I’d love to see PEDDLERS CROSS bounce back to his best and if he does the 10/1 is outstanding value. There is just a nagging feeling that he may struggle and previous efforts may have left their mark.
MONKSLAND looks to have an outstanding chance although 5/1 isn’t great value and I just wonder about the strength of his recent form. Looking further down the market, one who looks a decent each-way proposition is SMAD PLACE, who was a fine third last year. He could easily run into a place again at around the 14/1 mark.
But what about some of the more fanciful contenders? John Ferguson must think a lot of WHISPERING GALLERY to give him an entry and I was really impressed with him at Wetherby last time, although the World Hurdle is… well, a different world away from a novice hurdle in North Yorkshire. Plus, he is more likely to run in the Neptune. If he runs the the 66/1 might be worth a few shillings each-way.
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Who do you fancy for the Ladbroke World Hurdle? Feel free to leave a comment…