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Who could establish themselves as superstars at the 2022 Cheltenham Festival?

by Staff Writer
07 Feb 2022 at 07:01hrs | Views
The Cheltenham Festival is a National Hunt meeting that horse racing fans around the world look forward to each year. Not only do we see the sport's best take each other on in their respective divisions, but it is also the place where novices turn into big stars.

There is so much to look forward to at this year's meeting. Here is a look at some exciting novices who could prevail and enhance their reputation at the four-day event.

Constitutional Hill

Former Champion Trainer Nicky Henderson has had some impressive winners of the Supreme Novices' Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival. He could be set to claim the race for the fifth time this year with Constitutional Hill, one of a number of talented novices from the Seven Barrows yard.

The unbeaten hurdler is the +200 favorite in the odds for UK and Irish racing on the opening race of the meeting. He has held that position ever since he scored in impressive style in the Grade One Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown.
It looks set to be a strong renewal of the Supreme Novices' Hurdle this year. If Constitutional Hill can beat the best of the UK and Ireland, he could establish himself as the best novice hurdler in the sport.

Bob Olinger

Irish horse Bob Olinger was one of the most impressive winners at the 2021 Cheltenham Festival. Henry De Bromhead's runner stretched away from his rivals up the hill at Prestbury Park in the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle, scoring by just over seven lengths.

The early signs this season suggest Bob Olinger could be even better over fences. He is unbeaten in two chase appearances, with his latest victory coming in the Grade Three Kildare Novice Chase at Punchestown.
Back-to-back successes at the Cheltenham Festival would be a fine achievement from the seven-year-old. It will also leave connections with a big decision to make about next season as to which of the major chase races they should target. The Cheltenham Gold Cup and Queen Mother Championship could both be options.

Pied Piper

Trainer Gordon Elliott has a strong hand in the Triumph Hurdle this year and Pied Piper could be at the top of that pecking order. The four-year-old prevailed on Trials Day at Cheltenham where his jockey Davy Russell did not need to come off the bridle on his horse.

The former Flat horse, who used to be trained in the UK by John Gosden, looks to have a bright future over hurdles. The son of New Approach was bred by the Queen, so Her Majesty is sure to have a strong interest in the novice race at the Festival.

Elliott has to confirm the plans for his novice hurdler. There is the possibility that Pied Piper could line up in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle over the short trip of 2m. Whichever race connections choose to take on, their horse is going to take some beating.

The 2022 Cheltenham Festival takes place between 15-18 March and there will be 28 races across those four days in what should be a bumper week of racing.

Source - Byo24News