Triumph Hurdle kicks off Gold Cup proceedings with Rolling Star set for success in opener

The Triumph Hurdle is the perfect way to kick-off Gold Cup day at the Cheltenham Festival.

The race is a four-year-old hurdle race, the premium one of the season, and always produces a horse that goes on to have a very successful career in the future.

To catch all the action live on March 15, look no further than bookmaker William Hill, who are streaming live coverage from Prestbury Park for the entire four days.

As one of the world’s top betting companies William Hill pride their selves on building a rapport with their customers. A high majority of their clients are horse racing gamblers, therefore they put a lot of time and effort into producing a top quality racing portal where punters can enjoy live streaming, along with exclusive punditry via their brilliant radio service.

Access to the streaming couldn’t be easier, and you don’t even need to place a bet to watch the RSA Chase unfold, all you need to do is sign up, free-of-charge, with William Hill and you will be able to access the stream and see how your horse gets on.

From a betting and trends perspective, there is no doubt that the Triumph Hurdle is a different race now since the introduction of the Fred Winter Handicap in 2005.

The big change in recent years is the fact that inexperienced horses with only one run under rules are now winning the Triumph rather than experienced horses.

Trainers are playing their hand very late in terms of their top Triumph Hurdle competitors, therefore keeping an eye on some particular races around late January and February looks a wise move. The Adonis Hurdle at Kempton in particular looks a race to keep an eye on. Five of the last 13 winners of the Kempton feature have gone onto double up at the Festival whilst many other winners have finished in the first four.

As a prep race only the King George VI Chase at Kempton can compete in terms of winners of any one specific race going on to win any other specific race at the Festival.

Another race to look out for is the Grade Two Finesse Hurdle, run on Cheltenham Trials Day. Katchit won that race before rafting success at the Festival in 2007 whilst Franchoek and Walkon went on to finish second after their Finesse Hurdle win.

Countrywide Flame’s win last season broke an 18 year losing run from horses taking part in the Finale Hurdle at Chepstow on Welsh National Day. The John Ferguson trained Ruacana ran out a ready winner of this year’s renewal and is likely to head to Cheltenham. You can get 33/1 on the gutsy four-year-old triumphing in the same manner as Countrywide Flame.

When evaluating trainer form for the Triumph Hurdle, it really doesn’t get any simpler. Powerful stables, who spend the most money on their horses, are the ones to follow in this race.

Nicky Henderson has win it give times, Paul Nicholls, Alan King and Phillip Hobbs twice and the others mopped up by John Quinn, Nigel Twiston-Davies and Willie Mullins. Second-rate stables are rarely worth a second look when the Triumph Hurdle is in town.

Nicholls’ seems to hold the key for this year’s renewal with Irish Saint, who can be backed at 14/1 with Paddy Power despite looking like the choice of Ruby Walsh for the race.

The four-year-old made quite an impression at Kempton over Christmas when thrashing the well-regarded Mcvicar, who was 18 lengths inferior to the all-the-way winner.

King could go to war with 16/1 shot L’Uique following his win at Aintree in December whilst Mullins has an intriguing runner in the form of the 12/1 Blood Cotli.


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