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Aintree Festival Day Three: Cole Harden worth taking on in Stayers’ Hurdle (1)

10 Apr | BY Betway | MIN READ TIME |
Aintree Festival Day Three: Cole Harden worth taking on in Stayers’ Hurdle (1)

Cheltenham form unlikely to hold up at this different venue

There should be some overnight rain at Aintree heading into Saturday but it’s nothing that should interfere with the ground meaning we should be as we were throughout the week for the biggest day’s racing of the year.

Court Minstrel can follow home God’s Own in Novices’ Chase

In the Grade 1 Novices’ Chase at 2.05 God’s Own is 9lbs clear of his nearest rival and it’s hard to argue a case against him.

He got within 6 lengths of Un De Sceaux at Cheltenham in the Arkle and since all his form has come on a sound surface he’ll enjoy conditions here.

The only negative would be perhaps he’s better going right handed but he has good form at left handed courses.


Forecast punters might be tempted by Traffic Fluide who is highly rated by trainer Gary Moore but all his form is in handicaps and his trainer is on record as saying he’s still a bit immature mentally.

In front of a big crowd here that could catch him out so preference is for Court Minstrel.

The 8yo certainly isn’t lacking any experience and although he was some way behind God’s Own at Cheltenham, he has an excellent record at Aintree so could get a lot closer this time around.

Zarkander and Whisper can reverse Cheltenham form with Cole Harden

Cole Harden (11/4) bids to do the stayers’ double in this years Aintree Stayers’ Hurdle but he was a shock winner at Cheltenham on a day where the front runners weren’t coming back to the field.

Zarkander (9/4) was 2 places behind at Cheltenham but looked unlucky, nearly falling earlier in the race and staying on well against the pace bias.

He’s won two big races here and was ridden too prominently in this last year to be seen to best effect. Compensation awaits here.


It would be no surprise to see Whisper (4/1) improve past Cole Harden too at this venue.

Whisper was 5th at Cheltenham on just his second start of the season and having won this last year, he’s clearly well suited to the course.

It is Zarkander that is fancied to come out on top though.

Edgardo Sol can take advantage of disappointing turnout in Listed Handicap

A relatively small field for the staying listed handicap chase at 3.25 with only 10 set to go to post.

Buywise is an interesting runner, the way he stayed on at Cheltenham suggests he’ll be suited by this step up in trip and he’s apparently quite hard to get fit so with just two runs this calendar year, he might be even better here than he was at Cheltenham.


Phillip Hobbs has won this twice in the last 5 years and he has Duke Of Lucca, who comes here instead of having a shot at the Grand National.

He seems like a horse without a trip though and it would be no surprise to see him get outpaced on this flat track.

Paul Nicholls’ Wonderful Charm is out of form as is Vino Griego so competition against Buywise looks a bit thin on the ground.

Your Busy can go close if his jumping holds up but the best value may lie with Edgardo Sol.

He ran really well here earlier in the season in a handicap that has worked out well enough and he’s now 3lbs better off.