Flogas Novice Chase Betting Preview 06/02/16
Top Irish Novices take centre stage at Leopardstown on Saturday and it should provide plenty of clues for the top spring festivals. It is a competitive race despite only having six runners. Selection goes to Zabana who is best priced with Coral at 7/2.
He is the selection for many reasons. Firstly he was the highest rated hurdler in the field having finished second in the Coral Cup at the Cheltenham Festival and third in a Grade One at the Punchestown Festival. These two runs represent a good level of form over hurdles. He may have only had one run over fences but it was an impressive debut where he beat the re-opposing Blair Perrone. Zabana should uphold that form and is taken to improve from that experience. Another final positive is that he has been well backed for a big target at the Cheltenham Festival. This seems to suggest that connections think highly of him and he is taken to win this competitive contest.
Main competition could come from Outlander who is currently best priced with Paddy Power at 3/1. He was a good novice hurdler last season and appears to be even better over fences. He is two from two over fences so far and looks to be a good prospect. The latest of his two wins came in a Grade Two and he looks more than capable of making the step up into Grade One company. Another positive is the fact that Bryan Cooper has opted to ride him over Mckinley who is also owned by Gigginstown House Stud.
A final horse of note is Pont Alexandre. He is best priced with Bet365 at 11/4. He has always been very highly thought of in the Willie Mullins stable and this is a big compliment given the number of quality horses he has had recently. Pont Alexandre should be more suited to Saturday’s trip with him being dropped in distance from three miles to two miles and five furlongs. He appeared to be outstayed slightly last time out and Saturday’s trip should help. His jumping should hold him in good stead on Saturday and he shouldn’t be too far away.
Selection goes to Zabana, who was the best of these over hurdles and is taken to confirm this form over fences. Most likely to follow him home is Outlander with Pont Alexandre set to complete the frame. Get all the latest betting previews here.