Crabbie’s Top Novices’ Hurdle – Aintree – 14:20
With hardly anything separating the frontrunners for the first Grade One race at Aintree on Friday, the likes of River Wylde, Moon Racer and Lough Derg Spirit are the current favourites with the bookmakers, with trainers Nicky Henderson and David Pipe battling it out for the share of the spoils. Having finished third in the Supreme Hurdle, River Wylde previously held an unbeaten record over hurdles following wins at Ludlow and Kempton, with a 30% strike rate making him one of the best picks for Friday’s race. Meanwhile, Moon Racer is much fancied for Pipe despite pulling up when well beaten in the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham last month. The 11-year-old has something to prove, with just a 14% strike rate throughout his career. Lough Derg Spirit is an interesting contender following wins in two of his last three starts over hurdles, coming into Aintree fresh having skipped the Cheltenham Festival.
River Wylde to win @ 9/4 Black Type, WilliamHill, BetVictor
High Secret, each way @ 14/1 Paddy Power
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