Go for Broke with Pem in the County
WILLIE Mullins and Dan Skelton have won seven of the last eight runnings of the County Hurdle (2:10) between them.
In that time, Mullins has four wins to Skelton’s three, but I think it could be level come around 2.15pm.
PEMBROKE won a couple of two-mile novice hurdles on softish ground over the winter, but then didn’t seem to stay when finishing second over two and a half miles here on Trials Day.
They were forced into running there because of abandonments and it was clear afterwards that a step back to a fast run two miles would suit better.
The brothers combined to win the Coral Cup on Wednesday with Langer Dan and they clearly know how to win this race.
Pembroke is a son of Blue Bresil, the same sire as the incredible Constitution Hill, and you just get the feeling they think Pembroke is better than a handicapper.
While it’s never easy to win one of these competitive handicaps, he looks a really solid each-way bet at 8/1 with William Hill and BetUK, who are both offering six places.
There are a whole host of interesting rivals, not least Mullins’ Hunters Yarn who could have run in Tuesday’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.
He has won his last two comfortably and really could be anything, while we know all there is to know about stablemate Sharjah.
Twice a runner-up in the Champion Hurdle, he has won numerous Grade Ones and could just be a class above these.
However, he would have preferred a sounder surface and there is a slight concern that he is better suited to the sharper Old Course than this sterner test of stamina.
Richard Spencer’s Wonderwall has been well backed over the past few days.
He had some decent form last season and after trying his luck over fences in November, connections decided to stay over hurdles and come here.
At around the 14/1 mark, he has an each-way chance, but I’m happy to stick with Pembroke.
Pembroke e/w 2.10pm Cheltenham