JCB Triumph Hurdle – Friday 13 March

Let’s hope I can repeat my 10/1 success of Celestial Halo’s victory last year. Well, it won’t be 10/1 I’m afraid as my selection Walkon is now a best priced 9/1 with Boylesports. If you want to get involved then be quick as only Boylesport and Sportingbet have this price and it can only contract.

25/1 was available after being beaten by Zaynar (the current favourite for this race) at Newbury which was an incredibly generous price seeing as Walkon was giving the winner 7lbs and was a running on second. Added to that it had been stated by Alan King that he was his best juvenile and I just had to jump in! I reckon 9/1 is still value although note that the 2 bookies mentioned are only offering 1/4 odds 1,2,3 and not 1,2,3,4. There was further confidence shown by his trainer today who was quoted as stating Walkon is in ‘fantastic form’ plus a hint that he may turn around the form next time with Zaynar due to recent improvement.
Alan King has a great recent record in this race, winning with Penzance in 2005 and Katchit in 2007, so we can take what he says at face value. He has a great knack of progressing juveniles so they peak at the right time. There was an interesting article in the Racing Post recently stating that Nicky Henderson’s young horses (trainer of Zaynar) tend to peak on their first or second run so at the prices it has to be Walkon.
The Chepstow victory was very taking and King now intends his next run to be at the Festival Trials Day on 24 January, which will tee him up nicely for the big day. Experience of the course cannot be underestimated. Should he win, and I expect him too, then he will be challenging for favouritism.
Take the 9/1 now if you want to get involved.