Triumph Hurdle Tips - 1:20pm Cheltenham

A race for four year olds only and they take in eight jumps over two miles. This race proved to provide the shock of the festival last year when Goshen was a country mile clear of his opposition and unseated an inconsolable Jamie Moore. Burning Victory who was held up for much of the race took full advantage by staying on past tiring rivals to record a bloodless victory over Aspire Tower and Allmankind.

Statistics-wise favourites have a dismal record in the race and have only won three times in the last decade. Four of the last eight winners have used Leopardstown as a warm up for this race (Farclas, Ivanovich Gorbatov, Tiger Roll and Our Conor). All of the last ten winners had their previous run within fifty-five days of this race. No French horse has won this since Snow Drop in 2000. Nicky Henderson has won the race four times in the last twenty years and two of those came within the last six (Peace And Co and Pentland Hills).

Zanahiyr leads the betting market following three wins in as many starts since switching from the flat yard of Michael Halford. He has picked up Grade Three and Grade Two wins at Fairyhouse and Leopardstown just prior to Christmas. The way he travelled the last day showed that he can sit off a strong pace but can quickly make up ground as the race progresses. He jumped every hurdle with ease and went into a lot of notebooks following that effort.

Quilixios has always been held in high regard. He was good enough to win on his French debut for Francois Nicolle at Compeigne when he had a dozen lengths to spare over Yes Indeed. He subsequently was purchased by Cheveley Park Stud and shipped over to Ireland where he also made an instant impact. Two quick victories in the space of two weeks followed at Punchestown and Down Royal where he won by a combined thirty-three lengths. He was upped in class to contest the Grade One Juvenile Hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival where he won in fine style again. He is certainly well worth his place in this line-up and Jack Kennedy will have a headache deciding which of the leading pair to ride.

Adagio has plenty of experience around this track as he was runner-up in a Grade Two race here in November before winning the trial for this race the following month with something to spare over Historic Heart. He then landed a Grade One at Chepstow early in the new year getting the better of Nassalam and Houx Gris. He will be carrying the main hopes of the home nation and it would be foolish to write him off completely.

Tritonic has been a solid performer over middle distances for Alan King and was a decent fourth to Kingbrook in the Old Rowley Cup at Newmarket back in October. He has been switched to race over hurdles and made his debut at Ascot back in January. Despite looking in trouble at several points during the race and a mistake at the last, he kept on dourly in the closing stages to see off a game Casa Loupi. He certainly learned plenty from that experience though and followed up that win by landing a Grade Two at Kempton next time. Again that run was on a flat track and he needs to take another step forward to win this.

Quilixios brings some solid form to the table and he has to be high on any shortlist. He remains unbeaten and fulfils most of the prerequisite criteria required having won at the Dublin Racing Festival. An exciting future lies ahead for this Cheveley Park owned runner and he looks sure to be involved at the finish.

Punters Lounge Tip: Quilixios E/W @ 6/1 at William Hill - Click Here To Bet

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