The Grade 2 Kingwell Hurdle (Saturday 16 February) is a recognised trial for the Champion Hurdle, one that has been used as a stepping stone to Champion Hurdle success by the likes of Bula, Lanzarote, Alderbrook, and Hora La Loi III. It is run over a trip of 1 mile 7 furlongs and 65 yards during which runners must jump eight hurdles.
Kingwell Hurdle 10-Year-Trends
- Winners have been aged between five and eight
- Winners have been rated between 147 and 168
- Weights carried by the winners have ranged from 11-2 to 11-10
- Four of the last 10 favourites have won
- SP’s of the winners have ranged from 1/3 to 5/1
- Alan King has trained four of the last 10 winners
Kingwell Hurdle 2019 Main Contenders
If The Cap Fits
Highly-regarded seven-year-old whose only win this season came over two and a half miles at Ascot. Either side of that win he has been beaten by Verdana Blue over two miles, firstly here in the Kingwell Hurdle and most recently in the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton. The form of those runs gives him a great chance, but he does have to concede weight to all his rivals.
Won the Welsh Champion Hurdle in October and has run well in all his subsequent starts despite finishing second on three consecutive occasions. Despite his rating of 156 suggesting he has every chance, his latest two defeats by Brain Power and Global Citizen do suggest he could be vulnerable to a horse with more potential for improvement.
Trainer Paul Nicholls has won this race before with useful types, but this novice hurdler may be lacking the experience to win a race like this at this stage of his career. Nicholls does know the time of day though and this six-year-old was a major fancy for the recently postponed Betfair Hurdle, but he still needs to improve 10lb+ to have a chance of winning.
Vision Des Flos
Highly-touted youngster from the Colin Tizzard stable that took a while to find his feet over hurdles and was flattered to finish within two lengths of Buveur D’Air at Sandown last time. He also finished behind Silver Streak at Cheltenham earlier in the season and he may make a better chaser next season.
A drying weather forecast may tempt trainer Alan King to send his seven-year-old chaser back over hurdles, and his old hurdles form entitles him to plenty of respect in this sort of company. He won the Elite Hurdle in 2016 over course and distance and gets a few pounds from all his main rivals.
Kingwell Hurdle 2019 Summary& Betting Tip
It’s unlikely we’ll see the 2019 Champion Hurdler, and this looks a good opportunity for a young hurdler to take a step forward. Getaway Trump, Vision Des Flos, and Silver Streak all fit the bill and are all respected, as is Sceau Royal if he reverts to hurdles. However, If The Cap Fits has the best form in the book and his trainer Harry Fry has wanted to campaign him as a potential Champion Hurdler all season.
Kingwell Hurdle 2019 Tip
If The Cap Fits