Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023 | Tips, Odds & Predictions

Scottish Grand National Champion Hurdle Betting Banner Scottish Grand National Champion Hurdle Betting Banner

The second and final day of the 2023 Scottish Grand National festival will feature eight thrilling races, including the showpiece Grand National itself. This is preceded by the Scottish Champion Hurdle, which is a Grade 2 National Hunt hurdle race that’s run over a distance of around two miles.

This is undoubtedly a prestigious race, and one that really challenges runners over nine tough hurdles at the famous Ayr Racecourse. It has been a staple of the Scottish Grand National Festival since the event moved to Ayr in 1966, and this year will see betting brand Coral become the race’s leading sponsor.

Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023 Betting Odds

While just eight runners contested the 2022 iteration of the Scottish Coral Champion Hurdle, a total of 19 horses have already been confirmed for this year’s race. This makes for an open and competitive field, so here’s a glimpse at the very latest Scottish Coral Champion Hurdle betting odds.

Colonel Mustard7.
Leau Du Sud8.508.008.508.008.508.50
Nemean Lion6.507.
Anna Bunina8.
Colonel Harry9.009.0010.008.008.509.00
Soaring Glory9.0010.0010.0013.0011.0011.00
First Street13.0015.0011.0015.0013.0013.00
Highway One O Two15.0013.0015.0015.0013.0013.00
Royal Mogul26.0029.0026.0017.0021.0026.00
Rich Belief26.0026.0026.0026.0026.0026.00

⚡ Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023 Preview

Coral scottish champion hurdle Coral scottish champion hurdle

The odds highlight the lack of a clear and obvious ante post favourite, so 2023 Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle betting will be a potential minefield. As part of my Scottish Champion Hurdle preview, however, I’m going to compare the four most likely winners at Ayr and their most recent form.

1️⃣ Colonel Mustard

Colonel Mustard is one of the early front runners in the eyes of bookmakers, despite this eight-year-old gelding having not won over the hurdles since Galway in October 2021.

However, this Lorna Fowler-trained runner has been competitive in his most recent National Hunt outings, having been edged by just two lengths by Benson in the Morebattle Handicap at Kelso in March. Colonel Mustard was prominent throughout this run, going second three fences out before being overpowered by Benson down the stretch.

These two will resume their battle in the Scottish Champion Hurdle, while there’s no doubt that both will have been buoyed by their respective performances over the challenging two-mile course in the same good-soft going they’re likely to encounter at Ayr.

Colonel Mustard is certainly in-form and offers exceptional value as an each-way bet, especially at a price of 11/2 with Unibet.

2️⃣ Benson

Sandy Thomson’s eight-year-old runner Benson is certainly a prominent contender at Ayr, particularly at an average starting price of 16/1. To this end, he has five wins and eight top-three finishes in 17 career hurdle outings to date, including his excellent run at Kelso where he finished ahead of Colonel Mustard.

This featured in a run of five successive top-two finishes heading into the Cheltenham Festival, while Benson also emerged victorious in the Fitzdares Hair Of The Dog Handicap Hurdle at Musselburgh in January.

However, he struggled for fluency in his last outing in the Class 1 Coral Cup Handicap Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival in March, tailing off towards the end of the two-mile five-furlong course before pulling up prior to the last fence.

This has cast some doubt over Benson’s ability to win at Ayr, but his consistency means that he deserves to be considered among the Scottish Champion Hurdle favourites for 2023. Once again, Benson offers particular value as an each-way bet in the current marketplace.

3️⃣ Iceo

Paul Nicholls’ five-year-old gelding is another key contender for the 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle, having won three of his six hurdle outings to date (and placing second in another race).

This sequence included a winning run at Sandown in March, when he prevailed in the Betfair Imperial Cup Handicap Hurdle over one mile and seven furlongs. What’s more, he won this Class 1 race by 3¾ lengths from the excellent Knickerbockerglory, who disputed the lead throughout and pushed Iceo every step of the way.

He has also won previously at Kempton and Dieppe, where he clearly showcased his ability to remain competitive and manage races over two miles or longer.

Iceo will start as the favourite with some sportsbooks at an average price of 6/1, and I’d expect this price to shorten over the coming days. So, if you’re interested in backing the runner as an outright or each-way wager, you should consider doing this as soon as possible.

4️⃣ Leau Du Sud

Some punters may fancy runners like Milkwood (who won in 2021) and defending champion Anna Bunina to do well this time around. However, Milkwood is now nine years old and pulled up in the County Handicap Hurdle at Cheltenham last time out, while only one runner has ever won back-to-back Scottish Champion Hurdles (and that was Sea Pigeon back in 1977 and 1978).

But could Dan Skelton’s five-year-old runner Leau Du Sud emerge as a potential winner at Ayr? The short answer is yes, particularly when you consider his performance in the aforementioned Morebattle Handicap Hurdle at Kelso last month.

Here, he trailed closely behind fellow Champion Hurdle runners Benson and Colonel Mustard, with an excellent and steady performance only let down by a weakened run-in.

Leau Du Sud can be backed at a market high of 15/2 with Betway and Ladbrokes Sports, and while French runners don’t usually enjoy success in this race, he has a unique chance to buck this trend in 2023.

⭐ Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023 Betting Tips

Now that you’ve seen the ante post odds and most likely winners, it’s time to start placing your wagers! Before you do, however, here’s a select few Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023 betting tips to help you on your way!

✔️ Be Selective When Studying the Form

A quick glance at the form reveals that there’s no clear favourite to win the 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle at Ayr, which is also reflected by the early ante post odds.

So, to identify genuine value in the published prices and determine the most likely winner, I’d recommend delving deeper into previous performances and appraising key factors such as distance, the going and the grading of individual races and their difficulty.

In this instance, you should favour runners that have fared well over two miles or more during their career, while also appraising performances in the type of good-soft going that’s likely to be found at Ayr.

Similarly, pay particular attention to each runner’s most recent form and performances, especially if they competed at the Cheltenham Festival. This event precedes the Scottish Grand National Festival by a month, while five of the 10 Scottish Champion Hurdle winners since 2012 have also performed with distinction at Cheltenham.

✔️ Bet on Multiple Races at the Scottish Grand National Festival

Remember, the Champion Hurdle is one of 15 races scheduled to take place at the two-day Scottish Grand National Festival in 2023, including the Scottish Grand National itself.

Both races will take place on Saturday 22nd April, which also hosts the Future Champion Novices’ Chase and the Scotty Brand Handicap Chase.

So, you may want to consider deploying your bankroll across multiple races and bet types, enabling you to consider as many potential outcomes as possible and make the most of your starting bankroll.

Of course, betting on multiple races at the Scottish Grand National Festival requires careful and disciplined bankroll management, as you must never wager more than you can afford to lose during any given festival or timeframe.

✔️ Make Use of Each-Way Bets

In all forms of sports betting, it’s crucial that you take every reasonable step to insure your wagers and minimise the risk of loss.

There are many ways in which you can achieve this when engaging in horse racing betting, but one of the best options is to make use of so-called “each-way” wagers.

Such bets enable you to split your stake amount between two different outcomes, with half backing your chosen runner to win and the remainder staked on them finishing in the top four (or five if you opt into an ‘Extra Place’ promotion through sportsbooks like Ladbrokes).

This ensures that you’ll recoup at least some of your stake even if your runner doesn’t win, and it’s a great way of insuring your bets and capping potential losses.

🏆 Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023 Favorites to Win

There’s no doubt that betting on the Scottish Champion Hurdle is a challenging pastime in 2023, with no standout ante post favorite and a number of evenly matched runners in contention to win.

I like the look of Iceo, however, who has fared well in his six hurdle races to date and won superbly in the Imperial Cup Handicap Hurdle at Sandown last time out. Overall, he has placed in the top two in four of his career races over the jumps, while he also comes from the excellent Paul Nicholls stable.

Over the last 20 Scottish Champion Hurdle outings, Paul Nicholls is the second most successful trainer from a statistical perspective, having achieved one win and eight placed finishes from a total of 23 runners.

While my 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle prediction is that Iceo will win, he’ll undoubtedly face stiff competition from both Colonel Mustard and Benson, who engaged in an epic battle in the Morebattle Handicap at Kelso last month.

Benson ultimately edged this race by two lengths, while the eight-year-old gelding has a total of five wins and eight top-three finishes in 17 career hurdle outings to date. What’s more, he can be backed at 20/1 to win with Mr Green, so he’s an ideal selection either as an outside punt or each-way wager.

For his part, Colonel Mustard also offers value as an each-way selection. After all, he has continued to remain competitive on the National Hunt circuit of late, although his failure to win a hurdles race since October 2021 means he’s unlikely to come in first at Ayr.

🏆 My Prediction: Iceo to Win! 🏇

🎁The Best Free Bets Offers for the Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023

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❓ Frequently Asked Questions About the Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023

By now, you should have a pretty good idea of who you want to back to win the 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle and your preferred wager types. To bring this Champion Hurdle betting guide to a close, however, I’m also going to answer a few of your most frequently asked questions about the race.

1️⃣ When is the Champion Hurdle at the 2023 Scottish Grand National?

Historically, the Champion Hurdle at Ayr would take place the day before the Scottish Grand National. More recently, however, it has been run on the same day and in advance of the National, and the 2023 iteration will start at around 2.25 GMT on Saturday, 22nd April.

2️⃣ What is the prize money for the Scottish Champion Hurdle 2023

The total prize fund for the 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle is estimated to be in excess of €70,000. The winner of this race will earn a total of €42,713 on behalf of their jockey and trainer, along with the prestige of prevailing in one of Scotland’s most iconic races.

3️⃣ Who is the Favourite to Win the 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle?

Ultimately, there’s no clear favourite to win the 2023 iteration of the Coral Scottish Champion Hurdle, although Colonel Mustard and Iceo can both be backed at an average price of 6/1. The ante post odds also present some compelling each-way betting opportunities, especially with Morebattle Handicap winner Benson priced as high as 20/1.

4️⃣ Where can I bet on the 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle?

You can bet on this year’s iteration of the 2023 Scottish Champion Hurdle at a number of sportsbooks online, including Betinireland’s recommended operators. These sites are ranked according to a number of key criteria, and are proven to be trustworthy, secure and home to highly competitive odds. To learn more, I’d urge you to check out the latest bookmakers reviews on the Betinireland website.

✒️ Lewis Humphries iGaming and Sports Betting Expert

Lewis Humphries is an experienced sportswriter and tipster from the UK. He writes regularly about the horse racing and key events from across the UK and Ireland, including the Irish Grand National, the Cheltenham Gold Cup and the Aintree Grand National. He’s also providing extensive coverage and predictions for the 2023 Easter Festival at Fairyhouse.

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