Cheltenham Festival: Sir Gerhard wins Supreme Novices’ Hurdle if jumping is OK – Frank Hickey

Sir Gerhard's on the charge for Cheltenham glory.

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Sir Gerhard made it two from two over flights by landing the Tattersalls Ireland Novice Hurdle at the Dublin Racing Festival on Sunday.

Despite making a number of jumping blunders, Willie Mullins’ charge made all to win by 6l, strengthening his claims for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at next month’s Cheltenham Festival.

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There is little to split the prominent players in our betting for the Supreme but, speaking on the latest episode of our Cheltenham Countdown podcast series, Paddy’s trader Frank Hickey believes Sir Gerhard’s a sure thing as long as he delivers a decent enough round of jumping.

Sir Gerhard’s stablemate Facile Vega also wowed at Leopardstown in the Future Stars on Saturday, a performance which left Frank purring ahead of the Champion Bumper. You can listen to the Cheltenham Countdown show in full BELOW.

Frank Hickey:

“If Sir Gerhard jumps fairly OK then he’ll win the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle. I said that to a couple of people in the pub after and they laughed at me but look at his time!

“He was three-and-a-half seconds faster than Honeysuckle and three-and-a-half seconds faster than the handicap hurdle winner – and that’s including poor jumping.

“It was a phenomenal performance when looking at the clock. As long as he jumps adequately he’ll win. He doesn’t even have to jump brilliantly.

“Facile Vega was brilliant in the Future Stars. I reckon the second, Sandor Clean, is very good and he’s hammered him. Your only slight concern would be Appreciate It and Kilcruit did something similar and they both got beaten at Cheltenham. What he did on Saturday was fairly mind-blowing.”

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