Death Duty to ease to victory in Naas Grade 1 on Sunday

Sunday 8th January, 2017 - 1:50pm Naas - Lawlor's Hotel Novice Hurdle

Death Duty has been one of the most impressive novice hurdlers this season and the Gordon Elliott-trained six-year-old will aim to record his fourth win in a row on Sunday when he lines up as a red-hot favourite for the Grade 1 Lawlor's Hotel Novice Hurdle, which takes centre stage at Naas.

  • Death Duty is ante-post favourite for Neptune & Albert Bartlett
  • Willie Mullins has trained the last three winners of this race (saddles Augusta Kate & Turcagua)
  • Blood Crazed Tiger has won last three races

Sunday 8th January - 1.50pm OddsWon/LostBet
Lawlor's Hotel Novice Hurdle    
Tips Death Duty to win    Best Bet @ 4 / 7  

Death Duty Set To Enhance Reputation With Win

Back-to-back Graded wins at Navan has seen Death Duty launch into the limelight and he is currently heading the betting for both the Neptune Novices' Hurdle and the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival in March, but first of all he will have to down five rivals in Sunday's showpiece, however, the 4/7 available with Paddy Power suggests he should do just that with the minimum of fuss.

An impressive three-and-three-quarter length success over Monalee at Navan last month saw Death Duty slashed across the board for the aformentioned Cheltenham novice events, but it was the way he pulled clear of some smart rivals that day that saw his price plummet, and if he can continue on an upward curve here then it's hard to not see him landing the coveted prize.

This race has often been a significant stepping stone to big-race glory and Elliott has often had a glint in his eye when referring to Death Duty, and a win in this event could see him cement his place as one of the most exciting novice hurdlers around, and it's hard to not see him dominate once again in a race that lacks significant strength in depth.

Kate Spearheads Mullins Duo

Willie Mullins has trained the winner of the race for the last three years, but the master of Co. Carlow will have his work cut out to make it a fourth win in a row, howeve, he will saddle a dual-pronged attack here and is obvious first string is the smart mare Augusta Kate, who is a 10/3 shot with Paddy Power.

Seventh in the Champion Bumper at last season's Cheltenham Festival, she then finished a fine second at Aintree a month later, and has duly blossomed this season with two wins in a row, but having only been over hurdles once in her career then she could benefit from this experience, and while she will receive weight from her male adversaries she may just come unstuck at this high level at this stage of her career.

Turcagua will be the second shot fired by the Mullins' gun, and he broke his duck over hurdles at Punchestown last time out, however, she was down the field in the Champion Bumper in March, and it's hard to see him being able to turn the form around with Augusta Kate, so it's no surprise to see him as big as 10/1 with Paddy Power Bookmakers, and looks the Mullins' second string here.

Tiger Could Roar For Elliott

While all eyes will be on Death Duty for the Elliott yard he will also saddle Blood Crazed Tiger, who was a Listed winner last time out, and has racked up a string of wins, so could be very interesting at 10/1 with Paddy Power, and may be good enough to record a one-two for the stable.

His experience is sure to hold him in good stead, and while he may struggle to down his classy stablemate he could well get the better of August Kate, and makes much more appeal for punters looking to have a bet against the odds-on jolly, who should prove too good at the weekend.

2017 Lawlor's Hotel Novice Hurdle Odds

Posted: Friday, 6th January 2017
Author: Steve Chambo

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