Lanzarote Hurdle 2022 Tips: Back this improver to claim Kempton glory

A hugely competitive field line up in the Lanzarote Hurdle on Saturday.
A hugely competitive field line up in the Lanzarote Hurdle on Saturday.

One of the toughest betting heats on Saturday afternoon is the Lanzarote Hurdle, which takes place at Kempton Park, and our man Steve Chambers previews the event here and picks out his best bet...

Nicky Henderson has won two of the last four renewals of the Lanzarote Hurdle, and the master of Seven Barrows will unleash a three-pronged attack at the 2022 race, and his team will be spearheaded by the heavily supported Marie's Rock, who has been backed into favouritism for the race. A hugely impressive seven-length winner at Kempton on Boxing Day, the Middleham Park-owned raider will return to the scene of that romp, but will have to defy a significant 9lb hike in the handicap. She was dominant in that late December contest, and shaped like there's a lot more to come, and lining up over the same trip this weekend she has to be one of the leading contenders. Her stablemate Call Me Lord adds more depth to the Henderson charge, but he has struggled for form of late, and with top weight to carry looks one to avoid, while Monte Cristo is another that will struggle.

Paul Nicholls has trained the classy duo of Saphir Du Rheu (2014) and Modus (2019) to victory in this contest and he will saddle another exciting prospect in the shape of Gelino Bello, who has twice chased home the Albert Barltett Novices' Hurdle favourite Blazing Khal at Cheltenham, which is very smart form. Venturing into the handicap sphere for this contest, the six-year-old is open to notable improvement this campaign, and a mark of 138 is workable, but he will come up against some battle-hardened rivals here, and it could be that he just comes unstuck in what is a hugely competitive event.

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Towards the bottom of the handicap, the Venetia Williams-trained Green Book is another heading to Kempton in the form of his life, as wins at Ludlow and Haydock have catapulted him up the handicap. Given an 8lb rise for his most recent win, Green Book will take his chance off 130 on Saturday, but with Ned Fox taking 10lbs off his back then he could be one of those improvers at the bottom of the weights that lands a notable blow.

A winner of the County Hurdle at the 2019 Cheltenham Festival off a mark of 146, Dan Skelton's Ch'tibello will take his chance off 142 in Saturday's event, and with a decent 7lbs claimer on his back then he's weighted sensationally well to go very close. Unable to kick on from that Cheltenham win, Skelton's charge was last seen finishing fourth at Hereford, and he will need to improve considerably on that effort in a tougher race.

One contender that has been riding the crest of a wave over hurdles is Jamie Snowden's UP FOR PAROL, who has won three of his five career hurdle races, and off a mark of 133 looks to stand a terrific chance. A fine third in the Persian War Novices' Hurdle at Chepstow at the start of the season was followed by a disappointing run over fences next time out, so Snowden opted to return to hurdles with his improver, and he relished the switch. A comfortable winner off a mark of 127 at Haydock Park last time out, he's been given a 6lb rise, but that looks fair and he can improve once again. He will step up in trip for the Lanzarote, so he will need to show he can see out 2m 5f, but he's bred to stay three miles, so the extra distance could well bring on some improvement and he can strike here.

Of the others, former winner William Henry may not be the force of old, but he has shown he can deliver in this contest, so could be an each-way play, while the likes of Earth Lord, Dans Le Vent and Cobblers Dream add more depth to a terrific betting contest for punters to work out.

Lanzarote Hurdle
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