Top Novices' Hurdle Odds

Felix Desjy winning 2019 Top Novices' Hurdle at Aintree.
Felix Desjy winning 2019 Top Novices' Hurdle at Aintree.

The two-mile novice hurdle division is always an exciting one, and we can expect a top quality renewal this season. 

The latest odds for the Top Novices’ Hurdle will be listed below just as soon as they become available.

Top Novices’ Hurdle Tips

You can find our tip for the Top Novices’ Hurdle a little closer to the time. 

What is the Top Novices’ Hurdle?

The Top Novices’ Hurdle is a Grade 1 contest over two miles, held on the second day of the Grand National Festival at Aintree, Ladies Day. 

The race is regularly contested by runners from the previous month’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival, with the last horse to complete the double being Browne’s Gazette in 1984. 

The race was upgraded to Grade 1 status in 2016. 

What happened in the 2019 Top Novices’ Hurdle?

With three of the first four from the Supreme missing, the Top Novices’ Hurdle felt wide open, and the market was dominated by those who did arrive here from Cheltenham; Itchy Feet (third), Felix Desjy (fifth) and Aramon (sixth). 

The first-named was beaten from an early stage, and it was left to Felix Desjy and Aramon to battle out the finish, and it was Felix Desjy who came out on top under a fine front-running ride, finding more on the run-in when challenged at the final flight. Felix Desjy is reportedly going novice chasing this season, and we could see him back at Aintree in 2020. 

The History of the Top Novices’ Hurdle

Run over two miles and half a furlong, the Top Novices’ Hurdle has been a staple of the Grand National meeting for quite some time, though it has grown in stature since the turn of the century - eventually being awarded Grade 1 status in 2016. 

The race regularly sees the key players from the previous month’s Supreme Novices’ Hurdle take their chance, though it can often cause an upset, with the last horse to complete the double being Browne’s Gazette in 1984. 

Several winners of the Top Novices’ Hurdle have gone on to bigger and better things, including the 2016 winner, Buveur d’Air, who won back-to-back renewals of the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham in 2017 and 2018. 

Who is the most iconic winner of the Top Novices’ Hurdle?

There have been some fantastic winners of this race down the years, but there are perhaps none more iconic than the Nicky Henderson-trained Buveur d'Air.

Buveur d’Air was a comfortable winner of the Top Novices Hurdle in 2016, and he went on to dominate the two-mile hurdling division for the next two seasons, winning ten races in a row - including back-to-back renewals of both the Aintree Hurdle and the Champion Hurdle, in 2017 and 2018.

Buveur d’Air suffered defeat at both Cheltenham and Aintree in 2019, but bounced back to form in the Punchestown equivalent in May, and he will return to try and regain his throne in 2020. 

Are there any trial races for the Top Novices’ Hurdle?

As a Grade 1 novice hurdle, there is a defined path to the Top Novices’ Hurdle, and runners tend to head here after taking their chance in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham. Earlier in the season, it’s worth keeping an eye on the Tolworth Novices’ Hurdle at Sandown, the Supreme Trial at Cheltenham, and the Supreme Trial at Haydock Park. 

Who is the most successful jockey in the Top Novices’ Hurdle?

The winning most rider in the history of the Top Novices’ Hurdle is the great AP McCoy, with five wins. McCoy’s five wins in the race came courtesy of Fataliste (1998), Straw Bear (2006), Blythe Kight (2007), Darlan (2012) and My Tent Or Yours (2013).

Who is the most successful trainer in the Top Novices’ Hurdle?

Nicky Henderson has dominated the race in recent years, picking up each of his five wins in the race since 2010. Henderson’s five successes in the Top Novices’ Hurdle came courtesy of General Miller (2010), Darlan (2012), My Tent Or Yours (2013), Josses Hill (2014) and Buveur D'Air (2016).

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