The new jumps season has officially begun, and already the countdown to the 2020 Cheltenham Festival is underway.
Before that, there are meetings up and down the country to determine the runners at the pinnacle of the season, with a notable standout meeting at Kempton on Boxing Day likely to be a big indicator to the runners that we should be backing at the March festival.
But, which runners should punters be keeping a closer eye on for the duration of the season? Here are three that should be included in your horse racing bets.
One horse that many punters fell in love with during the Cheltenham January meeting in 2018 was Fakir D’oudairies when he ran away in the Triumph Hurdle Trial. He won by 13 lengths in the end from Fine Brunello. Hopes were high ahead of the festival last year, but it flattered to deceive in the Super novices.
It wasn’t a good day for the four-year-old, and he didn’t travel well at all as he finished fourth behind Klassical Dream. Regardless, he showed his ability as he stayed up the famous Cheltenham hill. This run was followed up with consecutive second places with Grade 1 company at Aintree and Punchestown. He will get better with age, and has already registered his first win of this new season in Navan. Here, he held off Melon to win by three lengths.
The Micky Hammond trained five-year-old enjoyed a winning start on his racecourse debut in Newcastle, and the performance was breathtaking. He ran away from the field to win by eleven lengths from Honda Fifty. The form of the race may not have stood out, but Crypto certainly did.
There are bigger things on the horizon for this horse, and that is echoed by connections that stumped up £200,000 to purchase him back in the Cheltenham sale in March. There is a reason behind that, and that is that Crypto is the half-brother of six winners. The trainer and owner will have no problems in finding the opportunities for Crypto as he could compete over hurdles and in Bumpers. He will likely be able to face a longer distance than two miles as he gains more experience on the course.
Many punters may be put off backing Lostintranslation again this season after so many close calls last season. However, he is a much-loved pick, and this could be the season when he really leaves his mark. He fell to Defi Du Seuil on back to back meetings at Sandown and Cheltenham but ended the season strongly by claiming a success at the Aintree festival.
In the Grade 1 there he was too strong for Topofthegame and won by six lengths. He has already started this season is the best kind of form and has claimed successes at Haydock and Carlisle. In the latter, he held off Count Meribel to win by two-and-a-half lengths, while at Haydock he outlasted Bristol De Mai to win by a length-and-a-half. Lostintranslation will be the star of this season.