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2022 Mares' Hurdle Tips - Two to back on Champions' Day

02 Feb 2022
Jon Vine 02 Feb 2022
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  • Ante-post tips and odds for the 2022 Mares' Hurdle
  • This Grade One takes place on day one of the Cheltenham Festival on Tuesday 15th March 2022
  • Tellmesomethinggirl is our best bet at the ante-post stage
  • We're also backing Indefatigable each way at 14/1
Jockey Rachael Blackmore rides horse Telmesomethinggirl (R) to win the Parnell Properties Mares' Novices' Hurdle. (Getty)

The fourth and final Grade One race on day one of the Cheltenham Festival is the Mares’ Hurdle. The most famous winner of this two-and-half-mile contest is Quevega, who secured six victories in a row between 2009 and 2014, making her the most successful horse in the history of this famous meeting.

This year’s Mares’ Hurdle looks as open a renewal as we’ve ever seen. I’ve taken a look through the ante-post betting and picked out my best Cheltenham Festival tips.
    Table Of Contents
  • 2022 Mares’ Hurdle Odds
  • Mullins’ Mares
  • Irish Raiders
  • Home Challenge
  • 2022 Mares’ Hurdle Tips – Best Bet
  • 2022 Mares’ Hurdle Tips – Value Bet

2022 Mares’ Hurdle Odds

Royal Kahala5/1
Stormy Ireland6/1
Heaven Help Us7/1
Burning Victory10/1
Mrs Milner10/1
Martello Sky12/1

*Odds taken on 2/2/22*

Mullins’ Mares

Stormy Ireland2022 Mares' HurdleGET 6/1 HERE
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Since Quevega claimed the last of her six wins, Willie Mullins has won with Glens Melody, Vroum Vroum Mag and Benie Des Dieux. It has, however, been four years since Ireland’s Champion Trainer has lifted the David Nicholson trophy, having been thwarted by Roksana, Honeysuckle and Black Tears in recent season.

Given his record in mares’ only events at the Cheltenham Festival, it’s no surprise to see plenty of Willie’s runners sitting near the top of the market. Concertista sits atop the ante-post betting with some firms, despite the fact she tops the Mares’ Chase betting following two solid wins over fences.

Stormy Ireland finished second in this race behind Roksana in 2019 and fifth as Honeysuckle won the following season. Since re-joining Mullins’ yard last spring, Stormy Ireland has won a Grade One within her own sex and two Grade Twos in open company, beating likes of McFabulous and Guard Your Dreams to land the Relkeel Hurdle on her most recent start.

Former Triumph Hurdle winner, Burning Victory placed second in the Cesarewitch during the autumn and finished best of the rest as Klassical Dream and Flooring Porter battled it out in the Christmas Hurdle at Leopardstown. Echoes In Rain has struggled in both the Morgiana and the Matheson Hurdle this term, but she impressed in novice company during 2021 and could be stepped up in trip at Cheltenham.

Finest Evermore and Dysart Diamond have both been handed entries, but I doubt whether either would be up to Grade One standard. It’s very hard to fancy the talented Gauloise on the back of a shocking run at Sandown earlier in the season and, while she ran well behind Molly Ollys Wishes at Ascot last time out, a run in the Coral Cup looks much more likely for My Sister Sarah.

Irish Raiders

Telmesomethinggirl ran out an impressive winner of the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle 12 months ago. Henry De Bromhead’s mare didn’t impress on her reappearance, but ran a lovely race at Leopardstown over Christmas, where she was only beaten a length-and-a-half by Royal Kahala, despite giving the winner five pounds at the weights.

Royal Kahala boosted that form last week by claiming a shock victory over Klassical Dream in the Galmoy Hurdle. Although a run in the Stayers’ Hurdle is under discussion, the ground will likely be slower on day one of the Cheltenham Festival than day three. Peter Fahey’s mare didn’t run well on quicker ground in the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle last year, so I would expect Royal Kahala to take up her Mares’ Hurdle entry instead.

Heaven Help Us split Royal Kahala and Telmesomethinggirl at Leopardstown, losing out by just a neck. Paul Hennessy’s stable star boasts a strong record around Cheltenham, winning the Coral Cup 12 months ago and she could be a big player on her return to the Festival.

Another of last year’s Festival winners, Mrs Milner has been handed a Mares’ Hurdle entry by Paul Nolan. Since striking in the 2021 Pertemps Final, Nolan’s seven-year-old has landed a Listed prize at Limerick and finished fourth behind Thomas Darby and Paisley Park in the Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury.

Home Challenge

Martello Sky2022 Mares' HurdleGET 12/1 HERE
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The leading British contender in the market is Martello Sky, who won a Listed race over course-and-distance at the April meeting in 2021. Lucy Wadham’s grey secured her second straight victory around Cheltenham in a handicap at the International Meeting, before hacking through heavy ground to win the Listed Hurdle a Sandown on Tolworth Day.

Indefatigable won the West Yorkshire Hurdle earlier in the season and was only beaten a neck by Martello Sky in that December handicap. Paul Webber’s mare claimed victory in the Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle back in 2020 and was fourth behind Black Tears in last season’s renewal of this Grade One.

Molly Ollys Wishes has won her last five starts in mares’ events, scoring in the Listed two-mile hurdle at Wetherby earlier in the season and the three-mile Warfield Hurdle at Ascot last time out. While she has won a couple of times over three miles, I feel that Dan Skelton’s mare is much more comfortable over this middle distance and she could be one that each-way players latch onto.

Marie’s Rock returned to top form by trouncing a decent field in handicap company on Boxing Day. Nico De Boinville’s mount was then hampered by a faller and pulled up in the Lanzarote Hurdle, having been backed into favoritism. Nicky Henderson has handed his mare an entry in this Grade One, but I’m sure the team will be eyeing a tilt at the Coral Cup, a race they’ve won several times down the years.

2022 Mares’ Hurdle Tips – Best Bet

Telmesomethinggirl2022 Mares' Hurdle Best BetGET 7/2 HERE
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Stormy Ireland and Heaven Help Us can both be very dangerous when allowed to dictate a race from the front. There is, however, a chance they could take each other on from the get-go, setting this year's Mares' Hurdle up perfectly for a strong-staying closer. 

Royal Kahala would certainly fit that profile. As would TELMESOMETHINGGIRL, who has twice been beaten by Royal Kahala this season. Yet, there are plenty of reasons why I think Henry De Bromhead’s mare is the one to beat should she turn up in the Mares’ Hurdle.

Rachael Blackmore’s mount picked up brilliantly off a strong pace to win the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle last year, where Royal Kahala could only finish seventh. Telmesomethinggirl has been forced to carry a penalty for that success on both her starts this term, and ran with credit on both occasions. This trip seems ideal, she goes on any sort of ground and De Bromhead is fantastic at readying his stars for Cheltenham. At 10/3, she would be my best bet in the race.

2022 Mares’ Hurdle Tips – Value Bet

I’m also going to back INDEFATIGABLE to improve on last season’s fourth-place finish. Paul Webber’s former Cheltenham Festival winner has been in excellent form this season, defeating Paisley Park and Thomas Darby – both future Graded winners – to claim the biggest win of her career in the West Yorkshire Hurdle.

Unusually, Daryl Jacob’s mare then completely fluffed her lines at the start of the Long Distance Hurdle and could simply never get back into the race. Indefatigable put that lengthy defeat behind her with a brilliant effort here at Cheltenham’s International Meeting, where she almost ran down Martello Sky to carry top-weight into the winners’ enclosure.

The early pace was fairly sedate in last year’s Mares’ Hurdle. Both Roksana and Indefatigable were forced to the fore much earlier than either would have liked. Black Tears and Concertista were both ridden more patiently and were able to quicken better in the closing stages. 

As I mentioned earlier, I’ll be expecting the early pace this year to be much quicker and a test of stamina would suit Indefatigable, who’s beaten some of the best stayers over three miles already this season.


Last year's Mares' Novices' Hurdle winner, Telmesomethinggirl is our best bet in this year's Mares' Hurdle. Indefatigable is our best value bet at 14/1.

2022 Mares' Hurdle Best Bet: Telmesomethinggirl Straight Win @7/2 at bet365 - 15 Units
2022 Mares' Hurdle Value Bet: Indefatigable Each-Way @14/1 at Star Sports - 5 Units
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