Champion Hurdle Odds 2023


Honeysuckle ridden by jockey Rachael Blackmore on the way to winning the Unibet Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy during day one of the Cheltenham Festival.

The Champion Hurdle is the most prestigious two-mile hurdle race of the National Hunt season and is the highlight of the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival. There have been five three-time winners of the hurdling crown, the most recent being Istabraq from 1998 to 2000. He was trained by Aidan O’Brien and was denied a tilt at a record fourth victory when the meeting was abandoned due to the outbreak of foot and mouth disease in 2001.

The race thrived during a golden age of hurdling in the late seventies and early eighties when Night Nurse, Monksfield and Sea Pigeon shared six victories between them. Nicky Henderson trained See You Then to three consecutive victories from 1985 to 1987 and took his Champion Hurdle tally to a record eight victories with Epatante in 2020. She was deposed last year by Honeysuckle who heads the Champion Hurdle Odds 2023 as the 4-7 favourite.

Champion Hurdle Odds and Entries 2023

The Champion Hurdle Odds have been dominated all season by the remarkable mare Honeysuckle. She and regular rider Rachael Blackmore extended their unbeaten run to 14 when taking their third Irish Champion Hurdle in a row at Leopardstown in February. Her main market rivals are last year’s easy Supreme Novices’ Hurdle winner Appreciate It and the progressive Teahupoo.

Appreciate It has not raced for almost a year and had originally been set to go novice chasing this season. The horse suffered a set-back so it was decided to stick to hurdles and go straight to Cheltenham. With two-time runner-up and stable companion Sharjah missing due to injury, Appreciate It is now the main hope of the Willie Mullins stable.

Teahupoo represents Gordon Elliott and has won all three races this season, posting a career-best when winning the Red Mills Trial at Gowran Park in February. 2020 winner Epatante is still available at 10-1 in the Champion Hurdle betting odds, despite the form of her Christmas Hurdle victory having been boosted since. Nicky Henderson is expecting a big run from the mare who has hurdled much more fluently since being treated for a niggling back injury.

Zanahiyr was beaten favourite in the Triumph Hurdle when only fourth to Quilixios. He has won only once in five subsequent starts but has been mixing it with the best. He was twice runner-up behind Sharjah before chasing home Honeysuckle in the Irish Champion Hurdle. Adagio has only just made it into the line-up for David Pipe after a satisfactory comeback run behind Goshen at Wincanton.

Latest Champion Hurdle odds *

*Best prices correct at time of writing

Honeysuckle 4-7

Appreciate It 7-2

Teahupoo 8-1

Epatante 10-1

Zanahiyr 16-1

Adagio 16-1

Tommys Oscar 25-1

Saint Roi 33-1

Buveur D’Air 40-1

Quilixios 40-1

Glory And Fortune 50-1

Not So Sleepy 50-1

Champion Hurdle News

Honeysuckle will be attempting to become the first mare to win two Champion Hurdles. Last year’s emphatic success took the pressure off for Trainer Henry de Bromhead and jockey Rachael Blackmore who proceeded to dominate the festival meeting. The stable are well represented again this year as they look to Honeysuckle to get the ball rolling. Nothing we’ve seen on the racecourse this season suggests that Honeysuckle will be beaten and she looks a worthy favourite in the Champion Hurdle odds 2023.

The dark horse of the race is undoubtedly Appreciate It, surprisingly beaten in the 2020 Champion Bumper but a wide margin winner of the Supreme Hurdle last year. It is very rare for any horse to win the Supreme by more than 20 lengths and the margin would have been reduced but for the last flight fall of stable companion Blue Lord. Appreciate It has tumbled from 8-1 to 7-2 in the Champion Hurdle betting odds in recent weeks. It will require a masterful piece of training by Willie Mullins to have him spot on for the race after a 364-day absence.

Teahupoo emerged as a serious contender when emphatically winning the Red Mills Trial. He had struggled to beat Quilixios by half a length at Limerick previously but had that rival 22 lengths back in third. The pair were separated by Darasso who had won a Grade 3 last time out so that looked a much-improved display.

Epatante was not entirely convincing when dead-heating with Not So Sleepy in the Fighting Fifth Hurdle at Newcastle in November. She looked much more like her old self when winning the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton. At the time, her two and a quarter lengths margin over 140-rated handicapper Glory And Fortune raised concerns. The runner-up came out and won the Betfair Hurdle at Newbury next time so the form looks a lot more solid now.