Elliott Sets Up Samcro vs Buveur D’Air Clash at Newcastle
After disappointing on his seasonal debut and then being pulled out due to quick conditions last weekend, Gordon Elliott has updated us on plans for his stable star Samcro over the next few weeks. The number one aim for him right now is the Fighting Fifth hurdle at Newcastle, and that is a race that would set up an exciting battle with current Champion Hurdle title holder Buveur D’Air.
Nicky Henderson has had the Fighting Fifth in his sights for Buveur D’Air for a long time now, giving the horse the same starting point as last season. The race has cut up in the past, but this season we could be in for a clash of epic proportions should the two stars meet each other.
Buveur D’Air is aiming to land his third Champion Hurdle in a row at Cheltenham next March, and Samcro is one of the horses who will aim to stop him from doing that. The Elliott trained six year old swept all before him as a novice last season, and the team have decided to keep him hurdling instead of going novice chasing, with the two mile Champion Hurdle the main target. There is doubts about whether he will be seen at his very best over two miles, but this race will give us a good indication of that should it come off.
There is another contender in the race that also needs mentioning and that is the Supreme Novice Hurdle winner from last season’s Cheltenham Festival, Summerville Boy. He too is on course for a Champion Hurdle tilt, and will be looking to claim a couple of big scalps in the Fighting Fifth, which takes place on December 1st.
All three contenders require rain to come at the track and soften the ground before they are confirmed as running in the race, but that should arrive in time and assuing it does, we are set for a huge early season clash between three horses who are looking to figure at the top of the hurdling division this season.
Early betting has Buveur D’Air installed as the odds on favourite to take the Fighting Fifth, with Samcro the second favourite and Summerville Boy third in the betting. With the highly anticipated Betfair Chase just days away now, and this race on the horizon, the next couple of weeks could be absolutely huge for jump racing fans in the UK.