Kumbeshwar enters Cheltenham picture

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At the start of December the David Evans-trained Kumbeshwar was struggling around Wolverhampton’s all-weather circuit finishing a modest fourth of seven runners in a nine furlong claimer. How times have changed as at Sandown on Saturday the four-year-old made an impressive winning debut over hurdles for Alan King to follow a run of three wins on Fibresand in the space of seven days at Southwell in mid-December making him a regular in the horse racing tips , writes Elliot Slater.

Sold out of Evans’ yard at the end of December following his all-weather hat-trick, the Doyen gelding had returned to something approaching the form that had garnered him a career high rating of 82 on turf, a figure he has now exceeded on artificial surfaces. On a day when King’s horses across the country all seemed to run with plenty of credit, Kumbeshwar showed few signs of stage fright on his hurdling bow, jumping well in the main until coming off the bridle before 3 out. Shaken up by Robert Thornton, he began to stay on in eye-catching fashion on the home turn, and as the clear leader Professeur Emery began to fade approaching the last Kumbeshwar came powering up the Sandown hill, leading 100 yards out before drawing away to win by three-and-a-half lengths.

King was delighted with the winner’s performance but stressed that he would like to get at least one more run into him to help him brush up his jumping, before deciding whether or not the JCB Triumph Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival is a realistic option. Bookmakers introduced the Sandown winner into the ante-post betting for the Triumph Hurdle at odds of 25/1, betting tips show why.

Smad Place, a 12/1 shot for the ‘Triumph’ is also trained by King, and is expected to take his chance in the juvenile hurdling cavalry charge having run well at Chepstow in Grade 1 company last time out behind the smart Marsh Warbler.

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