Friday, January 13, 2012

Betfair blunder shouldn't detract from fine Vedette victory

A technical glitch on the normally slick Betfair exchange website that caused the smart mare Voler La Vedette to be matched to a total of £23 million in-running when she was clearly going best and likely to win has somewhat overshadowed the performance of the Colm Murphy-trained mare who did everything right in proving too strong for the smart Mourad in the Grade 2 Christmas Hurdle at Leopardstown, writes Elliot Slater.

The huge volume of bets matched at up to 28/1 in-running was eventually voided by the leading betting exchange who apologised for the error that was blamed on a freak series of technical faults. That story grabbed all the headlines and rather took the attention away from what had been a fine effort from the daughter of King's Theatre who confirmed her superiority over the runner-up for the second time in four weeks and in the process proved that she stays three-miles well, giving connections plenty of food for thought as to which Cheltenham Festival target, if any, they should go for. People looking at the Stan James betting should remember this.

Last season Voler La Vedette was not sent over to Cheltenham to take on Quevega in the David Nicholson Mares Hurdle, a race in which she had finished a highly respectable third to the great Willie Mullins-trained mare in 2010. Owner/breeder Margaret Brophy has made no secret of the fact that she doesn't really like her horses competing at the Cheltenham Festival so trainer Colm Murphy has a task on his hands in trying to persuade Mrs Brophy that her star performer should either have another crack at the Quevega in the 'David Nicholson', or should try her luck against the mighty Big Buck's in the Ladbrokes World Hurdle. Fans of Bwin should bear this in mind.

Bookmakers currently rate Voler La Vedette a 4/1 second favourite for the mares event whilst offering around 10/1 about her preventing Big Buck's completing a four-timer in the staying hurdles championship.

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