Cheltenham 2019

    The Only Trends You Will Need



    After Relegate's confidence boosting (for me) swoop at 28s in the bumper, kicked on Thursday with Shattered Love, Penhill and Laurina. Hopefully ew money gained on Splash Of Ginge 25s Actinpieces 33s and (with Skybet) Guitar Pete 14s. More success on Friday with the Triumph 1-2 from only two selections (£40 exacta) and Blow By Blow at 11s.


    Over 12500 unique users on the site since early February. Over £3000 in donations for Guide Dogs. Humbling. Thank you. Will keep Justgiving page open for another few days should you wish to donate.


    Summary 2018

    Before you get cross, please remember the site rules. 1. The beauty of each stat is in the eye of the beholder. 2. All Cheltenham Stats will die. It is just a matter of when.


    What didn't work

    It is now time to say adieu to those stats who have served me. Like saying goodbye to an old friend. There are still some of us who haven't got over the loss of Scot Lane in the 2017 Festival.

    Native River killed the stat that you don't win a GC having been beaten in it before. Also hadn't started seasonal campaign before Xmas. (Now convinced that the no of days stats are irrelevant nonsense). I feel also for the 2018 Timeform Stat. Rated 150+, don't run for 200 days, then Chelt prep, can't win at Festival. The only two qualifiers were Altior and Native River. All that work to be proved wrong. Did suggest on the GC page that the stats for the race were 'far too pretty'. Losing money over a 30 yr period on stats 'certainties' sometimes gives you a sense. And those that know me will confirm that I can be a contrary so and so.


    Penhill killed the Albert Bartlett winners have no chance in the Stayers and hadn't been out this season. First since Cyborgo '96. All that can be got round with the Willie Mullins 'doesn't give a monkeys about stats' stat. Now, see, you are getting cross. Rule No 1.


    Gordon Elliott might be trying to do this too, with Delta Work being the first 5 yr to win since Pragada in 1986. I will miss the Josh Gifford trained Pragada, having included him in my stuff ever since. Rule No 2. Delta Work was also French bred and had never won over at least 2m4f. Wow! My head might explode trying to talk my way round that next year. Trainer also told us on Belfast Preview Night that it wanted better ground. Maybe D Russell was the difference.


    Samcro first Deloitte/Ballymore double since Itsabraq. Who knows how good Samcro could be. Presenting Percy had far too many previous runs to win an RSA. A machine. Relegate buried my own personal favourite piece of Festival trivia, making Fleminsfirth the first horse to sire two Bumper winners. The letter A is definitely no longer important in finding the winner of what used to be called the Fred Winter. I liked that stat but it will have to go. Missed Approach was a beaten fav last time out. Hate that.

    Maiden wins Triumph. But a maiden that was already G1 placed.


    What did work

    A few I am quite pleased with. Posted on this page 'Wed February 28th - Phil Smith and Irish handicap marks. He doesn't annoy anyone, not even Kevin Blake. The Irish are obviously thrown in. The last three Triumph Hurdle Favourites have won. No Festival race this century has been won by 4 successive different favourites. No winning favourite in ANY of the last 36 Festival Handicaps, hurdles or chases. An 'overripe' stat?' Apples Shakira must have known that there was a problem. Coo Star Sivola, first h'cap favourite up, cracks it, followed in by The Storyteller. Was hoping that William Henry would win as clear fav for the Coral but that one will have to wait for another year. (I sense that backing Coral Cup favs is going to cost me).

    In the Mildmay I got (friendly) feedback for tipping Splash Of Ginge and Guitar Pete 'winners of the big 2m 4f Chelt pre Xmas h'caps don't oblige in March?' They didn't either this time but my reasoning was that this March ground somewhat different than normal. Rule No 1. Both produced a return via Skybet.


    Handicappers don't win Supremes. No course winner won a handicap hurdle. When Willie brings a bundle to the Bumper, he doesn't have a clue which one is the one. The Storyteller, Footpad, Buveur D'Air, Altior (despite Timeform) all had clear lines on my stats grids. Yes, its true, the sad man makes stats grids for each race and even keeps them. I find it helps to keep me slightly more sensible when making tipping decisions later in the evening. I know I should tip more short priced but I don't like doing it. You see, contrary.


    Momentum - hard to know where to start. Willis Mullins, Tom George, Gordon Elliott, Irish trained, Jack Kennedy, Paul Townend, B Geraghty, C Tizzard, P Nicholls. You pick. Not poor Aidan Coleman whose week could be summarised when he was caught on TV falling off 9/2 fav Acey Milan on his way to the Bumper start. I'm sure that helped the horse. In previous years Aidan has been quoted as saying that 'Cheltenham doesn't matter that much.' Someone should ask Anthony Honeyball what he thinks.

    It is hard to change tack for momentum when you have spent all morning making reasoned? decisions in each race. Aftertiming I know, but when scattergunning the Fred Winter, I just remembered as they were circling the start to throw a couple of quid at Jack Kennedy. Steve and I outsmarted ourselves by covering all Davy Russell's Wednesday rides in Yankees. Davy had three winners on the Thursday.


    PUNTING 2018 Festival - I made a few quid, don't know how and I know my tipping doesn't reflect it. It seems I can make money but I can't tell you when its going to happen. My antepost book was full of good grounders. Told Steve on the morning of each race that Balko Des Flos and Pacha Du Polder had 'no chance' even though I had backed both of them ante post. Horses and fools eh? My luckiest, luckiest piece of punting was on 11th Feb -Skybet ew doubles and treble - Edwulf 20s, Penhill 8s, Pacha Du Polder 8s. Not in my thinking at all at that time but Skybet were going NRNB BOG. An offer which made a helluva difference to me.

    Enough now.


    THANKS - Big thanks to those who have helped me publicise the site. Robin Gibson for another generous review in the Racing Post, Margie McLoone for a full column in the Irish Field, Richard Pugh for access to www.p2p.ie. Richard Ross for Gstats first ever entry in the Belfast Telegraph. ATR links to Simon Rowlands excellent timespeed figures. Rory Delargy for a big plug on Williamhill Radio and for humouring me on Twitter. Pat Healy. All those people who used The Sunday Service and seemed to donate immediately, all the quiz entries. Gary for proof reading and pointing out mistakes and all those others who offered feedback, both positive and constructive.


    My spring flower will now die back, if spared, to return in 2019.


    As ever, a labour of love




    The hope remains that you make money in Festival week and this site in some small way contributes to your successful decision making processes.


    A big thank you to Ashleigh Watson at ash@coppersquareni.com for her work on Gaultstats, well received by the great and good below.




  • A labour of love from Bryan, well worth a look for those who love a stat or two, and there's a quiz'. Rory Delargy (WHill Radio, Matchbook and Final Furlong Podcasts, Irish Field Columnist. Not much he isn't good at. 22nd February 2018)


    'You are spot on re Willie Mullins'. Tony Keenan, @RacingTrends, Final Furlong Podcast Legend. Feb 22nd '18 (I swear he said it, I have the tweet.)


    'Lots of interesting stuff on Gaultstats... certainly things I didn't know.' Matt Tombs (the man who is the Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide from 2016)


    'If you are looking for comprehensive trends at the Cheltenham Festival, Gaultstats appears to have all angles covered with an in depth guide to each race and the general meeting trends.' Paul Jones (www.pauljoneshorseracing.com and author of The Cheltenham Festival Betting Guide 2000-2015) 24th Feb 2017


    'Heaving oceans of stats. Gaultstats...a near obsession...never fails to engage...barely a syllable of slack... contains every stat ever compiled about the festival... dry wit, some funny....packed with more nuggets than a KFC warehouse in a chicken glut...' Robin Gibson (Racing Post Sunday Supplement Feb '18)


    'Gault is the Statsman' - Margie McCloone (Irish Field 11th March 2017 )



    Guide Dogs For The Blind

    Each year I produce Gaultstats to support a different charity. In 2018 I am supporting my friend Gordon McMillen and his wife Orrlene who are volunteers for Guide Dogs For The Blind, Northern Ireland. The work of Guide Dogs has never been so vital. In UK and Ireland today, almost two million people are living with sight loss and of those, around 180000 rarely leave their homes alone. Many suffer from depression and struggle with feelings of isolation. When someone loses their sight, Guide Dogs are there to make sure they don't lose their freedom as well.


    Orrlene is a Puppy Walker and spends about a year with each puppy, instilling obedience and socialisation skills in a wide variety of situations. The work starts with a puppy of 7 weeks and continues until the dog is around 12 to 14 months when it goes to Forfar for its next stage of training in harness. This is a difficult time for the puppy walkers as they have become emotionally attached to the pup they have had in their home for a year. However knowing that this pup may become eyes for someone to help them live an independent life makes it all worthwhile. Guide Dogs For The Blind is financed by charitable donations. Orrlene and Gordon give their time and effort to bring up and train a lovely animal who will be a friend and an aid to a person who may be unable to read this. Now, get your card out please and give a few quid/euro.


    Previous collections have been for North Down Samaritans, Cancer Research and the Jonjo Bright Trust. If you have given before, I thank you. Please give again. A fiver is fine. No monies go to me. Keen to match or better last year's total of £2500 raised for the Samaritans.

    The Cheltenham Festival

    'There's no place like this on earth' says Ruby Walsh, frequently. This is where all National Hunt owners, trainers and jockeys dream about winning. Being involved with a winner ensures an entry in the National Hunt Role of Honour even if the race concerned may 'only' be the quirky Cross Country Chase. (If he turns up, Cause Of Causes is a certainty). Nigel Twiston-Davies, 23rd Feb 2018, 'We've won nearly £1.4m this season and that's great, but you're judged on your Cheltenham wins.' Harry Fry, Feb 2017, talking after Unowhatimeanharry won the Albert Bartlett - 'A Festival winner is what everyone in National Hunt racing strives to achieve and to get the first one was a watershed moment and a huge achievement for the team.' Since all are doing their damnest to win, trends can emerge of those most likely (or not) to succeed. After 30 odd years of doing this, I find myself left with only two rules about Cheltenham Stats. 'The relevance of every stat is in the eye of the beholder' and 'All Cheltenham Stats will die. It is only a matter of when.' Proved by Un Temps Pour Tout in the 2017 Ultima 3m h'cap chase putting Scot Lane to bed after three decades. Scot Lane must have been some horse.

    How to use Gault Stats


    I first attended this fantastic event in 1985 and have been collecting information about it ever since. Went last year for the first time in a while and really do recommend sitting outside the See You Then Bar in the sun with an early pint. The links above will take you to directly to each race. On each race page there will be Headline stats for that race. The next few lines will summarise a possible Profile of the winner. That profile will concentrate on trends that are correct to 90%+ over the last few Festivals. The rest of each race page will comprise the evidence to back up the profile. The profile may also suggest something that is overdue to happen or an 'overripe stat' that might be due to fall. For example, if the favourite hasn't won the race in years. The favourite will win, sometime. Horses identified in italics are being aimed to contest the race about which you are reading. As the countdown continues effort will be made to update races with confirmed runners and how they might fit in.

    The General Trends page covers lots of information and musings that doesn't really refer to any specific race. This includes jockeys, trainers, how W Mullins is no respecter of Cheltenham stats, stats on Pricewise, preview nights, course winners, Fate of the Favourites et al. Click on the link and become concerned as to how I spend my time. Well, maybe. There is a quiz and a page about my visits to meetings at all UK and Irish racecourses, a task which will finally conclude with a trip to the Newmarket July course this summer. Yes, I've been to Tramore, Pontefract, Ballinrobe, Hamilton, Hexham and Plumpton. Lovely places with nice people. Sorry, but I'm behind with my schedule on the course write ups.


    On each day of the Festival I will post selections for each race at the top of this home page. For the benefit of my friend Gary, these selections will be my view of those with the best chances / value as identified by my interpretation of GaultStats (He believes that there are rules about this and that 'You can't say that'). Feel free to come to your own conclusions.


    The hope remains that you make money in Festival week and this site in some small way contributes to your successful decision making processes.


    As ever, a labour of love




    (Feedback please to twitter @gaultstats or email bgault01@gmail.com. Any reasonable theories researched. Am I am old fashioned, I don't count Punchestown as being 'this season'. Reliably informed the site works fastest on Google Chrome)




All Posts
Wealth Warning.  Any decisions made (or not) or the basis of any information in this site are the sole responsibility of the reader.  There is no obligation on me to follow my own advice (Gary).  I take no responsibility for (but am keen to hear of) any factual errors.  Previous years ‘stats on stats’ would suggest we may identify a decent priced winner from manageable groups every three or four races.  I tend to improve as a tipster as the week goes on, possibly too worried on the Tuesday.  It is believed that Savello (2014 Grand Annual) took from Golden Chieftain (2013 3m hcap chase) the record for breaking the most stats in a race.  Stands now at 8.  Cole Harden equalised with 8 in the 2015 World Hurdle.  Remember, after you have cursed/laughed at me and given up totally on trends, they will come back to bite.  Always happens.  Usually on Gold Cup Day

Beware GO SEA - Groundless Optimism Syndrome Encouraged by Alcohol.  A Cotswold condition very common at this time of year.