• JCB Triumph Hurdle

    Nicky Henderson has trained 7 winners going back to First Bout in 1985

    Barry Geraghty rode 5 winners

    22 mares priced 14/1 and under have run. 4 won, 8 others placed

    9 of the last 11 winners last time ran in one of the Spring, Finesse, or Adonis Hurdles

    Three winners in 33 years had only one previous race over hurdles in GB or IRE

    Five of the last nine finished in the first four in the February Leopardstown G1

    11 of the last 16 from the front four in the market

    The last 22 winners ran between 18 and 55 days before

    Seven of the last eight not outside first two in any UK or IRE hurdle run

    Three of the last 15 had their first hurdle run after 10th January

    17 of the last 18 to have raced on the Flat, had raced at 1m 4f

    4 winners and 3 seconds in the last six renewals were French bred


    (Going to make a suggestion and I know 'you can't do that, Bryan, you're the stats man.' When looking at Triumph Hurdle stats, replace Burning Victory/Pentland Hills for Goshen/Sir Erec. Yes, I know, they're there to be jumped).



    Race Distance - 2 miles and about a furlong. Started hurdle career between 20th October and 31st January. Winner (if rated) will be at least 80 on the flat or placed in G1 hurdle. All placed horses (if rated) should be over 70. If ran on the flat was tried at some stage over 1m4f or has already won a G1 hurdle. Won or placed at least G3 last time out. No more than five runs over hurdles. Will have won at least 50% of all hurdle starts. Will be unbeaten in UK or IRE or have run at least three times over hurdles. Last run between 18 and 55 days ago. Irish trained coming to the fore. Either N Henderson or Irish trained, Elliott, Joseph O'Brien or W Mullins are doing well. No headgear unless it's the first time in NH races. Any price. Mares under 14/1 do well with their 7lb allowance. French Breds to be watched. Winner's sire a G1 winner.

  • Honours Board

    Year |||Form||| Winner |||Weight||| OR||| SP||| Trainer||| Jockey||| Runners |||Last race (No of days)

    2020||| 1||| Burning Victory |||10-7||| -||| 12/1||| W Mullins(IRE)||| P Townend |||13||| 1st G3 F'house Hdle (20)

    2019||| 1||| Pentland Hills||| 11-0||| - |||20/1||| N Henderson |||N de Boinville |||14||| 1st Plumpton Maiden Hdle (18)

    2018||| 22||| Farclas||| 11-0 |||140||| 9/1||| G Elliott(IRE)||| Jack Kennedy |||9 |||2nd G1 Leop Spring Hdle (41)

    2017||| 11111 |||Defi du Seuil |||11-0 |||155 |||5/2F |||P Hobbs||| R Johnson||| 15 |||1st G2 Chelt Finesse Hdle (48)

    2016||| 1114 |||Ivanovich Gorbatov||| 11-0||| 142 |||9/2F |||A O'Brien(IRE) |||B Geraghty||| 15 |||4th G1 Leop Spring Hdle (41)

    2015||| 111||| Peace And Co |||11-0||| 155||| 2/1F||| N Henderson||| B Geraghty |||16||| 1st G2 Chelt Finesse Hdle (48)

    2014||| 12||| Tiger Roll |||11-0||| - |||10/1 |||G Elliott(IRE) |||D Russell||| 15||| 2nd G1 Leop Spring Hdle (30)

    2013 |||23111||| Our Conor |||11-0||| 150||| 4/1 |||D Hughes (IRE)||| B Cooper||| 17||| 1st G1 Leop Spring Hdle (34)

    2012||| 12123||| Countrywide Flame||| 11-0 |||140 |||33/1||| J Quinn||| D Costello||| 20 |||3rd G1 Leop Spring Hdle (33)

    2011||| 1||| Zarkandar||| 11-0 |||- |||13/2||| P Nicholls||| D Jacob||| 23 |||1st G2 Kempton Adonis Hdle (20)


    Goshen was timed by the on-course Racing TV team at being at least 11 lengths in front when Jamie Moore met misfortune at the last. Some might say Paul Townend was riding Burning Victory 'to pick up the pieces'. But he did it well. Burning Victory was a poor enough jumper but had the top Flat rating at 94. The lack of obstacles in the last 7 furlongs of the New Course helped her cause. Paul wasn't that worried at Jamie's misfortune immediately after 'I've had my own share of bad luck.' (Boston Bob 2013 RSA comes to mind but no certainty then). He was more gracious in the parade ring later and W Mullins himself was all class. 'I'm happy for my clients but I'll take no joy from that win. I feel for the Moores.'


    TRAINERS - N Henderson has now won 7 of these, in 2019 the 20/1 Pentlands Hill winning well after the tragedy with Sir Erec. Witnessed his first winner First Bout in '85, the same year as See You Then won his first Champion Hurdle. First Bout helped me out of a punting hole. He has won four of the last 12. No runner last year. Winner 2010, 3rd 2011, 2 unpld 2013 including 5/2 fav, 2nd in 2014. In 2015 the stable got the trifecta up paying £95. Apples Shakira must have been a bitter disappointment in 2018, a well-beaten fourth at 6/5 fav. Mirroring that B Geraghty holds the record for the most jockey wins with five. Richard Johnson has now won three. A King, two winners, two seconds and two thirds in the last twelve. 11 runners in total over the last five, a no-hoper last year, Redicean 7/1 in 2018, all finished well down the field.


    P. Hobbs - three winners in last 17, Defi Du Seuil winner 2017 was his first runner in four years. None since. P Nicholls two winners in last thirteen, plus the placed horses behind Our Conor '03 and Calipto unlucky with the tack in 2014. Last year, Solo 4/1 well talked up by stable, rated 157, ran with choke out, 8th of 12 finishers. Sir Psycho, a solid 5th in what seemed a strong field. Quel Destin and Ecco well beat 2019. No runner previous two years. 2016 Clan Des Obeaux best of his five runners in 6th. Pipe stable - This race provided Martin with his first Festival winner in Baron Blakeney 1981 at 66/1. Only Kissair '95 has given success since. Only six runners in the last fifteen, all well unplaced.


    Irish trained - Five winners, five seconds and five third places in the last eight. Aspire Tower made it a 1-2 last year. G Elliott and J O'Brien respectively trained 2nd and 3rd in 2019, 1-2-3 2018, 2-3-4-5 in 2017. To be fair in the 2017 Belfast Preview night both David Casey as Willie's assistant trainer and G Elliott felt that Defi Du Seuil was unbeatable. Irish trained strolled it in 2016 with first four home. Aiden/Joseph with Ivanovich followed by the 2-3-4 from W Mullins. All three unplaced 2015. Tiger Roll and Our Conor had first stopped the Irish drought. In Scolardy's year 2002 4 out of first 5 home had been the previous winner. Irish trained have only ever won 9 Triumph Hurdles. As with many Festival races, Irish trained improving the performance all the time. Irish Trained 6 0f the 13 runners last year, 8 of the 14 runners in 2019.


    WILLIE MULLINS - A poor enough record, they said. Not now. Burning Victory his first success since Scolardy. 2019, three unplaced including Tiger Tap Tap at 7s. 2018, 2nd, 3rd and 5th. 2017, 3rd, 2016 2nd (he trained Apples Jade at that time), 3rd and 4th. 2015 only 5th. 2014. Got there, eventually.


    GORDON ELLIOTT - Two winners, two seconds and a fourth from 10 runners in the past 12. No runner last year.


    JOSEPH O'BRIEN - His father was the official trainer for Ivanovich Gorbatov but Aidan was quick to give all credit to his son. Cerberus, A Wave Of The Sea outclassed last year. In 2019 Joseph tasted tragedy and success with Sir Erec, Gardens Of Babylon 3rd and Band Of Outlaws winning the Fred Winter.


    Garden Of Babylon 3rd here, had been 2nd to Sir Erec in the DRF G1 February. Farclas, Tiger Roll and Our Conor came straight from that Leopardstown G1. Scolardy ’02 won the same race when it was a G3 and Commanche Court ‘97 won a Grade 3 event at Punchestown in mid-February. In 2018 Farclas had been 2nd to Mr Adjudicator at Leopardstown, positions reversed here. In 2017 in the G1 Spring Hurdle at Leopardstown Mega Fortune won from Bapaume, then second and third here to Defi Du Seuil. In 2016 Footpad won in Leopardstown from Lets Dance and Ivanovich. Reversed at Cheltenham. Aspire Tower best of the vintage last year.


    Five of the last nine Triumph winners all finished in first four in G1 Leopardstown Spring Hurdle. Farclas and Tiger Roll both second, Our Conor won, Countryside Flame finished 3rd. Mr Adjudicator won at Leopardstown in 2019, places reversed at Cheltenham. 2013 Diakali 2nd at Leopardstown, 4th here. Both Unaccompanied and Hisaabaat won at Leopardstown before being placed here. Also ran in the Spring Juvenile Hurdle at Cheltenham Mega Fortune 2nd, Footpad 3rd, Petite Parisienne 5th, Guitar Pete 3rd. A Wave Of The Sea and Cerberus a bit outclassed here last year.


    PRICE - Between 2008 and 2011 none of the first four home started bigger than 20/1. Despite Countrywide Flame at 33s in 2012, the scribes might have been right to say that 'because of the Fred Winter and small fields, outsiders winning the Triumph will never happen again'. But then again, its horseracing and tragedy befell Sir Erec in 2019. Pentland Hills won well at 20/1. Same last year with Goshen, the 5/2F. Burning Victory 12s. There had been nothing over 10/1 since 2012, although Tiger Roll was only 6th favourite at 10/1 and Farclas 9/1 5th fav of nine runners in 2018. Only 12 placed horses in past 24 races to have started at greater than 20/1. Two placed at 20s in 2019 year, Sayo 3rd at 33s 2018 the last to do so but the in previous three years all placed 12/1 and under. In 2015 the 1-2-3 Henderson trio all 8/1 and under. 2014 Kentucky Hyden second at 20s, 2013 Sametegal 3rd at 33s. Countrywide Flame, the first winner over 20/1 since Duke Of Monmouth ‘92. Since the introduction of the Fred Winter in 2005, apart from Burning Victory, Farclas, Tiger Roll and Countrywide Flame, all other twelve winners came from the first four in the betting. To be fair, as a clerk, that would be the spread I would expect.


    Only 7 from the last 33 Triumph Hurdle favourites have won (Including three of the last six, Defi Du Seuil on reflection, was a very generous 5/2. Ivanovich Gorbatov 9/2 and Peace and Co 2/1. Before that they were Detroit City '06, Katarino '99, Mysilv '94 at 2/1). Defi makes it 4 favs in the last 22. On course the last three years getting Goshen, Sir Erec RIP, Apples Shakira all beat, the latter two being backed from 6/4 to about evens were possibly the bookmaker results of those festivals. Because it is the first race on Gold Cup day, the Triumph is regularly one of the top ten betting races in the calendar, Flat or Jumps.


    In case you were wondering, I believe Ebaziyan 2007 is the last entire to win a Festival race. Before that, Alderbrook in the '95 Champion Hurdle. Solo was gelded after his run. Seems harsh.

    13 of last 28 were favourite or second favourite last time out. Pentland Hills 5/2 second fav at Plumpton. Farclas joint 2nd fav in Leopardstown Spring Hurdle, Defi Du Seuil had been a short-priced jolly in his previous six and won them all. Not Burning Victory 7/1 at G3 Fairyhouse, Tiger Roll, Our Conor, Snowdrop or Zarkandar. Tiger Roll was 16s in the Leopardstown Spring G1.


    This century 54 beaten favourites (BF) last time out have turned up. Two winners, Ivanovich beaten at 8/13 Leopardstown and Celestial Halo winner here at 5/1 in 2008, previously BF at 2/5. Aspire Tower only qualifier last year in 2nd, three in 2019, best Coeur Sublime at 20s in 2nd. None ran in 2018, two in 2017, finished 3rd and 6th.


    Last February Robert Hall was on his last ever day of running the show for RTE Racing at the second day of the 2020 DRF. He uttered some immortal stats words to Ted, 'you don't want to be going to Cheltenham on the back of a fall.' Aspire Tower F at the DRF and then was fortunate enough to finish 2nd here. Never really looked like winning. Spectroscope 2003 won the Triumph after suffering a BD two runs before his Festival win. He's the only Triumph winner this century with a letter in its form that season. The last G1 Festival hurdle winner off the back of a fall was Nichols Canyon who also fell at the last, this time in the Irish Champion Hurdle. He took the Stayers 6 weeks later. The last novices to win G1s with falls that season were Shishkin, Al Ferof 2011 Supreme, an, Nicanor 2006 Ballymore. All fell 3 runs before their Festival win. Sorry, I digress.


    FORM RACES - Defi Di Seuil, Peace and Co followed Katchit in being the only ones to complete the JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial at Cheltenham January/Triumph double since former’s inception in 1985. Hors La Loi did a double up in '99 with the Supreme Novice. Franchoek won the Finesse '08 but beaten by Celestial Halo in the big one. 2013 Rolling Star then fav for this only finished 5th. 2014 Le Rocher didnt come. 2018 Apples Shakira was blown out at the Festival. Had strolled it in the same manner as Defi Du Seuil. Interestingly, Defi's time at Cheltenham January was 4 mins 17s on 'very soft' and 5 secs faster than Peace and Co in 2015 and 9 secs faster than that of Apples Shakira, all on different varieties of soft ground. 2019 JP's Fakir D'Oudairies went to the Supreme to finish 4th as Sir Erec was meant to win this. Fakir's time here on good to soft ground Triumph course 4 mins 6 secs. Galahad Quest not entered last year though Night Edition 2nd, filled the same spot in the Fred Winter.


    Last Haydock Victor Ludorum winner to be involved in the finish of this was Ninja, 2nd at 50/1 in ’90. Don't think the double has been done in 50 yrs. But Une Artiste did double up with the Fred Winter in 2012. QI Psycho last year and 2019 Quel Destin 2019 both trained by P Nicholls both finished 5th in the Triumph after Ludorum success. Even spookier, in 2018 Turning Gold went from Haydock to be 5th in the Fred Winter, a sort of form line you'd might expect. Monmiral for Aintree


    MARES - Not unfancied mares’ have a decent record with 7lb allowance. (Burning Victory, Shawiya, Mysilv and Snowdrop all won and all came here on the back of a win.). 22 mares have started 14/1 and under. Those four won and 8 others were placed (Unaccompanied 2nd in 2011). Stats not helped by Apples Shakira and Stormy Ireland in 2018, the latter went off too quick, beaten when fell last at 9/2. 41 others 14/1 and greater, none placed. Hook Up 33s last year. One ran in 2019, Petite Parisienne well beaten 5th 2015 at 14s. No mares 2013 or 2012. 2016 Apples Jade 2nd at 12s, Lets Dance 11s and 4th. If I hadn't been all over Solo, might have paid some attention to this..


    ADONIS KEMPTON - 4 from last 19 won Adonis Hurdle at Kempton (last were Zarkandar 2011 and Soldatino 2010). 15 didn’t. 2014 Activial and 2013 Irish Saint both went to Aintree instead. Neither won there. 2015 Beltor won on the bridle at Kempton, 6th here at 7/1. 2016 Zubayr 11/2 and 13th. 2017 Master Blueyes 8/1 here and 10th. 2018 Redicean 'skipped clear' at Kempton, then 7/1 and only 6th here. 2019 Fusil Raffles N, injured. Solo, 4/1, 8th despite being rated 2lbs lower than the Champion Hurdle winner. This century 15 Adonis Hurdle winners have run in this. Apart from the 4 winners, Well Chief 2nd. (Also Flying Tiger, 4th at Kempton, won Fred Winter in 2017). Tritonic.


    Alan King has won the Adonis four times. Penzance 2005 his only winner to double up. Recently won it with Mister Blue Eyes 2017, 10th in Triumph, Redicean 2018, 6th.

    Burning Victory and Pentland Hills join Zarkandar only winners in 30 odd yrs to be a once-raced hurdler. Didn't work for Saldier 2018, 5th or Zubayr in 2016.


    Winner of Juvenile Hurdle at Cheltenham in November has provided a placed horse in this in 7 of the last 13 runnings. But only Allmankind 3rd 2020 in the last 4. 2017 won by Apples Shakira from Gumball. 2016 Won by Defi Du Seuil. Didn't work in 2016. 2015 Hargam 3rd, 2014 Guitar Pete was placed in both. Far West 2nd here 2013. Grandouet placed in both in 2011. '10 Barizan was second in both races. Duffle Coat beat Adagio


    Defi Du Seuil, Countrywide Flame and Katchit both broke a long term stat as being the only three of the last 23 to have run over hurdles in Britain or Ireland before October 20th. Defi cruised around Ffos Las on 15th Oct, the Flame had actually been out twice by that date. Ivanovich 27th December, Peace And Co 13th Dec, Tiger Roll first run 10th Nov, Our Conor 11th Nov. P Nichols had Zarkardar following Nicky's Soldatino in that their first run in UK was the Kempton Adonis at the end of February. Pentland Hills won at Cheltenham 18 days after winning at Plumpton. Burning Victory 20 days since Fairyhouse.


    Against that, since the Fred Winter only Burning Victory, Pentland Hills and Zarkander in 2011 made UK or Irish hurdling debut after 10th January.


    WINNING FORM - Farclas became the first maiden to win this since David Elsworth's Heighlin in 1980. Burning Victory, Pentland Hills, Ivanovich Gorbatov, Tiger Roll, Zarkandar, Made In Japan ’04 and Celestial Halo '08 only other 7 winners since ‘90 not to have won twice that season over hurdles. None worse than 4th last time out. All bar Pentland Hills of the last seven ran in at least a G3 last time out.


    All bar Burning Victory or Pentland Hills of the last eight had their last run in the Finesse or the Spring Hurdle, the two before that had their last run in the Adonis. (Goshen's previous run had been in an Ascot Juv Hurdle on 18th January.


    16 from last 22 won the previous race. Four finished second plus Countrywide Flame finishing 3rd, Ivanovich 4th, both in the G1 at Leopardstown.


    25 from last 29 either unbeaten in UK and Ire or ran at least 3 times previous (Not Farclas, Ivanovich, Tiger nor Celestial who had only ran twice). (Pentland Hills rated 73 of the English Flat, Ivanovich had 4 flat runs in Ire, Zarkandar had three in France, Countrywide Flame had 6 hurdle outings before Cheltenham).

    25 of past 27 had passed the post first in at least half their hurdle starts in UK and Ire. (Not Farclas obviously, Made In Japan, one from three, Scolardy 2002 won but was disqualified from 1st last time).


    Apart from Our Conor the last 18 winners to have run on the flat all tried at distances of 1m 4f plus (including Burning Victory, Pentland Hills and Zarkandar). Our Conor only tried up to 10 furlongs. 17 of last 26 were placed over 1 1/2 miles or further on the flat (including nine from the last thirteen). Last year Burning Victory had the top Flat Rating of 94 and had already won in France over 1m 4f on soft ground. Ivanovich had a Flat rating of 104, Pentland Hills 73. Need to have class and to stay to win this? At least one or the other


    17 of past 26 had won on a 'fast flat' track e.g. Kempton, Market Rasen. Our Conor 3.54 around Leopardstown 'fast' enough? Both Tiger Roll and Countrywide Flame won at Market Rasen. Peace and Co 4m.1 at Donc. Not Farclas, two runs at Leopardstown had been 4 mins 6 secs. Not Defi Du Seuil. Ran at Ffos Las, Chepstow and Cheltenham. Times of 4 mins 8, Cheltenham in November, 4 mins 1 sec at Chepstow. Pentland Hills had done 3 mins 51 secs on Plumpton good ground. Believe Nico was to be credited with convincing NH to enter him.


    This year's best times - Chelt Old Course, G1 Chepstow bog. The Chepstow time was slightly faster than Quel Destin's last season and practically the same as Defi Du Seuil when he won in his Triumph year. A Wave Of The Sea 4 mins flat Leopardstown 7 secs slower than Sir Erec Leopardstown. Sir Erec's time was actually 5 secs slower the Deloitte/Chanelle A Wave Of The Sea was only one second slower than Asterion Forlonge. Botox Has 4 mins 21secs Chelt JCB Triumph Trial December. Goshen 3 mins 57 for just short of 2 miles around Ascot. 3 mins 55secs at Kempton, about just over a second slower than the Dovecote.


    Simon Rowlands ATR Sectional Times Spotlight:




    Defi Du Seuil first winner of the Chepstow Finale Hurdle since Mysilv '94 did the double. Only Countrywide Flame had run in it since Mysilv and he was well beaten at Chepstow. 2019 Quel Destin 4/1 5th at Cheltenham. Last year Allmankind 3rd bt Cereberus 6th.


    There is a distant history of 4 yr olds performing well in all aged Conditions races and not following up here and in the Champion Hurdle. They do ok in the Supreme.


    All bar Defi Du Seuil, Peace and Co, Katchit and Zaynar of last 23 had previous run in February. All four last ran in January. Last 22 all ran between 18 and 55 days before. Farclas 40 days. Pentland Hills 18 days shortest gap this century. Burning Victory 20 days. Duke Of Monmouth '92 - 17th January.


    BREEDING - 19 from last 23 bred by a Group 1 winning sire including all of last 16 bar Soldatino and Our Conor. Former's sire Graveron never won a race and Jeremy was only placed at G1 level. Burning Victory by Nathaniel, Ascot KG winner. Peace And Co by Falco, Tiger Roll by Authorized. Ivanovich Gorbatov by Montjeu. Defi by Voix Du Nord, a Prix Lupin winner. Farclas by Jukebox Jury, an Irish St Leger winner, who himself was by Montjeu. Pentland Hills by Motivator, fast ground English Derby winner. Goshen by Authorized, same sire as Tiger Roll and Nichols Canyon


    Burning Victory a Fre Bred (as is Goshen). No French breds placed in 2019, but 3 wins and 3 seconds in the previous five races.


    FLAT RATING - 61 of last 82 win and placed rated at least 70 on the flat. Last year it was 94, 86, 86 and Goshen 88. Pentland Hills 73, 2018 Mr Adjudicator 2nd at 81. 2017 - Mega Fortune 77, Best flat ratings were Landofhopeandglory 102 and Master Blue Eyes 88, both well behind. 2016 Ivanovich off 104, Who Dares Win next best flat rating 85 finished second last. No placed horse 2015 had a flat rating though Hargam may have come close with his Listed French flat form. 2014 none of the first three over 70. Both Kentucky and Guitar Pete well under 80. 2013 Our Conor 85, placed horses ex French, no rating. Our Conor the only one of the first 8 home to have a Flat rating. 2012 all placed over 80. 13 placed recently were French NH and Flat without a rating, but Unaccompanied (2nd in '11) was rated 98, '10 Barizan was rated 86 and Alaivan 3rd with 110. '09 Mourad 3rd was 104. ’08 all three passed this one, Spectroscope '03 only winner since '96 rated less than 80 on the flat. This is far from an exact science.


    HURDLE RATINGS - Four of the last 12 winners rated at least 150 from a total of 13 qualifiers. Last year's Aspire Tower 152, Goshen 151, Solo 157. 2019 Sir Erec 151.


    HEADGEAR - Only Zaynar '09 (cheekpieces) and Detroit City '06 (visor) of the last 41 to try over 17 years have won. Both were wearing headgear in NH races for the first time although Detroit City had won in a visor on the flat as a three yr old. Last year, Allmankind 3rd in hood, Sir Psycho 5th in cheekpieces, neither first time. In 2019 Gardens Of Babylon in first-time blinkers finished third. None ran 2018. In 2017 two ran, best Mega Fortune 2nd, 3 tried 2016 best Footpad 3rd in second-time hood. 4 tried 2015, best Beltor 6th in first-time hood. Guitar Pete 3rd place in 2014 in the visor he always wore.


    2015 - Maximum number of runners cut from 24 to 22. Don't seem to get big numbers these days, 17 the largest field of the last eight.





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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.  I take no responsibility for (but am keen to hear of) any factual errors.  (Bgault01@gmail.com, @gaultstats). Previous years ‘stats on stats’ would suggest we may identify a decent priced winner from manageable groups every three or four races.  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.