• JCB Triumph Hurdle


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

    Barry Geraghty has ridden 5 winners

    21 mares priced 14/1 and under have run. 3 won, 8 others placed

    9 of the last 10 winners ran in either the Spring, Finesse or Adonis Hurdles last time.

    Only two winners in 32 years had raced only once over hurdles in GB or Ire

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

    11 of the last 15 from the front four in the market

    Last 21 winners all last ran between 18 and 55 days before

    Only two of the last 14 had their first hurdle run after 10th January

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


    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 G2 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 19 and 55 days ago. Irish trained coming to the fore. N Henderson the man, G Elliott, Joseph O'Brien are doing well. Not Pipe trained. Difficulty in Closutton. No headgear unless its the first time in NH races. Any price. Mares do well with their 7lb allowance. French Breds to be watched. Sire was a G1 winner.

  • Evidence

    Robert Hall, on his last ever day of running the show for RTE Racing, uttered the immortal words to Ted, 'you don't want to be going to Cheltenham on the back of a fall.' Aspire Tower. Spectocope 2003 won the Triumph after suffering a BD two runs before his Festival win. Thats the only Triumph winner this century with a letter in its form that season. Only an opinion, but I was at the DRF and saw that Aspire Tower took a good while to gather his senses, The last G1 Festival winner off the back of a fall was Nichols Canyon who also fell at the last, this time in the Irish Champion Hurdle before taking the Stayers 6 weeks later. The last novices to win G1s with falls that season were Al Ferof 2011 Supreme (3 runs before), Nicanor 2006 Ballymore (also 3 runs before).


    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 last year. Pentland Hills won well at 20/1. 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 23 races to have started at greater than 20/1. Two placed at 20s last year, Sayo 33s in third 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 Farclas, Tiger Roll and Countrywide Flame, all other eleven 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 32 Triumph Hurdle favourites have won (Including three of the last five, 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 21. On course in last two years getting Sir Erec RIP, Apples Shakira both beat when backed from 6/4 to about evens were the bookmaker results of those Festival, the Triumph being the first fav on Gold Cup day. Solo


    (And, in case you were wondering, believe Ebaziyan 2007 is the last entire to win a Festival race. Before that, Alderbrook in the '95 Champion Hurdle)

    13 of last 27 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 Tiger Roll, Our Conor, Snowdrop or Zarkandar. Tiger Roll was 16s in the Leopardstown Spring G1.

    This century 53 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. Three ran last year, best Coeur Sublime at 20s in 2nd. None ran in 2018, two in 2017, finished 3rd and 6th.


    TRAINERS N Henderson has now won 7 of these, the 20/1 Pentlands Hill winning well after the tragedy with Sir Erec. Attended his first winner First Bout in '85, the same year as See you Then won his first Champion Hurdle. He has won four of the last 11. In 2015 the stable got the trifecta up in 2015 paying £95. He had the 2nd in 2014 and the 3rd in 2011. (two unpl 2013 including 5/2 fav, no runner 2012). Charli Parcs 6th 2017. Apples Shakira must have been a bitter disappointment in 2018, a well beaten fourth at 6/5 fav. Suprisingly Grand Roi (33s 4th Feb) is his only entry in 2020. Mirroring that B Geraghty holds the record for the most jockey wins with five. A Wave Of The Sea, Cerberus. Richard Johnson has now won three. A King, two winners, two seconds and two thirds in the last eleven. 10 runners in total over the last five, Redicean 7/1 2018, all finished well down the field.


    P. Hobbs - three winners in last 16, Defi Du Seuil was his first runner in four years. P Nicholls two winners in last twelve, plus the placed horses behind Our Conor '03 and Calipto unlucky with the tack in 2014. Quel Destin and Ecco well beat last year. No runner previous two years. 2016 Clan Des Obeaux best of his five runnners 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 fourteen, all well unplaced.


    Irish trained - Five winners in the last seven. G Elliott and J O'Brien trained 2nd and 3rd last year, 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. Its worth attending, that Grahams evening. Irish trained strolled it in 2016 with first four home. Aiden/Joseph with Ivanovich followed by three from W Mullins. Tiger Roll and Our Conor had first stopped the Irish drought. 4 out of first 5 home in 2002 (Scolardy, trained by W Mullins) had been the last. Irish trained have only ever won 8 Triumph Hurdles. All three unplaced 2015. As with many Festival races, Irish trained improving all the time. Aspire Tower, A Wave Of The Sea, Cerberus. Irish Trained 8 of the 14 runners last year.


    WILLIE MULLINS - Poor enough record, they say. Hasn't won it since Scolardy 2002, we say. Last year, 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. Getting there?


    GORDON ELLIOTT - Two winners, two seconds and a fourth from 10 runners in the past 11.


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


    Garden Of Bablyon 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 Grade 3 event at Punchestown in mid February. Last year Farclas had been 2nd to Mr Adjudicator at Leopardstown, positions reversed here. In 2017 Leop G1 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. A Wave Of The Sea and Wolf Prince (inj) went past a stopping Cerberus.


    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. Galahad Quest not entered. 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. Last year Apples Shakira 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. Last year Fakir D'Oudairies went to the Supreme 4th as Sir Erec was meant to win this. Fakir's time here on good to soft ground Triumph course 4 mins 6 secs.


    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. 2019 Quel Destin finshed 5th in the Triumph after Ludorum success. 2018 Turning Gold went from Haydock to be 5th in the Fred Winter, a sort of form line you'd might expect. Sir Psycho impressive.


    MARES - Well fancied mares’ decent record with 7lb allowance. (Shawiya, Mysilv and Snowdrop all won and came here on the back of a win.). 21 have started 14/1 and under. Those 3 won and 8 others were placed (Unaccompanied 2nd in 2011). Stats not helped by Apples Shakira and Stormy Ireland, the latter maybe went off too quick, beaten when fell last at 9/2. 40 others 14/1 and greater, none placed. One last year, Petite Parissienne well beaten 5th 2015 at 14s. No mares 2013 or 2012. 2016 Apples Jade 2nd at 12s, Lets Dance 11s and 4th.

    (4th Feb 10 mares entered, four from W Mullins).


    ADONIS KEMPTON - 4 from last 18 won Adonis Hurdle at Kempton (last were Zarkandar 2011 and Soldatino 2010). 14 didn’t. 2014 Activial and 2013 Irish Saint both went to Aintree instead. Neither won there. 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. Last year Fusil Raffles got injured, didn't make it. This century 14 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). Solo romped it at Kempton

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


    Winner of Juvenile Hurdle at Cheltenham in November has provided a placed horse in this in 6 of the past 121 runnings. But not in nay of the past three years. 2017 won by Apples Shakira from Gumball. 2016 Won by Defi Du Seuil. Not work in March 2016. 2015 Hargam 3rd, 2014 Guitar Pete only placed in both. Far West 2nd here 2013. Grandouet placed in both in 2011. '10 Barizan was second in both races. Allmankind from Botox Has and Repetitio.


    Defi Du Seuil, Countrywide Flame and Katchit both broke a long term stat in that they have been the only three of the last 22 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 Ncky'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.


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


    WINNING FORM - Farclas became the first maiden to win this since David Elsworth's Heighlin in 1980. Pentland Hills, Ivanovich Gorbatov, Tiger Roll, Zarkandar, Made In Japan ’04 and Celestial Halo '08 only other 6 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 six ran in at least G2 last time.


    All bar 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.


    15 from last 21 won previous race. Four finished second plus Countrywide Flame finishing 3rd, Ivanovich 4th, both in the G1 at Leopardstown.


    Five of the last eight Triumph winners all at least 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 last year, places reversed at Cheltenham. 2013 Diakali 2nd at Leopardstown, 4th here. Both Unaccompanied and Hisaabaat won at Leopardstown before being placed here. Also rans in the Spring Juvenile Hurdle at Cheltenham Mega Fortune 2nd, Footpad 3rd, Petite Parisienne 5th, Guitar Pete 3rd. A Wave Of The Sea, Wolf Prince, Cerberus, Clemencia.


    24 from last 28 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).

    24 of past 26 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 previous 17 winners to have run on the flat all tried at distances of 1m 4f plus (including Pentlnd 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 eight from the last twelve). 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 25 had won on a 'fast flat' track e.g. Kempton, Market Rasen. Solo Our Conor 3.54 around Leopardstown 'fast' enough? Both Tiger Roll and Countrywide Flame won at Market Rasen. Peace and Co 4mins.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 ahd 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 - Allmankind at 4 mins 8 secs Chelt Old Course November followed by 4 mins 1 secs 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 Parma G1 an hour later and the elders carried 10lbs more. A Wave Of The Sea was only one second slower that Asterion Forlonge. Botox Has 4 mins 21secs Chelt JCB Triumph Trial December. Goshen 3 mins 57 for just short of 2 miles round Ascot. Thyme White 3mins 55secs just under 2 miles soft ground at Musselbrugh. Solo 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. Last year Quel Destin 4/1 5th at Cheltenham. Allmankind bt Cereberus.


    There is distant history of 4 yr olds performing well in all aged Conditions races and not following up here and in the Champion Hurdle. 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 21 all ran between 18 and 55 days before. Farclas 40 days. Pentland Hills shortest gap this century. Duke Of Monmouth '92 - 17th January. Allmankind will be 77 days.


    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. 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. Aspire Tower and A Wave Of The Sea by Born To Sea, only Listed winner on Flat. Allmankind by a German G1 Derby winner and Goshen by Authorized, same sire as Tiger Roll and Nichols Canyon


    No French breds placed last year, but 3 wins and 3 seconds in the previous four races.


    FLAT RATING - 58 of last 79 win and placed rated at least 70 on the flat. pentland Hills 73, 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 off 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 Alavan 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. Goshen 88, Allmankind 86, Aspire Tower 86, A Wave Of The Sea 82


    HURDLE RATINGS - Four of the last 11 winners rated at least 150 from a total of 10 qualifiers (Sir Erec only qualifier last year). Allmankind 148


    HEADGEAR - Only Zaynar '09 (cheekpieces) and Detroit City '06 (visor) of the last 39 to try over 16 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. Gardens Of Babylon in first time blinkers finished third last year. 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 placed 2014 in the visor he always wore.


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





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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.