• Sporting Life Arkle Chase

    Last ten winners all aged either 6 or 7 years.

    11 of last 13 already rated 151+

    Only one winner this century not favourite or second favourite on the previous run

    N Henderson has ran eight with hurdle rating 145+. Four won, three others 2nd

    Only Western Warhorse of the last 21 wore headgear.

    Mullins or Henderson have won seven of the last nine.

    13 of the last 14 winners had previously raced at Cheltenham.

    Six of the last nine favourites have won. All at odds on.

    No Doncaster Lightning Chase winner has done the double.

    Last eleven winners all won last time out.

    12 of last 14 were rated 142+ over hurdles.

    This century only 2 winners had fallen this season.

    14 from the last 16 had three or four chase runs, the other two were unbeaten.


    20th Jan 34 entries


    Not 8 yrs of age or older unless Grade 1 Chase winner and rated in high 150s. Hasn’t finished outside the first two on any completed chase start in England or Ireland. Won last time out and has should have had previous run since Jan 1. Has won at least 50% of all completed chase starts on trained by W Mullins. If fallen in a chase, has won all others. At least 7 total runs over hurdles/fences. Won’t have run more than five times over fences. A chase win in a time under 4 minutes 1 sec or Grade 2 Hurdle winning time under 4 minutes can be useful. French bred to be placed. Likely to have been rated over hurdles in excess of 142 or unbeaten over fences. Favourite or second favourite last time out or course chase winner. Check 2019 Festival novice hurdle form. Unlikely to be wearing blinkers. Course winner or decent previous Festival run. Form over 2m 4f would be useful. Can't get away from N Henderson runners with hurdle rating above 145. Not beaten favourite last time. The Supreme/Arkle double no longer a collector's item. RPR recent hurdle rating of 160+ is handy. At least a G2 winner over fences or hurdles. Hasn't fallen this season.

  • Honours Board

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

    2020 |||111121||| Put The Kettle On||| 6 |||10-11||| 144 |||16/1||| H de Bromhead(IRE) ||| A Coleman||| 11||| 1st G2 Cheltenham (114)

    2019 |||231||| Duc des Genievres |||6 |||11-4||| 151||| 5/1||| W Mullins(IRE)||| P Townend |||12 |||1st Gowran Beginners 2m 4f (24)

    2018 |||111||| Footpad |||6||| 11-4||| 162 |||5/6F |||W Mullins(IRE) |||R Walsh |||5 |||1st G1 Irish Arkle (38)

    2017 |||111||| Altior |||7 |||11-4||| 170 |||1/4F |||N Henderson||| N de Boinville||| 9 |||1st G2 Newbury Game Spirit (31)

    2016||| 111||| Douvan |||6 |||11-4||| 161 |||1/4F |||W Mullins(IRE) |||R Walsh |||7 |||1st G1 Irish Arkle (44)

    2015||| F11||| Un de Sceaux |||7||| 11-4||| 166||| 4/6F |||W Mullins(IRE) |||R Walsh |||11||| 1st G1 Irish Arkle

    2014 |||261 |||Western Warhorse||| 6 |||11-4||| 135||| 33/1 |||D Pipe |||T Scudamore |||9 |||1st Donc Cl3 Nov. (62)

    2013 |||11||| Simonsig |||6 |||11-7||| 160 |||8/15F |||N Henderson |||B Geraghty |||7||| 1st G2 Kemp. Wayward Lad (75)

    2012||| 111 |||Sprinter Sacre |||6||| 11-7 |||169||| 8/11F |||N Henderson||| B Geraghty |||6 |||1st G2 Newbury Game Spirit (25)

    2011||| 22221 |||Captain Chris||| 7 |||11-7||| 153 |||6/1 |||P Hobbs |||R Johnson |||12||| 1st G2 Kemp. Pendil 2m4f (17)


    AGE - Sizing Europe 2010 and Moscow Flyer 2002 only winners for those aged 8 yrs since Commandante ’90. Both Sizing and Moscow rated in the high 150s when running in this and both had won the Grade 1 novice chase in December at Leopardstown. Blackbow, Darver Star, Felix Desjy.


    Four tried last year in the 11 strong field, Global Citizen 33s best in 4th, the other three didn't finish. Articulum 25/1 placed as a nine year old in 2019. None of this age tried '18 or '17. 2011 Finians Rainbow 2nd, '10 Osana 3rd, Kalahari King 2nd in '09. There has been no 9 year old winner since Danish Flight '88. One of the best known Cheltenham stats. Will die someday, but when? Last year the 1-2-3 was aged 6-5-6 yrs, In 2019 Duc De Genievres from Us and Them both 6 yr olds. 2018 Footpad was a 6 yr old, 2017 First three all seven year olds. That year Charbel only 6 yrs old and probably would have been placed. Royal Caviar as a nine yr old finished fourth, a country mile behind the placers. Sgt Reckless and Court Minstrel well beaten as 9 yr olds in 2015.


    To summarise, the last ten winners - 6 yr olds lead 7 yr olds, Six - Four. Over the last five Four - One.


    5 yr olds - Do well with smaller numbers but allowance stopped after '08. No 5 yr old winner since Voy Por Ustedes '08. His Excellency 3rd of 7 runners 2013. No 5 yr olds ran in 6 of the last 9 years. Fakir D'Oudaries a fine second last year. Saint Calvados went off too quick in 2018. None ran in the previous two years, Clarcam beat one home in 2015.


    PRICE - Favorites - Notebook and Hardline couldn't continue the Arkle Favourites winning run after Footpad 5/6, Altior 1/4, Douvan 1/4 following Un De Sceaux 4/6. Before that Simonsig (hero) 2013 and Sprinter Sacre 2012. Currently still about the best current Festival race for favourites. Shishkin


    Before 2012 we have to go back to Azertyuiop ’03, Klairon Davis ’95, Remittance Man ’91. Those all short priced and turned over - Notebook (5/2), Champagne Fever (11/4) Medermit (11/4), Captain Cee Bee (5/2), Noland, War of Attrition, Sybillin, Mulligan, Decoupage and Seebald. With small fields and the JLT you might expect more favourites to win. No more than 11 runners each year in this since JLT introduction. 11 ran last year. Sybillin 4/5 in 1993 was the previous odds on before Sprinter Sacre 2012 and the last one to get beat. (Just love this stuff sometimes).


    Six odds on shots this century and all have won. Shiskin Put The Kettle on joins Western Warhorse 33s 2014 first winners to be priced over 11/1 since Waterloo Boy 20s in '89 (I was at Sedgefield the day Western Warhorse won, watched it with Steve, the only man there who had backed it, and I still don't believe it actually happened). Articulum 25s, Ordinary World 25s joined Gods Own and Baily Green (both 2nd at 33s) first since Ashley Brook '05 to be placed at 20/1 plus. Only 11 horses 20/1 and over have been placed in past 25 races.


    Put The Kettle On becomes the first in 27 winners not to be favourite or second favourite on their previous run. Was the 6/1 outsider of four when winning the Cheltenham Arkle Trial.

    Since the turn of the century 25 last time out beaten favourites have run. One winner Tidal Bay 6/1. Had been beaten 1/2 length on previous run at Doncaster at 1/4 but had won 3 novice chases that season. None ran last year. 2019's qualifiers Kalasnikov BD, Lalor PU.



    Irish trained - 10 of the last 25 winners but more importantly five of the last six with The Kettle, Duc de Genievres, Footpad, Douvan, Un De Sceaux. Henry broke W Mullins' run. Sizing Europe '10, Forpadytheplasterer '09, Moscow Flyer ’03 and eleven others placed out of 73 runners over the past 19 years. A 1-2 last year from 4 runners, 2019 an Irish 1-2-3 from 5 runners. (Sizing John, Champagne Fever both 2nd, Ordinary World 3rd, Trifolium 3rd 2014. 2013 Baily Green 2nd 2011 Realt Dubh 3rd). Last 9 winners of Irish Arkle finished 31121111616 in this. Notebook and Some Plan each finishing 6th spoils that a bit. Irish winners of had finished placed 31121111 in the December Leopardstown 2 mile novice. Franco de Port from Darver Star. Notebook again and Le Richebourg NR in 2019. Footpad won it, Min won it 2017, Douvan won 2016. Winners of this who had run in the Irish Arkle finished 111U1FF211 in Ireland.


    N. Henderson - Six wins, three seconds, and three thirds from 22 runners in past 27 races. Had no runner in 2020 or 2019, Brain Power 14s second in 2018. 2016 Vaniteux may have finished second before UR two out. Before Altior, Simonsig and Sprinter Sacre his last winner was Tuitchev in 2000. He has run eight horses in this who had a hurdle rating in excess of 145. Four won, three finished second and Vaniteux. Shishkin.


    Henry de Bromhead - Beginning to have some ammunition for this race. Won it with Sizing Europe in 2010, then a gap of four years with no entries. Has run 8 in the last five, Put The Kettle On wins, Sizing John 2nd, Ordinary World 3rd.


    JP McManus has only had seven runners this century, Fakir D'Oudaries (2nd) first since Tap Night 2013, and the first placed since Foreman in 2006.


    M/D. Pipe - 5 wins, 2 seconds and a third from 15 runners in past 20. Nothing placed for 7 years and then along comes Western Warhorse in 2014. D Pipe immediately admitted that he had spent the previous two weeks trying to persuade the owner, Roger Brookhouse, not to run him. What chance have we? Sail By The Sea from the same connections PU in 2015. No runners last five years and I don't see any in 2020. Well Chief (star) and the Warhorse only had one chase run. Winners back to '94 at least two chase runs.


    Mullins/Henderson have won seven of the last nine between them. Would have been eight without the Warhorse.


    P. Nicholls - In last 19 has had 20 runners. Two winners, four thirds. However since Azer '03 only three thirds from 15 runners. (No runners last four years, Vibrato Valtat 4th in 2014 after trying to take the favourite on. Dodging Bullets unpl 2014. No runner 2013, Al Ferof unpl 2012).


    A. King - has only ever had 6 runners in this. Probably now as well known a stat as Danish Flight. Jahash in ’04 was 4th at 150/1, Kadount ’05 was travelling well when UR four out and then he won it twice with Voy Por Ustedes and My Way De Solzen. 2011 Medermit his first runner for 4 years and favourite, only 4th. Last runner was Valdez 4th 2014.


    Northern based - Cloudy Dream 12s ran in 2017 to finish 2nd for Malcolm Jefferson. Kahahari King 2nd '09, Tidal Bay won '08 and Monets Garden’s 2nd to Voy ’06 improves their performance from the previous decade. Overturn well beaten at 7/2 in 2013. No triers 2015, '16, '18, '19 nor '20.


    FORM - All the last eleven winners won last time out. Only Contraband (3rd) and Moscow Flyer (F) of the last 28 winners did not finish 1st or 2nd in their previous race. Of those 28 only Moscow, Ventana Canyon and Un De Sceaux had actually fallen that season. Moscow had fallen twice. Ventana Canyon started chasing career in the same 2m 2f Thurles Beginners as Un De Sceaux. Duc De Genievres is the only winner since Contraband '05 not to have finished in the first 2 on any completed chase start that season in GB or Ire. But then when did Willie Mullins ever worry about stats. Western Warhorse had won his only chase. Hitman, Gumball, Fiddlerontheroof, Asterion Forlonge, Blackbow amongst others, have issues here.


    16 of the last 19 had won at least a G2 that season. Not the Duc, Western Warhorse, or Well Chief.


    BHA RATINGS - 9 of last 18 had rating of 156 plus and were the top-rated hurdler. Global Citizen top-rated last year of 156. Fakir had a 149 hurdle rating. Kalashnikov top-rated hurdler last year on 152. Altior was given a rating of 170 after winning the Game Spirit before this. Brain Power and Petit Mouchoir both had 3 lbs in hand over Footpad over hurdles according to the handicapper. Shishkin is now rated 162 over fences.


    2013 Simonsig second top-rated hurdler, 2012 Sprinter Sacre lowest hurdle rating 145 of first 4 home.


    18 of last 21 rated at least 142 over hurdles. Duc de Genievres 146, Altior, Douvan 160+ Un De Sceaux at least 156. Footpad 157 (Put The Kettle On only 123, Western Warhorse was 125, Voy Por Ustedes not officially rated but likely to not have been much over 120 - both were unbeaten over fences). Henry de Bromhead knows his stats. When questioned about this beforehand, 'aah sure, wasn't Special Tiara only a hurdler off 116, Ordinary World 118.'


    9 of last 14 winners had won a Pattern race over hurdles (not the Kettle, the Duc, Captain Chris, Sprinter Sacre nor Western Warhorse).


    Racing Post Ratings - In the last 19 races, 17 horses came with a recent hurdle RPR of 160+. 9 won, four others placed. Footpad RPR 162 in previous season. None last two years. Global Citizen 4th the best hurdle RPR off 158. Shishkin has a 170, Franco de Port and Allmankind 159.


    23 from last 29 had won at least 50% of their completed chase starts. Duc De Genievres broke this stat run which had gone back to Captain Chris 2011. He had only one win from 4 runs. 26 of last 33 had won at least twice over fences. (Again the Duc broke this, only one win, three other exceptions were trained by M/D Pipe, Forpadytheplasterer had been 2nd in three Grade 1 chases). Put The Kettle On, Un De Sceaux and Azertyuiop only winners since Anaglogs Daughter in 1980 to make most of the running. Douvan led from the 3rd when Ruby got bored. Footpad 2018 picked up the pieces as Davy Russell and Aiden Coleman both blew their chances by setting a ridiculous pace.


    Last 24 no more than 6 runs over fences. Only Western Warhorse of the last 20 wore blinkers. And that was first time. 27 of last 29 winners had at least 7 runs over hurdles/fences. Not Western Warhorse (5). He also became the 5th winner since 1987 to have had less than 3 chase runs. Footpad had won 3 chases, Altior and Put The Kettle On had won 4 chases.


    10 from last 14 had won over 2m 4f. Put The Kettle On 3 times over that trip, The Duc at Gowran, Footpad at Auteuil. Altior had beaten Black Corton 63 lengths in a match but over just 2m 2f. Not Forpady, only also had won over just 2m 2f. Nor Sprinter Sacre, only 2nd in an 2m 4f novice hurdle. Not Douvan, only 2m 1f. Only 13 from last 20 had won a Chase by Tingle Creek Day (7th December). Not the Duc, Captain Chris, Well Chief or any of the four before Douvan. Won a beginners chase at Navan on 22nd November. Un De Sceaux would have won but fell at 1/8 in a Thurles Beginners. Not particularly relevant, methinks.


    It has never happened that the winners of all the Supreme, Ballymore and Albert Bartlett have come back the next year and won the Arkle, Marsh and Festival Chase. Shishkin first up.


    SUPREME NOVICE/ARKLE DOUBLE - Altior and Douvan first since Flyingbolt in 1965 to do a Supreme-Arkle double. And Flyingbolt was rated 210. Seven others have tried. Un De Sceaux didn't come via the hurdle route because they already had Vautour. Charbel was also 5th in the (so far) Supreme of the Century 2015. Other recent triers Al Ferof 3/1 2012 and Champagne Fever 11/4 jt fav 2014 caught on the line by Western Warhorse. To credit Ruby, he went on RUK later that year explaining in detail why and when he should have kicked on a bit earlier that day. Simonsig had strolled a Neptune. Sprinter Sacre 3rd in Supreme Novice before winning here. He had finished behind Al Ferof in the hurdle, Somersby 3rd in Supreme Novices before 2nd here 2010, Kalahari King 4th in Supreme Novice '08 before 2nd here '09. Noland won Supreme '06, 3rd here '08, Wild Passion 2nd Supreme '05, 4th here in '06. Medermit 2nd Supreme Novice '09 before failing here. Shishkin


    No Lightning Chase winner at Doncaster late January has done the double. Since 2010 only 4 have attempted it, the shortest price and probably best performance was Vaniteux 8/1, fell two out when still pitching. Shishkin


    COURSE FORM - Only Un De Sceaux and Voy Por of the last 17 winners had never run here before. Western Warhorse had been 2nd in a Cl3 hurdle off 125. The other 14 had 'good' course form. Definition as follows. Either a course winner or 'decent' run at a previous festival. Stat stretched to include the Duc, 5th beaten 9l behind Samcro in the Ballymore, Forpadytheplasterer had finished 4th in another 'Ballymore'. The other 13 had also either won at least a G3 here or been placed in G2 or G1. Altior won the Supreme. Footpad has been 3rd in a Triumph and 4th in a Champion Hurdle. Put The Kettle On won the November G2 Arkle Trial. Fiddlerontheroof, Franco de Port.


    Boreen Prince 1985 last runner up in Champion Hurdle to win this the following year. Overturn failed in 2013. Melon went elsewhere. Sharjah staying over hurdles.


    Apart from The Kettle and Sizing Europe all winners since 1966 had had a run since Jan 1st. I am beginning to dislike 'number of days since last run' stats.


    Kingmaker (Warwick, Feb 15th) prep race with best current record. Winner of that has finished 0123U1263 in this. Rouge Vif 3rd last year. Allmankind. No Scilly Isles winner has doubled up in last 20. Itchy Feet and Defi De Seuil went to the Marsh Chase. Wayward Lad Chase at Kempton December won by Remittance Man, Sprinter Sacre and Simonsig. 2019 Global Citizen 4th bt Rouge Vif in 3 mins 56 seconds, 9 seconds faster than Cyrname in 2017. Captain Chris won after success in the 2m 4f Pendil Chase at Kempton. Last 3 winners of Lightning Nov Chase Donc 29th Jan well beaten at Cheltenham although in 2017 Cloudy Dream was second in both races. Mister Fisher went Marsh Chase


    TIMES - This race is usually run in a time under 4 minutes 3 secs (Not last year - 4 mins 8 secs proving the Kettle's 2m 4f stamina very important. 2019 Duc de Genievres 3 mins 59, 2018 Footpad 4 mins 2 in heavy going, Altior 3.55 Douvan 3.49, Un De Sceaux 3.51, 2014 3mins 47 2013 Simonsig did 4 mins 2 (in soft ground). 13 of last 22 winners had already won a chase in a time under 4 minutes 1 second or had posted a time under 4 minutes in at least a Grade 2 Hurdle. Not the Kettle nor the Duc. The latter had only won a chase over 2m 4f. (Footpad 3.45 Irish Champion Hurdle, Altior 3.46, Douvan 3.48 in respective Supremes, Sizing Europe 3.50 for an Irish Champion). Altior 3.54 in a Wayward Lad jog. Exceptions include Western Warhorse, Or Royal and Tuitchev who all had yet to contest a 2-mile chase although the latter had been 6th in the previous years Champion Hurdle. Also Tidal Bay who had posted a time of 4mins 6 over 2m ½ furlong when 2nd at Doncaster, Captain Chris, a course hurdle winner and G2 Pendil winner last time out and finally Simonsig, a Festival G1 winner.


    2020 contenders best times.


    Wayward Lad Kempton - Shishkin 3 mins 55s

    Lightning Chase Doncaster - Shishkin 4 mins 02s soft 2m 1/2f

    2m Cheltenham November - Eldorado Allen 4 mins 4 secs

    Irish Arkle - Energumene 4mins 23secs 2m 1 1/2f Soft

    Leopardstown Christmas 2 mile 1f Franco de Port 4 mins 12 secs Yielding.

    Kingmaker Warwick - Allmankind 4 mins 9 secs Heavy






    Some Plan 4 mins 6 secs for Irish Arkle 2017 and then stuffed in this. Although he finished alone it was 'probably the fastest run Irish Arkle in many years' said Davy Russell. Very likely with the unusually good ground in early Feb that year.


    BREEDING - 12 of last 26 winners were French bred from about 25% of runners. Including all of Willie's last four winners. 14 weren't. However a French bred has been placed at least in 15 of last 20. Four form a field of 11 last year, best 2nd and 3rd. 2019 Duc De Genievres was the only French Bred in the field. Footpad FRE. Douvan was bred in France but is by Walk In The Park, an Irish sire. (The sire of Min, as well). Altior is Irish bred by High Chapparal. Franco De Port


    Only 13 German breds have run. Well Chief hacked home, two seconds and a third. Notebook and Lalor didn't help the cause.


    Put The Kettle On stuffed the MARES stat. Kruguyrova '08 only placed mare of ten which had run in the past 20 years. Previous mare to win obviously Anaglog’s Daughter ‘80.



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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.