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). The Stats Proverb says 'Relevance Is In The Eye Of The Beholder.' 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 concerned 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.
AGE - Last year On The Fringe (11yrs) joined Cavalero (11yrs) in 2000 and Earthmover (13yrs) 2004 to win for horses over 10 yrs of age. First since Three Counties in '89. On The Fringe had become the first 10yr old winner since Baby Run 2010 . 8 from 24 older than 10 yrs last year, Paint The Clouds also in 3rd. 2015 , 9 from 24 last year were older than 10 Carsonstown Boy 4th. 13 from 24 qualifiers in 2014 best Pearlysteps 4th. All three of our older winners above were course winners. To summarise those aged 12 or over have produced one third from 51 runners over the last 12.
Earthmover won this as a 7yr old and a 13 yr old, trained first time by R Barber and the second time by P Nicholls.
Since 1990 Apart from the Fringe winning last year, the other 26 horses that were ages 11+ and went off at less than 10/1 have been beaten.
In the past 15, ten aged 8 or less have been placed from 101 triers. Six won, Salsify twice. (Colman Sweeney only jockey in the past 30 odd yrs to win this on two different horses. The other one was?) Apart from Following Dreams 2nd 2015 at 50/1 and 2011 winner Zemsky at 33s (D O'Connor ridden), the other 5 'youngsters' all priced 7/1 or less.
PRICE 4 favourites and a jt fav have won in the last 15 plus one second fav at 6s. On The Fringe backed from 5/2 to 13/8 in ten minutes before the off. The rest have been 15/2, 14/1, 3x20/1 and 2x33/1. Six favs and one joint favourite of the last 11 beaten favourites were trained in Ireland. (And Salsify was pretty fortunate in 2013).
Point To Point or Handicap? Baby Run '10, Amicelli '08, Sleeping Night ’05 and Drombeag ’07 are recent winners not to come through point to point and hunter chase ranks. Zemsky '11 and Earthmover ’04 had been initially point to pointing before going through handicap company and then back again. Lot of debate about this recent trend but ex handicappers had been turning up in this for ages. Examples include last year Marito 2nd 14s, Point The Toes 3rd, 2015 Point The Toes 11/4 fav, 2013 Cottage Oak (3rd) 2013 and '12 Chapoturgeon 3/1 fav and 5/1 respectively, Mighty Moss, West Tip, Flashing Steel, Cab On Target, Stearsby, Ryde Again, Lord Relic and Dorans Pride. All short enough based on past glories and beaten. Carsonstown Boy came to P2Ps in 2012. Henry Daly's Pearlysteps 8/1 and 4th in 2014.
Since 2005 all 54 ex handicappers rated 140+ at their peak have been beaten. Eight of them in 2016 including those finishing in 2nd adown to 6th. On The Fringe rated 147 last year. Aupcharlie, Chapoturgeon, Mendip Express, Pearlysteps, Twirling Magnet. So be careful of previous 'class' acts. Call Me Bubbles, Buckers Bridge, Home Farm, Grand Geature, Wonderful Charm
To accentuate trend S Alner ’03, P Nicholls ’04 and ’05, JJ O’Neill ‘07, Twiston Davies '10 Ian Ferguson '11 first professional trainer stables to win this since Fred Winter in the eighties. ('09 Mrs Crow with Cappa Bleu). Liam Lennon was the trainer in the papers for Tammys Hill, but in post race interviews he kindly gave all the credit to JJ Smyth and his family. Last couple of years you would have to say that Enda Bolger is a very professional trainer.
Cappa Bleu and Amicelli first since Rushing Wild ‘92 not to have won a Hunters Chase at some stage. All three had never run in one. Cappa only one since Rushing Wild last one not to have won under rules.
Last time out. 5 from last 15 previous run not winning but six from last nine winners all won last time. On The Fringe seems just to warm up in the Leopardstown Race before winning everything else, Tammys Hill RIP ran 3rd to Warne over 2m 5f at Fairyhouse before his win.
Going back to ’91, 9 of last 25 had previously won at Cheltenham. Also Baby Run and Amicelli had previously been placed in a course Grade 2 hurdle, ’07 Drombeag had been 3rd in the 4 miler, ’96 Elegant Lord had been third to Fantus ’95. On The Fringe (first time) 3rd to Tammys Hill in 2014. 10 others, including Tammys had never raced at Cheltenham before. Exception to them all - Zemsky - 4th and last home in a 3 mile December course novice chase when trained by N Henderson.
COMING BACK AGAIN On The Fringe has won as favourite twice 13/8 and 3/1 jt fav and 4th in 2011 as a five yr old, 11/2 second fav and third in 2014 as an 8yr old. 2013 Salsify (and Oscar Delta), Amicelli 1st '08 then 4th in '09, Whyso Mayo '07 followed up his win with a second. Last Option '03 his win with a third the next year. Behind Cappa Bleu '09 was Baby Run in third. Baby Run trifle unlucky 2011 when UR at second last. (The Doc had him covered with Zemsky) On The Fringe
Record of previous winner is 204U11.
Before the Fringe and Salsify, last back to back victory Double Silk '94. Although Fantus and Earthmover have also been double winners but not in successive years. Of all winners since Double Silk, 7 did try, their placings P36204U. 2 remained hunters but didn't come back to defend and the rest moved onto the handicap ranks. On The Fringe
THIRD WIN? - Hasn't been done - Double Silk (11/4) finished 5th to Fantus in his quest for a third win. Fantus (5/1) in turn ironically finished PU behind Earthmover in trying to win 3 times. Earthmover (7/1) finished 6th behind Sleeping Knight when he had a go. Salsify, On The Fringe
19 from last 20 last run between 12 and 41 days previous, whenever the date of the Leopardstown race. Not Drombeag, professionally trained first run of the season.
Last 19 had all won over at least 3 miles (including Point to Point).
Zemsky first in cheekpieces since Drombeag. No blinkered winners. Cheekpieces and blinkers are now allowed in point to points. Neither cheekpieces nor tongue ties are recorded anywhere due to the difficulties of ensuring correct information. My thanks to Richard Pugh at the excellent www.p2p.ie. 8 tried last year, best finisher Marito.
IRISH TRAINED Last seven Irish winners On The Fringe (x2), the lamented Tammys Hill, Salsify (x2), Drombeag '07 and Whyso Mayo '06 came form Leopardstown Inn Hunter Chase (better known as the Raymond Smith) on Irish Hennessey day won well in '10 by Kilty Storm (2nd here). '11 On The Fringe finished 4th here. The tragic You Must Know Me led all the way from It Came To Pass and Salsify, On The Fringe well beaten in 7th at Evens. Salsify weakened in fourth last year after a long lay off. PU at Cheltenham. Those involved in finish of this race have continually gone off at too big a price at Cheltenham. It Came To Pass is a half brother to Lord Windermere so better ground may not be a hindrance. 9/1, still going ok last year when fell 3 out. Foxrock (not qualified) bt On The Fringe, Stalker Wallace and Salsify, Quiet Account UR
Carsonstown Boy 4th 2015 year fast finishing second in the 2m 5f Fairyhouse Hunter Chase 21st Feb where Tammys Hill 3rd in 2013. Check
6 from last 19 made virtually all the running (and Carsonstowns Boy 2nd 2014). Definitely not Salsify or Zemsky, both given fine rides by Colman Sweeney and Derek O'Connor. Jane Mangan took the lead on Oscar Delta from 4 out. The Fringe tends to 'lead last'.
40 last time beaten favourites have run this century. 4 winners On the Fringe both times, Tammys Hill and Earthmover. The latter came from Fontwell, a course that would probably not have suited him. Level £1 stakes backing all 40 puts you £11.25 behind.
JOCKEYS - Only two jockeys have won this century who could normally claim 7lb
24 runners last year. Once again only BET 365 went 4 places.
(Sleeping Knight 2005)