AGE 6 yr olds didn’t used to win this before ’05 Missed That, ’06 Hairy Molly (only 2 that year). Fayronagh (RIP), Moon Racer and Silver Concorde three 6 yr old winners in the last four. First since Dunquib '09. 14 from the last 21 have been five year olds with the first three home in 2011 and the first four home 2013. 2014. 2nd to 7th behind Silver Concorde were all five year olds. In 2016 first seven home were all five year olds. Last year places 2nd to 6th went to two four years and three five year olds
Dato Star ’95 last 4 year old winner before Cue Card demolished the field in 2010. Both trained in England. Debuchet last year and New Years Eve 2nd in 2012 as 4 yr olds. Another Ferguson four yr old, Purple Bay, 5th 2013. 3 ran 2014, best was Modus in 8th. No 4 yr olds ran in the 2015 nor 2016.
Three favourites and three second favourites in the last thirteen. Fayronagh 7/1 jt third fav. Moon Racer '15 only favourite to win since Missed That 7/2 in 2005.
Liberman only one from 10 favourites to be sent off 11/4 or less and win, 7 of the other shorties finished runner-up. ('14 Shanehill 7/2f, '13 Regal Encore 7/1jf 2nd, '12 New Years Eve 9/2 '11 Ericht 5/1 fav and 6th. '10 Shot From The Hip backed from 6s to 3s in the twenty minutes before the off. Unplaced.) Moon Racer backed from 9s to 9/2 throughout the day. In 2016 bookies went 8s the field in the morning finished Augusta Kate 7/2 fav, Ballyandy 5s, New To This Town 6s, 10s bar. 2017. Skelton's Cause Toujours backed down to 9/2 fav. Hard to understand why. In the last two years, the SP Overround was 128%. Advisable to take an early price.
All 20 runners this century who had been beaten favourite last time out failed to win this. Two tried in 2017. No triers 2016.
Big prices, Silver Concorde 16s, Briar Hill 25s Champagne Fever 16s, Cheltenian 14s, Cue Card 40s all winners in the last seven years.
FORM All bar Monsignor and Liberman of the 25 winners were successful on most recent start. Won't be that much of a help.
Only 12 of the 25 were unbeaten. 10 from the last 15 had ran at least 3 times in bumpers. 5 hadnt. Ballyandy ran in 4 previous bumpers.
13 from last 15 not seen out for at least 32 days. Moon Racer 144 days since winning course bumper at October meeting. Fayronagh, Ballyandy and Moon Racer top BHA rating when allowances taken into consideration.
6 of last 15 not seen since Christmas. Silver Concorde won at Leopardstown on 28th December.
6 of the last 22 won a Leopardstown Xmas Bumper. 16 didn't. Bacardys best last year, 3rd here. Ballybow, Minella Encore, Delegate. (Eddie O'Leary, Racing Post 19th Feb 2016 'I wouldn't imagine we'll send one this year.' Gigginstown are not keen on what can be a rough race). None came last year, one unplaced in 2016. Neither P Nichols nor N Henderson tend to target this race.
14 from last 16 had won a bumper worth at least £4k to the winner (Not Cue Card or Cheltenian but £4k bumpers not common in England nowadays. All Irish bumpers usually worth £4k Moon Racer 50s first time out won big Fairyhouse bumper prize of £34k by 7 lengths. Small trainer said he was only three quarters fit). Ballyandy had won two £11 bumpers. Fayronagh won a 23k to the winner Lasted Mares Bumper at Fairyhouse by 20 lengths.
Fayronagh joined the W Mullins trained Missed That as having been outside the first 4 on any previous run. Both had been well out with the washing on their first run. None of the previous 10 outside 1st or 2nd in any bumper run. Last 14 all won last time out.
MARES - Fayronagh, Total Enjoyment (7/1 2nd fav) 2004, Mucklemeg (7/2f) 1994 have won this for Irish trainers. Augusta Kate all the rage getting 7lb, only 7th. Since the arrival of the big Aintree and Punchestown Mares Bumpers I can only find 4 unplaced of the gender at big prices in the last 8 runnings of this. Irish Roe well beaten last year. When Total Enjoyment and Mucklemeg won, mares also finished second. Only one other mare ran in either of those two races and she fell.
21 of the 25 successful previously in fields of 13 or more (including the last three but not the three before that. Silver Concorde had finished 2nd of 22 in a Galway Bumper at odds on).
TRAINERS - W Mullins. 8 winners from the last 21 races. No winner in last four but two seconds. 4 winners were his only runner, 4 when he went with more than one. The 4 wins with single runners came from his first five successes. Can't see him doing that anymore. He has had 64 runners in last 20 races. Two last year, best Next Destination in 4th. Seven came in 2016 giving him 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 7th and 8th. A better return than 2015 when six tried and his best finisher was Belshill in 10th (yes, 10th). Best backed 2015 was Bordoni 7s and pulled up. Three ran in 2014 finishing 2nd, 4th and 6th. Three in 2013 with Briar Hill priced up as the outsider. Wins at 25s. Two runners 2012 - Pique Sous finished third. Cousin Vinny (3 runners) and Joe Cullen (4). Five of his winners had only one previous run. With Briar Hill at 25s, Willie must be in front for level stakes. Both Champagne Fever and Briar Hill came from the Point to Point route. Could be wrong but I think Willie probably sometimes just tries to get them here and then whatever happens, happens.
Only 7 English trained winners from 25 (from about two thirds of the total runners - 15 from 24 in both the last two years. However, they have won four from the last eight. Before Ballyandy and Moon Racer, Cheltenian 2011 and Cue Card 2010 first since Liberman '03. Ballyandy, Al Ferof and Ericht won same Newbury bumper (Betfair Hurdle day) as Monsignor finished 4th in his year. Acey Milan strolled it. Barters Hill won that bumper in 2015 and then won at Aintree. Such a disappointing injury for a real trier. English trained filled first four places in 2015. English trained have finished 2nd five times when English trained won.
Naas £8k to winner bumper 21st Feb has produced Pizarro, Hairy Molly and Rite of Passage. Battleford 2nd in 2016 came from Punchestown Bumper early February. Check
Paul Webber – has trained two 4 yr olds to be placed Press Gang ’06, De Soto ‘05. Some time ago.
Edward O’Grady only 5 runners in last 23 runnings, 2 winners and a third. '10 Shot From The Hip. Seems a long time since Pizarro kept the race. It was 2002.
20 from the 25 winners were Irish bred. Ballyandy by Kayf Tara and GB. Bacardys 3rd 2016, Cheltenian and Al Ferof (2nd) first success for the 40 French Breds. 5 French Breds ran last year including the four year old Debuchet in second. 3 ran in 2016 all unplaced. Bordoni only (FR) bred in 2015 pulled up. No French breds ran 2014, three tried in 2013, Le Vent D'Antan 7/1jt fav best in 7th.
Amateur or conditionals have had no claim in this race for the last seven. No success until '07 when Pauline Ryan went very close on Sophocles and then '08 Patrick Mullins beat Nina Carberry with all the professionals in their wake. '09 Being an amateur didn't seem to cause much of a problem to Mr B T O'Connell on Dunguib. Mind you, you might have fancied your own chances at steering that. 2010 Joe Tizzard took off on Cue Card from Ruby and B Geraghty. 2011 R Johnson from Aiden Coleman. 2012 Mr PW Mullins. 2013 Ruby 'took off' on Briar Hill. 2014 Mr Robbie McNamara rode his first Festival winner with a fine ride on Silver Concorde to be followed up the next day on Spring Heeled in the Kim Muir. 2015 T Scudamore for D Pipe. 2016 was a good day for the Twiston Davies family. Last year Mr JJ Codd decided to give them all a start and then went round them all. Fantastic.
Sectional times explained by Simon Rowlands at http://cheltenham.attheraces.com/sectional-spotlight/sectional-spotlight-juvenile-hurdlers-and-bumper-horses
BLINKERS, CHEEKPIECES etc - Only five tried in 15 years, none won. One last year, still looking for it, none in 2016, two qualifiers 2015, best Modus 2nd in first time hood having finished eighth in 2014. No qualifiers in 2014.
All 25 winners of this have had different sires (remains one of my favourite pieces of Festival trivia). The sires have been (in order) Montelimar, Where to Dance, Strong Gale, Accordion, Welsh Term, Florida Son, Glacial Storm, Mister Lord, River Falls, Broken Hearted, Teenoso, Flemensfirth, Overbury, Shernazar, Fasliyief, Bob Back, Presenting, Kings Theatre, Astarabad, Stowaway, Shantou, Dansili, Saffron Walden, Kayf Tara and last year, Kalanisi. Does show how quickly sires can go in and out of fashion..
Racing Post breeding article in January 2017 asked 5 Irish breeders which sires they liked at present. Overwhelming support for Getaway and Ask.
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.