• Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys H'cap Hurdle

    Gigginstown have run 12 in this. Four won, five were placed and Column Of Fire....

    W Mullins four winners (all novices), P Nicholls and G Elliott 2 winners each. All three trainers have also had at least three other runners placed.

    Apart from the very first running, David Pipe no placed finishers.

    The last three winning jockeys had already ridden over 40 winners.

    Nine winners were second-season hurdlers, the other four were novices.

    All bar Early Doors of the last 11 ran within the last 52 days

    Only Early Doors of the seven Irish trained winners had previously run in a handicap. This one.

    All six UK trained winners had run in at least three handicaps.

    11 of the 13 had previously ran in a Graded hurdle.

    12 of the 13 had won a hurdle of at least 11 runners

    11 of the 13 aged 5 or 6 yrs

    Nine of the last 11 finished in the first three on their previous run.

    No BF last time has ever won


    Race Distance - 2 miles and abt four and a half furlongs. It's a 0-145 handicap. Going 13 years. I do hope the Pipes win this someday, but it's not easy against the Irish. In past years their plot horse tends to get too short for a 24 runner handicap hurdle (and will be all the rage the week before). Winner has won at Class 3 level hurdle or placed at least at Listed level. Either won last time or Graded place. Winning jockey has already ridden 30+ winners. Not beaten favourite last time. Usually a compressed handicap, ratings from about 135 to 145. Aged 5 and 6 yrs or top weight. Not necessary to have run up a sequence of wins. No more than 11 previous hurdle runs. Out within the last 50 days or in a G1. Has won a hurdle of at least 11 runners or front runs. Gigginstown, G Elliott, J O'Brien, P Nicholls a keen interest. Willie Mullins in vogue again. If Irish trained, this will be its first handicap unless ran in this before. Irish novices obviously respected. Carrys 11st 1lb or more. Rarely a frontrunner but has run over further this season. First three last time out or ran in G1.

    In 2015 the 3lb allowance for riders riding for their own stable and the 7lb allowance for those who have not ridden a winner have been removed from race conditions. Done to deter trainers 'gambling with inexperience'. BHA wants to promote booking the best conditionals.

  • Honours Board

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

    2021 ||| 12P6 ||| Galopin Des Champs ||| 5 ||| 11-9 ||| 142 ||| 8/1 ||| W Mullins(IRE) ||| S O'Keefe ||| 6th Leop G 1 Nov 2m (40)

    2020 |||52231||| Indefatigable||| 7 |||11-9 |||145||| 25/1 |||P Webber |||R Dingle |||1st Lstd Warwick Lstd M Hurdle 2m 5f (34)

    2019||| 52||| Early Doors||| 6||| 11-10||| 145|||5/1 |||J O'Brien(IRE)||| J O'Neill jnr |||2nd G1 Leop G1 3m (81)

    2018||| 32161 |||Blow By Blow |||7||| 11-10||| 144||| 11/1||| G Elliott(IRE) |||D Meyler |||1st G3 Thurles Nov (23)

    2017 |||23213 |||Champagne Classic |||6 |||11-3 |||138||| 12/1 ||| G Elliott(IRE)||| JJ Slevin |||3rd G3 Thurles Nov (22)

    2016 |||235||| Ibis du Rheu |||5 |||11-7||| 139 |||14/1 |||P Nicholls |||J Sherwood |||5th G3 Sandown H'cap 3m (41)

    2015 |||123||| Killultagh Vic||| 6 |||11-1||| 135||| 7/1 |||W Mullins(IRE)||| L Dempsey||| 3rd G2 Leop Nov. (47)

    2014||| 211 |||Don Poli |||5 |||11-5||| 143||| 12/1 |||W Mullins (IRE)||| M Fogarty (3) ||| 1st G3 Clonmel Nov 3m (22)

    2013 |||4251 |||Salubrious||| 6 |||11-5||| 141||| 16/1||| P Nicholls |||H Derham (3)||| 1st Cl3 M'burgh H'cap (40)

    2012||| 135P1 ||| Attaglance |||6 |||11-3||| 139||| 20/1 |||M Jefferson||| H Haynes (3)||| 1st CL3 Market Rasen H'cap 2m 2f (26)

  • Evidence

    2021 - I felt for Dan Skelton. Langer Dan, 6th in the Boodles in 2020, then hardly beats a horse in three runs last season. Turns up at Sandown, cruises home indecently in the Imperial Cup at 5/1. Five to one? The bonus was the plan. Six days later, well punted at 13/2, held out the back by Lorcan Williams, then scythes through them two out. Coming round the corner, Lorcan thinks 'what a double, this and the Foxhunters!' But no one had told him that in front was a Willie aeroplane off 142 called Gallopin Des Champs. At the last Lorcan thinks, 'still have a shout.' But no, the thing just gets faster. From the last the two of them pull ten lengths clear of something else in third. Not sure how long it took Sean O'Keefe to pull up. Langer Dan hasn't been seen since. Now rated 140, what do you think? Imperial Cup double, 5lb penalty, top weight here? On 3rd Feb, he is the current 8/1 favourite for this race.


    2020 - Front View all the rage the fortnight before. The JP, Jonjo Jnr ridden 4/1 SP fav. Kevin Blake is Joseph's race planner. To give him credit as he was scorned at the Belfast Preview, Kevin did say 'although well handicapped, his jumping might not be up to scratch.' Proved spot on. If Column Of Fire with the weight of the Gigginstown stat (only runner) hadn't come down at the last, Gordon Top Festival Trainer 2020? Maybe. It was left to Paul Webber's Indefatigable to mug a lonely Pileon on the line. Post-race, the morning 40s after that December CD run when she had tried to give 5lb to Dame De Compagnie, the pair clear, looked...well...fecking huge. Rex (The King) Dingle no mug either with over 50 winners to his name at that time .Bottom weight 11st off 136. Standard is climbing. Umbrigado, the Pipe runner, backed to 9s, nowhere. You do feel for David, in his quest.


    2019 - Joseph O'Brien brought a bittersweet Festival Day to a close (Sir Erec) when Early Doors, a JP owned, Jonjo Jnr ridden 6 yr old carrying the top weight of 11st 10lb got home from the Gigginstown 7/2 fav Dallas Des Pictons, the pair clear. Winner was the 5/1 second fav, having finished 3rd in this in 2018. Donagh Meyler rode the fav here having won it on Blow By Blow. Gigginstown/Elliott responsible for 2nd and 3rd. Bottom weight was 4th and got in with a rating of 126. Dallas Des Pictons, if winning, would have meant Gordon drew level with Willie on three winners but would have still lost it 5-2 on countback for second places.


    2018 - Gigginstown make it four from the last eight when Blow By Blow leads from start to finish, their only runner in the race. Fine front running ride from Donagh Meyler. 9 of the 23 strong field Irish Trained, fill the 1-2-3-4. N Henderson best of the rest in 5th and 6th. Non-claiming Irish jockeys also filled the first four places. Top weight winner carrying 11st 10 lbs


    2017 - Champagne Classic at 12s, Michael O'Leary's 'worst horse' and a novice, wins very cosily under a non-claimer, JJ Slevin, for G Elliott who was confirming top trainer at the Festival. His 6th run over hurdles, the horse was a six yr old carrying 11st 3 rated 1lb less than he was in Ireland? Running in his first handicap As was G Elliott's third place, Runfordave. Bottom weight 11st. Dell' Arca only Pipe representative, 18th. Winner never here before. Previous run, third in a Thurles G3 over 2m 4f.


    2016 - P Nicholls continues his targeting of the Festival h'caps with 5yr old Ibis Du Rheu 14s in a hood he always wore carrying 11st 7 lb, rating 139 ridden by Jack Sherwood, a non claiming jockey. Price 14s. Won by a length from the in-form Twiston Davies trained Flying Angel fresh from winning the Imperial Cup at Sandown six days previous. His 6lb penalty got him into the race as bottom weight carried 11st 3 lb before allowance. Best Irish trained was Willie's Whiteout 5th at 33s. Ibis hadn't been out for 41 days and his only course form was 6th in the January Juvenile Trial in 2015. No Pipe runners. Changing times.


    2015 - Only two Pipe runners, both unfancied, both unplaced. W Mullins getting a taste for this, saddling 1st and 3rd from 3 runners. Killutagh Vic 7/1 won again for second season hurdlers (but still a novice). 6th in previous years Champion Bumper and came here from 3rd in January Leopardstown G2 novice over 2m 4f (finishing just behind Martello Tower). Irish trained 1-2-3-4. Had only won a maiden hurdle this season. He was 6 yrs old and this was his 5th run over hurdles. Lowest weight was 11st 1lb off 135 (the rating of the winner). Luke Dempsey was an non claiming jockey under the new rules and was the 5th in a row to win this having already ridden 20+ winners. Roi Des Francs (the well backed 3/1 fav) in 3rd had previously won the Clonmel G3 won in 2014 by Don Poli.


    2014 - Pipe runner was Vieux Lion Rouge unbeaten in three, backed from 7s to 5s, finished 21st. W Mullins wins with 12/1 Don Poli, 5 yr old carrying 11st 5lbs off 143. Mikey Fogarty (claiming 3lbs) said he was 'flat out for the first mile and a half.' Horse had 3 hurdle runs, winning its last 2. Has run previous season in France. Never ran on course before. Handicap ranged from 146 to 133 (10st 12lbs)

    '13 - D Pipe had 14 of the 198 entries . Only one runner, Gevrey Chambertain (full brother to Grand Crus). Hammered on course down from 5/1 to 9/4 fav (23 runners). Pulled up. P Nicholls won with Salubrious rated 141, winner last time of a Cl3 h'cap, a 6 yr old carrying 11st 8lbs ridden by Harry Derham (3). Price 16/1. 5 previous runs over hurdles. Had finished unpl in a previous on course bumper. Had won 2 previous hurdles. Lowest weight in h'cap was 10st 12.1


    '12 - Attaglance off 139 at 16s completed a Festival handicap hurdle double for Malcolm Jefferson. Beat a pausing Toner D'Oudairies. He was a six year old and won a Cl3 h'cap last time out. Compressed handicap went only down to 132. 4 Pipe runners got in best in 10th, Street Entertainer one of theirs at 5/1, beaten when fell. All the rage at Belfast Preview night 10 days earlier. AH Haynes (3) rode. Attaglance had 13 previous hurdle runs.


    '11 - Sir Des Champs 134 just got up with a well timed ride from Emmett Mullins (3). 9/2 favourite, a five yr old, won only previous hurdle run over 2 miles in Ireland. Closest Pipe finisher Shoegazer 9th at 13/2. Sir Des Champs never been here before.


    '10 - Pause And Clause 137 won for Emma Lavelle at 14s carrying 11st 10lbs off 137. J Farrelly had no claim. Pause had also decent course form, having finished 3rd to Ninetieth Minute in the '09 Coral Cup. This win was his 7th run over hurdles. Had won a Cl2. Best Pipe finisher Ashkazar 7th and fav.


    '09 - N Henderson wins with Andytown at 25/1, a son of Old Vic who had won a 2-mile handicap hurdle over the course in November. Andytown had finished last of 4 (a novice chase) last time out. He was a six yr old carrying 11 st 2lb off 133. Andytown was the first course (and distance) winner to win a handicap hurdle at the Festival for quite some time. This win was his 8th hurdle run. Best Pipe finisher Big Eared Fran 3rd and fav.




    12 of the 13 winners had won hurdles containing at least 11 runners (Galopin Des Champs, Ibis Du Rheu and Sir Des Champs all in France). Not Blow By Blow but had won an 11 runner G1 Bumper at Punchestown.


    THURLES - The Michael Purcell 2m 5f novice on 20th February has a recent history with this. 2018 Blow By Blow won both (hard to believe now, I know), Champagne Classic on 2017 was 3rd at Thurles before winning at Cheltenham. W Mullins's Five O'Clock and disappointed last year, 7/1, 7th. Front View fav, had been 2nd in Thurles. Nothing came last year. CHECK


    9 of the last eleven finished in the first three in their previous run. Galopin 80/1 6th behind Appreciate It in the DRF G1 2m Novice


    Gigginstown have 4 winners from 15 runners, five of the other 11 were placed. Their only runner in 2020, Column Of Fire, fell at the last when second. Had every chance. 2021 Dallas Des Pitons 66/1 5th, their best.


    JOCKEYS - Sean O'Keefe had ridden circa 65 winners before this Rex Dingle's portfolio include a £62k Sandown's Veterans Chase at Sandown. Jonjo O'Neill Jnr Donagh Meyler, Emmett Mullins and Harry Derham had already ridden over 40 winners each before this. Jonjo biggest win had been a Listed Lanzarote Hurdle, Donagh Meyler had already won a 95k Paddypower Chase, Harry had won at least a Greatwood Hurdle. Jack Sherwood and JJ Slevin both over 30 winners. I think ability and experience of pilot very relevant in this race. As Pricewise keep hammering, we should pay more attention to jockey bookings.


    In the 1-2-3 of the 12 years only Henry Brooke (6) and Joseph Palmowski (6) has gained a place for jockeys who would be claiming more than 3 lbs (Henry 2nd on Son Of Flicka 2011. Joseph 2nd on Thomas Crapper in 2017. To be honest, T Crapper probably knew his way around Prestbury Park better than Joseph). Declan Lavery (6) fourth 2016 for W Mullins on Make Your Mark. In 2020 Rex pipped Ben Jones and Donal McInerney, both normally 3lb claimers. That season Ben had won the Newbury Ladbroke on de Rasher Counter and Donal has a career total of over 70 winners in Ire and the UK.


    The system has changed in 2018. No claims now. Best conditionals get the rides.


    TRAINERS - W Mullins 4 winners, two 3rds, a fourth and a fifth. Has had 15 runners in the last sixive. Of those, only Great White Shark gained a place. 3rd at 40s 2020 before the aeroplane won. Also had the 4/1 fav last year Gentleman De Mee, 10th. It's not easy.


    G Elliott coming to the party with two winners, a second, two 3rds and a fourth between 2016 -20, And Column Of Fire. The Bosses Oscar 5th. Mrs Foster had a 5th, an 8th and Folcano 15/2, a first hurdle faller last year.


    2020 Joseph O'Brien, a 1st and a 3rd. Then 2021 Floueur 3rd at 33s top weight.


    P Nicholls (in the last six) two winners and 3 placed. Two down the field in each of the last two years.


    Sir Des Champs at 9/2 in 2011 only favourite to win. Due. Having said that nothing above 16/1 in the last eight.


    DAVID PIPE - Had been reported that both Grand Crus and Dynaste were balloted out of this in their respective years. With Gevrey Chambertain well punted, tends to obviously suggest that Pond House keep trying to aim something useful here. Mr Big Shot, unbeaten over three turned up for them in 2018, unplaced, 'improve for run' said Racing Post. wasn't meant to happen imo. No runners in the 2019, Umbrigado 11th 2020, Leoncavallo 28s last year, 6th. David is 0-23. I do hope it happens sometime.


    Galopin Des Champs, Blow By Blow, Champagne Classic and Killultagh Vic were novices. Other 9 were second-season hurdlers. Only two winners had more than 8 runs over hurdles. Attaglance 14, Indefatigable 11. All bar Early Doors out within the last 52 days. He had jogged around after Apples Jade in the Leopardstown Xmas G1 over three miles, got a h'cap mark in England of 145 and then hid in his box. Blow By Blow in 22 days.


    Six of the last eight had run over further than the 2m 4f earlier in the season. Not Galopin. Indefatigable won last time over 2m 5f.


    Indefatigable had been 5th in the Mares Hurdle 2019, Early Doors had been 3rd in the 2018 renewal of this. Only Killutagh Vic 2015 6th in the Bumper and Pause And Clause 2010 3rd in the Coral Cup had previous Festival from. The previous Festival. Galopin had been hiding in plain sight.

    Now is a 0-145 handicap as opposed to 0-140 previously. Will be over 150 entries each year. Outsider of field at 6 day stage normally priced at 33s. Overround 300% plus. Do not bet ante-post on this. (Unless you really, really know, of course) Do wish I would take my own advice.

    There were only three of them between the last two years but horses carrying 11st or less are 0-90. Folcano the only one last year, 15/2 fell first.


    Blow By Blow led the whole way. Galopin up there throughout. Nothing else has. Prone to late finishers.


    BLINKERS ETC - 65 have tried so far, Blow By Blow in blinkers wins 11/1, Ibis Du Rheu 14/1 won in the hood he always wore. Noble Endeavour 2nd 2015 'lost on nod.' Eight headgeared last year, Dallas Des Picton best in 5th, Three in 2020, two in first time headgear, best 19th. 2019 6 ran, best was sixth. 7 ran in 2017, also nothing better than sixth.

    BEATEN FAVOURITES - 36 last time beaten favourites have ran in the 12 races. No winners. Included Column Of Fire and Umbrigado. None ran last year. Do you think they know?

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