National Hunt Challenge Cup PreviewA steeple chase over 4 miles for amateur riders only.
National Hunt Chase Trends
|10/10||had ran at least three times over fences|
|8/10||were aged 7 or 8|
|8/10||had run at least 4 times since 1st November|
|8/10||had won a race since 1st November|
|7/10||were rated 129 or higher|
|7/10||finished 1st or 2nd on their last completed start|
|7/10||had their last run that year|
National Hunt Chase AnalysisStamina is obviously the key here but the question is how to ascertain if your selection is likely to stay this marathon trip at what is likely to be an early stage of a steeplechase career?
A good stat to concentrate on is when contenders have had form over three miles and further over hurdles as these horses are more likely to translate that stamina from the smaller obstacles to this extreme distance over fences.
Also, look out for a high stamina index from the sire of your selection. For example, the 2014 winner Midnight Prayer had a stamina index of 13.3f. The higher this figure is the greater the influence of stamina. Look for sires around the 12/13f figure or above.
This has become a decent race for favourites with three of the last five market leaders obliging.
Other information to note is the great records of owner JP McManus (five winners in the race) and of trainer Jonjo ONeill who has won this race an amazing four times in the last fourteen years (as well as also winning the race in 1995!)
National Hunt Chase Last Ten WinnersTable below shows the last ten winners of the race, their age at the time of winning, trainer, jockey and odds
|2016||Minella Rocco||6yo||JJ ONeill||Mr D OConnor||8/1|
|2015||Cause Of Causes||7yo||G Elliott||Mr JJ Codd||8/1|
|2014||Midnight Prayer||9yo||A King||Mr J Newman||8/1|
|2013||Back In Focus||8yo||W Mullins||Mr P Mullins||9/4F|
|2012||Teaforthree||8yo||Rebecca Curtis||Mr JT McNamara||5/1F|
|2011||Chicago Grey||8yo||G Elliott||Mr Derek OConnor||5/1F|
|2010||Poker De Sivola||7yo||F Murphy||Ms K Walsh||14/1|
|2009||Tricky Trickster||6yo||N Twiston-Davies||Mr S Twiston-Davies||11/1|
|2008||Old Benny||7yo||A King||Mr C Huxley||9/1|
|2007||Butlers Cabin||7yo||JJ ONeill||Mr A Berry||33/1|
National Hunt Chase PreviewMaking sure you have a top amateur rider on your selection may seem an obvious statement but the advantage gained by having a one of the more established amateurs on board cannot be underestimated.
A scan of the last ten years shows that this race has tended to fall to the best pilots and one rider in particular is well worth siding with. Top Irish point to point rider Derek O'Connor won the race in 2011 for Gordon Elliott and his overall record in the race makes impressive reading: 32F142P254
The conditions of this race changed in 2010 and since then the highest rated horse has won three times.
This suggests that we should be focusing on the classier runners rather than trying to find a horse likely to improve for a step up in distance.
This is a hard race to work out too far in advance. The OLBG forum discussion has been focused around trying to understand which horses will run in the race. The Market Man thinks Roi Des Francs will run in this race, with Black Hercules going elsewhere.
" Growing confidence through the Mullins family for Roi Des Francs
Thomas, who sold the horse to Willie, thinks he'll win this and has been telling him so for months. This leads to Willie sending Black Hercules elsewhere and though the obvious choice is the RSA, he's been very impressed with No More Heroes - this led to considering the JLT. However, more likely to be RSA. "e;
As we get closer to the race there will be far more information available here.