2022 Champion Hurdle Preview, Trends, Pace Map, Tips - Cheltenham Festival 2022. Photo Healy Racing / Racingfotos.com

2022 Cheltenham Festival Trends: DAY ONE (Tues 15th March 2022)

Each day of the 2022 Cheltenham Festival our horse racing trends experts will give you all the quick-fire positive and negative stats for EVERY race. Apply these to the final cards and you will build up a picture and a profile of which horses have historically done the best in recent renewals.

We hope they help narrow down the fields and also help pin-point plenty of winners at the 2022 Cheltenham Festival for you!

The 'day one' feature is the Grade One Unibet Champion Hurdle - a race in which 32 of the last 38 winners won last time out.

Cheltenham Festival Trends

Tuesday 15th March 2022 (Old Course)   

    1.30 - Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 87y ITV

2021 Winner: APPRECIATE IT 8/11 fav
Trainer – Willie Mullins
Jockey – Paul Townend

Pluses…..

  • 22 of the last 25 winners won their last race
  • 14 of the last 18 winners had raced in at least 4 hurdles races before
  • 10 of the last 12 winners came from the first 4 in the market
  • 9 of the last 10 winners have all won a graded Novice Hurdle before
  • 21 of the last 27 winners ran in the last 45 days
  • Irish-trained horses have won 17 of the last 30 runnings
  • 5 & 6 year-olds have the best record – winning 15 of the last 17 runnings
  • Willie Mullins has won the race 7 times in total and for 5 of the last 9 years
  • 25 of the last 27 winners had raced that same calendar year
  • Owner Rich Ricci & trainer Willie Mullins have won 3 of the last 9 runnings
  • 6 of the last 8 winners had been rated 153 or more
  • 9 of the last 10 winners had won a graded Novice Hurdle before
  • 8 of the last 9 winners returned a single-figure price
  • 9 of the last 13 winners were previous bumper winners

Negatives…..

  • Horses that FAILED to win last time out before coming here are just 3 from the last 25. In other words, look for horses that won last time out!
  • Since 1992 all horses (38) wearing head-gear have been beaten
  • We’ve seen just two ex-flat horses win since 2008
  • Just 2 of the last 19 winners came here unbeaten
  • Just 1 of the last 19 winners aged 7 or older
  • Just 2 outright winning favourites in the last 17 runnings
  • Betfair Hurdle winners are 0-from-8 in the last decade
  • Nicky Henderson is 2 from 39 since 1993 (Shishkin (2020) and Altior (2016) his two winners for this period)

 

2.10 - Sporting Life Arkle Novices' Chase (Grade 1) 1m 7f 199y ITV

2021 Winner: SHISHKIN (4/9 fav)
Trainer – Nicky Henderson
Jockey – Nico de Boinville

Pluses….

  • 14 of the last 17 winners had won (or been placed) at Cheltenham before
  • 16 of the last 22 winners had won a Grade 1 or 2 chase before
  • The last 12 winners won last time out (plus 17 of the last 21)
  • 20 of the last 22 winners returned 9/1 or shorter
  • 12 of the last 16 winners had won at least twice over fences before
  • 14 of the last 15 winners were aged 6 or 7 years-old
  • 15 of the last 19 winners had run 3 or 4 times over fences
  • 13 of the last 18 winners at run at the previous year’s Cheltenham Festival
  • 12 of the last 21 winners were the top or second top-rated hurdler in the field
  • 8 of the last 10 winners were unbeaten over fences
  • Nicky Henderson has won the race 7 times
  • Willie Mullins has won 4 of the last 7 runnings (all French-bred)
  • 8 of the last 10 winners trained by Willie Mullins or Nicky Henderson

Negatives…..

  • Only 2 of the last 35 winners failed to win of finish second last time out
  • Just 3 of the last 31 winners started 11/1 or bigger in the betting
  • Only 3 of the last 30 winners were older than 7 years-old
  • The last horse aged 9 (or older) to win was in 1988
  • The last 29 ex-flat horses to run have all lost
  • Only 1 winner since 2000 won with headgear
  • 5 year-olds are 0-13 in the last 13 years
  • Shishkin (2021), Douvan (2016) and Altior (2017) were the first Supreme Hurdle winners (prev season) that have followed-up in this race since 1965
  • Trainer Paul Nicholls has had 12 unplaced from his last 13 runners

 

    2.50 - Ultima Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 3m 1f ITV

2021 Winner: VINTAGE CLOUDS (28/1)
Trainer – Sue Smith
Jockey – Ryan Mania
 

Pluses….

  • 17 of the last 22 winners were officially rated 143 or less
  • 15 of the last 21 came from the top 4 in the betting
  • 17 of the last 21 winners returned 11/1 or shorter
  • 15 of the last 21 were novices or second season chasers
  • 8 of the last 14 winners were rated between 142-146 (7 between 142-145)
  • Horses rated 140+ have won 13 of the last 21 runnings
  • 9 of the last 19 won last time out
  • Horses that have run well in the race before have a good record
  • 3 of the last 12 winners ran in the Cleeve Hurdle that season
  • 9 of the last 10 winners wore headgear
  • 9 of the last 12 winners had run at Cheltenham that season
  • Jonjo O’Neill, Alan King, Nicky Henderson, Tony Martin & David Pipe are trainers to note
  • All winners since 2000 had won over 3m+ before
  • 5 of the last 7 winners ran at Cheltenham’s January meeting
  • 4 of the last 8 winners ran in the Ladbrokes Trophy that season
  • 11 of the last 13 winners had run at the Festival before

Negatives….

  • Be a bit wary of horses carrying 11-04 or more in weight – 11 of the last 17 carried 10-12 or less, although the 2017 winner carried 11-12 & the 2019 winner won with 11-8. The 2020 winner, Vintage Clouds, carried 10-11
  • Horses aged 11 or older are just 3 from 52 to even get placed (but last year’s winner was an 11 year-old)
  • Be wary of Paul Nicholls-trained horses – he’s currently 0 from 23
  • Only 2 winners in the last 13 hadn’t raced at a previous Festival
  • Only 5 winners since 2000 have returned bigger than 11/1
  • The Irish have won just 2 of the last 53 runnings (since 1967)
  • Irish-trained runners are 0-28 in the last 15 runnings

 

    3.30 - Unibet Champion Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 87y ITV

2021 Winner: HONEYSUCKLE (1st 11/10 fav)
Trainer – Henry De Bromhead
Jockey – Rachael Blackmore

Pluses….

  • 32 of the last 38 won last time out
  • Horses unbeaten that season often do well (9 of last 11)
  • The Irish and Nicky Henderson have won 19 of the last 23 runnings between them
  • 9 of the last 13 winners came from the Henderson or Willie Mullins yards
  • The Irish have won 14 of the last 23 runnings
  • Owner JP McManus has won 6 of the last 12 (10 in total)
  • Trainer Willie Mullins has won 4 of the last 11 runnings
  • 27 of the last 32 winners were aged 6 or 7 years-old (11 of last 15)
  • 13 of the last 23 winners had won at the Festival before
  • 24 of the last 37 winners were placed in the first 4 at the previous season’s festival
  • The Fighting Fifth Hurdle is a good guide (4 winners, 5 places in last 14 runnings)
  • 14 of the last 26 winners started as flat horses
  • The last 7 winners were unbeaten that season
  • Look for horses that have raced at least once that calendar year
  • Trainer Nicky Henderson has won the race 8 times, including 3 of the last 5 years
  • 6 of the last 13 winners contested the Christmas Hurdle (Kempton)
  • Mares are currently 3 from the last 6

Negatives….

  • Avoid horses that failed to finish in the top three last time out
  • 5 year-olds are just 2 from 108 since 1985, but the 2019 winner was a 5 year-old
  • Since 1927 we’ve only seen 2 winners aged 10 or older (0-29 in the last 39 runnings)
  • Just 1 of the last 15 winners had raced more than 12 times over hurdles
  • Christmas Hurdle (Kempton, 26th Dec) winners are just 4 from 31, but – Epatante 2020) – did the Christmas Hurdle/Champion Hurdle double.
  • Just 2 horses have regained the race since 1975
  • International Hurdle winners are 0-from-13 (last 18 runnings)
  • Only 2 of the last 23 winners hadn’t raced at the Festival before

 

    4.10 - Close Brothers Mares' Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 3f 200y ITV

2021 Winner: BLACK TEARS (11/1)
Trainer – Denise Foster
Jockey – Jack Kennedy

Pluses….

  • Follow Irish-trained mares (12 of last 14)
  • The favourite (or 2nd fav) have won 11 of the last 14 runnings
  • 8 of the last 14 favourites have won
  • 13 of the last 14 winners had won over at least 2m4f
  • Willie Mullins has trained 9 of the last 13 winners
  • Look for Willie Mullins, Nicky Henderson, Paul Nolan & Alan King runners
  • Novices generally do well
  • 10 of the last 14 winners had won a Grade 1 or 2 before
  • 6 of the last 10 winners had won over 2m6f+ before
  • Horses that began their careers in bumpers have done well
  • Respect French-bred mares – won 9 renewals
  • 11 of the last 14 winners returned 6/1 or shorter
  • 12 of the last 14 winners had won (or placed) in a graded race against the males

Negatives….

  • Avoid front-runners
  • British-bred mares are currently 2-81
  • Just one winner from last  31 runners to wear headgear have won
  • Be wary of Paul Nicholls, Philip Hobbs and Noel Meade runners
  • Benie De Deaux is the only ex-flat horse to win the race

 

    4.50 - Boodles Fred Winter Juvenile Hurdle (Handicap Hurdle) 2m 87y) ITV

2021 Winner: JEFF KIDDER
Trainer – Noel Meade
Jockey – Sean Flanagan

Pluses….

  • 10 of the last 17 winners had run just 3 times over hurdles before
  • French bred horses have a good record
  • 9 of the last 17 winners started their careers in France
  • Respect Fillies
  • 8 of the last 17 winners won last time out
  • 8 of the last 11 winners all came from the bottom half of the weights/handicap
  • 11 of the last 17 had run in the last 25 days
  • David Pipe, Paul Nicholls, Gordon Elliot (3 of last 9) and Alan King-trained horses often do well
  • 6 of the last 10 winners returned between 25/1 and 40/1 (7 of the last 10 priced 25/1+)
  • 11 of the last 17 winners returned a double-figure price
  • Respect horses wearing headgear
  • 13 of the last 17 winners were rated between 124-134
  • 8 of the last 14 winners were British-trained
  • Trainer Paul Nicholls has won 3 of the last 12 runnings
  • 12 of the last 17 winners had won no more than once over hurdles

Negatives….

  • Just 2 recent winners had last raced in January or further back
  • Trainers Willie Mullins, Philip Hobbs and Venetia Williams are 0 from 36 between them
  • Just 2 of the last 17 winners rated 135+
  • Horses bred in Britain are 0-55 (last 123 years)
  • Willie Mullins runners are 0 from 16 (just 1 placed in top 5 too)
  • Only 3 winners had run in a handicap hurdle before
  • No winner had raced at Cheltenham before
  • Horses with 2+ wins over hurdles are just 2 from 17

 

    5.30 – National Hunt Chase (Amateur Riders' Novices' Chase) (Grade 2) 3m 5f 201y RTV

2021 Winner: GALVIN 7/2
Trainer – I R Ferguson
Jockey – Jack Kennedy

Pluses…..

  • 12 of the last 20 winners finished 1st or 2nd last time out
  • 11 of the last 16 winners were aged 7 or 8 years-old (22 of the last 31)
  • Favourites have won 3 of the last 12 runnings
  • 9 of the last 12 winners had run 5+ times over fences
  • 4 of the last 11 winners were top-rated
  • 10 of the last 12 winners had run in a Graded Novice chase
  • 5 of the last 11 winners had run in a Grade One Novice Chase that season
  • 8 of the last 15 had run in a chase at Cheltenham before that season
  • 8 of the last 12 winners had run at a previous Cheltenham Festival
  • 8 of the last 11 winners returned a single-figure price
  • Note horses wearing headgear
  • 8 of the last 11 winners were rated 145 (or more)
  • Look out for JP McManus-owned runners (6 winners)
  • Jonjo O’Neill has trained 6 winners in the race (5-from-22)
  • Jockey Derek O’Connor has 2 wins / 4 places (from 15 rides)
  • Derek O’Connor, Jamie Codd & Patrick Mullins have won 7 of the last 11 (3, Codd, 2 Mullins, 2 O’Connor)
  • Jockey Jamie Codd has won 3 of the last 7
  • Gordon Elliott has won the race 4 times from just 8 runners

Negatives….

  • 5 and 6 year-olds are just 2 from 81 since 1989
  • Just 2 of the last 31 winners were aged 6 years-old
  • Trainer Paul Nicholls has NEVER won this race - he’s currently 0 from 19
  • Trainer Nicky Henderson has NEVER won this race
  • Horses with less than 3 chase starts don’t fare well
  • Horses rated in the 130’s have a poor record (1 from 12)
  • Just 2 winners in the last 14 returned bigger than 12/1

 

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1 reply
  1. 10 Things You Didn't Know about Geegeez Racecards
  2. Brian
    Brian says:

    Great article Andy.

    Not wanting to point out a mistake (even though it is), I wanted to elaborate on the fact that 7 year olds have won 2 of the last 15 renewals of the Supreme from just 22 runners.
    If you factor in lto winners and fancied in the betting (single figure odds), these 7yo’s have a record of 1-3-1 in the last 15 years

    Reply

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