The Supreme Novices' Hurdle often produces winners who continue to shine at the Festival in future years. It is one of the most eagerly anticipated races of the entire season though not a great race for favourites. Only 2 have won in the last 15 renewals, that said, only a couple of those have started longer than 12/1.
Willie Mullins has won this race 6 times, Nicky Henderson 4 and Noel Meade twice. Handling ground conditions with the ability to act in large fields is key. This race is regularly won by a stayer but one who can race close to the pace - they rarely come from way back.
1.30: (Old) Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m87y .
19/19: Foaled between March & May (100%)
19/19: Between 2-7 runs that season (100%)
19/19: Won over hurdles previously (100%)
16/16: Rested at least 16 days (100%)
16/16: Won at 2m – 2m1f (100%)
12/12: Aged 5 or 6yo (100%)
12/12: At least 2 runs that season (100%)
12/12: At least 2 previous wins over 15-17 furlongs (100%)
18/19: Sent off no bigger than 25/1 (95%)
18/19: Won at least a Class 3 contest (95%)
18/19: Contested at least a Class 2 race (95%)
18/19: In first three last time out (95%)
15/16: Raced over 2m - 2m2f last time out (94%)
15/16: Ran 2-4 times since October (94%)
15/16: Ran within the last 60 days (94%)
15/16: Ran 2-5 times over hurdles (94%)
24/26: Raced in same calendar year (92%)
12/13: Came from top 6 in the betting (92%)
11/12: At least 2 wins that season (92%)
11/12: Rated 142 or higher (92%)
11/12: At least 4 runs over hurdles (92%)
11/12: At least 2 wins over hurdles (92%)
42/46: Won by 5 or 6yo (91%)
21/23: Won at least 50% of career hurdle races (91%)
- Winning favourites at Cheltenham in non-handicap hurdles: 44-113 for 39%
- Willie Mullins representatives sent off favourite for 6 of last 7 years, won this race 6 times
- Nicky Henderson has won this race 4 times
- The last 11 winners were rated 142+
- Last winner with just one run over hurdles before winning was in 1992
- Last 4yo winner in 1999
- Those aged 7yo have poor record in race showing 1-39 since 1997
Our numbers are very strong for this race! The top 8 trends show a recurrence factor of 125/125 for 100% whilst the top 24 show 384/405 for 94.81%.
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The Racing Horse Verdict
Last year Nicky Henderson started the meeting with a bang courtesy of Shishkin at 6/1 getting us off to a great start! He was the trainer's fourth winner in the festival opener, following on from River Ceiriog (1986), Flown (1992) and Altior (2016).
Our 1-2-3-4 to follow...
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