Cheltenham Festival

First Boodles Cheltenham Gold Cup Shown On American National TV A Success

The 2022 G1 Boodles Cheltenham Gold Cup was broadcast for the first time on Fox Sports in the U.S. on Friday and was named a "resounding success". Rachael Blackmore triumphed aboard A Plus Tard (Fr) (Kapgarde {Fr}) at Cheltenham Racecourse, and the experience impressed American television executives. Fox Sports, working with HBA Media and racecourse Media Group, took the Racing TV feed, fronted by Nick Luck, for an hour around the Gold Cup. Tony Allevato, the Chief Revenue Officer of NYRA, who was experiencing the Cheltenham Festival for the first...

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Rock Star Rachael Is Pure Gold On A Plus Tard

CHELTENHAM, UK--Emotions ran high at Cheltenham on Friday as Rachael Blackmore, the most successful female National Hunt jockey of all time, continued to rewrite the history books, this time by becoming the first woman to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Her willing and sublimely talented partner was A Plus Tard (Fr) (Kapgarde {Fr}), who was runner-up to his stable-mate Minella Indo (Ire) (Beat Hollow {GB}) last year but turned the tables in emphatic fashion this time around. Tackling the defending champion for the lead over the final fence, the 8-year-old...

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Porter Floors 'Em To Remain King Of The Stayers

CHELTENHAM, UK--Depending on your preference, Thursday at Cheltenham is either Paddy Power Stayers' Hurdle day or Ryanair Chase day but either way, on St Patrick's Day each of the Irish-sponsored co-feature races produced a repeat Irish winner. The one key difference 12 months on was that the owners of Flooring Porter (Ire) (Yeats {Ire}) and Allaho (Fr) (No Risk At All {Fr}) were allowed on course to celebrate in person. And celebrate they did. The huge black-and-white-bedecked entourage that accompanied the dual Stayers' Hurdle winner Flooring Porter made the most...

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A Champion Crowned As A Champion Bows Out

CHELTENHAM, UK--It is a rare moment when a beaten horse elicits a more rousing reception than a winner, but then Tiger Roll (Ire) (Authorized {Ire}) is the rarest of beasts. An enigma sometimes, but scintillating on his many days in the sun, he retires a proper champion of a horse after giving his all for one final run in relentless rain.  Nobody could claim that the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase is a championship race - in fact there are those who call for its exclusion from the Festival - but...

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The Sweet Roar Of Success For Cheltenham's Golden Girls

CHELTENHAM, UK--There are horses, and then there's Honeysuckle (GB). Thought it may seem like sacrilege to compare the superstar hurdler to the greatest racehorse of the modern era, there has been no better winning sequence on the turf since Frankel (GB) stepped off it to the breeding shed a decade ago, and Honeysuckle isn't stopping yet. The daughter of Sulamani (Ire) is now a dual Champion Hurdle winner, a treble Irish Champion Hurdle winner, unbeaten in 15 starts under rules, plus her debut triumph in a point-to-point at Dromahane at...

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Ireland Set Fair To Dominate Cheltenham Breeding Ranks

Whichever way you slice it, the green, white and orange of the Irish tricolour ran right through the middle of last year's Cheltenham Festival results. Some 28 races were run during the four biggest days in the jumps racing calendar, and the Irish raiding party won an unprecedented 23 of them. This haul included the four championship prizes, as Honeysuckle (GB) (Sulamani {Ire}) won the Champion Hurdle, Put The Kettle On (Ire) (Stowaway {GB}) claimed the Champion Chase, Flooring Porter (Ire) (Yeats {Ire}) took the Stayers' Hurdle and Minella Indo...

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Wadham Looking To Sky For Poignant First Festival Win

"You start to feel like you're waiting for Godot," says Lucy Wadham, referring to the fictional character who never actually appears in Samuel Beckett's play of the same name. It has been a long winter and the days can seem to pass agonisingly slowly when you have a horse aiming for a big-race target, but the sand in the Cheltenham Festival hourglass has now nearly all run through. Wadham has only to wait until Tuesday afternoon to unleash the bonny grey mare who has been at the forefront of the...

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Rachael Blackmore Wins 2021 Irish Racing Hero Award

Jockey Rachael Blackmore will be awarded the 2021 Irish Racing Hero Award at the annual Horse Racing Ireland Awards in December. Blackmore became the first woman to claim the Cheltenham Festival Leading Jockey title with six winners. She found Champion Hurdle success with Honeysuckle (GB) (Sulamani {Ire}) on Tuesday, a Triumph Hurdle score with Quilixios (GB) (Maxios {GB}) on Friday and also won races in the middle of the meeting with Bob Olinger (Ire) (Sholokhov {Ire}) and Sir Gerhard (Ire) (Jeremy) on Wednesday and Allaho (Fr) (No Risk At All...

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King Henry Rules With Gold Cup One-Two

The crowning moment in an extraordinary week for Henry de Bromhead was provided by not one but two horses when Minella Indo (Ire) (Beat Hollow {GB}) beat his stable-mate A Plus Tard (Fr) (Kapgarde {Fr}) in steeplechasing's greatest prize, the Cheltenham Gold Cup. The victory of Barry Maloney's 8-year-old also wrote de Bromhead's name in the history books as the first person to train the winners of the Champion Hurdle, Champion Chase and Gold Cup in the same year.  "This is crazy stuff, it's not reality," said the trainer as...

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Rachael Reigns Over Cheltenham

"Out of this world," was how Rachael Blackmore described her week at Cheltenham so far, but it is becoming increasingly clear that the top echelon of National Hunt racing is very much her world. The 31-year-old now leads the jockeys' table with five Festival winners in the last three days, with Jack Kennedy her closest pursuer on three. Two of her triumphs have come on horses owned by Cheveley Park Stud, which has now celebrated two winners at each of the last three Cheltenham Festivals. Wednesday's victory of Sir Gerhard...

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Blackmore Makes History At Cheltenham

Jump racing was lifted from the doldrums on the opening day of Cheltenham as Rachael Blackmore became the first woman to win a championship race at the Festival aboard Kenny Alexander's unbeaten Honeysuckle (GB) (Sulamani {Ire}). Her 7-year-old mount in turn continued her flawless career to become the third mare in five years to win the G1 Unibet Champion Hurdle following Annie Power (Ire) (Shirocco {Ger}) and last year's winner Epatante (Fr) (No Risk At All {Fr}), who had to settle for third this year, the two mares being split...

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Pair Of Queens Gives Syndicate A Strong Hand

There have been 28 runnings of the G1 Weatherbys Champion Bumper at Cheltenham and 10 of them have been won by Willie Mullins. The Festival's most successful trainer of all time even rode the first of his winners, Wither Or Which (Ire), and he trains five of the 15 declared runners for this year's race, which is the final contest of Wednesday's card. Of that quintet, the Cheveley Park Stud-owned favourite Sir Gerhard (Ire) (Jeremy) cost £400,000. Lower down the sales scale is the little mare Grangee (Fr) (Great Pretender...

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