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Arkle Challenge Trophy Trends: Stats and information for Cheltenham Festival Grade 1 race

Jonbon Trials Day

We take a look at some of the vital Arkle Challenge Trophy trends ahead of the 2024 renewal on day one of the Cheltenham Festival on Tuesday 12th March. Here at GG we look to try and help you find the winner of the Grade 1 novice chase and look at what is the ideal age, starting price and official rating for an Arkle winner.

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Age

Attracting the leading 2m novice chasers from the UK & Ireland, the Arkle is always one of the most hotly-anticipated races throughout the Cheltenham Festival and it’s been won by some legends of the National Hunt sphere. Being first season novice chasers, the Arkle is aimed at young, emerging stars looking to make waves over fences and there have actually been two five-year-olds win the race in the last two decades with Well Chief (2004) and Voy Por Ustedes (2006) both claiming the win.

However, the most popular age of an Arkle winner is either six or seven, with the former being accountable for seven winners, while there have been nine seven-year-old winners since 2004 with the likes of Simonsig, Altior and Shishkin all landing the prize for Nicky Henderson at the age of seven. There have also been two eight-year-old winners, but there’s not been a horse older than eight to win the race since 1988 when Danish Flight won for Jimmy Fitzgerald.

Age Of Arkle Challenge Trophy Winners In Last 20 Years

  • 5 – 2 winners
  • 6 – 7 winners
  • 7 – 9 winners
  • 8 – 2 winners

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Starting Price

In recent times the Arkle has become a race that has seen the favourites dominate with nine of the last 12 winners being the market leader and a lot of them have been short-priced jollies that have blown their rivals away. With the addition of the Turners Novices’ Chase to the Cheltenham Festival schedule the Arkle has certainly lost some notable intrigue and it can see small-runner affairs, but prior to the last decade there were much more competitive renewals.

Between 2004 and 2011 the winner seven of the eight winners were priced between 6/1 and 9/1, so it certainly wasn’t a hotbed for favourites, while there was a shock winner way back in 2014 when David Pipe’s Western Warhorse outbattled Champagne Fever in an epic conclusion to land the prize for Pond House at a whopping 33/1.

Starting Price Of Arkle Challenge Trophy Winners In Last 20 Years

  • 1/4 to Evs – 7 winners
  • 11/10 to 11/4 – 2 winners
  • 3/1 to 7/1 – 6 winners
  • 15/2 to 10/1 – 3 winners
  • 11/1 to 18/1 – 2 winners
  • 20/1+ – 1 winner
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Rating

With favourites dominating the Arkle in recent times that means the official ratings for winners over the last 15 years have been pretty high and the highest of them all belonged to the iconic Altior, who stormed to Arkle glory in 2017 when rated 170, while the legendary Sprinter Sacre and former stablemate of Altior was rated 1lb lower at 169 when he won in 2012.

Western Warhorse was rated a meagre 135 when he caused an almighty shock with his win, while another relatively lowly rated winner was Put The Kettle On, who was rated 144 when landing the 2020 renewal. However, the trends show that a horse must be generally rated between 150 and 170 to win an Arkle on day one of the meeting.

Official Rating Of Arkle Challenge Trophy Winners In Last 15 Years

  • <140 – 1 winner
  • 141-150 – 1 winner
  • 151-160 – 6 winners
  • 161-170 – 6 winners
  • 171+ – 0 winners
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