Cheltenham Gold Cup - Key Facts

The Cheltenham Gold Cup has many startling and interesting facts surrounding it, which we provide below for your reading. Many of these facts are key when making a selection to win the race, particularly if a Free bet facility is to be used.

  • The Cheltenham Gold Cup is the most valuable non-handicap chase in Britain. The total prize money for the 2009 race will be £475,000, an increase of £25,000 from that in 2008. The first Cheltenham Gold Cup was a three-mile Flat race in 1819, won by Mr Bodenham’s Spectre. The chase as we now know it was introduced in 1924, and won that year by Red Splash, where the winning prize money was £700.
  • The 2006 Gold Cup saw the joint biggest ever Gold Cup field, with 22 Gold Cup runners going to post. There has only been one other renewal with more than 20 runners, which took place in 1982 when Silver Buck defeated 21 rivals. The current maximum field is 24. The legendary Golden Miller holds the record for the most Gold Cup victories, with five consecutive wins from 1932-36. The race is fiercely competitive, so much so that before Best Mate in 2002, 2003 and 2004, the last horse to win more than once was L’Escargot in 1970 and 1971. This year the two favourites, Gold Cup betting favourites, Denman and Kauto Star will be looking for a second win.
  • Golden Miller’s owner, Dorothy Paget, is also the most successful owner in the race with an amazing seven victories, with Roman Hackle (1940) and Mont Tremblant (1952) adding to Golden Miller’s haul.
  • The most successful trainer is Tom Dreaper, who won five Gold Cups with three separate horses, who were Prince Regent (1946), Arkle (1964-66) and Fort Leney (1968).
  • Champion jockey Tony McCoy’s Champion Hurdle/Cheltenham Gold Cup double in 1997 on Make A Stand and Mr Mulligan was the 11th time that the big-race double has been landed by one jockey in the same year. The other jockeys to have achieved the feat were Dick Rees (1929), Tom Cullinan (1930), Ted Leader (1932), Bill Stott (1933), Gerry Wilson (1935), Aubrey Brabazon (1949 and 1950), Tim Molony (1953), Fred Winter (1961) and Norman Williamson (1995).
  • Alderbrook and Master Oats in 1995 enabled Norman Williamson and Kim Bailey to join a highly select group of jockey and trainer partnerships who have won both the Champion Hurdle and Gold Cup in the same year. The others were Tom Cullinan and Jack Anthony in 1930, Ted Leader and Basil Briscoe in 1932, Bill Stott and Basil Briscoe in 1933, and Aubrey Brabazon and Vincent O’Brien in both 1949 and 1950.
  • Dawn Run is the only horse to have won both the Champion Hurdle and Gold Cup. She was successful in 1984 in the Champion Hurdle and won the Gold Cup in 1986.
  • The longest-priced winner of the Gold Cup is Norton’s Coin, who started at 100/1 in 1990, he was also the biggest shock winner of the race. The shortest priced winner was Arkle, who won when 1/10 odds on favourite in 1966.
  • The last grey to win the Gold Cup was Desert Orchid in 1989.
  • totesport has sponsored the Cheltenham Gold Cup since 1980.
  • Throughout the Gold Cup's history there has only been six horses that have won the race more than once; the most recent of them being Best Mate who won in 2002, 2003 and 2004. The others were L'Escargot (1970/71), Easter Hero (1929/30), Golden Miller (1932/33/34/35/36), Cottage Rake (1948/49/50) and Arkle (1964/65/66). Their successes were all in consecutive years.
  • The last 27 runnings have seen eight 9-year-olds, eight 8-year-olds, five 10-year-olds and six 7-year-olds successful in the race. The last horse over the age of 10 to win was 12-year-old What A Myth, who triumphed in 1969. The last six-year-old to win was Mill House in 1963.
  • Only nine of the last 28 favourites have gone on to win the race – Kauto Star in 2007 and 2009, Kicking King in 2005, Best Mate in 2003 and 2004, Master Oats in 1995, Desert Orchid in 1989, Dawn Run in 1986 and Bregawn in 1983.
  • There have been four Irish-trained winners in the last 27 runnings. They were War Of Attrition in 2006, Kicking King in 2005, Imperial Call in 1996 and Dawn Run in 1986. Irish-trained horses did better between 1946 and 1977 when 16 successes were achieved. The only ever French-trained winner was The Fellow in 1994 while there has also been a Welsh-trained winnerr in Norton’s Coin (1990).
  • In 2009 Kauto Star became the first ever horse to re-gain the Cheltenham Gold Cup having previously won the race in 2007, before being beaten by Denman in 2008.
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