County Hurdle Trends - Cheltenham Festival Betting

County Hurdle Trends - Cheltenham Festival Betting

TOP 5 COUNTY HURDLE TRENDS

  • No more than 4 hurdle wins
  • No more than 2 handicap hurdle wins
  • Run in at least 1 handicap hurdle
  • Not favourite in County Hurdle betting
  • Officially rated no higher than 140

Get the latest County Hurdle Odds here

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Did Trends Win Last Year's County Handicap Hurdle?

There were four horses fitting the County Hurdle trends profile in 2018, but only one made the frame, Mohaayed winning at crazy odds of 33/1.

Mohaayed was an almost ideal example of a County Hurdle winner, according to the 10-year and 15-year trends listed below. He was rated 139, had not won a handicap hurdle, but had won two other hurdle races, been third in the Scottish Champion Hurdle and in a Grade 1.

He was also the right age at six, booked to carry less than 11st, had been placed on his last run, and two runs ago in a handicap, and had won over 2m. The County Hurdle trends clearly marked him as a lively contender, so his wild odds in the Cheltenham betting had to be down to trainer Dan Skelton's stable jockey Harry Skelton picking Spiritofthegames, and the horse's seventh in 2017 off a lower handicap mark.

Spiritofthegames, third last time out in a Key Trends Race, the Betfair Hurdle, was actually the next on the shortlist to finish, taking fifth after winning only one handicap hurdle previously.

He was also rated 139, had run in just four handicap hurdles, and had won only three hurdles in total, but he was perhaps beaten because those victories had come over 2m3f-2m4f, highlighting why that trend of 2m winners winning is important.

Other trends picks Ben Dundee and Bleu Et Rouge, the topweight, finished outside the top 10, Ben Dundee having won a handicap hurdle over 2m4f and finished down the field in a Key Trends Race, and Grade 1 winner Bleu Et Rouge having been second in the Betfair Hurdle last time out off a handicap mark just 8lbs lower.

Second Remiluc was too old, exposed, and highly-rated to be shortlisted on trends, though he had only won the two handicap hurdles and did run very well in the Betfair Hurdle. He perhaps defied the trends due to his particular liking for the testing ground at Cheltenham.

Third Whiskey Sour was also rated too highly, as was fourth Chesterfield, who had was too exposed, having won three handicap hurdles and five hurdle races in total. He had few secrets, though he did boast a course-and-distance win, and was racing off 8lbs less than he had when 10th in at Cheltenham the previous November.


KEY COUNTY HURDLE TRENDS

15-year-trends

The last 15 winners…

  • Were aged up to nine
  • Won one of their last 10 starts
  • Had run in at least one handicap hurdle
  • Had an average official rating of 138, only two horses rated more than 139 winning

10-year-trends

The last 10 winners…

  • Were aged between five and eight
  • Had won no more than four hurdle races
  • Had won no more than two handicap hurdles, five winning none
  • Had won a race over 2m-2m1f before
  • Were not favourite in the betting

Nine of the last 10 winners…

  • Were officially rated between 134-139, exception was 158-rated Arctic Fire
  • Finished in the first three in one of their last three starts
  • Had run 2-4 times that season
  • Featured eighth or lower in the weights

Eight of the last 10 winners…

  • Were aged 5 or 6
  • Carried 11st 1lb or less to victory
  • Had won at least two hurdle races
  • Had run in no more than four handicap hurdles
  • Last ran no more than 80 days ago

Seven of the last 10 winners…

  • Had won any race that season
  • Had run at Cheltenham before, but only 1 had won

Six of the last 10 winners…

  • Were trained in Ireland by Willie Mullins, Tom Mullins or Tony Martin - Paul Nicholls and Dan Skelton trained the four other winners

KEY RACE TRENDS (10 years)

(Last Graded race contested prior to the County Hurdle)

Key Race Racecourse Winners Place Finishers
Ladbrokes Hurdle (Grade B) LeopardstownThousand Stars (2010), Final Approach (2011), Ted Veale (2013) Plan A (2012), Shadow Catcher (2013)
Betfair Hurdle (G3) Newbury Remiluc (2018)Sternrubin (2016), Montbazon (2014), Manyriverstocross (2013), Sailors Warn (2011), Get Me Out Of Here (2011), Nearby (2011)
Imperial Cup (G3) SandownWicklow Brave (2015) Arctic Fire (2014), Stradbrook (2009)
Deloitte Novice Hurdle (G1)LeopardstownNoneWhiskey Sour (2018)
Heroes Handicap Hurdle (G3)SandownNoneArcalis (2010)

KEY TRAINER TRENDS (10 years)​

TrainerRunsWinsWin%P/LPlaces
Willie Mullins 27 4 15 52.00 5
Paul Nicholls 15 2 13 18.00 1
Dan Skelton 6 2 33 37.00
Tony Martin 4 1 25 7.00 1

WATCH: Racehour Grand Annual Preview


How Mohaayed Won 2018's County Hurdle

At 33/1 and almost bottom-weight, Mohaayed appeared an underdog in 2018's County Hurdle on the final day of the Cheltenham Festival.

Ridden by 3lb-claimer Bridget Andrews, and trained by 2016 County Hurdle winner Dan Skelton, the six-year-old had finished seventh the previous year, and 11th of 13 in the Greatwood Hurdle over almost course and distance since.

However, a month later he first teamed up with Andrews, producing a career-best to be second in a handicap at Doncaster, that led to a first Grade 1 run in Kempton's Christmas Hurdle, but this time back under regular rider Harry Skelton.


2.10 CHELTENHAM - 2018 COUNTY HURDLE RESULT

  1. Mohaayed 33/1
  2. Remiluc 50/1
  3. Whiskey Sour 7/1
  4. Chesterfield 16/1

He finished third, beaten six lengths and was put away for the Festival with a handicap rated of 139, 5lbs higher than is had been 12 months earlier. It didn't matter, Andrews off-set the rise, the horse far fresher than before and granted his preferred soft ground.

Covered up early, he was shaken up into fifth turning in, early leaders Tigris River and Sternrubin galloping the County Hurdle field to the second-last hurdle.

Tigris River cried enough there as the race began in earnest, Remiluc, Whiskey Sour, Chesterfield and Mohaayed swallowing Sternrubin to jump the last together.

As the four approached the Cheltenham hill it was Mohaayed with most in reserve, drawing clear to win by almost three lengths from Remiluc, Grade 1-winning novice Whiskey Sour under a length further back in third. Scottish Champion Hurdle winner Chesterfield took fourth.


Cheltenham 2019 Friday Schedule

13:30 Triumph Hurdle

14:10 - Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle

14:50 Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle

15:30 CHELTENHAM GOLD CUP

16:10 Cheltenham Foxhunter Chase

16:50 Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase

17:30 Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle

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