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    Info IMPERIAL CUP TRENDS 2015

    The William Hill Imperial Cup is a 2M ½F listed handicap hurdle run at Sandown on the Saturday (7th March) before Cheltenham. Previous sponsors of the race, Sunderlands, offered a £75K bonus to any winner who went on to win at the Festival the following week and current sponsors, William Hill, are offering £100,000. The double was last achieved by Gaspara in 2007 and David Pipe will most likely have something lined up for a go at the double again this year.





    Below we take a look at the past 10 runnings to attempt to find some pointers:



    Age (Win-Place-Runners)
    4yo: 2-1-9
    5yo: 3-6-43
    6yo: 3-8-61
    7yo: 1-10-50
    8yo: 1-4-21
    9yo+: 0-0-18
    Younger horses have fared better in recent years, especially 4yos who have gained 2 wins and a place from 9 runners (which improves to 2 wins and 1 place from 4 runners when only including 4yos priced less than 25/1)
    horses aged 4 to 6: 8-15-113
    horses aged 7 or older: 2-14-89


    Since 2002, 6 of the 7 winners aged 4 or 5 came from the Pipe stable
    2 of last 3 winners aged 7+ were novice hurdlers who had been placed in group company on the flat.

    Breeding


    Irish bred: 5-7-58
    French bred: 4-9-49
    British bred: 1-9-71
    German bred: 0-2-16
    NZ bred: 0-1-1
    USA bred: 0-1-7
    9 of 10 winners were French or Irish bred, and they only represented 53% of total runners.
    The 9 winners aged 4 to 7 were Irish or French bred, whereas the one 8yo winner was GB bred.
    All three 4yos to win or place were French bred.
    8 of 10 winners were sired by a group 1 winner

    Weight (Win-Place-Runners)


    horses carrying 11-0 or more: 0-11-73
    horses carrying 10-13 or less: 10-18-129
    Lower weights have held sway with the last 10 winners all carrying less than 11-0.
    Top Weight: P080000F327 (0-2-11) has been placed in 2 of last 3 renewals

    Official Ratings


    horses rated 131 or higher: 1-8-69
    horses rated 121 to 130: 7-18-110
    horses rated 120 or lower: 2-3-23
    In past 8 years horses officially rated 124 to 130 have won 7 of 8 and filled 18 of 31 places.

    Recent/Past Form


    7 of 10 winners finished in the first 3 on last completed hurdles start
    6 of 10 winners won 1 of their last 2 starts (3 of 4 exceptions were placed on 1 of last 2 starts)
    8 of 10 winners had their last run between 16 and 55 days ago
    7 of 10 winners posted highest RPR last time (3 exceptions did so on penultimate hurdles start)
    10 of 10 winners posted an RPR of 123+ in last 2 outings
    8 of 10 winners had run 3 to 9 times over hurdles
    7 of 10 winners had run in no more than 2 handicap hurdles (3 exceptions had run in 5 to 11)
    10 of 10 winners had won no more than twice over hurdles in GB&IRE
    6 of 10 winners were novice hurdlers
    10 of 10 winners had run in 1 to 5 hurdles since August
    0 of 10 winners had won a class 1 hurdle
    6 of 10 winners ran on the flat (5 were rated 77 or higher on flat, other had won both starts in France)
    Only 5 of 10 winners had previously run at Sandown (4 of 5 had 1 start, 2 had won & other 2 were placed, other looked potential winner over CD on penultimate start before falling at last)
    2 of 2 winners aged 4 had contested a graded hurdle that season
    In the past 20 years, 7 winners came from Pipe yard (3 trained by David and 4 trained by Martin), all 7 were novice hurdlers

    Other Races


    Weatherbys Hamilton Handicap Hurdle winner (Ascendant): 1 (1-0-1)
    Higos Insurance Services Ltd Crewkerne NH Novice Hurdle winner (Thistlecrack): 1 (1-0-1)
    Madinat Jumeirah Dubai December H'cap Hurdle winner (Snake Eyes): 33 (0-2-2)
    Ladbrokes Supporting Greatwood Handicap Hurdle winner (Royal Guardsman): 2 (0-1-1)
    Livingstone Insurance Yeovil Handicap Hurdle winner (Thundering Home): 5 (0-0-1)
    Nomad Novices' Hurdle winner (Bidourey): 5 (0-0-1)
    David Lindon & Co Novices' Hurdle winner (Bidourey): 0P (0-0-2)
    2 of 10 winners (2 of last 3) ran in Share.com More People Enjoying H’cap Hurdle, finishing 3F
    2 of 10 winners won a Taunton Novice Hurdle that season
    2 of 10 winners ran in Betfred Supports Jack Berry Introductory Hurdle, finishing 31
    2 of 10 winners ran in Betdaq The Sporting Exchange Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle, finishing 12

    Trainers


    David Pipe (3-4-13) has carried on the great tradition his father Martin, he has trained the winner in '07, '08 & '14 and his two runners in 2009 finished 2nd and 4th and his 2 runners in 2013 finished 2nd & 3rd. His record with 4yos is 2 wins and 1 place from 3 runners.
    Lucy Wadham (1-1-8) trained the winner in 2011 and also saddled Fenix to place in back to back renewals in 2004 & 2005.
    Charlie Longsdon (1-0-2) won it with Painball in 2012 while Laura Mongan (1-0-3) trained a 20/1 winner in 2013 and a 50/1 fifth in 2009.
    Nicky Henderson (1-0-13) trained the winner in 2009 but his other 12 runners have all been unplaced.
    Paul Nicholls (0-3-12) has saddled 3 placed finishers since 2005.
    Richard Lee (0-1-1) & Colin Tizzard (0-1-2) have each saddled the runner-up in past 3 years.

    Price


    4 of 10 winners were sent off favourite, though 4 of last 6 winners went off between 10/1 & 20/1.
    Favourites (4-3-11) have won 4 of last 10, showing a level stakes profit of 7.33.



    Summary:


    Based on the trends from the past 10 years you are looking for a horse:


    - French or Irish bred aged 4 to 7 (especially 4 or 5yos from Pipe stable)
    - Carrying less than 11-0
    - Officially rated 124 to 130
    - Finished in first 3 on last start, 21 to 55 days ago
    - Posted a career high RPR of 128+ on last 2 outings
    - Run 1 to 5 times since August
    - Run 3 to 9 times over hurdles (won no more than twice)
    - Novice hurdlers do well
    - Run in no more than 2 handicap hurdles
    - Won at no higher than class 2 over hurdles
    - Previously won or placed at Sandown (or having first course start)
    - Officially rated 77+ on the flat
    - Trained by David Pipe.

    Thanks to ganjaman2

    neilb (2nd March 2015) 


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