The Bet365 Gold Cup (formerly the Whitbread Gold Cup), which takes place at Sandown on Saturday 25th April, is a grade 3 handicap chase run over 3 miles 5½ furlongs and it signals the end of the British national hunt season. It is always a hugely competitive race and history tells us that it takes a special horse to carry a big weight to victory in this.
Below we take a look at the trends for the past 10 years:
horses aged 6 to 8: 5-12-68
horses aged 9+: 5-16-106
Younger horses have a better record proportional to the number of runners, with those aged 6 to 8 winning half of the last 10 renewals from less than 40% of the total runners.
Of the 5 winners aged 9+, 3 had previously won a graded chase, 1 had won the Grade B Troytown Chase & was 2nd in the Irish Grand National on previous start and the other had won the Grimthorpe Chase on previous run.
Irish bred: 5-9-89
French bred: 4-16-53
British bred: 1-3-29
French bred horses have won 4 of last 10 and filled 20 of 38 places since 2005 and they represented only 30.4% of the total runners.
Progeny of Dom Alco: 217 (1-1-3)
Progeny of Flemensfirth: 41P (1-1-3)
horses carrying 11-0 or more: 3-8-55
horses carrying 10-6 to 10-13: 4-12-54
horses carrying 10-0 to 10-5: 3-4-46
horses carrying 9-13 or less: 0-4-19
7 of 10 winners carried 10-7 or more from approximately 57.2% of total runners.
horses carrying 10-7 or more: 7-16-100
horses carrying 10-6 or less: 3-12-74
Top Weight: F030P4P10U (1-2-10)
The 2 top weights to be placed were ridden by 7lb claimers, while Tidal Bay, in 2012 has been the only horse to carry top weight to victory since 2005, he was a multiple grade 1 winner previously.
The only other 2 horses to carry 11-6+ to victory in past 30 years were Life Of A Lord (winner of the Galway Plate & Kerry National earlier that season) in 1996 and the great Desert Orchid in 1988.
horses rated 146 or higher: 4-5-38
horses rated 132 to 145: 6-20-114
horses rated 131 or lower: 0-3-22
8 of the last 9 winners were officially rated 135 higher, they have also filled 28 of 34 places since 2006.
horses racing from out of the handicap: 2-4-26
9 of 10 winners finished in first 6 on last completed chase start
7 of 10 winners had their last chase start in a graded contest (3 exceptions ran in class 2 chase worth 30K+)
10 of 10 winners had run in the past 60 days.
10 of 10 winners had run at least 3 times that season
10 of 10 winners had won over 3M+
8 of 10 winners ran in 10+ chases
9 of 10 winners had run in 9 or fewer handicap chases (exception finished 4th in previous year's race)
9 of 10 winners had won no more than 2 handicap chases
7 of 10 winners had run in a novice chase that season or previous season
9 of 10 winners had won a class 2 or higher chase
8 of 10 winners won a race worth 20K+ (1 exception placed in a grade 1 worth 84K)
Highest placed finisher from last year to return: F93P3PP0P (0-2-9)
Grand Military Gold Cup winner (Loose Chips): 4 (0-1-1)
Sandown Masters H'cap Chase winner (Le Reve): 48 (0-1-2)
Kim Muir H'cap Chase winner (The Package): 25 (0-1-2)
Highest placed finisher from previous season's 4M NH Novice Chase: 113 (2-1-3)
Highest placed finisher from that season's 4M NH Novice Chase: 1 (1-0-1)
2 of 10 winners ran in previous season's 4M NH Novice Chase, finishing 11
2 of 10 winners ran in the Charlie Hall finishing 34
2 of 10 winners ran in the Scottish National last time out, finishing 1U
2 of 10 winners ran in Ultima Business Solutions H'cap Chase last time, finishing P0
5 of 10 winners ran at the Cheltenham Festival (2 Ultima Business Solutions H'cap Chase, 1 4M NH Novice Chase, 1 Cross-Country & 1 Ryanair)
Philip Hobbs (2-4-12) trained the winner in 2006 and 2008 and has seen 6 of his 12 runners make the frame.
Paul Nicholls (1-7-25) saddled Ad Hoc to win this in 2001 & 2003 and also Tidal Bay to win it in 2012.
Nicky Henderson (1-2-6) won it with Hadrian’s Approach in 2014 and also saddled 2 places from his other 5 runners. All 6 of his runners finished in first 7.
Henry Daly (1-1-5) saddled the winner in 2013 and the runner-up in 2009.
Willie Mullins (0-1-1) has seen his last 2 runners finish 5th and 3rd.
Irish trained runners (2-3-15) have won 2 of last 10 runnings from 8.6% of total runners.
8 of 10 winners were priced between 6/1 and 16/1
No strong trends on trends on the prices, though there have been a few upsets recently with winners at 20/1 and 25/1 in past 7 years.
Favourites (0-6-14) have failed to win this in past 10 year, level stakes loss of 10.00.
Based on the trends from the past 10 years you are looking for a horse:
- French bred
- Aged 6 to 8 (or aged 9+ that has won a graded chase)
- Carrying 10-7 to 11-5
- Officially rated 135 to 154
- Ran in the past 50 days
- Finished in first 6 on last completed chase start
- Had last run at Cheltenham Festival, in a grand national or over hurdles
- Ran in a race at 2015 Cheltenham Festival
- Previously run 10 or more times over fences
- Run 9 or fewer handicap chases (or placed in this race last year)
- Won no more than 2 handicap chases in their career
- Run at least 3 times this season (winning no more than 1 chase)
- Won over 3M+
- Won a class 2 or higher chase worth 20K+
- Trained by Philip Hobbs, Paul Nicholls, Nicky Henderson, Henry Daly or in Ireland
- Avoid the favourite