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The Ryanair World Hurdle

The Premier Grade 1 Long distance hurdle

Ryanair

 

The_Race

The World Hurdle sponsored by Ryanair is a grade 1 hurdle race.

The World Hurdle is the most prestigious 3 mile hurdle race in the whole calendar and is run for long distance hurdlers on the third day of the Cheltenham festival.

First Run in 1972 this is the race that all top class long distance hurdlers are aimed at all season.

More Information.



The_2016_Race

Well here we are at the third day of the Cheltenham Festival and the major championship race of the day is the world hurdle, this year it has a new sponsor, Ryanair. The owner of Ryanair is part of the Gigginstown syndicate that has three horses running today but we are going to start with the favourite, Thistlecrack.

Thistlecrack is the top rated hurdler in the field today and has done very little wrong in his running this year. He has been able to beat good horses over 3 miles and on each occasion he has had his field strung out. He contested Cleeve hurdle at this course at the end of January and travelled really superbly throughout the race and very impressively drew clear and won by 12 lengths, and it could have been more. He is from a yard that this year has been in sparkling form that of Colin Tizard. So with course form, stable form and distance form he has ticks in all the boxes and nothing against. Will be a very short price for the race but he does look the best.

The best of the Gigginstown horses is Alpha des Obeaux. This young gelding has been steadily improving throughout this year. He started running over 2 1/2 miles and then stepped up to 3 miles and actually looked better over that distance than the former. He won the grade 2 Galmoy hurdle which is a grade 2 hurdle run at Gowran Park in Ireland on his last outing and won the race very easily. He comes sure with every chance of making the frame and would not be a surprise winner.

Last year's winner Cole Harden has not yet shown the form that won him this race 12 months ago. Although to be fair to the horse he only won one race in his lead up to last season's victory. He was well fancied last year by some shrewd judges and any market move on the day should not be ignored. He will have a more difficult task on his plate today but he did win really well last year and a repeat win would by no means be out of the question.

Paul Nicholls is again running Saphir Du Rheu who was second in this race last year. He went from the Festival last year to the Aintree Festival and won the Mildmay novices chase over 3 miles plus that was an impressive performance. He had 2 chase runs earlier this season and was then reverted back to hurdles in December at Ascot where he contested the Long walk hurdle. He finished fifth that day behind Thistlecrack and was 30 lengths behind him. Thistlecrack has continued to improve so there is a lot for this horse to turn around today.

 

Whisper is a horse sent by the master of Cheltenham Nicky Henderson. He is a good horse, a very good horse however can sometimes have his own ideas about doing things. If things go right for him and he is on a going day he is a very interesting runner. Although he finished fifth in this race last year when he went to Aintree a few weeks later he overturned the form with the winner beating him by 3 1/2 lengths. The main problem perhaps this year is that he has had no form at all finishing last of five behind Thistlecrack in the long distance hurdle at Newbury and then getting pulled up in a grade 2 on this course back in January. Don't write him off for this though!

Aux Ptits Soins is another runner for Paul Nicholls. He was bought very expensively from France and is only had one run for his new stable. It was a winning run, and was at the Festival. He won the coral cup a grade 3 handicap over 2 miles 5 furlongs. He has not been seen so far this year, he is likely to be a very high-class horse but actually is a fair bit behind some of the others on the ratings. Wouldn't be a surprise winner from a stable who was won four of the last seven running's but is another where we have to take a lot on trust.

Kilcooley is a nice young seven-year-old who has been doing pretty well at a distance of just over 2 miles. This season in his solitary run back in October he was sent over 3 miles and was very impressive indeed beating a past champion hurdle winner Rock on Ruby by 13 lengths. He won that race very easily but is not been seen since. He certainly looks one of the better outsiders in the race.

 

Martello Tower is last seasons Albert Bartlett novice hurdle winner where he stayed on well to win the race. In his two runs so far this season he has not looked as good as that performance. He should have improvement to come but he would have to improve to win this. He does have in his favor course and distance form and that should not be ignored when assessing his chances.

Another of the Irish raiders Lieutenant Colonel he was 10th in this race last year. This year he simply has not looked up to that class and perhaps his two poorest pieces of form for both at Cheltenham so it may be that this course does not suit.

The David pipe stable sends French import Un Temps Pour Tount who is another interesting runner. Sixth in this race last year but well beaten and although running well for a long time he couldn't live with the horses in front. He has been running well without setting the world on fire in novice chases this year and I'll reverts back to hurdling. Not really sure why he should improve enough to win this today.

Rebecca Curtis sends the nine-year-old At Fishers Cross again to contest this race. Fourth last year and was staying on really well at the end of the race. He was second behind Alpha Des Obeaux on his first run in January at Gowran Park and at nine years old and don't really see how we can overturn at 11 length defeat. Still an interesting runner.

It is very unusual for a gold cup winner to take his chance in the world hurdle. This is what is happening with Bobs Worth. An absolutely top class chaser who was rated 180 over the larger obstacles but is being lightly run every year and has not looked the force of old, except when running in preparation hurdle races. He ran in the Relkeel hurdle at this course on New Year's Day and finished last of the six finishers, however that was the only time that this horse is ever been beaten over hurdles. There is little doubt that he finds hurdles easier currently and has speed over them as his win in the Betfred hurdle in 2015 showed where he had the very smart Simonsig well beaten. It is unusual for horses older than nine years old to win this race with the last being Crimson Embers in 1986 and you have to go back a further 60 years to find another 11-year-old winner. That said if you find some of his old form that he had when winning the gold cup he could be really surprising at a big price.

 

Knockara Beau is a nice chaser but is a 13-year-old who was never looked up to this class over hurdles.





Race Conditions: For 4yo+ which are allotted a rating of 130 or more by the BHA Head of Handicapping following a review of the horses entered and after taking account of races run up to and including March 10th. Horses which are not qualified for a rating in Great Britain, Ireland or France may also be entered. Such horses may be eligible providing the Handicapper is satisfied that the horse's racecourse performances up to and including March 10th would merit a minimum rating of 130. The decision of the BHA Head of Handicapping shall be final Weights 4yo 11st 1lb; 5yo+ 11st 10lb Allowances fillies & mares 7lb



List_of_runners


NUMBER FORM NAME AGE WEIGHT TRAINER JOCKEY RATING


1 F-2221 Alpha Des Obeaux 6 11-10 M F Morris B.J.Cooper 156
2 wins and 6 places in nine starts, wins have come on ground ranging from yielding through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles.

2 454-24 At Fishers Cross 9 11-10 Rebecca Curtis Barry Geraghty 152
8 wins and 7 places from 22 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good to soft through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles.

3 1/311- Aux Ptits Soins 6 11-10 Paul Nicholls Nick Schofield 152
3 wins and 1 place from four starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good through to heavy and up to a distance of 2 miles and 5 furlongs.

4 P0-166 Bobs Worth 11 11-10 Nicky Henderson David Bass 150
11 wins and 3 places from 21 starts wins have come on ground ranging from good through to soft and up to a distance of 3 miles 2 1/2 furlongs.

5 412-33 Cole Harden 7 11-10 Warren Greatrex Gavin Sheehan 164
6 wins and 7 places from 16 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles 2 1/2 furlongs.

6 1P17-1 Kilcooley 7 11-10 Charlie Longsdon Richard johnson. 164
6 wins and 2 places from 13 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good to soft through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles.

7 80P-24 Knockara Beau 13 11-10 George Charlton Liam Treadwell 140
11 wins and 14 places from 52 starts wins have come on ground ranging from good through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles and 2 furlongs.

8 110-42 Lieutenant Colonel 7 11-10 Ms Sandra Hughes Davy Russell* 155
5 wins and 5 places from 13 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from yielding through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles,

9 121-33 Martello Tower 8 11-10 Ms Margaret Mullins A.P.Heskin 150
6 wins and 3 places from 11 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles.

10 21-155 Saphir Du Rheu 7 11-10 Paul Nicholls Sam Twiston Davies 161
8 wins and 3 places from 19 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles and 1 furlong.

11 1-2111 Thistlecrack 8 11-10 Colin Tizzard Tom Scudamore 168
7 wins and 2 places from 12 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good to soft through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles and half a furlong.

12 3-1224 Un Temps Pour Tout 7 11-10 David Pipe Doubtful 163
5 wins and 12 places from 19 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from soft through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles won a half furlongs.

13 251-5P Whisper 8 11-10 Nicky Henderson Nico de Boinville 164
8 wins and forced places from 17 starts, wins have come on ground ranging from good through to heavy and up to a distance of 3 miles and half a furlong.






The_Full_Result


POSITION DISTANCE HORSE / SP AGE WEIGHT TRAINER JOCKEY
1 Thistlecrack EvensF 8 11-10 Colin Tizzard Tom Scudamore
2 7 Alpha Des Obeaux (FR) 8/1 6 11-10 M F Morris B J Cooper
3 22 Bobs Worth (IRE) 33/1 11 11-10 Nicky Henderson David Bass
4 1 Cole Harden (IRE) 15/2 7 11-10 t Warren Greatrex Gavin Sheehan
5 9 Aux Ptits Soins (FR) 16/1 6 11-10 Paul Nicholls Nick Scholfield
6 4 Saphir Du Rheu (FR) 11/1 7 11-10 Paul Nicholls Sam Twiston-Davies
7 Martello Tower (IRE) 14/1 8 11-10 Ms Margaret Mullins A P Heskin
8 Whisper (FR) 9/1 8 11-10 Nicky Henderson Nico de Boinville
PU Kilcooley (IRE) 20/1 7 11-10 t Charlie Longsdon Richard Johnson
PU At Fishers Cross (IRE) 33/1 9 11-10 b Rebecca Curtis Barry Geraghty
PU Lieutenant Colonel 33/1 7 11-10 t Ms Sandra Hughes Davy Russell
PU Knockara Beau (IRE) 100/1 13 11-10 George Charlton Liam Treadwell




TheStoryOfTheRace

To be updated.














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