Lookout Cheltenham, the Irish are Coming!!

Updated: 2185 Horse Racing

You cannot deny the Irish have been getting the upper hand at the Cheltenham Festival, we look back to see what their numbers are and where they have been excelling.

Lookout Cheltenham, the Irish are Coming!!
In this article: The Irish Are Coming
Andy Powell Content Editor

Horse Racing stats man, Andy has contributed to OLBG for 18 years - An Ipswich fan and F1 fanatic, he also contributes EFL football and Motor Sport opinion.

The Irish Are Coming

With the Festival just around the corner, many thousands of Irishmen and women will be making their annual pilgrimage to the home of National Hunt racing.

Along with the thousands of pints of Guinness that will be drunk and the thousands of euros that will be wagered the formidable Irish trainers and owners will be bringing over their very best horses and will be looking to take home plenty of prize money and the prestigious honours from the best National Hunt race meeting in the world.

In this blog we are going to look at the numbers and see just how dominant they have been and in which areas that dominance has come.

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Ten Year Statistics

As you can see from the table below, the Irish entries have won 50% or more of the race at each of the last nine festivals, seven of those festivals they won 60% or more of the races.

The 2021 festival was a bumper year with them winning an incredible 23 of the 28 races, that was 82% of the races that year.

YearBetsWinsWin%RacesRace%
2024204188.82%2766.67%
2023236187.63%2864.29%
2022223188.07%2864.29%
20211622314.20%2882.14%
2020181179.39%2762.96%
2019189147.41%2850.00%
20181501711.33%2762.96%
20171591911.95%2867.86%
20161451510.34%2853.57%
2015148138.78%2748.15%

A Handicap or Not?

This probably is not news to many but the majority of the winners do come in non-handicap races, however, do not be put off in a handicap by all means!

The Irish have won 68.33% of the non-handicap races at the last ten festivals, that is an impressive 123 races won from a possible 180.

They have won just over half of the handicaps but only just, from the 96 handicaps, they have won 49 of those (51.04%).

  • 123-180 (68.33%) in Non-Handicap
  • 49-96 (51.04%) in Handicaps
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The Class

When it comes to classes there is one which stands out and that is the Irish entries into a Grade 2 races which include the Challenge Cup, Mares Novices Hurdle and Mares Novices Chase.

Over the last ten festivals there have been 21 renewals of those races and the Irish have won 81% of them, that is 17 of the 21 races!

Their Grade 1 record is good too, they have won 68% of those which is 94 of the 139 races and the last four festivals have seen win rates of 86%, 71%, 71% & 86%!

Schedule for Tuesday at the Cheltenham Festival

Prepare for the ROAR of the Cheltenham Festival on the opening day when the tape goes up for the Supreme Novices Hurdle, the feature on Tuesday is the Champion Hurdle.

RaceLast WinnerInfo
13:30 Cheltenham
Supreme Novices Hurdle
Slade Steel (IRE)
6yo - 7/2
Henry De Bromhead
Rachael Blackmore
14:10 Cheltenham
Arkle Challenge Trophy
Gaelic Warrior (GER)
6yo - 2/1
W P Mullins
Paul Townend
14:50 Cheltenham
Ultima Handicap Chase
Chianti Classico (IRE)
7yo - 6/1
Kim Bailey
David Bass
15:30 Cheltenham
Champion Hurdle
State Man (FR)
7yo - 2/5
W P Mullins
Paul Townend
16:10 Cheltenham
Close Brothers Mares Hurdle
Lossiemouth (FR)
5yo - 8/13
W P Mullins
Paul Townend
16:50 Cheltenham
Boodles Juvenile Handicap Hurdle
Lark In The Mornin (GER)
4yo - 9/1
Joseph Patrick O'Brien
J J Slevin
17:30 Cheltenham
National Hunt Chase Challenge Cup
Corbetts Cross (IRE)
7yo - 15/8
Emmet Mullins
Mr Derek O'Connor

Schedule for Wednesday at the Cheltenham Festival

The dust has settled on the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival and now on to day two. The feature on the second day is the Queen Mother Champion Chase. We also have the cross country scheduled on Wednesday, a race like Marmite, some love it and some don't!

RaceLast WinnerInfo
13:30 Cheltenham
Baring Bingham Novices Hurdle
Ballyburn (IRE)
6yo - 1/2
W P Mullins
Paul Townend
14:10 Cheltenham
Brown Advisory Novices Chase
Fact To File (FR)
7yo - 8/13
W P Mullins
Mark Walsh
14:50 Cheltenham
Coral Cup
Langer Dan (IRE)
8yo - 13/2
Dan Skelton
Harry Skelton
15:30 Cheltenham
Queen Mother Champion Chase
Captain Guinness (IRE)
9yo - 17/2
Henry De Bromhead
Rachael Blackmore
16:10 Cheltenham
Cross Country Chase
Delta Work (FR)
10yo - 11/10
Gordon Elliott
Keith Donoghue
16:50 Cheltenham
Johnny Henderson Grand Annual
Unexpected Party (FR)
9yo - 12/1
Dan Skelton
Harry Skelton
17:30 Cheltenham
Champion Bumper
Jasmin De Vaux (FR)
5yo - 9/2
W P Mullins
Mr P W Mullins

Schedule for Thursday at the Cheltenham Festival

Halfway through the festival and onto day three where the Stayers Hurdle is the feature race. A hurdle race to test the stamina and see how can last best up the Cheltenham hill.

RaceLast WinnerInfo
13:30 Cheltenham
Turners Novices Chase
Grey Dawning (IRE)
7yo - 5/2
Dan Skelton
Harry Skelton
14:10 Cheltenham
Pertemps Network Final
Monmiral (FR)
7yo - 25/1
Paul Nicholls
Harry Cobden
14:50 Cheltenham
Ryanair Chase
Protektorat (FR)
9yo - 17/2
Dan Skelton
Harry Skelton
15:30 Cheltenham
Stayers Hurdle
Teahupoo (FR)
7yo - 5/4
Gordon Elliott
Jack Kennedy
16:10 Cheltenham
Festival Plate
Shakem UpArry (IRE)
10yo - 8/1
Ben Pauling
Ben Jones
16:50 Cheltenham
Mares Novices Hurdle
Golden Ace (GB)
6yo - 10/1
Jeremy Scott
Lorcan Williams
17:30 Cheltenham
Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup
Inothewayurthinkin (IRE)
6yo - 13/8
Gavin Cromwell
Mr Derek O'Connor

Schedule for Friday at the Cheltenham Festival

The final day of the festival and feature race that we have all been waiting for, the Cheltenham Gold Cup in which the Irish have been fairly dominant in recent years.

RaceLast WinnerInfo
13:30 Cheltenham
Triumph Hurdle
Majborough (FR)
4yo - 6/1
W P Mullins
Mark Walsh
14:10 Cheltenham
County Handicap Hurdle
Absurde (FR)
6yo - 12/1
W P Mullins
Paul Townend
14:50 Cheltenham
Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle
Stellar Story (IRE)
7yo - 33/1
Gordon Elliott
Sam Ewing
15:30 Cheltenham
Cheltenham Gold Cup
Galopin Des Champs (FR)
8yo - 10/11
W P Mullins
Paul Townend
16:10 Cheltenham
Foxhunter Chase Challenge Cup
Sine Nomine (GB)
8yo - 8/1
Fiona Needham
Mr John Dawson
16:50 Cheltenham
Mrs Paddy Power Mares Chase
Limerick Lace (IRE)
7yo - 3/1
Gavin Cromwell
Keith Donoghue
17:30 Cheltenham
Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys Handicap Hurdle
Better Days Ahead (IRE)
6yo - 5/1
Gordon Elliott
Danny Gilligan

Article Contributor Information

We are blessed with an excellent team of specialists and experts at OLBG. Contributing to creating and maintaining this Lookout Cheltenham, the Irish are Coming!! are at hand, Andy and James. They both work on the Horse racing tips team team looking after the tipsters and managing the tips settlement, whilst also creating and managing all of the horse racing event previews for National Hunt Racing.

James Banting

James Banting

Tipster competition assistant

James Banting, a passionate horse racing enthusiast and aficionado, brings a wealth of experience to OLBG, having attended numerous race meetings over the years. His background working with the Jockey Club provides him with a unique insider's perspective on the industry.
Andy Powell

Andy Powell

Content editor

Andy, a seasoned horse racing expert with over 15 years of experience, possesses a comprehensive understanding of the sport, from delving into complex statistical data for jump racing in the UK and Ireland to crafting insightful national hunt racing blogs for OLBG.

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