Friday 21 October 2016

Cheltenham Festival - Arkle Challenge Trophy

The Arkle Challenge Trophy is among the classic races that headline the opening day at the annual Cheltenham Festival. Immediately after the Champion Novices’ Hurdle, participating horses of five years and older line up to gallop the two miles (3199 m) of turf on the Old Course. They have to go over 13 fences in the process.

This race usually attracts horses that are angling for the premier Gold Cup in subsequent competitions.

This race has had multiple records set and broken after the turn of the 21st century. Barry Geraghty has had an especially fruitful run in this while, winning in 2002, 2009, 2012 and 2013 to become the leading jockey in this category. Four of Nicky Henderson’s trainer six trainer wins have also come
after 2000. Nicky heads into the 2018 edition as the defending trainer champion after seeing Altior overcome some threatening mistakes to win the 2017 event.

Willie Mullins’ Footpad is however tipped to finish first in this year’s race.

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