JCB Triumph Hurdle Form Guide

Previous winners such as Katchit and Detroit City highlighted how their form in the build up to the race was important to allowing punters the opportunity to pick out the winner. We often see a decent sized field in the Triumph with plenty of excellent young juveniles hoping to make the big step up at the Festival.

We have been following the main contenders right through the season, all of the well backed horses are featured from their first run right through until the Cheltenham Festival. One race that we focused on this year is the Juvenile Novices' Hurdle trial at the Cheltenham trials day, we often see some nice types in this one and we are expecting this year to be no different.

JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial Races

Past Triumph Hurdle Form Guide

2016 JCB Triumph Hurdle Latest Form

Race OverviewA race dominated numerically by Paul Nicholls, Willie Mullins and Alan King who are responsible for 11 of the 15 runners. Nicholls won this five years ago with Zarkandar, who had won the Adonis at Kempton on his only previous hurdling start, and can repeat the trick with ZUBAYR who won that Grade 2 contest last month going away in the style of a high-class recruit. The Mullins pair Footpad and Apple's Jade look his main rivals following their good wins at Leopardstown, even though today's ground will be very different. Backers of Ivanovich Gorbatov are clearly pinning their hopes on today's quicker conditions producing an improved performance.[Adrian Cook]

Odds provided by Paddypower

1Big McIntoshBig McIntosh (IRE)
M Batchelor
John Ryan
4 yrs / 154 lbs

CommentBig McIntosh

Freegoing sort who is likely to be wilting some way from home in this company. Ground will suit this freegoing sort who showed fairly useful form in small-field juvenile events facing quick conditions in the autumn, but likely to be wilting some way from home in this company.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
06/11/15MUS 15Gd 3yCl4 Hd,3K159 lbsMattie Batchelor2/9 7l, Sir Chauvelin[11/2]10-12 t
18/10/15KEM 16Gd 3yCl3 Hd,6K158 lbsMattie Batchelor2/4 8l, Oceane[14/1]11-4 t
04/10/15HUN 15Gd 3yCl4 Hd,4K152 lbsMattie Batchelor1/6 10l, Consortium[20/1]10-7 t
25/09/15WOL 9St 3yCl5Hc,3K120 lbsFranny Norton6/11 6l, Robins Pearl[14/1]9-3 v
02/09/15WOR 16GS 3yCl5 MdHd,3K154 lbsMattie Batchelor6/8 53l, Hadfield[7/1]11-0
2Clan Des ObeauxClan Des Obeaux (FR)
N Fehily
P Nicholls
4 yrs / 154 lbs

CommentClan Des Obeaux

Regarded as staying chase prospect so these much quicker conditions a concern; hood on.. French bumper winner who made impressive hurdling debut for new connections on soft at Newbury in December; mugged close home in six-runner C&D Grade 2 on even more testing ground here next time; regarded as staying chase prospect so these much quicker conditions are a concern; hood on.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
30/01/16CHL 16Hy 4yCl1 G2Hd,17K158 lbsSam Twiston-Davies2/6 1 1/4l, Protek Des Flos[11/8F]11-0
16/12/15NBY 16Sft 3yCl4 Hd,3K152 lbsSam Twiston-Davies1/8 21l, Jaleo[2/1]11-5
12/04/15Lrs 12 3yNHF,4K139 lbsOlivier Jouin1/3 1l, Canitie[2/1]10-0
3ConnetableConnetable (FR)
S Twiston-Davies
P Nicholls
4 yrs / 154 lbs


2-4 over hurdles; needs more on this quicker ground in first-time cheekpieces. Has won two of four starts over hurdles, building on Ascot second to Gibralfaro on debut for this yard in January when making most of weight he got from older rivals in useful four-runner event at Sandown a fortnight later; needs more on this quicker ground in first-time cheekpieces.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
06/02/16SAN 15Sft Cl1 LisHd,14K144 lbsSam Twiston-Davies1/4 1/4l, Rayvin Black[15/2]11-0
23/01/16ASC 15Sft 4yCl3 Hd,6K158 lbsNick Scholfield2/5 1 3/4l, Gibralfaro[9/4]11-4
07/05/15Aut 17Hy 3yHd,18K148 lbsArnaud Duchene3/14 1 3/4l, Punch Nantais[7/1]10-10
18/04/15Com 16VSft 3yHd,8K143 lbsArnaud Duchene1/10 3/4l, Christmas In Usa[22/5]10-3
29/03/15Ang 13 3yNHF,4K137 lbsLewis Conan4/4 6 1/2l, Calling Des Blins9-7
4Consul De ThaixConsul De Thaix (FR)
M P Walsh
N Henderson
4 yrs / 154 lbs

CommentConsul De Thaix

Placed both starts (testing conditions); looks a longer-term prospect and this a big ask. Placed both starts (testing conditions), third behind longer-priced stable-companion Protek Des Flos as well as Clan Des Obeaux in Grade 2 over C&D on debut for this yard in January; looks a longer-term prospect (unraced on Flat) and this a big ask.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
30/01/16CHL 16Hy 4yCl1 G2Hd,17K154 lbsBarry Geraghty3/6 3l, Protek Des Flos[10/1]11-0
26/09/15Aut 18VSft 3yHd,18K146 lbsRegis Schmidlin2/14 1/2l, Crin Au Vent[249/10]10-6
5FootpadFootpad (FR)
R Walsh
W Mullins
4 yrs / 154 lbs


Staked claim to be best Irish juvenile last time; different ground now but major player. Has won three of four starts for current yard, settling better in first-time hood (retained) and staking claim to be regarded as best Irish juvenile when winning Leopardstown Grade 1 last month, with Let's Dance and Ivanovich Gorbatov behind; different ground here but likely to be a major player.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
06/02/16LEO 16Sft/Hy 4yG1Hd,37K154 lbsDanny Mullins1/8 2 3/4l, Allblak Des Places[14/1]11-0 h(1)
21/01/16GOW 16Hy 4yHd,10K154 lbsR Walsh1/3 12l, Jazz Ranger[1/10F]10-9
26/12/15LEO 16Hy 3yG2Hd,21K152 lbsDavid Mullins3/8 8 1/4l, Apple's Jade[5/2J]10-5
21/11/15GOW 16Sft 3yMdHd,6K154 lbsPaul Townend1/7 6 1/2l, Lagostovegas[1/5F]10-7
07/05/15Aut 17Hy 3yHd,18K143 lbsKevin Nabet2/14 1/4l, Punch Nantais[56/10]10-10
6FrodonFrodon (FR)
S Bowen
P Nicholls
4 yrs / 154 lbs


Form of Haydock win knocked here on Wednesday; looks down the Nicholls pecking order. Improved on previous efforts, which included third in handicap here on stable debut in January, when winning steadily run four-runner Grade 2 at Haydock last month; second and third did not boost that form here on Wednesday and looks down the Nicholls pecking order here.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
20/02/16HAY 15Hy 4yCl2 Hd,10K160 lbsSean Bowen1/4 3/4l, Fixe Le Kap[4/1]11-6
30/01/16CHL 16Hy Cl2 HdHc,16K140 lbsSam Twiston-Davies3/9 5 1/4l, Solstice Star[13/2]9-11
07/11/15Aut 18VSft 3yG2Ch,70K146 lbsKevin Nabet4/9 4 1/4l, Punch Nantais[18/5]10-10
11/10/15Aut 18VSft 3yG2Hd,61K148 lbsKevin Nabet5/7 22l, Device[14/1]10-12
22/09/15Aut 18VSft 3yLisHd,32K146 lbsKevin NabetF/6 Device[32/5]10-12
7GibralfaroGibralfaro (IRE)
W Hutchinson
A King
4 yrs / 154 lbs


Only fourth to Zubayr at Kempton and cheekpieces need to make a big difference. Progressive performer on Flat in France under variety of conditions and made good start to hurdling career for new yard when winning at Kempton and Ascot; in trouble some way out when only fourth to Zubayr back at Kempton latest and first-time cheekpieces need to make a big difference.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
27/02/16KEM 16GS 4yCl1 G2Hd,17K159 lbsWayne Hutchinson4/7 9 1/2l, Zubayr[EvensF]10-12
23/01/16ASC 15Sft 4yCl3 Hd,6K158 lbsWayne Hutchinson1/5 1 3/4l, Connetable[4/5F]11-4
27/12/15KEM 16GS 3yCl3 Hd,6K152 lbsWayne Hutchinson1/7 1/2l, Duke Of Medina[9/1]11-4
16/10/15Pon 13St 3y,10K126 lbsTony Piccone1/3 2 1/2l, Parzival[11/5F]9-0
29/09/15Mrs 10GS 3yHc,6K132 lbsTony Piccone1/3 2 1/2l, Princess Charlotte[14/5F]9-6
8Ivanovich GorbatovIvanovich Gorbatov (IRE)
B J Geraghty
A O'Brien
4 yrs / 154 lbs

CommentIvanovich Gorbatov

Needs to do much better but Flat form suggests today's ground will suit him. Very progressive in light campaign on Flat and long been a fancy for this contest; good start to hurdling career when beating Let's Dance at Leopardstown in December but could not confirm that form when only fourth to Footpad there next time; clearly needs to do much better here but Flat form does suggest this quicker ground will suit.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
06/02/16LEO 16Sft/Hy 4yG1Hd,37K154 lbsBarry Geraghty4/8 9 3/4l, Footpad[8/13F]11-0 t
27/12/15LEO 16Hy 3yMdHd,7K154 lbsBarry Geraghty1/18 2 1/4l, Let's Dance[100/30]10-7 t
06/08/15LEO 15GF Hc,9K133 lbsJoseph O'Brien1/15 2l, Venezia[11/4F]9-10 bl(1)
17/05/15NAV 13Gd 3yMd,6K131 lbsJoseph O'Brien1/9 1 1/2l, Torcedor[9/2]9-5
05/10/14TIP 9Gd 2yMd,7K131 lbsColm O'Donoghue3/14 1 1/4l, Vilman[9/2]9-5
9LeoncavalloLeoncavallo (IRE)
A Coleman
J Ferguson
4 yrs / 154 lbs


Won all five completed starts over hurdles; ground no problem but in deeper here. Better over hurdles than on Flat and was making it five in a row when pipping Sceau Royal in steadily run Wetherby Listed event in October; every chance when unseating at the last in race won by that rival here in December and not seen since; no problem with today's ground but in deeper here.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
12/12/15CHL 16Sft 3yCl2 Hd,13K161 lbsAidan ColemanUR/5 Sceau Royal[3/1]11-7
30/10/15WET 16Sft 3yCl1 LisHd,11K160 lbsAidan Coleman1/5 Sceau Royal[4/6F]11-6
26/09/15MAR 16Gd 3yCl2 Hd,10K160 lbsAidan Coleman1/7 14l, Pinkie Brown[7/4F]10-12
20/08/15STR 16Gd 3yCl4 Hd,3K166 lbsAidan Coleman1/7 3 3/4l, Auld Fyffee[30/100F]10-5
12/08/15NAB 16GS 3yCl4 Hd,4K159 lbsAidan Coleman1/5 18l, Secrets Safe[2/9F]10-12
10Sceau RoyalSceau Royal (FR)
D Jacob
A King
4 yrs / 154 lbs

CommentSceau Royal

Easily competed hat-trick of small-field wins latest; much tougher against this opposition. Has improved since his narrow defeat by Leoncavallo at Wetherby in October and easily completed hat-trick of wins in small fields when he scored at Huntingdon in January; the return to quicker ground should not be a problem but calibre of opposition might be.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
15/01/16HUN 15Sft 4yCl2 Hd,13K160 lbsDaryl Jacob1/5 7l, Perceus[2/11F]10-12
12/12/15CHL 16Sft 3yCl2 Hd,13K161 lbsDaryl Jacob1/5 1 3/4l, Adrien Du Pont[7/4]11-7
18/11/15WAR 16GS 3yCl4 Hd,3K158 lbsDaryl Jacob1/4 9l, Winterfell[2/5F]11-4
30/10/15WET 16Sft 3yCl1 LisHd,11K160 lbsWayne Hutchinson2/5 Leoncavallo[5/2]11-6
11/10/15CHP 16Gd 3yCl4 Hd,4K159 lbsDaryl Jacob2/7 Adrien Du Pont[11/4]11-5
11Tommy SilverTommy Silver (FR)
J J Burke
P Nicholls
4 yrs / 154 lbs

CommentTommy Silver

Decisive winner at Musselburgh and clearly promising, but this much more competitive. Third on only start on Flat in France; built on promising hurdling debut second at Newbury in December when decisive winner of four-runner Listed event at Musselburgh early last month; clearly promising but this is much more competitive.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
07/02/16MUS 15Sft 4yCl1 LisHd,17K154 lbsSam Twiston-Davies1/4 11l, Ashoka[4/6F]11-5
29/12/15NBY 16Sft 3yCl3 Hd,6K152 lbsSam Twiston-Davies2/7 1l, Fixe Le Kap[7/1]10-12
25/06/15Cla 12GS 3y,10K128 lbsFabrice Veron3/3 8 1/4l, Seven Kingdoms[28/1]9-2
12Who Dares WinsWho Dares Wins (IRE)
R Johnson
A King
4 yrs / 154 lbs

CommentWho Dares Wins

Did too much too soon when fourth in the mud over C&D latest; could improve on that. Progressive middle-distance stayer on Flat (successful on fast ground/Tapeta) and won first two starts over hurdles; probably did too much too soon when close fourth in C&D Grade 2 event on very testing ground here in January and could improve on that form on this better ground.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
30/01/16CHL 16Hy 4yCl1 G2Hd,17K161 lbsRichard Johnson4/6 3 1/4l, Protek Des Flos[13/8]11-0
12/12/15DON 16Hy 3yCl1 G2Hd,17K156 lbsWayne Hutchinson1/6 20l, Robertstown[3/1]10-12
12/11/15LUD 15GS 3yCl4 Hd,4K152 lbsWayne Hutchinson1/7 3/4l, Fouburg[5/6F]10-12
09/10/15YOR 14Sft 3yCl2Hc,31K126 lbsTom Marquand3/6 3l, Swaheen[6/1]8-13 cp
23/07/15SAN 14GF 3yCl3Hc,7K115 lbsTom Marquand1/6 1/4l, Secateur[6/1]9-7 cp
13ZubayrZubayr (IRE)
N Scholfield
P Nicholls
4 yrs / 154 lbs


Made exceptionally promising hurdling debut when winning Kempton Grade 2 going away. Bought for 380,000euros last July after showing plenty of promise in two Longchamp middle-distance maidens; made exceptionally promising start to hurdling career when winning Grade 2 at Kempton last month, patiently ridden and very strong at finish after runner-up had been allowed clear advantage; looks high-class recruit for yard with very strong hand in this department.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
27/02/16KEM 16GS 4yCl1 G2Hd,17K152 lbsNick Scholfield1/7 3 3/4l, Azzuri[9/1]10-12
08/06/15Lon 12Gd 3y,10K128 lbsChristophe Soumillon4/9 2 1/2l, Harlem[3/1]8-13
19/05/15Lon 11Gd 3y,10K128 lbsChristophe Soumillon3/9 1 1/4l, Clariden[37/10]9-2
14Apple's JadeApple's Jade (FR)
B Cooper
W Mullins
4 yrs / 147 lbs

CommentApple's Jade

Stable second string when scoring at Leopardstown in December; looks a good prospect. Has won both her starts, at Vichy in May and Leopardstown in December; stable second string in that heavy-ground Grade 2 when getting up close home on debut for yard, with Footpad a disappointing third; latter has clearly improved since and this ground very different, but clearly a good prospect.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
26/12/15LEO 16Hy 3yG2Hd,21K145 lbsJ J Burke1/8 1/4l, Jer's Girl[12/1]10-5
05/05/15Vic 16Sft 3yHd,8K141 lbsPaul Lucas1/4 5 1/2l, Viva Brasilia[21/1]10-4
15Let's DanceLet's Dance (FR)
P Townend
W Mullins
4 yrs / 147 lbs

CommentLet's Dance

Sure to win races, but probably not this one and Walsh switches to Footpad. All three starts in testing ground, showing herself a smart filly for new connections when placed at Leopardstown in December (second to Ivanovich Gorbatov) and February (third to Footpad); sure to win races but this one is unlikely to be among them and Ruby Walsh switches to Footpad today.

DateRace ConditionsWeightJockeyRace Outcome
06/02/16LEO 16Sft/Hy 4yG1Hd,37K147 lbsR Walsh3/8 2 3/4l, Footpad[5/1]11-0
27/12/15LEO 16Hy 3yMdHd,7K147 lbsR Walsh2/18 2 1/4l, Ivanovich Gorbatov[4/7F]11-0
01/04/15Fnt 15VSft 3yHd,8K143 lbsVincent Cheminaud2/11 1 1/4l, Vallee Du Nil[9/5F]10-3

February 2016

The Spring Juvenile Hurdle at Leopardstown always sees the best of the Irish juveniles clash and that was the case here. We saw something of a shock result though as hot favourite Ivanovich Gorbatov didn't really land a blow although he should be better on spring ground which means we cannot rule him out. The winner was Footpad who showed a good turn of foot to beat Allblack Des Places into 2nd place and both of those are now likely to head to Cheltenham with decent claims in March.

Paul Nicholls decided to send Connetable to the Contenders Hurdle at Sandown against older horses and it paid off as he beat some very good horses like Peace And Co to enter the Triumph picture. He was beaten by Gibralfaro at Ascot last month which is now looking like decent form and this was another step up in form for the Nicholls horse to muddy the juvenile picture even further this season.

We next saw Gibralfaro in the Adonis Hurdle at Kempton and he failed to land a blow as a red hot favourite and his participation in the Triumph Hurdle is now in doubt. The winner of the Adonis was Zubayr who managed to win on debut for Paul Nicholls. The Ditcheat handler did the Adonis/ Triumph double with Zarkandar and Zubayr looked every inch the star as he won at Kempton.

January 2016

Alan King decided to send Sceau Royal to Huntingdon for a low quality juvenile hurdle in mid-January and it was an impressive win from the horse. Particularly taking was the way Sceau Royal jumped at Huntingdon as he took lengths out of the field at every obstacle and he was equally impressive in the way he powered clear of the field. A very game horse, he will of course need to do it better company but he could be an each-way bet come the Festival.

December 2015

Alan King is a terrific trainer of juvenile hurdlers and he had two winners on the same day in December when Sceau Royal and Who Dares Wins both took the eye. Sceau Royal won the Triumph Hurdle trial at Cheltenham and as such proved himself at Prestbury Park which is a major plus, while Who Dares Wins hacked up at Doncaster to win the Summit Juvenile Hurdle and both have to be contenders.

Who Dares Wins was perhaps the more impressive on the eye as he travelled in style but Sceau Royal looked tough and game and both have to be considered for March, especially as each-way contenders.

We saw a terrific winner of the 3-Y-O Hurdle at Leopardstown over Christmas in the form of Ivanovich Gorbatov. The Aidan O'Brien trained hurdler was a very smart performer on the flat and he looked very good indeed on his first start over hurdles in ground that would likely to have been too testing for him. He is obviously still a little green but class is without question and Ivanovich Gorbatov might be one of the better Juveniles in training this winter.

November 2015

It has been a terrific start to the season so far for Dan Skelton and he now looks to have a really classy juvenile in his yard in the form of Kasakh Noir. The horse streaked well clear of the field to win the Juvenile Hurdle at the Hennessy Meeting at Newbury and although this was very testing ground, it was hard not be impressed by this clearly progressive sort.

Our Conor won the Juvenile Hurdle on Drinmore Novices Chase Day at Fairyhouse before going onto win the Triumph and it will be fascinating to see if Rashaan can follow in those hoofsteps. The Colin Kidd trained juvenile simply demolished a very highly touted odds-on favourite to win this race and on the face of it, this was perhaps the best juvenile display of the season far.

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Cheltenham Festival Racing

The four days of the Cheltenham Festival play host to a number of exceptional races: