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Festival Handicap Chase 2022 Racecard

The Festival Trophy Handicap Chase is a Grade 3 National Hunt steeplechase handicap which takes place each year during the Cheltenham Festival in March, and is one of the big betting races on day one of the meeting. Open to horses aged five years or older, the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase is run on the Old Course at Cheltenham over a distance of about three miles and one furlong (3 miles 1 furlong), with 20 fences to be jumped.

2:50 Tue 15 Mar FESTIVAL HANDICAP CHASE

Distance: 25f 0y Age: 5yo + Prize: £125,000 Going: Good

Analyst's Verdict

One of the few races the home team has dominated and OUR POWER looks very interesting for the burgeoning Sam Thomas yard. He ran a very eye-catching race on his first go over 3m in a valuable Kempton handicap last month, finishing with a flourish having had plenty go wrong. He gets the vote over Corach Rambler, Tea Clipper and high-class Frodon. Floueur could be the pick of the Irish challengers.

ENTRY
FORM
SILKS HORSE
JOCKEY & TRAINER
AGE
WGT
ODDS
1
jockey silks 1. FRODON (FR)
J: Bryony Frost
T: Paul Nicholls
10
11-12
* * * *
* * * *
Top-class front-running chaser under this rider, his 3 Grade 1 wins including the 2019 Ryanair. Successful on last go in a handicap over C&D off this mark in October 2020. Fascinating contender.
2
jockey silks 2. LOSTINTRANSLATION (IRE)
J: Brendan Powell
T: Colin Tizzard
10
11-3
* * *
* * *
Grade 1 winner and third in the 2020 Gold Cup but far more blow-outs since, disappointing twice since landing thin Ascot Grade 2 on return this term. First go in a handicap. Cheekpieces also go on.
3
jockey silks 3. DOES HE KNOW
J: David Bass
T: Kim Bailey
7
11-0
* * *
* * *
Has made up into a smart novice chaser, winning for a third time in 4 starts in testing 3m Ascot Grade 2 last month, showing bags of stamina. Plenty of Cheltenham experience and got to be respected.
4
jockey silks 4. BEN DUNDEE (IRE)
J: D. E. Mullins
T: Andrew Lynch, Ireland
10
10-9
* * *
* * *
Good runs in handicap chases at the last 2 Festivals (unlucky eye-catcher 12 months ago) and back to form when beaten narrowly by School Boy Hours at Leopardstown over Christmas. Likely to go well.
5
jockey silks 5. NOBLE YEATS (IRE)
J: Mr Sam Waley-Cohen
T: Emmet Mullins, Ireland
7
10-9
* * *
* * *
Galway maiden chase winner in October and back to form when second to Ahoy Senior in 4-runner Wetherby Grade 2 over 3m last month. Changed hands since. Not the most fluent of jumpers.
6
jockey silks 6. FLOUEUR (FR)
J: Jordan Colin Gainford
T: Gordon Elliott, Ireland
7
10-8
* * * *
* * * *
No match for Galopin des Champs before opening chase account in 21f Fairyhouse maiden in January. Fine run behind Death Duty in Punchestown handicap since. Third in the Martin Pipe last year. Player.
7
jockey silks 7. FOXY JACKS (IRE)
J: Jonathan Moore
T: M. F. Morris, Ireland
8
10-7
* * *
* * *
Won a valuable 20f handicap at the Punchestown Festival last spring and best run since when second in another big-field contest at Leopardstown last month. Will need a career-best to take this.
8
jockey silks 8. DOCTOR DUFFY (IRE)
J: Liam Quinlan
T: Charles Byrnes, Ireland
9
10-7
* * *
* * *
Dual chase winner at up to this trip last season. Rather quiet this term, though better signs until unseating 2 out in Punchestown handicap chase won by Death Duty latest. Could revive.
9
jockey silks 9. TEA CLIPPER (IRE)
J: Stan Sheppard
T: Tom Lacey
7
10-7
* * * *
* * * *
Fine start over fences when scoring at Chepstow (19.5f) in October and, while disappointing twice since, could revive now handicapping after wind op (also sports headgear), Third in 2021 Coral Cup.
10
jockey silks 10. DEATH DUTY (IRE)
J: J. W. Kennedy
T: Gordon Elliott, Ireland
11
10-6
* * * *
* * * *
First success since his Grade 1-winning novice chase days in 28.2f Punchestown handicap 4 weeks ago, jumping fine and relishing the test. Remains well treated on best form and will be popular.
11
jockey silks 11. FANTASTIKAS (FR)
J: Sam Twiston-Davies
T: Nigel Twiston-Davies
7
10-6
* * *
* * *
Progressive novice chaser, winning for a second time at Lingfield (3m) 7 weeks ago, leading again on the line. Big-field handicap scenario could suit him well and he's worth consideration.
12
jockey silks 12. VINTAGE CLOUDS (IRE)
J: Sean Quinlan
T: Sue Smith
12
10-6
* * *
* * *
A regular in this and won it on his fifth attempt fitted with cheekpieces last year, jumping much better. Best run since at Doncaster after wind op last time and can't be ruled out.
13
jockey silks 13. RAPPER
J: Tom O'Brien
T: Henry Daly
8
10-5
* *
* *
Looks a thorough stayer and on a hat-trick after victories in small-field handicaps at Catterick and Wincanton over this trip. This is a whole different test up 6 lb and he would be a surprise winner.
14
jockey silks 14. DISCORDANTLY (IRE)
J: Robbie Power
T: Mrs J. Harrington, Ireland
8
10-5
* * *
* * *
Jumped much better with cheekpieces fitted when resuming winning ways in 21f Leopardstown handicap earlier this month. Headgear must work as well a second time in this tougher contest.
15
jockey silks 15. GRUMPY CHARLEY
J: Bryan Carver
T: Chris Honour
7
10-4
* * *
* * *
Multiple hurdles winner who has taken well to chasing, impressive when landing 22.5f Newbury novice handicap at Christmas. Fair run behind Bravemansgame there latest and could have more in the locker.
16
jockey silks 16. KILTEALY BRIGGS (IRE)
J: A. P. Heskin
T: Jamie Snowden
8
10-3
* * *
* * *
Has improved further over fences this season, landing a couple of small-field novices at Haydock and Musselburgh (gamely made all in first-time cheekpieces). This test should suit and worth a look.
17
jockey silks 17. FULL BACK (FR)
J: Joshua Moore
T: Gary Moore
7
10-2
* * *
* * *
Better than ever when winning 26.3f handicap chase here (other course) on New Year's Day and ran well behind stalwart Yala Enki at Taunton 7 weeks ago. Big performance could be on the way again.
18
jockey silks 18. CORACH RAMBLER (IRE)
J: Derek Fox
T: Lucinda Russell
8
10-2
* * * *
* * * *
Improved to win novice handicaps over this trip at Aintree/here (other course) before a good run in the Classic Chase. Coming into it when unseating in Grade 2 won by Does He Know at Ascot. Respected.
19
jockey silks 19. RUN TO MILAN (IRE)
J: Alan Johns
T: Victor Dartnall
10
10-0
* *
* *
Good record at Exeter, making all in extended 3m veterans' handicap there last month. Has work to do in this much hotter environment.
20
jockey silks 20. OUR POWER (IRE)
J: Charlie Deutsch
T: Sam Thomas
7
9-12
* * * * *
* * * * *
Has taken well to chasing, winning 2 small-field novice handicaps before a very encouraging effort in valuable 3m Kempton heat 17 days ago, finishing strongly after an unlucky run. Most interesting.
21
jockey silks 21. ONE MORE FLEURIE (IRE)
J: Charlie Todd
T: Ian Williams
8
9-11
* *
* *
Highly progressive novice chaser last term who won his last 4 completed starts at up to 3m. Poor runs upon his return in the autumn though and needs a big comeback reappearing in a race like this.
22
jockey silks 22. BELARGUS (FR)
J: Niall Houlihan
T: Nick Gifford
7
9-11
* *
* *
Dual chase winner at up to 20f at Sandown last term. Seen just twice this season, falling first in the Paddy Power Gold Cup here then well held over hurdles 17 days ago. Unproven over this far.
23
jockey silks 23. OSCAR ELITE (IRE)
J: Harry Cobden
T: Colin Tizzard
7
9-10
* * *
* * *
Useful hurdler who was second in last year's Albert Bartlett but hasn't progressed after a promising chase debut here (fell 3 out when going well), again finishing tamely on handicap bow in January.
24
jockey silks 24. GERICAULT ROQUE (FR)
J: Tom Scudamore
T: David Pipe
6
9-9
* * *
* * *
Dual hurdles winner who has taken very well to chasing, placed again in the Classic Chase at Warwick 8 weeks ago. Tongue tie back on and can improve further for yard with good record in this race.

Betting Forecast : 9/1 9 DEATH DUTY, 10/1 10 DOES HE KNOW, 12/1 12 FLOUEUR, 16/1 16 FANTASTIKAS, 16/1 16 NOBLE YEATS, 16/1 16 CORACH RAMBLER, 18/1 18 KILTEALY BRIGGS, 20/1 20 FRODON, 20/1 20 OUR POWER, 20/1 20 TEA CLIPPER, 20/1 20 FULL BACK, 20/1 20 GERICAULT ROQUE, 25/1 25 VINTAGE CLOUDS, 25/1 25 BEN DUNDEE, 25/1 25 LOSTINTRANSLATION, 28/1 28 OSCAR ELITE, 33/1 33 FOXY JACKS, 33/1 33 DISCORDANTLY, 50/1 50 GRUMPY CHARLEY, 66/1 66 BELARGUS, 66/1 66 RAPPER, 66/1 66 DOCTOR DUFFY, 100/1 100 RUN TO MILAN, 150/1 150 ONE MORE FLEURIE, 499/1 499 PONTRESINA

In 2011, the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase was run as the Stewart Family Spinal Research Handicap Chase to highlight the work done by the charity Spinal Research.

Spinal Research is the UK’s leading charity funding medical research around the world to develop effective treatments for paralysis caused by spinal cord injury.

The Stewart family in question is that of racehorse owner Andy Stewart who has enjoyed plenty of success as an owner at the Cheltenham Festival, his winners including the multiple Stayers’ Hurdle winner Big Buck’s who wore Stewart’s familiar red and white halved silks.

Stewart’s son Paul was told he would never walk again after breaking his back after getting caught up in an avalanche while snowboarding in the Alps in 2008.

Stewart Snr has never won the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase, but Lizzie Kelly became the 12th women to ride a winner at the Cheltenham Festival when guiding the well-supported 5/1 favourite Coo Star Sivola to victory in the race in 2018.

Winners of the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase often go on to run in the Grand National, although not always in the same year. Horses to have achieved victory in both events include Royal Tan, Team Spirit, West Tip, Seagram and Rough Quest.

Three horses have won the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase twice - Sentina in 1957 and 1958, Scot Lane in 1982 and 1983, and Un Temps Pour Tout in 2016 and 2017.

The last-named was ridden by Tom Scudamore , who, along with Robert Thornton, has won the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase on three occasions.

Thornton’s wins in the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase include Kelami , successful in 2005, who is the only French-trained winner of the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase.

In terms of Timeform ratings this century, Coo Star Sivola’s smart performance was actually one of the lesser winning efforts, rated 2 lb lower than the iconic Festival Trophy Handicap Chase victory of Wichita Lineman in 2009.

The well-backed favourite Wichita Lineman had been pushed along for over a circuit by the legendary AP McCoy , but stayed on best of all up the hill to collar Maljimar in the dying strides and win by a neck.

The ride is considered one of the best of all time, and is fondly remembered by McCoy in his 2011 book My Autobiography. "It was only after we crossed the winning line that I was aware of the noise coming from the stands. It was probably one of the better rides that I have given any horse; in fact I'd say that in my own little head I thought it was probably the best ride I have ever given a horse."

Un Temps Pour Tout, winner of the Festival Trophy Handicap Chase in 2016 and 2017, has produced the best winning performances in recent years, his most recent effort was classified as ‘High Class’ by Timeform, and would have been good enough for a fourth-placed finish in the same year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup.

Though Fred Rimell and Fulke Walwyn both won the race four times many decades ago, the most successful Festival Trophy Handicap Chase trainer in recent times is David Pipe, who has won it three times, with: An Accordion (2008), and Un Temps Pour Tout (2016, 2017).

The most successful Festival Trophy Handicap Chase jockey in recent times are Tom Scudamore and Robert Thornton , who have both won it three times.

Scudamore’s wins were all on the David Pipe-trained runners listed above, while Thornton’s success came with: Fork Lightning (2004), Kelami (2005), and Bensalem (2011).

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Festival Handicap Chase 2022 FAQs

What is the distance of the Festival Handicap Chase?

3 miles and 1 furlong

How many obstacles are jumped in the Festival Handicap Chase?

20

What day of the festival is the Festival Handicap Chase?

Day 1

What time is the Festival Handicap Chase?

14:50

What weights are carried for the Festival Handicap Chase?

As it is a traditional National Hunt handicap steeplechase, weights range from 11 st 12 lb for the top weight, to 10 st for the bottom weight.

What is the purse for the Festival Handicap Chase?

£110,000 (2019)

Who is the leading jockey in the Festival Handicap Chase*?

Tom Scudamore and Robert Thornton

Who is the leading trainer in the Festival Handicap Chase*?

David Pipe

Who won the Festival Handicap Chase?

You can check out our Festival Handicap Chase results page here to see a list of previous winners.

Where can I compare the odds for the Festival Handicap Chase?

Click the link to visit our Festival Handicap Chase Odds Comparison page.

*Since 1977

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CHELTENHAM COUNTDOWN 2022

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NEXT RACE SMART STATS

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