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Cheltenham Festival

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RSA Chase 2020 Racecard

The RSA Insurance Novices’ Chase is a Grade 1 chase held over just over three miles (3 miles and 80 yards), and is traditionally run in March, on Day Two of the Cheltenham Festival, the Wednesday. The race is open to novice chasers aged five and up, and during the race 19 fences are jumped by those taking part.

2:10

Wednesday 11 March

Distance: 24f 80y Age: 5yo + Prize: £175000 Going: Soft

FORM
ENTRY
SILK HORSE
JOCKEY & TRAINER
AGE
WGT
ODDS

1
jockey silks 1. ALLAHO (FR)
J: P. Townend
T: W. P. Mullins, Ireland
6
11-4
Useful novice hurdler last term, placed behind Minella Indo at Cheltenham/Punchestown Festivals. Beaten by Easy Game on chase bow before cruising home by wide margin at Fairyhouse. Exciting prospect.
44 stars

2
jockey silks 2. AYE RIGHT (IRE)
J: Callum Bewley
T: Harriet Graham
7
11-4
Did well over hurdles, winning 5 times. In process of making encouraging chase bow when unseating rider at Doncaster and had no problems making amends in match race at Newcastle. Big ask here, though.
22 stars

3
jockey silks 3. BATTLEOVERDOYEN (IRE)
J: Davy Russell
T: Gordon Elliott, Ireland
7
11-4
Leading novice hurdler last term. Won first 3 starts over fences, including small-field Grade 1 at Leopardstown. Weakening when falling there next time but he's not one to write off.
33 stars

4
jockey silks 4. CASTLEBAWN WEST (IRE)
J: M. P. Walsh
T: W. P. Mullins, Ireland
7
11-4
Impressive winner of maiden at Fairyhouse on New Year's Day and ran perfectly well up significantly in class when fourth in Grade 1 at Leopardstown (behind Easy Game). This another stiff task, though.
22 stars

5
jockey silks 5. CHAMP (IRE)
J: Barry Geraghty
T: Nicky Henderson
8
11-4
Only defeat over hurdles last year when second in Ballymore. Good start over fences, winning twice at Newbury, including Grade 2. Would have won Dipper here but for falling 2 out. Big chance.
55 stars

6
jockey silks 6. COPPERHEAD
J: Harry Cobden
T: Colin Tizzard
6
11-4
Winning hurdler but proving much better over fences, winner of good handicaps at Wincanton and Newbury before completing hat-trick in Grade 2 at Ascot last time. Bold bid expected.
44 stars

7
jockey silks 7. EASY GAME (FR)
J: D. E. Mullins
T: W. P. Mullins, Ireland
6
11-4
Useful novice hurdler last season. Already better in 2 starts over fences, beating stablemate Allaho on chasing debut at Leopardstown before close second in Grade 1 there. Trip a query.
33 stars

8
jockey silks 8. MINELLA INDO (IRE)
J: Rachael Blackmore
T: Henry de Bromhead, Ireland
7
11-4
Winner of Albert Bartlett at last year's Festival before following up at Punchestown. Yet to be highly tried over fences but beat a subsequent Grade 2 winner when off mark at Navan. High on shortlist.
44 stars

9
jockey silks 9. PYM (IRE)
J: Nico de Boinville
T: Nicky Henderson
7
11-4
Already a much better chaser than hurdler, showing a good attitude when making all at Ascot and Cheltenham (25f) this season. Struggled upped in class in Grade 2 at former track since, though.
22 stars

10
jockey silks 10. SLATE HOUSE (IRE)
J: Robbie Power
T: Colin Tizzard
8
11-4
Second-season novice who's had mixed fortunes over fences but won all 3 completed starts this term, notably Grade 1 at Kempton. Not himself against Gold Cup horses in Cotswold Chase here last time.
33 stars

Analyst's Verdict

CHAMP remains one of the very best chasing prospects on the scene and is taken to atone for the fall that cost him a perfect record over fences here on New Year's Day. There was plenty to like about Copperhead's performance at Ascot last month and he is interesting, especially if conditions become testing. Of the Irish, Minella Indo is respected as a Festival winner over hurdles.

Established in 1946, the race was originally known as the Broadway Novices’ Chase, but since the mid-1960s it has had several sponsors, including the Tote, under whom it was called the Totalisator Champion Novices’ Chase.

The race’s present sponsor, RSA Insurance Group, are long-term backers, sponsoring it in their original form as Sun Alliance from 1974-1996, and latterly as Royal & Sun Alliance from 1996 onwards.

The race is seen as a stepping stone to the Cheltenham Gold Cup, and several horses have won both races over the years.

The last winner of the RSA Chase to go on win the Cheltenham Gold Cup was the Jim Culloty-trained Lord Windermere , who won the RSA in 2013 and followed up in the Gold Cup one year later in 2014.

Two other horses have achieved the same feat this century; the 2007 RSA winner Denman , who won the Gold Cup a year later, and the 2012 RSA winner Bobs Worth , who also obliged in the big one 12 months later, in 2013.

Perhaps the most famous renewal of the RSA Chase came as recently as 2017, a race which was ultimately won by Might Bite but involved a dramatic finish.

The Nicky Henderson -trained Might Bite jumped the final flight ten lengths clear before veering badly right and being overtaken by stable-mate Whisper, only to rally and retake the lead on the line, coming out on top in a photo finish.

Might Bite subsequently featured in a thrilling renewal of the Cheltenham Gold Cup a year later, just losing out to the Colin Tizzard -trained Native River, ridden by Richard Johnson .

The joint-leading trainers in the RSA Chase are Fulke Walwyn and Willie Mullins , both with four winners.

Walwyn’s four victories came with Mountain Prince (1948, div. 2), On View (1951), Glenbeigh (1954) and Mandarin (1957), whilst Mullins’ four wins in the RSA Chase were with Florida Pearl (1998), Rule Supreme (2004), Cooldine (2009) and Don Poli (2015). Topofthegame provided Paul Nicholls with a third win in the race when landing the 2019 renewal.

The leading jockey in the RSA Chase is Pat Taaffe, with five winners. Pat Taaffe’s five winners in the RSA Chase were Coneyburrow (1953), Solfen (1960), Grallagh Cnoc (1961), Arkle (1963) and Proud Tarquin (1970).

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RSA Chase 2020 FAQs

What is the distance of the RSA Chase?

3 miles and 89 yards

How many obstacles are jumped in the RSA Chase?

19

What day of the festival is the RSA Chase?

Day 2

What time is the RSA Chase?

14:10

What weights are carried for the RSA Chase?

11 st 2 lb for five-year-olds. 11 st 4 lb for six-year-olds and up. 7 lb allowance for fillies and mares.

What is the purse for the RSA Chase?

£175,000 (2020)

Who is the leading jockey in the RSA Chase*?

Pat Taaffe, with five wins

Who is the leading trainer in the RSA Chase*?

Fulke Walwyn and Willie Mullins, both with four wins

Who won the RSA Chase?

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

Where can I compare the odds for the RSA Chase?

Click the link to visit our RSA Chase Odds Comparison page.

*Since 1946

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