Racing Ahead


Andy Newton with the leading trends for the big 2m 2f race


Last May was a write-off on the racing front, so this month’s Chester Cup is being run for the first time since 2019 during the popular Chester May Meeting, set to be staged between 5th-7th May.

The race used to be run on the opening day of the meeting but has now been rightly moved to the Friday – which gives the fixture the chance to build up to this 2m 2f handicap.

Being run over 2m2f on the Flat, then it’s also a race the jumps trainers tend to have on their radars – backed up by the likes of David Pipe, Donald McCain and Nicky Henderson having all won the race in the last ten runnings.

So, what are the other key trends to note?

Age – In 2016, we saw an 8-year-old, No Heretic, land the race, but since 1986 all bar that winner were aged 7 or younger. In more recent years, 17 of the last 18 winners were aged 7 or younger too, while 13 of the last 18 successful horses were aged 5, 6 or 7. That said, you certainly can’t rule out the 4-year-olds, with the last winner in 2019 – Making Miracles – this age, while we’ve had two 4-year-olds go in since 2015. In short, it’s probably best to avoid the older horses (8+) in the race!

Recent Form – With a massive 12 of the last 18 winners having finished unplaced last time out, don’t be too worried if your fancy heads here without some 1’s, 2’s or 3’s next to its name. But having winning form over at least 2m on the Flat in the past is something to look for, while having a run within the last two months is another plus – 12 of the last 18 winners ticked this trend.

Weight – Being a handicap, it’s always worth looking back at past weight stats. 12 of the last 18 winners carried 9st 2lbs or less, but with the last three winners and 5 of the last 7 winners carrying 9st or more, then this weight trend might be taking a slight turn in the other direction. Since 1981, only seven winners have carried more than 9st 2lb to victory. However, with 13 of the last 18 winners rated between 93-99, which is, of course, closely linked with the weight stat, that could be another angle into the race.

Draw – Most of us know that Chester is one of the tightest Flat tracks around, so even over this longer 2m2f trip the draw can play a big part. It’s normally a race that’s well contested too – in 2019 there were 15 runners – so having a decent early pitch can often be the difference between winning and losing. This is backed up with 12 of the last 18 winners drawn from stalls 7 or lower, but the 2019 winner – Making Miracles – did defy this stat by winning from stall 16.

Favourites – It’s not been a great race for favourite backers – since 1975, we’ve only had four winning market leaders and only two in the last 18 runnings. The averaging winning SP in the last 18 years has been 12/1 and with 11 of the last 18 winners priced 10/1 or shorter, then outside the favourite you generally don’t have to look too far down the market to find the winner.

Trainers – I’ve already mentioned this is a race the NH yards often target – in the last 10 renewals we’ve seen four winners from jumping stables take the first prize, while in terms of other yards to note, the Richard Fahey and Ian Williams camps have both won the race twice each since 2007.

It’s also a race that popular owner – Dr Marwan Koukash – loves to throw a few arrows at. His grey silks have been responsibl­e for four of the last 12 winners and he’s sure to have some targeted at the race again this year.

Good Luck!

Recent Chester Cup Winners

2020 – No Race

2019 – Making Miracles (16/1) 2018 – Magic Circle (8/1)

2017 – Montaly (16/1)

2016 – No Heretic (11/1)

2015 – Trip To Paris (10/1)

2014 – Suegioo (10/1)

2013 – Address Unknown (12/1) 2012 – Il De Re (10/1)

2011 – Overturn (11/2)

2010 – Mamlook (7/1 fav)

2009 – Daraahem (7/1)

2008 – Bulwark (33/1)

2007 – Greenwich Meantime (14/1) 2006 – Admiral (28/1)

2005 – Anak Pekan (16/1)

2004 – Anak Pekan (2/1 fav)

2003 – Hugs Dancer (9/1)

2002 – Fantasy Hill (8/1)

Chester Cup Betting Trends

17/18 – Aged 7 years-old or younger 15/18 – Won by – 2 lengths or less

13/18 – Officially rated between 93-99 13/18 – Aged 5, 6 or 7 years-olds

12/18 – Finished unplaced last time out 12/18 – Won from stall 7 or lower

12/18 – Carried 9-2 or less

12/18 – Had raced within last 2 months 12/18 – Had won previously over at least 2m on the Flat

11/18 – Returned 10/1 or shorter

10/18 – Favourites were unplaced

8/18 – Irish bred

4/18 – Ran at Newmarket last time out 4/18 – Won by owner Dr Marwan Koukash

3/18 – Had won at the track before 3/18 – Ran at Aintree over hurdles last time out

3/18 – Won their previous race

2/18 – Trained by Donald McCain

2/18 – Trained by Richard Fahey

2/18 – Trained by Ian Williams

2/18 – Won by the favourite

The average winning SP in the last 18 years is 12/1

Key Chester Cup Stats

The race has seen repeat winners three times since 1997

Since 1975 we’ve seen only 4 winning favourites

The Hills yard took the race in 1980, 1999, 2001 and 2009

Since 1975 all winners have been aged 8 or younger

Since 1975 there have beenonly three winners aged 8 years-old

Since 1981 only 7 winners have carried more than 9-2 to victory

4 of the last 10 winners came from NH yards

3 of the last 8 winners returned 10/1 Dr Marwan Koukash has owned 4 of the last 12 winners

 ??  ?? Making Miracles wins the Chester Cup in 2019
Making Miracles wins the Chester Cup in 2019

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