Baring Bingham Novices' Hurdle Race Card

Ballymore Novices' Hurdle (Grade 1) (Registered As The Baring Bingham)

1st
Davy Russell

Envoi Allen

Age: 6
Weight: 11.5
OR: 156
J:
 
Davy Russell
T:
 
Gordon Elliott
raced keenly, in touch, chased leaders 2 out, about 6 lengths off the pace home bend, closed quickly to lead just before last, edged left run-in, ran on to draw clear final 100yds
2nd
Rachael Blackmore

Easywork

Age: 6
Weight: 11.5
OR: 147
J:
 
Rachael Blackmore
T:
 
Gordon Elliott
took strong hold, chased leaders, went 2nd approaching 4th, ridden between last 2, challenging approaching last, hung right run-in, outpaced and no chance with winner final 100yds (jockey said gelding ran too freely)
3rd
Paul Townend

The Big Getaway

Age: 6
Weight: 11.5
OR: 146
J:
 
Paul Townend
T:
 
W P Mullins
prominent, not fluent and led 3rd, not fluent 3 out, kicked on off home bend between last 2, ridden and headed just before last, no extra final 100yds
4th
Robbie Power

The Big Breakaway

Age: 5
Weight: 11.5
OR: 144
J:
 
Robbie Power
T:
 
Colin Tizzard
midfield, headway 6th, pushed along after 4 out, effort and headway approaching 2 out, outpaced between last 2, no danger after

First race of Ladies day

The Baring Bigham Novices’ hurdle is the opening contest on day two of the Cheltenham festival. The second day of the meeting is Ladies day which always leads to a loud atmosphere and the first race of the day is usually treated by the traditional roar.

The race is open to novice hurdlers aged who are aged four years and older and they tackle a trip of 2 miles and five furlongs over the old Cheltenham course, with 10 hurdles to tackle along the way.

There is £70,000 prize money given to the winner in the Grade one contest.

History of the Baring Bingham Novices’ hurdle

The race was added to the festival in 1971 and was in them days called the Aldsworth Hurdle.

After three renewals of the race, Sun Alliance took over sponsorship in 1974 and named the race all the way up until 2006, They were then replaced Ballymore properties until 2009 when the race was supported by Neptune Investment Management. In 2018, Ballymore resumed sponsorship of the race.

The actual race title of ‘Baring Bingham Novices’ hurdle’ is named after Baring Bingham, who was a property developer and bought Prestbury Park in 1898. Not only that but it was Bingham who was the brains behind the first ever Cheltenham festival and organised the first ever one, all the way back in 1902.

Recent years

The race has been dominated in recent years by Ireland, who have won eight of the last 12 renewals.

In 2018, City Island saw off favourite Champ for another Irish success, for Mark Walsh and Martin Brassil.

Irish trainer Willie Mullins has won the race on four occasions, most recently in 2016 and those four winners mean he has the outright most victories in the race. All four winners were ridden by Ruby Walsh, which means he is also the outright most successful jockey in the race.

Willie Mullins and Ruby Walsh:

Fiveforthree (2008)

Mikael d'Haguenet (2009)

Faugheen (2014)

Yorkhill (2016)

Whilst the race open to horses as young as four, it may be worth looking to the older ones when searching for your 2020 winner, specifically horses aged six, as they have won 8 of the last nine editions.

As well as that, it’s obviously worth noting anything that is in the field for Willie Mullins and with no Ruby Walsh in 2020, whatever is ridden by now stable jockey Paul Townend, will surely need to be treated with serious respect, as well as other Irish challengers from Gordon Elliot and the likes.

The English record is poor in the race however Nigel Twiston-Davies has been successful on two occasions and if you’re looking for something closer to home, you might want to check out anything he chooses to run,

When The Fun Stops. Stop.