Denman Race Horse

Denman Horse

Bred by Colman O’Flynn in 2000, Denman was the product of sire Presenting and dam Polly Puttens. He was owned by Paul K Barber and trained by Paul Nicholls at Manor Farm Stables, holding a record of fourteen wins and five seconds from twenty-four runs before his retirement in 2011.

Although Paul Nicholls wanted to extend the horse’s life by retiring him at the age of eleven, Denman was euthanised in 2018 after his health deteriorated. Paul Nicholls was clearly devastated by Denman’s death, stating in a tribute to the horse that ‘he was a magic horse who had a tremendous following because of the wholehearted way he went about his racing’.

Denman Races

Various races at Liscarroll, Wincanton, Bangor-on-Dee and at Cheltenham’s New Year’s Day races proved Denman’s worth in winning his opening five runs. This was enough for Paul Nicholls to enter Denman into the 2006 Cheltenham Festival, where he finished second in the Royal & SunAlliance Novices’ Hurdle. He then enjoyed a winning streak of nine successive races including in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, the Jim Brown Memorial Novices’ Chase and the Royal & SunAlliance Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham. 2009 started with a second-place finish in the Levy Board Chase at Kempton and in the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Denman disappointingly failed to finish in the Bowl Chase at Aintree but bounced back in winning the Hennessy Gold Cup Chase at Newbury.

Another error occurred in the 2010 Aon Chase at Newbury when Denman unseated jockey AP McCoy but the second-place finish in the Cheltenham Gold Cup saw Denman bouncing back in style. The final four race meetings for Denman saw him finishing fourth in the Punchestown Guinness Gold Cup, third in the Hennessy Gold Cup Chase at Newbury, second in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, and fifth in the Bowl Chase at Aintree before retiring eight months later.

Denman Cheltenham

Horse racing’s best nags are tested the most at Cheltenham Festival and Denman was off to a strong start in winning the Stan James Challow Novices’ Hurdle in 2006. His first entry at Cheltenham Festival wasn’t the win that the bookmakers expected but finishing second in the Royal & SunAlliance Novices’ Hurdle was enough to show promise for future entries. Denman returned in style at Cheltenham’s November Meeting, winning the Jim Brown Memorial Novices’ Chase, and following it up by winning his second attempt at the Royal & SunAlliance Chase in 2007. He reached his peak at the festival in 2008 by winning the Cheltenham Gold Cup ahead of favourite Kauto Star, who was also trained by Paul Nicholls. The final three appearances at Cheltenham Festival saw successive second place finishes in the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

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