Cheltenham Festival News
Tuesday 24th February 2015
   

Nicky Henderson Stable Visit

Nicky Henderson today hosted a media visit at his Seven Barrows yard just to the north of Lambourn in Berkshire.

Nicky Henderson

The most successful trainer ever at The Festival, with 51 successes, talked of his hopes for the four-day Cheltenham meeting between Tuesday, March 10 and Friday, March 13.

His highest-profile runner is superb two-mile chaser, Sprinter Sacre, who is continuing a comeback in the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase on Wednesday, March 11. Sprinter Sacre won the Grade One chase in 2013 in great style but missed out last year after recuperating from an irregular heartbeat.

The nine-year-old had his first run since December, 2013 at Ascot last month, finishing a promising second in the Grade One Sodexho Clarence House Chase to Dodging Bullets.

Henderson said: "We are as good as we have been for a very, very long time with Sprinter Sacre. He is right there - spot on. We have had our run and he has done plenty of work since and he does not need to go to a racecourse (for a gallop).

"We will probably go to Mandown (part of The Jockey Club's Lambourn gallops) on Wednesday. He worked on Saturday (Feb 21) and schooled on Friday (Feb 20). As always the better the ground, the better for him. He travelled well at Ascot - like the best horse in the race - and just got tired at the second last.

"We knew he had to have a run and it was there or nowhere. The ground was not bad and I cannot make that an excuse. They went a right good gallop and set out to test him so it could have been a kinder race for him. He seems in good shape and since Ascot has been great.

"We have been waiting for that spark which wasn't there last year - you cannot force it to happen and have to wait. He was absolutely, ridiculously unbeatable a couple of years ago - I am not saying we are totally unbeatable next month, but he is in seriously good shape. He has done everything we have asked him to do. It will be a great race (Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase). Sire De Grugy has a crown we want back. I think we have a good chance - I am not confident but pretty hopeful."  

L'Ami Serge
© Caroline Norris
L'Ami Serge

The trainer is looking forward to L'Ami Serge running in the opening Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle on Tuesday, March 10, Josses Hill in the next race, the Racing Post Arkle Chase and Vaniteux in the Stan James Champion Hurdle on the same day, with Ma Filleule in the Ryanair Chase on Thursday, March 12.

Then on the last day, Friday, March 13, he is pleased with his three runners in the JCB Triumph Hurdle, Peace And Co, Top Notch and Hargam, while Bobs Worth goes for a second Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup success following on from his 2013 victory.

Horse Racing Betway Banners

Henderson said: "Ma Filleule came to herself in the spring of last year and she is back there - it was a good run at Ascot the other day (when second in the Grade One Betfair Ascot Chase). We have reason to believe she can find a length or two on that.

"Luckily, I don't have to split my three in the JCB Triumph Hurdle. I would be hopeful with one of them and I have got three shots. They are three lovely horses, they are all entitled to go there and are good enough to go there. They compare well with the horses we have had in the past for the race.

"Bob's Worth has only had the one run in the Lexus Chase this season but that was always the plan. He has one more bit of work to do and the plan is to go to Newbury on Sunday if the ground is not too bad. He is fresh and well. Barry (Geraghty) was pleased with him in Ireland where the ground was desperate. He wants better ground.

"In normal circumstances, I would be pretty keen on L'Ami Serge. He was very impressive in the Tolworth Hurdle - he quickened well, is classy and experienced. Soft ground won't worry him.

"They will go quick in the Arkle and Barry says that will suit Josses Hill. It will be easier for the horse to jump well if they go a good gallop.

"I still think Vaniteux is a very good horse and he is very, very well. Good ground would be important to him and he has not had it this season."

Synopsis - Nicky Henderson is the all-time leading trainer at The Festival with 51 successes. He has won the Jump trainers' championship three times - 1985/86, 1986/87 and 2012/2013.

Born - Lambeth, London, on December 10, 1950

Background - The son of financier and amateur jockey John Henderson MBE, who founded Racecourse Holdings Trust, the forerunner for Jockey Club Racecourses, he was educated at Eton and the Royal Agricultural College.

He worked for stockbrokers Cazenove in London and Australia, where he gained experience riding work at Randwick, before devoting himself full-time to racing.

Henderson first made his name in Britain as an amateur rider, finishing runner-up three times in the non-professional championship. His main wins as a jockey came on Happy Warrior in the 1977 Fox Hunters Chase at Aintree and on Acquaint in Sandown's Imperial Cup in the same year. Henderson recorded his 78th and final win on Rolls Rambler in the Horse & Hound Cup at Stratford in June, 1978.

He became assistant trainer to Fred Winter in 1974 and received his own training licence in July, 1978, taking over from Roger Charlton at Windsor House Stables in Lambourn, Berkshire. He moved to Seven Barrows, to the north of the village, in 1992, after swapping yards with Peter Walwyn.

First Winner As A Trainer - Dukery at Uttoxeter, October 14, 1978.

Free Racing Tips

Cheltenham Festival Wins (51)

Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle (1986 River Ceiriog, 1992 Flown)

Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase (1991 Remittance Man, 1993 Travado, 2000 Tiutchev, 2012 Sprinter Sacre, 2013 Simonsig)

Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase (2000 Marlborough)

Stan James Champion Hurdle (1985, 1986 & 1987 See You Then, 2009 Punjabi, 2010 Binocular)

CHAPS Restaurants Barbados Novices' Handicap Chase (2013 Rajdhani Express)

Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle (2012 Simonsig)

RSA Chase (2005 Trabolgan, 2012 Bobs Worth)

Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase (1992 Remittance Man, 2012 Finian's Rainbow, 2013 Sprinter Sacre)

Coral Cup (2010 Spirit River, 2014 Whisper)

Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (2012 Une Artiste)

Ryanair Chase (2006 Fondmort, 2012 Riverside Theatre)

Ladbrokes World Hurdle (1989 Rustle, 2000 Bacchanal)

Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate (1985 & 1986 The Tsarevich, 2005 Liberthine, 2006 Non So)

Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Chase (1990 Master Bob, 2002 The Bushkeeper, 2005 Juveigneur)

JCB Triumph Hurdle (1985 First Bout, 1987 Alone Success, 1999 Katarino, 2009 Zaynar, 2010 Soldatino)

Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle (1993 Thumbs Up, 1997 Barna Boy)

Albert Bartlett Novices Hurdle (2011 Bobs Worth)

Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup (2011 Long Run, 2013 Bobs Worth)

Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle (2009 Andytown)

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase (2006 Greenhope, 2012 Bellvano)

Cathcart Chase (1990 Brown Windsor, 1994 Raymylette, 1999 & 2000 Stormyfairweather)

Cheltenham Festival Wins by Year

1985: 3 - Stan James Champion Hurdle (See You Then), Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate (The Tsarevich), JCB Triumph Hurdle (First Bout)

1986: 3 - Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle (River Ceiriog), Stan James Champion Hurdle (See You Then), Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate (The Tsarevich)

1987: 2 - Stan James Champion Hurdle (See You Then), JCB Triumph Hurdle (Alone Success)

1988: no winners

1989: 1 - Ladbrokes World Hurdle (Rustle)

1990: 2 - Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Chase (Master Bob), Cathcart Chase (Brown Windsor)

1991: 1 - Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase (Remittance Man)

1992: 2 - Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle (1992 Flown), Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase (Remittance Man)

1993: 2 - Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase (Travado), Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle (Thumbs Up)

1994: 1 - Cathcart Chase (Raymylette)

1995: no winners

1996: no winners

1997: 1 - Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle (Barna Boy)

1998: no winners

1999: 2 - JCB Triumph Hurdle (Katarino), Cathcart Chase (Stormyfairweather)

2000: 4 - Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase (Tiutchev), Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase (Marlborough), Ladbrokes World Hurdle (Bacchanal), Cathcart Chase (Stormyfairweather)

2001: no winners

2002: 1 - Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Chase (The Bushkeeper)

2003: no winners

2004: no winners

2005: 3 - RSA Chase (Trabolgan), Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate (Liberthine), Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Chase (Juveigneur)

2006: 3 - Ryanair Chase (Fondmort), Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate (Non So), Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase (Greenhope)

2007: no winners

2008: no winners

2009: 3 - Stan James Champion Hurdle (Punjabi), JCB Triumph Hurdle (Zaynar), Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Hurdle (Andytown)

2010: 3 - Stan James Champion Hurdle (Binocular), Coral Cup (Spirit River), JCB Triumph Hurdle (Soldatino)

2011: 2 - Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle (Bobs Worth), Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup (Long Run)

2012: 7 - Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase (Sprinter Sacre), Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle (Simonsig), RSA Chase (Bobs Worth), Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase (Finian's Rainbow), Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (Une Artiste), Ryanair Chase (Riverside Theatre), Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase (Bellvano)

2013: 4 - Racing Post Arkle Trophy Chase (Simonsig), CHAPS Restaurants Barbados Novices' Handicap Chase (Radjhani Express), Betway Champion Chase (Sprinter Sacre), Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup (Bobs Worth)

2014: 1 - Coral Cup (Whisper)

Winner of The Irish Independent Dessie Hughes Leading Trainer Award at The Festival:

1985, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1992, 1993, 2000, 2010, 2012

Nicky Henderson's Festival contenders

Horse

Entries

Rating

Summary

NOVICE HURDLERS

Aigle De La See

PIPE

127*

French import; two wins from two starts for Nicky Henderson, scoring in Sandown Park hcap hurdle (2m 4f) on Jan 31 & taking Ffos Las nov hurdle by 10l on Feb 15

Birch Hill

PIPE

124

Fifth in 2m 4f+ nov hurdle at Cheltenham on Jan 1; sixth in Musselburgh nov hurdle (3m+) on Feb 1

Bivouac

NEP, WINT, TRI

139*

Ran 3rd G2 Adonis Juvenile Hurdle at Kempton Park on Saturday; fifth (beaten 14½l) to Peace And Co in G2 JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial (2m 1f) at Cheltenham on Jan 24; narrow winner of juv hurdles at Kempton Park (Dec 27) & Sandown Park (Dec 5) 

Caracci Apache

NEP, ALB

146

Unbeaten in three hurdle appearances, most recently when beating Blaklion by a head in G2 Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle (3m+) at Doncaster on Jan 24; won over 2m 5f at Plumpton on Jan 4 & over 2m+ at Sandown Park on Dec 6

Cardinal Walter

SUP, NEP

138

Rated 91 on Flat; 7l winner on hurdling debut at Doncaster on Dec 12; runner-up (beaten 6l by Qewy) in 2m+ nov hurdle at Newbury on Feb 7

Clean Sheet

PIPE

135*

Successful over 2m 4f+ at Fakenham on Feb 13 (beat Chidswell by 3l); short-head winner of Newbury nov hurdle (2m+) on Dec 29; beaten 1¼l by Caracci Apachi at Sandown Park on Dec 6

Clondaw Banker

PIPE

122

Kempton Park bumper winner in Jan 2014; winless in four starts over hurdles; third (beaten 2½l) on latest outing in Doncaster maiden hurdle (2m 3f+) on Jan 23

Cup Final

PNF

136

Second-season novice; 10th (45l behind Faugheen) in G1 Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle (2m 5f) at The Festival in 2014; 2l winner of Sandown Park Pertemps qualifier (2m 6f) on Dec 6 

Hargam

TRI

144

Flat winner over 12f in France; second (beaten ¾l by Golden Doyen) in G2 JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial (2m+) at Cheltenham on Nov 15; 1¼l winner of JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial (2m 1f) at same course on Dec 13; scored by 6l on latest start in Listed juv hurdle (2m) at Musselburgh on Feb 1

Kilcrea Vale

NEP

No rating

Successful in Irish point-to-point in May; won by 26l on debut for Nicky Henderson in 2m 3f nov hurdle at Market Rasen on Jan 15

L'Ami Serge

SUP

153

Dual Listed runner-up over hurdles in France & yet to be beaten in three starts for Nicky Henderson; facile 6l winner of Listed intermediate hurdle (2m+) at Newbury on Nov 27; scored by 7l in G2 Sky Bet Supreme Trial Novices' Hurdle (2m) at Ascot on Dec 19; 14l winner of G1 32Red Tolworth Hurdle (2m+) at Sandown Park on Jan 3

Out Sam

ALB

142

Unbeaten in two starts in nov hurdles, winning by 3l at Newbury (2m 5f) on Nov 28 & by 1¾l at Ascot (2m 6f) on Jan 17

Peace And Co

TRI

155

Three from three over hurdles, including easy win at Clairfontaine (France) for former connections; took Doncaster G2 juv hurdle (2m+) by 19l on Dec 13; stayed on well to beat Karazek by 3l in G2 JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial (2m 1f) at Cheltenham on Jan 24

Snake Eyes

O'BRIEN

128

Sixth in valuable Leopardstown hcap hurdle (2m) in Jan 2014 & 10th in same race on Jan 18; scored at fifth time of asking over hurdles with ½l victory in Sandown Park hcap hurdle (2m+) on Dec 6

Spartan Angel

PIPE

118

Won 2m Worcester maiden hurdle (2m 4f) by 6l in June; runner-up (beaten 4l) on latest start in Ascot hcap hurdle (2m 6f) on Dec 19

Sweet Deal

CORAL, PIPE

131

Twice won on good ground in June, 2014, taking Aintree maiden (2m 1f) hurdle by 2½l and posting 10l success in 2m Uttoxeter nov hurdle; 10th (beaten 29l) on latest start in Listed hcap hurdle (2m) at Musselburgh on Feb 1

Theinval

CORAL, PIPE

134

Twice runner-up in 10 starts over hurdles and fences in France; 6l winner of Kempton Park hcap hurdle (2m) on Nov 24; beaten neck by Alternatif same course in 2m 5f hcap hurdle on Dec 26

Top Notch

TRI

144

Unbeaten in five starts; eligible to run in JCB Triumph Hurdle but not a novice, having captured a pair of hurdle races in France in March & April; comfortable winner of juv hurdles at Newbury (2m+) on Dec 29 & at Ascot (2m) on Jan 17; easily won 2m Haydock juv hurdle by 9l on February 14

Vyta Du Roc

NEP, ALB

147

Beaten a neck by Parlour Games in G1 Challow Novices' Hurdle (2m 5f) at Newbury on Dec 29; successful on four previous starts including nose victory in G2 Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle (2m 4f) at Sandown Park on Dec 5; scored by a neck in G2 Sky Bet Supreme Trial Novices' Hurdle (2m+) at Cheltenham on Nov 16

NOVICE CHASERS

Cocktails At Dawn

CLUB

135

11th (beaten 53l by Faugheen) in G1 Neptune Investment Management Novices' Hurdle (2m 5f) at The Festival in 2014; yet to win in three starts over fences, most recently when well-beaten fourth in Kempton Park hcap chase (2m 4f+) on Jan 10

Golden Hoof

CLUB

137

Three-time winner over hurdles & won 2m 4f Aintree nov chase by 6l on Oct 25; placed on both subsequent starts, most recently when 13l-third in Wetherby hcap chase (2m 4f+) on Dec 26

Josses Hill

ARK, JLT

150

6l runner-up to Vautour in G1 Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle at The Festival in 2014; impressive winner of G2 Top Novices' Hurdle at Aintree the following month; second (beaten 9l by Ptit Zig) on chase debut in G2 nov chase (2m 3f) at Ascot on Dec 19; comfortably took Doncaster nov chase (2m+) on Jan 9; went down by ¾l to more-experienced Third Intention in Kempton Park graduation chase (2m 4f+) on Feb 6

HURDLERS

Bear's Affair

CORAL, PNF

152

Won four of eight starts over hurdles; second in hcap hurdles at Wincantion (2m6f) and Aintree (2m 4f) last twice; most recent victory came in 3m hcap chase at Aintree in May

Beat That

WORLD

160

G1-winning novice at Aintree (3m+) and Punchestown (3m) in April; faded to sixth on comeback in Dornan Engineering Hurdle (2m 4f+) at Cheltenham on New Year's Day

Big Hands Harry

PNF

130

Beaten fav when sixth in Pertemps qualifier at Warwick (3m 1f) on Jan 10; won 3m nov hcap chase at Ascot on Nov 22

Blue Fashion

WORLD

152

Lightly-raced French import; two starts for Nicky Henderson, most recently when second (beaten 3¾l) to Faugheen in G2 Ascot Hurdle (2m 3+) on Nov 22; also second to More Of That in hcap hurdle (2m 4f) at Haydock Park in November, 2013

Call The Cops

CORAL, PNF

133

Dual winner over hurdles, most recently at Ludlow (2m 5f) in April; fourth (beaten 6¼l) to Brother Brian in hcap hurdle (2m 5f) at Kempton Park on Nov 3

Cool Macavity

O'BRIEN

132

Beaten 13l when eighth to Bayan in Ladbroke Hurdle (2m) at Ascot on Dec 20; won 2m hcap hurdle at Punchestown Festival in May

Dawalan

CORAL, PNF

150

Appreciated step up in trip this season, winning at Aintree (2m 4f) and Musselburgh (3m); runner-up to Sign Of A Victory in Listed hcap hurdle (2m) at Ascot on Nov 1; sent off favourite when 13th in Fred Winter Juvenile Hcap Hurdle at The Festival in 2014;

Full Shift

CORAL, PIPE

135

Not run since coming 11th (beaten 30l) in Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Hcap Hurdle at The Festival in 2014; won two of three hurdle starts before that at Kempton Park (2m 5f) and Newcastle (2m)

Hammersly Lake

CORAL

144

Runner-up in hcap hurdles at Cheltenham (2m+) and Newbury (2m 3f) first two starts this season; did not replicate that when 11th (beaten 72l) behind Tea For Two in hcap hurdle (2m 5f) at Kempton Park on Jan 10

Lough Kent

O'BRIEN

129

Well-beaten last two starts in hcap hurdles at Taunton (Feb 17) and Newbury (Dec 29); 20th in the Vincent O'Brien County Hcap Hurdle at The Festival in 2014

Lyvius

CORAL

145

Caught in the final strides when second in G2 hcap hurdle (2m 3f+) at Ascot; fifth (beaten 8¾l) to On Tour in 2m 4f hcap hurdle at Haydock Park on Nov 22; eighth in Vincent O'Brien County Hcap Hurdle at last year's Festival

Mayfair Music

OLBG, CORAL, PIPE

135

Decisive winner of Listed mares' nov hurdle at Doncaster (3m+) in March; well-beaten two starts this season, most recently when fifth (beaten 27l) behind Glens Melody in Listed event (2m 5f) at Warwick on Feb 7

Polly Peachum

OLBG

155

PU and dismounted last time out in Listed event (3m+) at Kempton Park on Nov 24; impressive winner of mares hcap hurdle (2m 6f) under top-weight at Wincanton on Nov 8; won OLBG.com Supports Mares' Jump Racing Mares' Hcap Hurdle (2m 5f+) at Cheltenham in April

River Maigue

CORAL, PIPE

140

Not run since PU in nov hcap chase at Kempton Park (2m 4f+) on Boxing Day; won once in six starts over hurdles; G2 runner-up at Cheltenham in November, 2012

Rolling Star

CORAL, O'BRIEN

145

Fifth (beaten 44l) in hcap hurdle (2m 3+) at Ascot on Feb 15 after a year off; not won since taking 4yo hurdle (2m) at Haydock Park in November, 2013; sixth in JCB Triumph Hurdle at The Festival in 2013

Royal Irish Hussar

CORAL, O'BRIEN, PIPE

140

Fifth (beaten 8l) in 2m 1f hcap hurdle at Cheltenham on January 24; high-class juvenile hurdler, completing hat-trick in G2 event at Cheltenham in November, 2013; sixth to Tiger Roll in JCB Triumph Hurdle at The Festival in 2014

Sign Of A Victory

CHAMP, O'BRIEN

147

Facile winner of 2m Listed hcap hurdle at Ascot on Nov 1; proved no match for Faugheen when fourth (beaten 31l) in G1 Christmas Hurdle at Kempton Park on Boxing Day; filled same postion behind Blue Heron in G2 Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton on Feb 14

Vaniteux

CHAMP

154

Third to Vautour in last year's Sky Bet Supreme Nov Hurdle at The Festival; runner-up in all three starts at Cheltenham this season, including (beaten 6l) to The New One in G2 StanJames.com International Hurdle (2m 1f) in December; found Rock On Ruby 2½l too strong in Dornan Engineering Hurdle (2m 4f+) on New Year's Day

Vasco Du Ronceray

CORAL, O'BRIEN, PIPE

140

Recorded first win for two years when annexing 2m hcap hurdle by 5l at Haydock Park in November; UR when weakening in Betfair Hurdle at Newbury on Feb 7; fifth (beaten 22l) behind Our Conor in JCB Triumph Hurdle at The Festival in 2013

Volnay De Thaix

CORAL

158

Cruised to victory under top-weight in a hcap hurdle (2m 4f) at Huntingdon on Nov 11; fourth 11 days later in Fixed Brush Hcap Hurdle (3m) at Haydock Park; runner-up (beaten 2¼l) to Rock On Ruby in G2 Osborne House Relkeel Hurdle (2m 4f+) at Cheltenham on Dec 13

Whisper

WORLD

164

Won Coral Cup at The Festival in 2014 and followed up in G1 Liverpool Hurdle over 3m at Aintree in April; only outing this season yielded a second in a beginners' chase (2m 3f+) at Exeter on New Year's Day

CHASERS

Anquetta

JHGA

139

Has run in the last four renewals of the Johnny Henderson Grand Annual, finishing sixth, fourth, ninth and 10th; last seen out when fifth (beaten 36l) in 2m 1f hcap chase at Newbury on Nov 29; latest win came in 2m 4f hcap chase at Market Rasen in May

Bobs Worth

GOLD

166

Three-time winner at The Festival - Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle (2011), RSA Chase (2012) and Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup (2013); sent off the 6/4 fav to retain his Gold Cup crown last year after winning G1 Lexus Chase at Leopardstown (Dec 28, 2013), but could only finish fifth; eighth in sole start this term in Lexus Chase behind Road To Riches

Captain Conan

RYAN

161

Four-time G1 winner including three novice chases during 2012/2013 campaign - the Henry VIII Novices' Chase (2m) & Challengers Novices' Chase (2m 4f+) at Sandown plus Manifesto Novices' Chase (2m 4f) at Aintree; beat Sire De Grugy in G2 nov chase (2m) at Cheltenham in Nov 2012 but not seen since pulling up behind same horse in Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase at The Festival in 2014

Ericht

CORAL, BROWN, WALWYN

133 (c) 135 (h)

Four starts in hcap chases at Cheltenham this season, most notably when third to Johns Spirit at The Showcase in October; sole win over fences came in 2m 4f nov chase at Musselburgh in February, 2014; dual winner over hurdles and fifth in Coral Cup at The Festival in 2013

Finian's Rainbow

QM

158

Enjoyed finest hour with 1¼l victory over Sizing Europe in 2012 Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase; dual G1 winner at Aintree, taking Maghull Novices' Chase (2m) in 2011 & Melling Chase (2m 4f) in 2012; PU on latest outing in G3 Paddy Power Gold Cup (2m 4f) at Cheltenham in November 2013

French Opera

BROWN, JHGA

149

Could make seventh appearance at The Festival following five runs in Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase (3rd in 2009 & 2nd in 2010) and a sixth in the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase in 2011; dual G2 winner at around 2m in 2011; sixth on latest appearance off top-weight in 2m Sandown Park hcap chase on Jan 31

Hadrian's Approach

ULTIMA

151

Third behind Lord Windermere in 2013 RSA Chase; game winner of G3 bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown Park in April, 2014; sixth on seasonal return in G3 Majordomo Hospitality Handicap Chase (3m 2f) at Cheltenham on Dec 12; PU in 3m+ hcap chase at Sandown Park on Jan 31

Hunt Ball

RYAN, BROWN

155

Prolific chase scorer in 2011/2012, culminating with 8l success off 12st in Cheltenham Club Novices' Handicap Chase at The Festival; twice third in G1 chases, including 2013 Ascot Chase (2m 5f+); runner-up (beaten 3¼  by Splash Of Ginge) in 2m 5f G3 handicap chase at Cheltenham on Jan 1; last of three in Kempton Park Listed chase (2m 4f+) on Jan 10

Ma Filleule

RYAN, GOLD

159

G2 winner over hurdles (2m 3f) and impressive 8l scorer in G3 Topham Chase at Aintree in April, 2014; close third to Sam Winner (beaten 1½) in Listed chase at Aintree on Dec 6; went down by 3¼l to Balder Succes in G1 Ascot Chase (2m 5f+) on Feb 14

Rajdhani Express

RYAN, BROWN

155*

Prom wknd when 7th in G3 BetBright Chase (3m) at Kempton Park on Feb 21; Successful in Cheltenham Club Novices' Handicap Chase at The Festival in 2013 & third in Ryanair Chase last year; fourth in G2 chase (2m 3f) at Ascot on Nov 22; last of six in G2 Betfred Peterborough Chase (2m 4f+) at Huntingdon on Dec 7

Shakalaka-boomboom

FWKM

122

G3 hcap chase (3m 1f+) winner at Cheltenham off 140 in Dec 2011; ninth in 2012 Crabbie's Grand National; now rated 122 over fences after pulling up in two of three latest starts, including in hcap chase (3m 2f+) at Cheltenham on Jan 1

Sprinter Sacre

QM

188

One of the best 2m chasers of modern times with seven G1 wins including scintillating displays in the 2012 Racing Post Arkle Chase (beat Cue Card by 7l) and the 2013 Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase (beat Sizing Europe by 19l); spent a year on the sidelines with fibrillating heart; returned to action with 3l second to Dodging Bullets in G1 Clarence House Chase (2m 1f) at Ascot on Jan 17

Tanks For That

BROWN, JHGA

137

Veteran of five previous Festivals, coming home second to Bellvano in the 2012 Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase; won valuable 2m hcap chase at Cheltenham in Nov 2011; PU on first start since Punchestown Festival in 2m hcap chase at Wincanton on Feb 14

Nicky Henderson's Cheltenham entries with previous form at The Festival

Anquetta

2011

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

6th

David Bass

9/1

2012

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

4th

Andrew Tinkler

33/1

2013

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

9th

David Bass

20/1

2014

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

10th

Mr Sam Waley-Cohen

50/1

Bobs Worth

2011

Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle

1st

Barry Geraghty

15/8f

2012

RSA Chase

1st

Barry Geraghty

9/2

2013

Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup

1st

Barry Geraghty

11/4f

2014

Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup Chase

5th

Barry Geraghty

6/4f

Captain Conan

2013

JLT Novices' Chase

5th

Barry Geraghty

5/1

2014

Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase

PU

Barry Geraghty

7/2

Cocktails At Dawn

2014

Neptune Investment Management Nov' H

11th

Barry Geraghty

33/1

Cup Final

2014

Neptune Investment Management Nov' H

10th

A P McCoy

16/1

Dawalan

2014

Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle

13th

Barry Geraghty

7/2f

Ericht

2011

Weatherbys Champion Bumper

6th

Barry Geraghty

5/1f

2013

Coral Cup

5th

Gary Derwin

14/1

2014

CHAPS Restaurants Barbados Novices' Handicap Chase

PU

Barry Geraghty

13/2j

Finian's Rainbow

2010

Neptune Investment Management Nov' H

5th

Barry Geraghty

11/2

2011

Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase

2nd

Barry Geraghty

7/2

2012

Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase

1st

Barry Geraghty

4/1

French Opera

2009

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

3rd

Marcus Foley

10/1

2010

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

2nd

David Bass

10/1

2011

Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase

6th

Andrew Tinkler

22/1

2012

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

F

Jeremiah McGrath

16/1

2013

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

8th

Barry Geraghty

20/1

2014

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

5th

Nico de Boinville

33/1

Full Shift

2014

Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' H'cap H

11th

Nico de Boinville

9/2f

Hadrian's Approach

2013

RSA Chase

3rd

Barry Geraghty

7/1

2014

Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase

14th

Barry Geraghty

8/1

Hunt Ball

2012

Rewards4Racing Novices' H'cap Chase

1st

Nick Scholfield

13/2f

2013

Festival Group Plate

4th

Nick Scholfield

8/1

2014

Ryanair Chase

4th

Barry Geraghty

14/1

Josses Hill

2014

Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle

2nd

Andrew Tinkler

14/1

Lough Kent

2014

Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle

20th

Nico de Boinville

50/1

Lyvius

2014

Vincent O'Brien County Handicap Hurdle

8th

Barry Geraghty

20/1

Ma Filleule

2013

Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap H

13th

 Jeremiah McGrath

9/1

2014

Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase

2nd

 Nico de Boinville

33/1

Rajdhani Express

2013

Rewards4Racing Novices' H'cap Chase

1st

Mr Sam Waley-Cohen

16/1

2014

Ryanair Chase

3rd

Mr Sam Waley-Cohen

18/1

River Maigue

2013

Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle

8th

Barry Geraghty

18/1

Rolling Star

2013

JCB Triumph Hurdle

6th

Barry Geraghty

5/2f

Royal Irish Hussar

2014

JCB Triumph Hurdle

6th

Barry Geraghty

6/1

Shakalakaboomboom

2011

Cheltenham Club Handicap Chase

9th

David Bass

33/1

2014

Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase

17th

David Bass

50/1

Sprinter Sacre

2011

Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle

3rd

A P McCoy

11/1

2012

Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Ch

1st

Barry Geraghty

8/11f

2013

Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase

1st

Barry Geraghty

1/4f

Tanks For That

2010

Cheltenham Club Novices' Handicap Chase

PU

Andrew Tinkler

22/1

2011

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

18th

Barry Geraghty

11/1

2012

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

2nd

Barry Geraghty

9/1

2013

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

PU

Andrew Tinkler

33/1

2014

Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase

9th

Barry Geraghty

12/1

Vaniteux

2014

Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle

3rd

Barry Geraghty

11/1

Vasco Du Ronceray

2013

JCB Triumph Hurdle

5th

Jacques Ricou

20/1

Whisper

2014

Coral Cup

1st

Nico de Boinville

14/1

Nicky Henderson's entries at The Festival so far

CHAMPION DAY, TUESDAY, MARCH 10

1.30pm Sky Bet Supreme Novices' Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 110y

Cardinal Walter, L'Ami Serge

2.05pm Racing Post Arkle Chase (Grade 1) 2m

Josses Hill

2.40pm Ultima Business Solutions Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 3m 1f

Hadrian's Approach

3.20pm Stan James Champion Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 110y

Sign Of A Victory, Vaniteux

4.00pm OLBG Mares' Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 4f

Mayfair Music, Polly Peachum

4.40pm Toby Balding National Hunt Chase (Listed) 4m

No entries

5.15pm CHAPS Restaurants Barbados Novices' Handicap Chase (Listed) 2m 4f 110y

Cocktails At Dawn, Golden Hoof

LADIES DAY, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 11

1.30pm Neptune Investment Management Novices' (Grade 1) 2m 5f   

Bivouac, Caracci Apache, Cardinal Walter, Kilcrea Vale, Vyta Du Roc

2.05pm RSA Chase (Grade 1) 3m 110y

No entries

2.40pm Coral Cup (Handicap Hurdle) (Grade 3)            2m 5f

Bear's Affair, Call The Cops, Dawalan, Ericht, Full Shift, Hammersly Lake, Lyvius, Mayfair Music, River Maigue, Rolling Star, Royal Irish Hussar, Sweet Deal, Theinval, Vasco Du Ronceray, Volnay De Thaix

3.20pm Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase (Grade 1) 2m

Finian's Rainbow, Sprinter Sacre

4.00pm Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Chase 3m 7f

No entries

4.40pm Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (Grade 3) 2m 110y

Bivouac

5.15pm Weatherbys Champion Bumper (Grade 1) 2m 110y

Entries close February 24

ST PATRICK'S THURSDAY, MARCH 12

1.30pm JLT Novices' Chase (Grade 1) 2m 4f    

Josses Hill

2.05pm Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle (Listed) 3m  

Bear's Affair, Big Hands Harry, Call The Cops, Cup Final, Dawalan

2.40pm Ryanair Chase (Grade 1) 2m 5f           

Captain Conan, Hunt Ball, Ma Filleule, Rajdhani Express

3.20pm Ladbrokes World Hurdle (Grade 1) 3m

Beat That, Blue Fashion, Whisper

4.00pm Brown Advisory & Merriebelle Stable Plate (Grade 3) 2m 5f

Ericht, French Opera, Hunt Ball, Rajdhani Express, Tanks For That

4.40pm Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase 3m 2f

Ericht, Shakalakaboomboom

GOLD CUP DAY, FRIDAY, MARCH 13

1.30pm JCB Triumph Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 1f

Bivouac, Hargam, Peace And Co, Top Notch

2.05pm Vincent O'Brien County Hurdle (Grade 3) 2m 1f

Cool Macavity, Lough Kent, Rolling Star, Royal Irish Hussar, Sign Of A Victory, Snake Eyes, Vasco Du Ronceray

2.40pm Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle (Grade 1) 3m   

Caracci Apache, Out Sam, Vyta Du Roc

3.20pm Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup (Grade 1) 3m 2f 110y

Bobs Worth, Ma Filleule

4.00pm St James's Place Foxhunter Chase 3m 2f 110y

Entries close February 24

4.40pm Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle 2m 4f 110y

Aigle De La See, Birch Hill, Clean Sheet, Clondaw Banker, Full Shift, Mayfair Music, River Maigue, Royal Irish Hussar, Spartan Angel, Sweet Deal, Theinval, Vasco Du Ronceray

5.15pm Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase (Grade 3) 2m 110y

Anquetta, French Opera, Tanks For That