Royal & SunAlliance Chase - Wed March 14th 2007 

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Royal & SunAlliance Chase

1st (4) Denman 6-5 Fav
2nd (13) Snowy Morning 10-1
3rd (1) According To John 66-1
17 ran
Also: 25-1 Aces Four 4th


Denman Delivers in Style 14/03/07

Denman, the week’s banker for many at Cheltenham this year, returned home to a huge roar after a masterly performance in the Royal & SunAlliance Chase, when he never gave casue for concern to those that had supported the 6/5 favourite.

Ruby Walsh coasted home 10 lengths clear of Snowy Morning on the seven-year-old to land a huge gamble.

“We knew he was decent and I said to Ruby to make plenty of use of his class and jumping and he’s done that,” said winning trainer Paul Nicholls.

“He’s just a very good horse and you always want them to do what you believe they can - until they pass the post you are not there.

“It is a relief. You start to believe all the rubbish written by the doubters, but we've always known we had a good horse. I knew we had him right today - he's never been better.

“He looked great, and he just gallops and jumps. He's still a big baby and he will still improve. Today has always been the plan - starting off the first day at Exeter to winning today, that has been the target all season.”

Walsh added: “He’s improved so much and is a great jumper. He never lost an inch going down the back and we knew he’d jink going past the stands, that’s him and it’s just what he does.

“I didn’t mind whether I was sat in first place or seventh, I was just concerned that they went a good even gallop. He was as good on this ground today as he had been any day so I don’t think it matters and he could be a Gold Cup horse. You just never know about that extra quarter mile, remember Florida Pearl won this easily.”

"He's some horse! He's a quirky, lairy horse. I had him grand, settled early on, and then Bobby McNally missed one on front of me, and he got running a bit keen. But he's a hell of a horse. Graham nearly fell, I got left in front, and he was half pulling up.”

Denman is as short as 5/1 for next year’s totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup with Boylesports and William Hill, who offer just 7/4 that Paul Nicholls will train the 2008 victor.”



Harry Findlay, joint-owner of Royal & SunAlliance Chase winner Denman, reckons he won “just under £1 million” in bets when his brilliant horse cruised to victory.

Findlay, a professional punter who lives near Bath and shares ownership of the seven-year-old with Paul Barber, was surrounded by friends as Ruby Walsh rode into the winner’s enclosure. Cries of “Denmania,” and “Ruby, Ruby, Ruby,” rang out before Findlay launched into a staccato analysis of the race.

Top of the people he wanted to thank was Alan King, trainer of My Way De Solzen, who was Denman’s biggest rival until being switched to The Irish Independent Arkle Trophy.

Findlay said: “Ruby was so confident and rode this horse so confidently. I was sure they would take us on and they did, but Ruby kept him out of trouble. Before the race I thought Aces Four [Fourth] was the danger, and they were in front when he [Denman] did that little dwell [rounding the top bend] which he has done before. But then he ran on and it was a war, even though you know Aces Four isn’t going to stay.

“Denman’s so safe at his fences and it was a real proper race. The ante-post gamble was all down to Alan King. After the Festival last year there were only two horses that could win this race, and suddenly My Way De Solzen’s not running and we’ve had 10s, 7s, 6s and all prices down. Thanks to Alan King we’ve landed a massive touch.

“Full credit to Alan King because he’s got a brilliant horse and now he and Denman are going to take each other on next year. And if Kauto Star is there as well what a thrill it will be to watch them.

“Now I’m going to lump on Well Chief [for the Seasons Holidays Queen Mother Champion Chase].”



Both Snowy Morning and According To John both pleased their trainers following the Royal & SunAlliance Chase.

Snowy Morning stayed on well to come home 10 lengths behind the impressive winner Denman.

His trainer Willie Mullins said of the 10/1 chance: “That was a terrific run - I’m delighted.

“When Cailin Alainn fell on the first circuit he just lost his concentration and lost his place.

“But I am delighted with the way he ran and the way he jumped. Before the race, I thought with a bit of luck we might be placed.

“He will probably run again this year. We will have a look but he could go to both Fairyhouse and Punchestown.

“The winner looked fantastic.”

A further three-and-a-half lengths back in third was According To John, a 66/1 chance, and his trainer Nicky Richards was in great spirits: “According To John has run a great race. I am very pleased.

“He might have finished second but for making a mistake near the finish but I am very pleased as I would have been happy if he’d finished in the first six.

“Today he travelled well, jumped well and really stayed on. He has not had much racing and this race should have helped to toughen him up a bit.

“It will be ground dependent where we go with him as a big horse like him wouldn’t want it too firm. He could go for the Scottish Grand National and we will also look at Sandown.


Starting Price
Beaten Distance
P F Nicholls
R Walsh
11st 4lbs
6 - 5
Snowy Morning
W P Mullins
M A Fitzgerald
11st 4lbs
10 - 1
10 lengths
According To John
N G Richards
A Dobbin
11st 4lbs
66 - 1
3 1/2 lengths
Aces Four
Ferdy Murphy
G Lee
11st 4lbs
25 - 1
Gazza's Girl
Mrs J Harrington
B J Geraghty
10st 11lbs
28 - 1
1 1/2 length
K G Reveley
T J Murphy
11st 4lbs
11 - 1
4 lengths
P F Nicholls
S Thomas
10st 8lbs
9 - 1
1/2 length
D T Hughes
R Loughran
11st 4lbs
66 - 1
9 lengths
Patsy Hall
Michael Cunningham
R M Power
11st 4lbs
20 - 1
1 1/2 length
Dom d'Orgeval
D Pipe
A P McCoy
11st 4lbs
8 - 1
2 1/2 lengths
Royal Rosa
J Howard Johnson
P J Brennan
11st 4lbs
50 - 1
4 lengths
N A Twiston-Davies
Tony Evans
11st 4lbs
28 - 1
M Hourigan
A J McNamara
11st 4lbs
66 - 1
10 lengths
B W Duke
N Fehily
11st 4lbs
100 - 1
1 1/4 length
Cailin Alainn
C Byrnes
D N Russell
10st 11lbs
13 - 2
Chelsea Harbour
Thomas Mullins
D J Casey
11st 4lbs
50 - 1
J Fox
R P McNally
11st 4lbs
100 - 1


1. The Royal & SunAlliance Chase had a slight name change in 1998, having been run as the Royal SunAlliance Chase for the first time in 1997. But Sun Alliance, which merged with Royal Insurance in 1996, is among Cheltenham's longest-running sponsors. The Sun Alliance Chase was run for 23 years and Sun Alliance sponsored at Cheltenham for 26 years altogether. From 1971-3, the Foxhunters Chase was titled the "Sun Alliance & London Foxhunters."

2. Sun Alliance & London was the first sponsor outside racing to embrace commercial sponsorship at The Festival. Only the Tote precedes the insurance company. Before 1974 the race was titled the Broadway Novices’ Chase and the Totalisator Champion Novices’ Chase.

3. Since 1960, five horses have won both the Royal & SunAlliance Chase and totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup. They are:
1963 Arkle (Gold Cup 1964-6)
1974 Ten Up (Gold Cup 1975)
1979 Master Smudge (Gold Cup 1980 on the disqualification of Tied Cottage)
1990 Garrison Savannah (Gold Cup 1991)
1999 Looks Like Trouble (Gold Cup 2000)
To this list might be added the name of Tied Cottage, winner of the Royal & SunAlliance Chase in 1976 and the Gold Cup in 1980, before subsequent disqualification.

4. The biggest field for the race has been 30, in 1986, and the smallest eight, in 1993.

5. The Royal & SunAlliance Chase is as difficult to win as The Irish Independent Arkle Chase. Only Fred Winter won it more than twice as a trainer with three victories; Killiney (1973), Pengrail (1975) and Brown Chamberlin (1982).

6. Irish-trained winners number eight since 1964, the latest being Rule Supreme in 2004.

7. The most successful jockey in the Royal & SunAlliance Chase has been Peter Scudamore, who notched up a hat-trick from 1991 to 1993 with Rolling Ball, Miinnehoma and Young Hustler. The latter went on to further big-race success while Miinnehoma won the 1994 Grand National.

8. The longest-priced winners since 1964 are Hussard Collonges in 2002 and Canny Danny in 1983, both at 33/1, with Killiney the shortest-priced at 8/15 in 1973.

9. The fastest running of the race was by Lord Noelie in 2000 at 6 mins 5.3s, beating the previous best of 6 mins 6.6s set by Miinnehoma in 1992.

10. The West Awake is the only horse to have won both the Royal & SunAlliance Novices’ Hurdle and the Royal & SunAlliance Chase. He won the hurdle in 1987 and the chase in 1988.

Previous results

2005-WINNER-TRABOLGAN 7-11-04 Owner-Trevor Hemmings; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-Mick FitzGerald; SP- 5/1
2ND-Comply Or Die 6-11-04 Owner-David Johnson; Trainer-Martin Pipe; Jockey-Timmpy Murphy; SP-3/1 Fav
3RD-Cornish Rebel 8-11-04 Owner-Graham Roach; Trainer-Paul Nicholls; Jockey-Ruby Walsh; SP-9/2
9 ran, Time-6m 12.85s Dist-3, 3

2004-WINNER-RULE SUPREME 8-11-04 Owner-John Lynch; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-David Casey; SP-25/1
2ND-Royal Emperor 8-11-04 Owner-Widdop Wanderers; Trainer-Sue Smith; Jockey-Dominic Elsworth; SP-6/1
3RD-Our Vic 6-11-04 Owner-David Johnson; Trainer-Martin Pipe; Jockey-Tony McCoy; SP-11/8 Fav
10 ran, Time-6m 9.70s Dist-1.5, 2

2003-WINNER-ONE KNIGHT 7-11-04 Owner-Robert Gibbs; Trainer-Philips Hobbs; Jockey-Richard Johnson; SP-15/2
2ND-Jair Du Cochet 6-11-04 Owner-Miriam Montauban; Trainer-Guillaume Macaire FR; Jockey-Jacques Ricou; SP-4/1
3RD-Barrow Drive 7-11-04 Owner-Mrs B Leniham; Trainer-Tony Mullins IRE; Jockey-Barry Geraghty; SP-9/1 9 ran, Time-6m 14.90s Dist- 1¾, 10 9/4 Fav Keen Leader (5th)

2002-WINNER-HUSSARD COLLONGES 7-11-04 Owner-Nick Bannister; Trainer-Peter Beaumont; Jockey-Russ Garritty; SP-33/1
2ND-Iznogoud 6-11-04 Owner-County Stores-Avalon Surfacing; Trainer-Martin Pipe; Jockey-Tony McCoy;SP-14/1
3RD-Chives 7-11-04 Owner-Trevor Hemmings; Trainer-Henrietta Knight; Jockey-Richard Guest; SP-33/1
19 ran, Time-6m 35.65s Dist- 2, 4 9/2 Fav Colonel Braxton (5th)


2000-WINNER-LORD NOELIE 7-11-04 Owner-Executive Racing; Trainer-Henrietta Knight; Jockey-Jim Culloty; SP-9/2
2ND-Alexander Banquet 7-11-04 Owner-Miriam O’Callaghan; Trainer-Willie Mullins; Jockey-Ruby Walsh; SP-9/2
3RD-Toto Toscato 6-11-04 Owner-Hilda Clarke; Trainer-Alan King; Jockey-Richard Johnson; SP-11/1
9 ran Time-6m 5.3s Dist-1¼, hd 7/2 Fav-Native Upmanship (4th)

1999-WINNER-LOOKS LIKE TROUBLE 7-11-04 Owner-Universal Conference & Incentive Trv Ltd; Trainer-Noel Chance; Jockey-Paul Carberry; SP-16/1
2ND-Lord Of The River 7-11-04 Owner-Brian Stewart-Brown; Trainer-Oliver Sherwood; Jockey-Tony McCoy; SP-11/2
3RD-Billingsgate 7-11-04 Owner-Dr David and Mrs B Chesney; Trainer-David Elsworth; Jockey-Paul Holley; SP-25/1 14 ran Time-6m 21.5s Dist-dist, 3 5/4 Fav-Nick Dundee (fell)

1998-WINNER-FLORIDA PEARL 6-11-04 Owner-Violet O’Leary; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-Richard Dunwoody; SP-11/8 Fav
2ND-Escartefigue 6-11-04 Owner-Darren Mercer; Trainer-David Nicholson; Jockey-Adrian Maguire; SP-5/1
3RD-Fulip 5-10-08 Owner-Roger Barby; Trainer-Francois Doumen FR; Jockey-Mr Thierry Doumen; SP-9/1
10 ran Time-6m 8.3s Dist-1.5, 19

1997-WINNER-HANAKHAM 8-11-04 Owner-Malcolm Brereton; Trainer-Ron Hodges; Jockey-Richard Dunwoody; SP-13/2
2ND-Eudipe 5-10-08 Owner-David Johnson; Trainer-Martin Pipe; Jockey-Tony McCoy; SP-4/1
3RD-Djeddah 6-11-04 Owner-Stella Elkaim; Trainer-Francois Doumen FR; Jockey-Adam Kondrat; SP-100/30 Fav 14 ran Time-6m 8.8s, Dist-2.5, 5

1996-WINNER-NAHTHEN LAD 7-11-04 Owner-Jim Shaw; Trainer-Jenny Pitman; Jockey-Warren Marston; SP-7/1
2ND-Mr Mulligan 8-11-04 Owner-Michael Worcester; Trainer-Noel Chance; Jockey-Richard Johnson;SP-11/8 Fav
3RD-Do Rightly 7-11-04 Owner-J M Fitzpatrick; Trainer-Mark Bradstock; Jockey-Paul Holley; SP-40/1
12 ran, Time-6m 22.3s Dist-8, 28

1995-WINNER-BRIEF GALE 8-10-13 Owner-Carrie Zetter; Trainer-Josh Gifford; Jockey-Philip Hide; SP-13/2
2ND-Harcon 7-11-04 Owner-Mrs P J Conway; Trainer-Jim Dreaper IRE; Jockey-Kevin O’Brien; SP-6/4 Fav
3RD-Banjo 5-10-08 Owner-Darren Mercer; Trainer-Martin Pipe; Jockey-Richard Dunwoody; SP-11/4
13 ran, Time-6m 28.7s Dist-9, 15

1994-WINNER-MONSIEUR LE CURE 8-11-04 Owner-Hector Brown; Trainer-John Edwards; Jockey-Peter Niven; SP-15/2
2ND-Martomick 7-10-13 Owner-Richard Shaw; Trainer-Kim Bailey; Jockey-Dean Gallagher; SP-20/1
3RD-Crystal Spirit 7-11-04 Owner-Paul Mellon; Trainer-Ian Balding; Jockey-Jimmy Frost; SP-10/1
18 ran, Time-6m 18.2s Dist-3, 8 3/1 Fav One Man (9th)

(Royal & SunAlliance Chase since 1998, Royal Sun Alliance Chase 1997, Sun Alliance Chase 1974-96, Totalisator Champion Chase 1971-73, Totalisator Champion Novices’ Chase 1964-1970, Broadway Chase 1961-63, Broadway Novices’ Chase before 1961)

Year Winner Age/Wt Jockey Trainer Owner SP Ran
2005 Trabolgan 7-11-04 Mick FitzGerald Nicky Henderson Trevor Hemmings 5/1 9
2004 Rule Supreme 8-11-04 David Casey Willie Mullins IRE John Lynch 25/1 10
2003 One Knight 7-11-04 Richard Johnson Philip Hobbs Robert Gibbs 15/2 9
2002 Hussard Collonges 7-11-04 Russ Garritty Peter Beaumont Nick Bannister 33/1 19
2001 No Race (Foot and Mouth)
2000 Lord Noelie 7-11-04 Jim Culloty Henrietta Knight Executive Racing 9/2 9
1999 Looks Like Trouble 7-11-04 Paul Carberry Noel Chance Universal Conf. & Incentive Trv Ltd 16/1 14
1998 Florida Pearl 6-11-04 Richard Dunwoody Willie Mullins IRE Violet O’Leary 11/8F 10
1997 Hanakham 8-11-04 Richard Dunwoody Ron Hodges Malcolm Brereton 13/2 14
1996 Nahthen Lad 7-11-04 Warren Marston Jenny Pitman Jim Shaw 7/1 12
1995 Brief Gale 8-10-13 Philip Hide Josh Gifford Carrie Zetter 13/2 13
1994 Monsieur Le Cure 8-11-04 Peter Niven John Edwards Hector Brown 15/2 18
1993 Young Hustler 6-11-04 Peter Scudamore Nigel Twiston-Davies Gavin MacEchern 9/4 8
1992 Miinnehoma 9-11-04 Peter Scudamore Martin Pipe Freddie Starr 7/2F 18
1991 Rolling Ball 8-11-04 Peter Scudamore Martin Pipe Hilda Clarke 7/2F 20
1990 Garrison Savannah 7-11-04 Ben de Haan Jenny Pitman Autofour Engineering 12/1 9
1989 Envopak Token 8-11-04 Peter Hobbs Josh Gifford Frank Arthur 16/1 15
1988 The West Awake7-11-04 Simon Sherwood Oliver Sherwood Maggie Heath 11/4F 14
1987 Kildimo 7-11-04 Graham Bradley Toby Balding Lady Harris 13/2 18
1986 Cross Master 9-11-04 Reg Crank Tom Bill Harlow Bros 16/1 30
1985 Antarctic Bay 8-11-04 Frank Berry Pat Hughes IRE P Meade 6/4F 11
1984 A Kinsman 8-11-04 Geordie Dun John Brockbank Mrs John Brockbank 10/1 18
1983 Canny Danny 7-11-04 Niall Madden Jimmy FitzGerald P Norton 33/1 14
1982 Brown Chamberlin 7-11-04 John Francome Fred Winter Mrs Coral Samuel 7/1 15
1981 Lesley Ann 7-11-04 Colin Brown David Elsworth Brian Gaule 25/1 17
1980 Lacson 8-11-04 Steve Knight Bob Hawker Bob Hawker 16/1 17
1979 Master Smudge 7-11-04 Richard Hoare Arthur Barrow Arthur Barrow 16/1 17
1978 Sweet Joe 6-11-04 Steve Smith Eccles Tom Jones Milton Ritzenberg 12/1 17
1977 Gay Spartan 6-11-04 Michael Dickinson Tony Dickinson M Armstrong 13/2 15
1976 Tied Cottage 8-11-00 Tommy Carberry Dan Moore IRE Anthony Stanley Robinson 12/1 15
1975 Pengrail 7-11-00 John Francome Fred Winter Mrs G Morton 12/1 11
1974 Ten Up 7-11-00 Tommy Carberry Jim Dreaper IRE Anne, Duchess of Westminster 7/2 12
1973 Killiney 7-11-03 Richard Pitman Fred Winter Enid Boucher 8/15F 9
1972 Clever Scot 7-11-07 David Mould Tom Jones Milton Ritzenberg 11/1 18
1971 Tantalum 7-11-07 David Nicholson Michael Pope Colonel S W Green 14/1 16
1970 Proud Tarquin 7-11-12 Pat Taaffe Tom Dreaper IRE John Thomson 100/7 17
1969 Spanish Steps 6-11-12 John Cook Edward Courage Edward Courage 100/8 22
1968 Herring Gull 6-11-12 Joe Crowley Paddy Mullins IRE Mrs G A J Wilson 9/1 16
1967 Border Jet 7-11-00 Josh Gifford Ryan Price Lady Weir 4/1F 19
1966 Different Class 6-11-12 David Mould Peter Cazalet Gregory Peck 10/1 17
1965 Arkloin 6-11-07 Liam McLoughlin Tom Dreaper IRE George Ansley 100/7 17
1964 Buona notte 7-12-04 Johnnie Haine Bob Turnell Jim Joel 11/8F 16
1963 Arkle 6-12-04 Pat Taaffe Tom Dreaper IRE Duchess Of Westminster 4/9F 15
1962 Caduval 7-11-08 Laurie Morgan Bogden Lubecki Bogden Lubecki 11/2 13
1961 Grallagh Cnoc 7-12-01 Pat Taaffe Joe Osborne IRE Mrs K Harper 8/13F 17
1960 Solfen 8-11-12 Pat Taaffe Willie O'Grady IRE B Naughton 5/4F 21
1959 Mac Joy 7-11-12 Arthur Freeman Ken Bailey W C Simpson 4/1 11
1958 Just Awake 6-11-08 Arthur Freeman Peter Cazalet Bill Whitbread 100/7 19
1957 Mandarin 6-12-01 Michael Scudamore Fulke Walwyn Peggy Hennessy 8/1 14
1956 Polar Flight 6-11-08 Tommy Cusack George Spann Mrs P Pleydell-Bouverie 100/7 19
1955 Great Eliza 7-11-13 B Cooper Danny Morgan IRE Mrs N Hope Collins 7/2F 23
1954 Glenbeigh 8-11-13 Dave Dick Fulke Walwyn Dorothy Paget EvsF 16
1953 Coneyburrow 7-11-03 Pat Taaffe Joe Osborne IRE I E Levy 100/8 13
1952 Good And Plenty 8-11-08 Jimmy Power Jack Fawcus Lady Joicey 8/1 18
1951 On View 8-11-13 Bryan Marshall Fulke Walwyn Dorothy Paget 8/1 23
1950 (I) Manicou 5-11-06 Lord Mildmay Peter Cazalet Lord Mildmay 2/1F 9
1950 (II) Arctic Gold 5-10-13 Glen Kelly Gerald Balding John Hay Whitney 100/30 9
1949 (I) Glen Fire 6-11-02 Mr J Spencer Syd Mercer J G Greenaway 100/8 19
1949 (II) Comeragh 8-11-02 D Kelly Major Noel Furlong Major Noel Furlong 10/1 10
1948 (I) Blakely Grove 7-11-04 Joe Maguire Ivor Anthony Paul Mellon 5/4F 17
1948 (II) Mountain Prince 9-11-04 Bryan Marshall Fulke Walwyn Dorothy Paget 100/8 15
1947 No race (snow and frost)
1946 Birthlaw 11-11-07 Ted Vinall Tommy Rayson Mrs V Bruce 20/1 16

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