1st (5) Ebaziyan 40-1
40/1 Shot Ebaziyan wins Supreme Novices' Hurdle 13/03/07
Ebaziyan, returned at 40/1, became the joint second-highest priced winner
ever of the Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle when prevailing
by three lengths in the opening race of The Festival 2007. The 1994 victor
Arctic Kinsman (50/1) was the biggest outsider while the 1986 winner
River Ceiriog was also returned at 40/1.
The winner, having only his third outing over hurdles, is owned by Dublin-based
hotelier and businessman Peter Garvey, trained by Willie
ridden by Davy Condon, enjoying his first-ever Festival success on only
his third ride at the event. Mullins was recording his 10th Festival
success and his second victory in this race, following Tourist Attraction
Mullins said: “I am delighted. To be honest, I’d have been delighted if he’d finished in the first six to eight and have counted it as a win if he’d finished in the first three.
“I had intended to run him last year, but he broke a pelvis. He
ran well first time although he got beat, and then won at Thurles.
“We thought he might have more than he has showed so far so that
is why we thought he was worth taking a chance with today.
“Davy has given him a great ride. He got caught up in the melee
at the start and then did well to follow Amaretto Rose through. I thought
he jumped well, although Davy said he wasn’t foot perfect at all
“Peter Garvey has been a tremendous owner. We will have to think about it, but he could go to Punchestown now.”
The winning rider added: “Great - I can't believe it. I couldn't
believe how well he was going. Coming here today, we didn't have much
confidence, but he has done it really.
“It's brilliant. I was too far back all together. I was happy
to see as we passed the bend that Mick (Fitzgerald) was right there,
so I thought I can't be doing too bad, I'll follow him through, and it
all worked out in the end. It's a brilliant buzz. I thought I had got
there a bit too soon because he doesn't do much in front, but luckily
he battled really well."
Placed horses bow to Ebaziyan
Despite defeat at the hands of 40/1 outsider Ebaziyan in the opening
race at the 2007 Cheltenham Festival, connections of the placed horses
had no complaints.
John Hales, owner of 15/2 runner-up Granit Jack, said: “It was
a brilliant performance by the winner and we were beaten by a better
horse on the day. But my horse is a chaser, he hasn’t been bought
“Ruby said he jumped badly, but what he meant was he jumped big because all the horse knows from his time in France is jumping fences.”
Granit Jack suffered from stomach ulcers earlier this season, and Hales
said: “When we bought him in France, we had no reason to scope
him because he was in such wonderful condition. He was eating up and
there was no reason to suspect he had ulcers.
“I sent him to Bristol [to the equine hospital] expecting him to need a soft-palate operation, but I was told he was way above the average horse in terms of his engine and oxygen intake. They couldn’t find anything wrong with him, other than the ulcers that were in an area of his stomach that caused him distress in a race.”
Asked about future options for the grey, Hales said he would need to speak to trainer Paul Nicholls, and he added: “If he runs at Aintree or Punchestown I won’t be able to see him because I’m in Barbados for the Cricket World Cup - I’ll have to get to the nearest bookmaker.”
Johnny Weatherby, head of the 120-strong Weatherbys Racing Club and
Weatherbys, racing’s secretariat, said of their mare, third-placed
Amaretto Rose, the hot 2/1 favourite: “Mick [Fitzgerald] said she
just got a bit hampered coming down the hill after the second-last which
just stopped her rhythm and put her back a bit. She battled on up the
hill and he said she would have been closer but for that incident.
“We’re all delighted and not deflated. Many owners strive all their lives to have a runner at Cheltenham, let alone a fancied one. We’ve achieved our objectives and she’s run a blinder.”
Paul Webber, trainer of fourth-placed De Soto, said: “He stayed on so the two-and-a-half miler at Aintree might suit him now. The ground was a bit tacky for him today. He loves this place, but he didn’t quite get the break after the false start. The first time he had a lovely position, but was facing the other way on the second start - but I’m pleased he’s run a super race.”
ANGLO IRISH BANK SUPREME NOVICES’ HURDLE FACTS AND FIGURES
1. The Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle was known as the
Gloucestershire Hurdle until 1974. Capel Cure Sharp backed the contest
for the first time in 2000 and the company, which became Gerrard Wealth
Management, supported the race until 2003. Racecourse caterers Letheby & Christopher
became the sixth sponsor since the initial backer Lloyds Bank in 1974
when supporting the contest in 2004 and 2005. Anglo Irish Bank sponsors
the race for the second time in 2007.
2. The Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle is the only race
at The Festival to have been divided. From 1946-1971 when known as the
Gloucestershire Novices’ Hurdle, it divided on no less than 25
occasions. In 1963 and 1946 there were even three divisions.
3. The oldest horse to have won was 12-year-old Beau Caprice in 1966
(Div One). Three eight-year-olds have also been successful; Like-A-Butterfly
in 2002, Sondrio in 1989 and Boys Hurrah in 1956 (Div One).
4. The 1993 winner, Montelado, holds a unique position in the history
of The Festival at Cheltenham. He is the only horse to have won consecutive
Festival races, landing the Weatherbys Champion Bumper in 1992, the last
race of that year’s meeting, and returning to win the Anglo Irish
Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle in 1993, the first race12 months later.
5. The Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle has thrown up
one winner of the totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup and three Smurfit Kappa
Champion Hurdle heroes. L'Escargot won in 1968, before consecutive Gold
Cup triumphs in 1970 and 1971. Bula scored in 1970, before Champion Hurdle
victories in 1971 and 1972, while the 2002 Smurfit Kappa Champion Hurdle
winner Hors La Loi III took the race in 1999, and Brave Inca took the
Champion Hurdle last year having landed the novice event in 2004.
6. The race has been won by Irish-trained raiders on no less than 35
occasions, and by the French once. Of the 16 divisions from 1952-59,
Vincent O'Brien won 10. Ireland also kept a stranglehold on the race
for seven years from 1977-83 and have won three of the last five runnings.
7. The smallest field was in 1950, with nine runners in Division 1,
and the largest, 30 runners, for both Harry Hastings' win in 1985 and
French Ballerina in 1998. The maximum field allowed is now 24.
8. Since the race ceased to be divided, big-name jockeys have found
the Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle difficult to win.
Tony McCoy, successful on Hors La Loi III in 1999, is the only one of
the last four champion jockeys to have scored in this particular contest,
and only Charlie Swan (1993 and 2002), Tommy Carmody (1980 and 1983)
and Niall Madden (1978 and 1981) have been successful twice.
9. The longest-priced winner was Arctic Kinsman at 50/1 in 1994. The
shortest-priced winners at 4/9 were Tsaoko in 1950 and Flyingbolt in
1964. Favourites have been successful eight times in the 34 runnings
since 1972, with three of the last five winning.
10. The fastest time for the winning horse was achieved by Montelado in 1993 at 3 mins 50.6 secs. French Ballerina came close to that record in 1998 when her time was 3 mins 50.9 secs.
Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices' Hurdle - Analysis
The Grade One £120,000 Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle
has attracted a bumper 131-strong entry, the highest since 2002 and 18
more than in 2006, including a record 53 from Ireland.
Irish-trained runners have landed four of the last six renewals but
last year the Noel Meade-trained hot favourite Sweet Wake could manage
only fifth behind the Paul Nicholls-trained Noland, with Sublimity the
best of the Irish raiders in fourth.
Michael O’Brien has entered current market leader De Valira, who
defeated the Edward O’Grady-trained Catch Me by a neck in the Grade
Two Paddypower.com Future Champions Novice Hurdle at Leopardstown’s
Christmas meeting, with Sizing Europe, Mickataine and Turtle Dubh behind.
Meade took this race with Sausalito Bay in 2000 and he has seven entered,
headed by Grade One Barry & Sandra Kelly Memorial Novice Hurdle winner
Aran Concerto, and also including dual hurdle winner Aitmatov, Casey
Jones, and the former John Gosden-trained Signatory, who was bought for
90,000gns by J P McManus in October but is yet to race over hurdles and
has not been seen since finishing last when favourite for the totesport
Ebor at York in August.
The Jessica Harrington-trained Hide The Evidence, winner of his first
four starts over obstacles, was six lengths too good for the O’Grady-trained
Grade Three scorer Clopf in the Grade One Royal Bond Novice Hurdle at
Fairyhouse on December 3.
Willie Mullins, successful with 25/1 shot Tourist Attraction in 1995,
has more entries than any other trainer with his 10 including Davenport
Democrat, who was runner-up to Iktitaf in the Grade Three Anglo Irish
Bank Hurdle at Down Royal in November, the smart Financial Reward, as
well as maiden hurdle winners Orge d’Ete, Deutschland, Dooneys
Gate and Nay.
The Irish contingent also includes Paul Nolan’s Galway Hurdle
winner Cuan Na Grai and the same trainer’s Rhacophorus, winner
of the Listed mares only bumper at Aintree in April and subsequently
sold for £220,000 at Cheltenham in April, the record for a jumping
mare in training.
Tom Hogan has entered Grade Three winner Kalderon, while course and
distance scorer Tipperary All Star could represent Michael Halford and
Brian Hamilton has entered dual-bumper winner Amstecos. Niall ‘Boots’ Madden
won the race twice as a jockey aboard Golden Cygnet in 1978 and Hartstown
in 1981 and has entered Wins Now who has won both his starts since falling
at the last behind De Valira in a maiden hurdle at Fairyhouse in December.
Tommy Stack could run Perce Rock who was a fine second to the Nicholls-trained
Silverburn in the Grade One Anglo Irish Bank Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown
on January 6.
Silverburn is one of the leading home-based novices and is part of Nicholls’ eight-strong
entry. The Ditcheat handler also has Granit Jack who was runner-up to
Labelthou in the Grade Two Ballymore Properties Novices’ Hurdle
at Sandown in December, last season’s Weatherbys Champion Bumper
third Kicks For Free, unbeaten French import Oslot, classy Flat recruits
Ouninpohja and Another Bottle, Pepporoni Pete and impressive Taunton
Nicky Henderson has entered the classy mare Amaretto Rose, who defeated
Hobbs Hill at Ascot in December and had Leslingtaylor well behind on
heavy ground when winning the Grade Two Anglo Irish Bank Novices’ Hurdle
at Haydock recently, as well as Zebra Crossing, winner of the prestigious
Group One J&B Met on the Flat in South Africa last year, and French
import Monfils Monfils - who made a winning debut on Huntingdon on January
Howard Johnson saddled Arcalis to success in 2005 and he has entered
Tidal Bay, who was second at Cheltenham on Saturday and had won his previous
three starts over hurdles this term, as well as Cedrus Libani, and Flat
Group Three winners Crocodile Dundee and Diktatorial.
De Soto, runner-up to Missed That in the 2005 Weatherbys Champion Bumper
at The Festival, won twice over hurdles this term before finishing fourth
to Silverburn at Sandown on January 6.
The Charlie Mann-trained My Turn Now fell at the last when making headway
in that Grade One contest and had won all his previous four starts over
hurdles. Mann has also entered Cortinas and Moon Over Miami who was successful
over two miles at Cheltenham in the Grade Two Anglo Irish Private Banking
Novices’ Hurdle in November.
The latter was subsequently held in second by the Ian Williams-trained
Tagula Blue in the Grade Two Mitie Kennel Gate Novices’ Hurdle
at Ascot in December.
Alan King has engaged Self Respect who defeated Moon Over Miami at Kempton
in October, as well as King’s Revenge, My Petra, Onyx Bruere, Pouvoir,
Pur de Sivola and Wyldello.
David Pipe has entered Pauillac, unbeaten in two starts in Britain before
running third at Cheltenham on Saturday, Kavatcha, My Immortal, Osana,
Scotland Yard and Wise Owl.
Venetia Williams has an interesting entry in the seven-year-old Tyson,
a Grade Three winner on the Flat in South
Philip Hobbs has engaged dual winner Liberate, Manhattan Boy, Snow Patrol,
200,000gns purchase Warsaw Pact, Odal d’Airy and Huntingdon winner
The James Fanshawe-trained Buster Hyvonen was useful on the Flat and
made it two wins from three starts over hurdles when defeating Royal
Ascot winner I’m So Lucky and Et Maintenant at Huntingdon on January
John Quinn has entered Blythe Knight, Pevensey and King’s Quay
alongside Leslingtayor, while Brian Meehan has engaged Junior and Charles
Egerton could run Pukka, who finished ninth in the 2004 Derby.
Nigel Twiston-Davies is represented by Ouragan de Prairie and Platin
Grounds, while Carl Llewellyn has entered Nightfly, Wind Instrument and
Roll Along. Gary Moore could run Ameeq, who was runner-up to Detroit
City in the Greatwood Hurdle at Cheltenham’s Open meeting, while
Emma Lavelle has Rio De Janeiro engaged, and Alan Swinbank may run dual
bumper winner Sir Boreas Hawk.
The French entry consists of the Francois Doumen-trained Grand Bleu,
who defeated the Francois De Chevigny-trained Kaldonn Speed at Fontainebleau
2005-WINNER-ARCALIS 5-11-07 Owner-Andrea & Graham
Wylie; Trainer-Howard Johnson; Jockey-Graham Lee: SP-20/1
2004-WINNER-BRAVE INCA 6-11-07 Owner-Novices Syndicate; Trainer-Colm
Murphy IRE; Jockey-Barry Cash; SP-7/2 Fav
2003-WINNER-BACK IN FRONT 6-11-08 Owner-Dermot
Cox; Trainer-Edward O’Grady
IRE; Jockey-Norman Williamson; SP-3/1 Fav
2002-WINNER-LIKE-A-BUTTERFLY 8-11-03 Owner-J P McManus; Trainer-Christy
Roche IRE; Jockey-Charlie Swan; SP-7/4 Fav
2001 - Cancelled (Foot and Mouth Disease)
2000-WINNER-SAUSALITO BAY 6-11-08 Owner-The High Street Racing Syndicate;
Trainer- Noel Meade IRE; Jockey-Paul Carberry; SP-14/1
1999-WINNER-HORS LA LOI III 4-11-00 Owner-Paul Green; Trainer-Martin
Pipe; Jockey-Tony McCoy; SP-9/2
1998-WINNER-FRENCH BALLERINA 5-11-03 Owner-Sue Magnier; Trainer-Pat
Flynn IRE; Jockey-Graham Bradley; SP-10/1
1997-WINNER-SHADOW LEADER 6-11-08 Owner-James Blackshaw; Trainer-Charles
Egerton; Jockey-Jamie Osborne; SP-5/1
1996-WINNER-INDEFENCE 5-11-08 Owner-Indef Limited; Trainer-Jenny Pitman;
Jockey-Warren Marston; SP-25/1
ANGLO IRISH BANK SUPREME NOVICES’ HURDLE ROLL OF HONOUR
(Anglo Irish Bank Supreme Novices’ Hurdle since 2006, Letheby & Christopher Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 2004-2005, Gerrard Wealth Management Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 2003, Gerrard Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 2001-02, Capel Cure Sharp Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 2000, Citroen Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 1994-99,Trafalgar House Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 1991-93, Waterford Crystal Supreme Novices’ Hurdle 1978-90, Lloyds Bank Champion Novice Hurdle 1974-1977, Gloucestershire Hurdle before 1974)
Year Winner Age/Wt Jockey Trainer Owner SP Ran
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