Cheltenham Festival News
|Tuesday 8th December 2015|
Timico is the new sponsor of the Cheltenham Gold Cup
Fast-growing managed service provider Timico Technology Group is announced as the new sponsor of the Cheltenham Gold Cup, the feature race of The Festival over four days in March at Cheltenham Racecourse.
The Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup, run on the final day of The Festival, Friday, March 18, 2016, receives an immediate prize money boost of £25,000 and will be worth a record £575,000.
Cheltenham’s richest race, which has a long and illustrious history, became available for a new sponsor for the first time since 1979 three weeks ago.
The first Cheltenham Gold Cup was a three-mile Flat race in 1819, won by Mr Bodenham’s Spectre. It was turned into the present-day chase in 1924, when Red Splash was successful and gained win prize money of £700.
Coneygree, bred by the late Lord Oaksey, owned by the Max Partnership, trained by Mark Bradstock and ridden by Nico de Boinville, won the 2015 Cheltenham Gold Cup in tremendous style and remains unbeaten over fences.
Timico, started in 2004 by Chief Executive Officer Tim Radford, has expanded through organic growth and acquisitions. Radford previously founded the Project Telecom Group which was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 2000 and aquired by Vodafone for £162 million in 2003.
Headquartered in Newark, Nottinghamshire, and with offices in London, Milton Keynes, Reading and Fareham, the telecoms business employs more than 400 people and plans to use sponsorship of the Gold Cup to further build its reputation ahead of a projected stock market flotation in 2017.
Timico is an independent information and communications technology service provider, offering a range of network connectivity, cloud, unified communication, managed IT and mobile solutions. Its clients include Travis Perkins, World Gold Council, The Restaurant Group plc, Goodwood, Greene King plc, Jimmy Choo, The National Trust and The Savoy Hotel.
Radford, who currently has 12 horses in training, has been associated with top chasers Somersby, Calgary Bay and Racing Demon. Somersby, trained now by Mick Channon and previously by Henrietta Knight, has finished second twice in the Betway Queen Mother Champion Chase at The Festival and was fourth in the Grade One Betfair Tingle Creek Chase at Sandown Park on December 5.
Ian Renton, Regional Director of Jockey Club Racecourses South West, commented: “I am delighted that we are able today to announce Timico’s involvement in the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
“We’re delighted to work with a partner who is so keen to use the national platform the Cheltenham Gold Cup offers to become much more widely known as part of the next stage of their growth strategy and I very much look forward to working with them to ensure that their sponsorship of the Gold Cup proves hugely rewarding.
“It is rare that a sponsorship opportunity as prestigious as the Cheltenham Gold Cup becomes available and, in the short window offered, there have been a number of different organisations that have expressed an interest in this sponsorship. I am confident that Timico will prove to be an excellent partner for our flagship race.
“All the team at Cheltenham really look forward to working with Tim Radford and his colleagues at Timico as we anticipate the first running of the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup, the start of a great new partnership between Timico and The Jockey Club.”
Radford said: “We’re thrilled to have been chosen as the new sponsors of the Cheltenham Gold Cup. As an ambitious business working in a fast-paced industry, we were quick to recognise the tremendous opportunity of partnering with The Jockey Club to be part of one of the country’s most prestigious events.
“Technology is now the lifeblood of every organisation, large and small. We’re passionate about delivering our clients the high quality ICT infrastructure they need to stay connected and stand out from the crowd. In turn, we’re very excited about this unique partnership helping us connect with a far wider audience on a global scale.”
Cheltenham Gold Cup Facts & Figures
The Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup is the most valuable non-handicap chase in Britain. The total prize money for the 2016 running will be a record £575,000.
The joint biggest Gold Cup field ever was in 2006, when 22 runners went to post. Since the race was first run in 1924, there has only been one other renewal with more than 18 runners – in 1982 when Silver Buck defeated 21 rivals. The current maximum field allowed is 24.
In the Gold Cup’s history only seven horses have won more than once, the most recent of them is Kauto Star, who took the spoils in 2007 and 2009 and is the only horse to ever regain the Gold Cup. The others were Best Mate (2002/03/04), L’Escargot (1970/71), Arkle (1964/65/66), Cottage Rake (1948/49/50), Golden Miller (1932/33/34/35/36) and Easter Hero (1929/30). Golden Miller holds the record for the most Gold Cup victories, with five consecutive wins from 1932-36.
Most Successful Owner
Golden Miller’s owner, Dorothy Paget, has been the most successful owner in the race with an amazing seven victories, with Roman Hackle (1940) and Mont Tremblant (1952) adding to Golden Miller’s five wins.
Most Successful Trainer
The most successful trainer has been Tom Dreaper, who won five Gold Cups with three separate horses, namely Prince Regent (1946), Arkle (1964, 1965 and 1966) and Fort Leney (1968).
Paul Nicholls is the most successful current handler with four wins from three separate horses – See More Business (1999), Kauto Star (2007 & 2009) and Denman (2008).
Most Successful Jockey
The most successful jockey has been Pat Taaffe, who recorded four victories on – Arkle (1964, 1965 & 1966) and Fort Leney (1968).
The two most successful current jockeys are Ruby Walsh and Barry Geraghty, who have both enjoyed two wins. Walsh was on board Kauto Star (2007 & 2009) and Geraghty took the spoils with Kicking King (2005) and Bobs Worth (2013).
Ridden & Trained Winner
Five winning jockeys went on train the Gold Cup winner.
Danny Morgan Morse Code (1938) Roddy Owen (1959)
Fred Winter Saffron Tartan (1961), Mandarin (1962) Midnight Court (1978)
Pat Taaffe Arkle (1964, 1965, 1966), Fort Leney (1968) Captain Christy (1974)
Jonjo O’Neill Alverton (1979), Dawn Run (1986) Synchronised (2012)
Jim Culloty Best Mate (2002, 2003, 2004) Lord Windermere (2014)
A total of four mares have won the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup – Ballinode (1925), Kerstin (1958), Glencaraig Lady (1972) and Dawn Run (1986).
Longest & Shortest-Priced Winners, Fate Of The Favourites
The longest-priced winner of the Gold Cup has been Norton’s Coin, who started at 100/1 in 1990, while the shortest-priced winner was Arkle, the 1/10 favourite in 1966. In the 87 runnings, 29 favourites have won (just over 33 per cent).
The only grey Gold Cup winner was Desert Orchid in 1989.
The breakdown of winners by age is as follows:
5yo – 3 victories
6yo – 5 victories
7yo – 16 victories
8yo – 21 victories
9yo – 24 victories
10yo – 11 victories
11yo – 5 victories
12yo – 2 victories
The winners of 23 Gold Cups have been trained overseas.
IRELAND (22): Ballinode (1925), Prince Regent (1946), Cottage Rake (1948, 1949, 1950), Knock Hard (1953), Roddy Owen (1959), Arkle (1964, 1965, 1966), Fort Leney (1968), L’Escargot (1970, 1971), Glencaraig Lady (1972), Captain Christy (1974), Ten Up (1975), Davy Lad (1977), Dawn Run (1986), Imperial Call (1996), Kicking King (2005), War Of Attrition (2006), Lord Windermere (2014)
FRANCE (1): The Fellow (1994)
Gold Cup/Champion Hurdle Double
Dawn Run is the only horse to have won both the Champion Hurdle and Gold Cup. She was successful in 1984 and 1986 respectively.
The fastest winning time is 6 minutes 29.7 seconds, set by Long Run in 2011.
Did You Know?
A P McCoy’s Stan James Champion Hurdle/Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup double in 1997 on Make A Stand and Mr Mulligan was the 11th time that the big-race double has been landed by one jockey in the same year. The other jockeys to have achieved the feat were Dick Rees (1929), Tom Cullinan (1930), Ted Leader (1932), Bill Stott (1933), Gerry Wilson (1935), Aubrey Brabazon (1949 and 1950), Tim Molony (1953), Fred Winter (1961) and Norman Williamson (1995).
Alderbrook and Master Oats in 1995 enabled Norman Williamson and Kim Bailey to join a very select group of jockey and trainer partnerships who have won both the Champion Hurdle and Gold Cup in the same year. The other successful partnerships were Tommy Cullinan and Jack Anthony in 1930, Ted Leader and Basil Briscoe in 1932, Bill Stott and Basil Briscoe in 1933, and Aubrey Brabazon and Vincent O’Brien in both 1949 and 1950.
Michael Dickinson saddled the first five horses home in the 11-runnner 1983 renewal – Bregawn (Graham Bradley – 100/30F), Captain John (David Goulding – 11/1), Wayward Lad (Jonjo O’Neill – 6/1), Silver Buck (Robert Earnshaw – 5/1) and Ashley House (Mr Dermot Browne – 12/1).
Coneygree (2015) became the first novice chaser to succeed in the Cheltenham Gold Cup since Captain Christy in 1974.
Timico is only the third sponsor of the race known as the Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup between 2012 and 2015, the totesport Cheltenham Gold Cup (2004-2011), the Tote Cheltenham Gold Cup (1980-2003) and the Piper Champagne Cheltenham Gold Cup (1975-1979). The Tote, which evolved into totesport, was bought by Betfred in 2011.