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Martin Pipe Handicap Hurdle
(Conditional Jockeys)
Cheltenham 17:30
£75,000 guaranteed, 4yo plus,
2m 4f 56y, Class 2
Friday 15th March 2024


1 Better Days Ahead 5/1
2 Waterford Whispers 10/3F
3 Quai De Borubon 4/1
4 Answer To Kayf 10/1
21 ran NR: Teddy Blue, Thanksforthehelp
Distances: 1½l, ½l, ¾l Time: 5m 21.43s (slow by 31.43s)

Irish-trained horses dominated the top positions with Better Days Ahead, ridden by Danny Gilligan and trained by Gordon Elliott, emerging victorious.

This two-mile-five-furlong contest unfolded with market rivals Waterford Whispers and Quai De Bourbon fiercely vying for supremacy. Meanwhile, Answer To Kayf maintained a prominent position throughout the race but ultimately finished fourth.

Waterford Whispers, leading for a significant portion of the race, faced challenges from both sides as they approached the final stretch. Despite his relentless gallop, it was Better Days Ahead who showcased superior strength, crossing the finish line with a lead of one and a half lengths.


Elliott told RacingTV: “I got as big a kick out of that as any winner this week. To win the Martin Pipe race – he is my idol in life. Noel and Valerie Moran of Bective Stud sponsor my yard, are one of my biggest supporters and very good friends. They sponsor Meath football, they are massive people in sport in Meath and to have their first Cheltenham winner is just unbelievable. What they do for the yard is unbelievable. No people deserve it more, they are putting so much money into the game – what they do for me, for Meath football and for everyone, I’m just absolutely delighted. They’ve been so good to me, I’ve been trying to get them a Cheltenham winner and have been hitting the crossbar, they are really going to enjoy this, they are brilliant people.”

He added: “He’s a big chaser, we have minded him for this race, he had a good run at Navan a few months ago, which helped us come straight here for this.”

Summing up the meeting, he said: “I’ve had three winners, 17 or 18 placed horses, so I can’t complain.”

Gilligan added: “I felt like I was everywhere out there, and turning in I still had a bit to do. I knew going out he’d love the ground, and he’s a lovely chaser to look forward to next year. He’s just a bit galloper, and at the back of the last when he met the hill, he found another leg.

“It was very messy down at the start, but I got a nice start and a good position, and I was probably just going a gear faster than I wanted to. I was switching out and switching in, and I got a lovely run up the rail turning in - thankfully it worked out.

“He’s a fine, big horse and he loves that ground. He gallops for fun. I’m over the moon to get a first winner in Cheltenham for the owners, who sponsored me at the start of the season.

“They are massive owners in the yard and I’m sure Gordon would be lost without them.

“It probably hasn’t sunk in yet, but just walking back down there, the buzz is unbelievable. Mam and Dad and all my brothers are here. Meeting them on the way down was extra special.”


Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys' Handicap Hurdle
£75,000 guaranteed, 4yo plus, 2m 4f 56y, Class 2
21 ran
Going: Heavy

1     Better Days Ahead 6 11-7 Gordon Elliott Danny Gilligan 5/1
Waterford Whispers 6 11-0 Henry De Bromhead Mike O'Connor 100/30F
½ Quai De Bourbon 5 11-7 W P Mullins Michael O'Sullivan 4/1
¾ Answer To Kayf 8 11-4 Terence O'Brien John Shinnick 10/1
12 Ocastle Des Mottes 5 11-0 W P Mullins Kieran Callaghan 7/1
½ What's Up Darling 7 11-4 Gordon Elliott Conor Stone-Walsh 10/1
No Ordinary Joe 8 11-7 Nicky Henderson Aidan Kelly 16/1
19 Fiveonefive 6 10-10 Cian Collins Eoin Walsh 125/1
6 Sequestered 6 10-13 Paul John Gilligan Jack G Gilligan 33/1
14 Hollow Games 8 11-11 Gordon Elliott Kieren Buckley 50/1
PU Angels Breath 10 11-3 Sam Thomas Dylan Johnston 28/1

PU Jason The Militant 10 10-4 Philip Kirby Joe Williamson 66/1

PU Magic Tricks 8 11-12 Gordon Elliott Charlie O'Dwyer 66/1
PU Jay Jay Reilly 8 11-6 Dan Skelton Tristan Durrell 28/1
PU Russian Ruler 7 10-3 Nicky Henderson Freddie Gordon 80/1
PU Sonigino 7 11-10 Paul Nicholls Freddie Gingell 16/1
PU Shared 5 10-6 Harry Derham Alice Stevens 66/1
PU Bingoo 8 10-11 James Moffatt Patrick Wadge 50/1
PU Stuzzikini 6 11-3 Gordon Elliott Jake Coen 100/1
PU Mel Monroe 6 10-12 Gordon Elliott Ben Harvey 18/1
PU Yeats Star 5 11-5 Gordon Elliott Shane Fitzgerald 14/1

NR 16 Teddy Blue 6 10-12 Gary Moore NON RUNNER

NR 20 Thanksforthehelp 7 10-6 David Pipe NON RUNNER


Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle Previous Results

Year Winner Age/Wt Jockey Trainer Owner SP Ran

2023 Iroko 5 11-5 Aidan Kelly Oliver Greenall & Josh Guerriero John P McManus 6/1 21

2022 Banbridge 6 11-03 M M McDonagh Joseph O'Brien R A Bartlett 12/1 23

2021 Galopin Des Champs 5 11-09 Sean O'Keeffe W P Mullins Mrs Audrey Turley 8/1 22

2020 Indefatigable 7-11-09 Rex Dingle Paul Webber Philip Rocher 25/1 23

2019 Early Doors 6-11-10 Jonjo O’Neill Jr Joseph O’Brien IRE J P McManus 5/1 24

2018-WINNER-BLOW BY BLOW 7-11-10 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Gordon Elliott IRE; Jockey-Donagh Meyler; SP-11/1
2ND-Discorama 5-11-02 Owner-Andrew Gemmell & Thomas Friel; Trainer-Paul Nolan IRE; Jockey-Dylan Robinson; SP-33/1
3RD-Early Doors 5-11-08 Owner-J P McManus; Trainer-Joseph O’Brien IRE; Jockey-J J Slevin; SP-9/1
4TH-Sire Du Berlais 6-11-10 Owner-J P McManus; Trainer-Gordon Elliott IRE; Jockey-Donal McInerney; SP-10/1
23 ran, Time-5m 22.20s; Dist-5, 1¼, 1¼ 13/2 Fav Flawless Escape (12th)

2017-WINNER-CHAMPAGNE CLASSIC 6-11-03 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Gordon Elliott IRE; Jockey-J J Slevin; SP-12/1
2ND-Verni 8-11-00 Owner-Paul & Clare Rooney; Trainer-Philip Hobbs; Jockey-Thomas Cheeseman; SP-25/1
3RD-Runfordave 5-11-05 Owner-Pat Sloan; Trainer-Gordon Elliott IRE; Jockey-Donagh Meyler; SP-9/1
4TH-Coo Star Sivola 5-11-03 Owner-Babbit Racing; Trainer-Nick Williams; Jockey-Lizzie Kelly; SP-13/2
23 ran, Time-4m 55.90s; Dist-2¼, 1¼, ½ 9/2 Fav Battleford (8th)

2016-WINNER-IBIS DU RHEU 5-11-07 Owner-John Hales; Trainer-Paul Nicholls; Jockey-Jack Sherwood; SP-14/1
2ND-Flying Angel 5-11-06 Owner-R J Renton; Trainer-Nigel Twiston-Davies; Jockey-Ryan Hatch; SP-8/1
3RD-Sky Khan 7-11-03 Owner-The Ormello Way; Trainer-Lucinda Russell; Jockey-Derek Fox; SP-50/1
4TH-Tully East 6-11-08 Owner-Barry Connell; Trainer-Alan Fleming IRE; Jockey-Shane Shortall; SP-50/1
24 ran, Time-4m 51.70s; Dist-1¼, 1¼, 6 9/4 Fav Squouateur (7th)

2015-WINNER-KILLULTAGH VIC 6-11-01 Owner-Rose Boyd/B Anderson/Mrs M Armstrong; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-Luke
Dempsey; SP-7/1
2ND-Noble Endeavour 6-11-06 Owner-Chris Jones; Trainer-Gordon Elliott IRE; Jockey-Kevin Sexton; SP-14/1
3RD-Roi Des Francs 6-11-05 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-David Mullins; SP-3/1 Fav
4TH-Kauto Grand Mogol 7-11-01 Owner-J C Delamere/D McCorkell/H Catherwood; Trainer-Liz Doyle IRE; Jockey-Jody McGarvey; SP-33/1
21 ran, Time-5m 3.10s; Dist-hd, 4½, 6

2014-WINNER-DON POLI 5-11-05 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-Mikey Fogarty; SP-12/1
2ND-Thomas Crapper 7-10-05 Owner-apis.uk.com; Trainer-Robin Dickin; Jockey-Joseph Palmowski; SP-10/1
3RD-Caid Du Berlais 5-11-05 Owner-Donlon, Doyle, MacDonald & C Barber; Trainer-Paul Nicholls; Jockey-Harry Derham; SP-9/1
4TH-Urbain De Sivola 6-10-06 Owner-Chris Giles; Trainer-Paul Nicholls; Jockey-Andrias Guerin; SP-33/1
24 ran, Time-4m 48.58s, Dist-4½, 1¼, 1¾ 9/2 Fav Full Shift (11th)

2013-WINNER-SALUBRIOUS 6-11-05 Owner-The Johnson & Stewart Families; Trainer-Paul Nicholls; Jockey-Harry Derham; SP-16/1
2ND-Nagpur 7-11-00 Owner-Miss S Douglas-Pennant; Trainer-Venetia Williams; Jockey-Tom Cannon; SP-33/1
3RD-Double Ross 7-11-06 Owner-Options O Syndicate; Trainer-Nigel Twiston-Davies; Jockey-Adam Wedge; SP-14/1
4TH-Make Your Mark 6-10-08 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-Declan Lavery; SP-8/1
23 ran, Time-5m 18.60s, Dist-7, 1, 3¾ 9/4 Fav Gevrey Chambertin (PU)

2012-WINNER-ATTAGLANCE 6-11-03 Owner-H Young, G Eifert, R Snyder; Trainer-Malcolm Jefferson; Jockey-Harry Haynes; SP-20/1
2ND-Toner D’Oudairies 5-11-01 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Gordon Elliott IRE; Jockey-Keith Donoghue; SP-7/1
3RD-Oscar Nominee 5-10-13 Owner-Michael Buckley; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-David Bass; SP-10/1
4TH-Make A Track 6-10-12 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Charlie Swan IRE; Jockey-Ben Dalton
24 ran, Time-4m 51.6s, Dist-nk, nk, 1½ 9/2 Fav Bourne (9th)

2011-WINNER-SIR DES CHAMPS 5-11-03 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jocket-Emmet Mullins; SP-9/2 Fav
2ND-Son Of Flicka 7-11-06 Owner-Twenty Four Seven Recruitment; Trainer-Donald McCain; Jockey-Henry Brooke; SP-28/1
3RD-First Point 8-11-07 Owner-The Third Pheasant Inn Partnership; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-David Bass; SP-20/1
4TH-Indian Daudaie 4-11-03 Owner-Timeform Betfair Racing Club & Clive Smith; Trainer-Paul Nicholls; Jockey- James Cowley; SP-25/1
23 ran, Time-4m 55.22s; Dist- ½, 2, 4

2010-WINNER-PAUSE AND CLAUSE 6-11-10 Owner-Robert Cohen; Trainer-Emma Lavelle; Jockey-Johnny Farrelly; SP-14/1
2ND-Radium 5-11-04 Owner-Simon Munir; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-Harry Skelton; SP-14/1
3RD-Clova Island 7-11-00 Owner-Mrs Peter Prowting; Trainer-Philip Hobbs; Jockey-Giles Hawkins; SP-14/1
4TH-Peveril 6-11-03 Owner-Trevor Hemmings; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-David Bass; SP-5/1 24 ran, Time-5m 5.25s; Dist-3¼, 1¼, 2¾ 9/2 Fav Ashkazar (7th)

2009-WINNER-ANDYTOWN 6-11-02 Owner-Richard & Lizzie Kelvin Hughes; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-Felix de Giles; SP-25/1
2ND-Midnight Chase 7-11-00 Owner-Lady Clarke; Trainer-Neil Mulholland; Jockey-Michael O’Connor; SP-100/1
3RD-Big Eared Fran 6-11-02 Owner-Thomas Barr; Trainer-David Pipe; Jockey-Johnny Farrelly; SP-7/2 Fav
4TH-Font 6-10-11 Owner-Mr & Mrs R Nevison & Mr & Mrs Ged Mason; Trainer-Paul Nicholls; Jockey-Harry Skelton; SP-14/1 23 ran, Time-4m 58.52s; Dist-9, 7, 2

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