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Arkle Novices' Chase Trends: Cheltenham Festival 2024

Jessica Lamb for Bookies.com

Jessica Lamb  | 13 mins

Arkle Novices' Chase Trends: Cheltenham Festival 2024

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Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase 2024 Trends

Need some help finding the winner of the 2024 edition of the Arkle Chase? Well, look no further because our team of experts at Bookies.com have done the hard work for you by pinpointing the most critical trends and pointers from the last 10 renewals in order to help you find the winner of the two-mile Grade 1 novice event.

The last 10 winners:

  • Won on their last start.
  • Won at least once over fences (seven were unbeaten)
  • Had won previously under the same rider.
  • Had winning chase form on a left-handed track.
  • Had run at Cheltenham before, or, if they hadn’t, were trained by Willie Mullins (Un De Sceaux and El Fabiolo). Five winners were unbeaten at the course.

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Nine of the last 10 winners:

  • Won or placed in a Grade 2 race or better (exception Duc Des Genievres).
  • Had four or less starts over fences (Put The Kettle On).
  • Aged six or seven (eight-year-old Edwardstone).

Key Arkle Chase Trials from the last 10 years

The Grade 2 Wayward Lad Novices' Chase at Kempton in December, though run on a right-handed course, is growing as a trial, with three winners in the last 10 years (Simonsig 2013, Shishkin 2021 and Edwardstone 2022). Each of those Arkle winners won the Wayward Lad, and the two most recent winners won one more Grade 1 novices' chase before Cheltenham. The 2022 Wayward Lad winner was Boothill, but he did not run in the Arkle. The 2023 winner was Master Chewy, but he was well-beaten last time in a Grade 2 at Lingfield.

The Irish Arkle, run in early February, is a key trial with four winners (all trained by Willie Mullins) and four places coming from the race in the last 10 years. Energumeme won the Irish Arkle in 2021 but skipped Cheltenham to win at Punchestown in April. The 2022 Irish Arkle winner, Blue Lord, finished second in the Arkle at Cheltenham. El Fabiolo won both races in 2023. Stablemate It Etait Temps won in 2024.

2020 Arkle winner Put The Kettle On won the Grade 2 Racing Post Arkle Trophy Trial Novices’ Chase at Cheltenham in November 2019, but didn’t run again until the Festival in March. Eldorado Allen won the same race in 2020 and finished second in the 2021 Arkle at 33/1. It was won by Third Time Lucki in 2021, who did not run at Cheltenham, and nor did 2022 winner Banbridge. It was won by Homme Public in 2023, and he’s since been beaten in a handicap.

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Trainer Trends

  • With eight winners between them in the last 10 years, Willie Mullins and Nicky Henderson have dominated recent Arkle Chases.
  • David Pipe, Alan King and Henry de Bromhead are the other trainers to have won the race in the last 10 years.
  • Keep an eye on anything that could potentially head for the Arkle that is trained by Joseph O’Brien. He saddled the Arkle Chase runner-up in 2019 and 2020 and has not had a runner since.

Jockey Trends

  • Legendary riders Barry Geraghty and Ruby Walsh have dominated this race since 2012 but both are now retired.
  • Nico de Boinville has a fine record with two winners and two places from just four Arkle outings.
  • Aidan Coleman has a win (Put The Kettle On) and a place from just five Arkle rides.
  • Paul Townend got his second win last year on El Fabiolo.

How did the trends do last year?

Applying the key trends whittled the field down to only two contenders, El Fabiolo and Jonbon. They finished first and second, showing how important it is in this event to follow the trends.

Both horses were trained by Willie Mullins and Nicky Henderson. They had won Grade 1 novice chases on left-handed courses and were unbeaten over fences.

This pair of superstars had met at Aintree the previous spring in a Grade 1 novice hurdle and Jonbon had won by a neck, but this time El Fabiolo - the Irish Arkle winner - landed the spoils.

They have also gone on to prove they really are among the best two-mile chasers of their generation and sit first and second in the 2024 Champion Chase betting.

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Who Fits The Trends Best In 2024?

Applying the key Arkle Novices' Chase trends narrows the possible field to three horses of interest - and this does not include the current favourite.

Leading them with all the key trends boxes ticked is Il Etait Temps, the Irish Arkle winner, who is trained by one of the race’s most successful trainers Willie Mullins.

He’s won two of his three chase starts, including racing left-handed in the Grade 1 Irish Arkle at Leopardstown last time out. He’s only not favourite because he has been to Cheltenham twice over hurdles and been beaten out of the frame both times.

He is also not the most careful jumper over fences, and is prone to mistakes, as he was over hurdles. He’s the clear pick on trends, but is his form luck?

Next-best is the Joe Tizzard-trained JPR One, a winner racing left-handed in a Grade 2 at Lingfield last time out. The seven-year-old was on course to win the Arkle trial at Cheltenham in November, but lost concentration and unseated his rider at the last when three lengths clear. He does have Cheltenham Festival form, having been fifth in the 2022 Supreme Novices’ Hurdle.

The 2021 Triumph Hurdle winner Quixilios also hits some key trends and makes the short-list after winning well over 2m at left-handed, galloping track Naas last time out. He is trained by Henry De Bromhead, who has had huge success with two-mile chasers like Big Zeb, Sizing Europe, Put The Kettle On and Special Tiara.

He is two from three over fences and looks a dark horse.

The current favourite, Marine Nationale, is the Supreme Novices’ winner and was unbeaten in his career until the Irish Arkle, but not since Forpadydeplasterer in 2009 has a horse won the Arkle without winning their last race, and he finished second over a trip two long.

Marine Nationale finished fifth over 2m1f.

2023 Arkle Novices' Chase Result

Position Name Price Trainer Jockey
1st El Fabiolo 11/10f Willie Mullins Paul Townend
2nd Jonbon 2/1 Nicky Henderson Aidan Coleman
3rd Saint Roi 11/1 Willie Mullins Mark Walsh

2024 Arkle Chase Odds

Check out latest Cheltenham ante post odds.

About the Author

Jessica Lamb is a multi-media journalist who specializes in horse racing, cycling and sports betting and has worked on desks at the Racing Post and Irish Sun newspapers.