Bristol Novices’ Hurdle

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The Bristol Novices’ Hurdle is a Grade 2 race over three miles at Cheltenham in December.

It has been sponsored by Albert Bartlett since 2007 and is a recognised trial for the Grade 1 Novices’ Hurdle they sponsor at the Cheltenham Festival in March.

Notable past winners include Remittance Man (1989), Bindaree (1999), Iris’s Gift (2002), Comply Or Die (2003) and Coneygree (2012).

Find out more about the Bristol Novices Hurdle:

Bristol Novices’ Hurdle

Race Overview – The Bristol Novices Hurdle

Horses four years old and older may compete in the Bristol Novices’ Hurdle, a Grade 2 National Hunt hurdle race.

There are twelve hurdles to clear throughout the race, which is run over a distance of around 3 miles (2 miles 7 furlongs and 213 yards, or 4,822 metres), on the New Course at Cheltenham. The novice hurdlers’ race takes place in December each year.

Famous Bristol Novices’ Hurdle Winners

Nicky Henderson’s Remittance Man (1989) went on to win the Arkle Challenge Trophy in 1991 and the Queen Mother Champion Chase the following season. Remittance Man was also famous for his stable companion, Nobby the sheep. The sheep helped to settle the otherwise nervous racehorse and the two animals became inseparable.

The Bristol Novices Hurdle has produced two subsequent Grand National winners in Bindaree (1999) and Comply Or Die (2003). They won the 2003 and 2008 Grand Nationals for Nigel Twiston-Davies and David Pipe respectively. 2002 winner Iris’s Gift won the Stayers’ Hurdle at the 2004 Cheltenham Festival and won the Liverpool Hurdle in the same season.

2012 winner Coneygree famously went on to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup as a novice chaser in 2015. He was the first novice to win the race since Captain Christy in 1974.

Other notable Bristol Hurdle winners include Blaklion (2014) and Unowhatimeanharry (2015).

Key Bristol Novices’ Hurdle Trials

The key trial for the Bristol Novices’ Hurdle is the Hyde Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham. Four of the last twelve winners ran in that race, two of them had won the Hyde and two were placed.

Five of the twelve were previous course winners.

Wholestone (2016) returned to Cheltenham to win the Classic Novices’ Hurdle next time out.

Other popular choices are the Challow Novices Hurdle at Newbury and the Leamington Novices Hurdle at Warwick.

Eight of the last eleven winners ran in the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle at the Festival meeting. Unowhatimeanharry (2015-16) and Kilbricken Storm (2017-18) won both races.

Favourites have a good record in this race with five outright market leaders and two joint-favourites winning in the past twelve years. Mossley (2010) and Deireadh Re (2011) both started joint-favourite.

The shortest-priced winner during this period was Kings Palace (2013) at 10-11 for David Pipe and Tom Scudamore.

Only two of the twelve winners did not feature in the first three in the betting. Redford Road (2019) won at 14-1 and Make Good (2020) won at 12-1.

Five-year-olds have the best recent record with nine winners in twelve seasons.

The oldest winner during that time was seven-year-old Unowhatimeanharry in 2015.

Bristol Novice Hurdle – Top Trainers and Jockeys

The leading Trainer in the history of the Bristol Novices’ Hurdle is Nigel Twiston-Davies with five winners; Bosuns Mate (1998), Bindaree (1999), Blaklion (2014), Wholestone (2016) and Redford Road (2019).

Colin Tizzard has trained the winner on three occasions; Flight Leader (2006), Kilbricken Storm (2017) and Rockpoint (2018).

Two jockeys have ridden the winner of the Bristol Novices’ Hurdle three times. Carl Llewellyn won it on Bignor Hill (1990), Bosuns Mate (1998) and Bindaree (1999).

Tony McCoy won it three times within four years aboard Iris’s Gift (2002), Comply Or Die (2003) and Black Jack Ketchum (2005).

Popular Questions

What are important facts about Bristol Novices’ Hurdle?

Here are some important facts about Bristol Novices’ Hurdle:

  • The Bristol Novices’ Hurdle is run at Cheltenham Racecourse, Great Britain
  • The Bristol Novices’ Hurdle is for horses aged 4 and over
  • The Bristol Novices’ Hurdle is a National Hunt Hurdle race in Great Britain
  • The Bristol Novices’ Hurdle distance is around 3 miles

Summary of the Bristol Novices Hurdle

Thank you for reading our Bristol Novices’ Hurdle guide.

A high-class novice hurdle it has gone on to produce two Grand National winners and a Gold Cup winner.

In our guide, we have looked at history, betting, odds, tips and more, so you can make an informed decision when either placing a bet or just watching the race.

You can check out the Cheltenham horse racing tips page for our tips on this race or take a look at more horse racing in December.