Winter Novices’ Hurdle

The Winter Novices’ Hurdle is a Grade 2 race over two and a half miles at Sandown Park in early December.

The Winter Novices’ Hurdle takes place on Saturday 9th December 2023.

The race is considered a trial for the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.

Notable past winners include See More Business (1995), Inglis Drever (2003), Neptune Collonges (2005) and Taquin Du Seuil (2012).

Find out more about the Winter Novices Hurdles:

Winter Novices’ Hurdle

Race Overview – The Winter Novices Hurdle

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

There are nine hurdles to clear throughout the race, which is raced at Sandown Park over a distance of around 2 miles and 4 furlongs (2 miles, 3 furlongs, and 173 yards, or 3,980 metres). The race takes place in December.

Winter Novices’ Hurdle 2023 Odds

The Winter Novices’ Hurdle odds are listed below:

2.20 Sandown (Race 4) - BOG
  • Date: Saturday 4th of February 2023
  • Time: 14:20
  • Details: 5 Runners Chase Chase 2m 4f 10y
3 Gerri Colombe
1 Balco Coastal
5 Thunder Rock
4 Monmiral
2 Bowtogreatness

Winter Novices’ Hurdle 2023 Tips

The Winter Novices’ Hurdle tips are below:

2 points to win for TBC at odds of TBC
1 point each way for TBC at odds of TBC

Many Winter Novices’ Hurdle horses will race in more races throughout the years. Stay updated on the horses and place ante-post bets if you want to wager on them.

Winter Novices’ Hurdle Previous Winners

Year Winner Age Jockey Trainer
1987Slalom6John WhiteMichael Robinson
1988Man on the Line5Peter ScudamoreReg Akehurst
1989no race 1989 [a]
1990Tyrone Bridge4Richard DunwoodyMartin Pipe
1991Arabian Sultan4Peter ScudamoreMartin Pipe
1992Glen Lochan7Jamie OsborneHenrietta Knight
1993Top Spin4Adrian MaguireJohn Jenkins
1994Roberty Lea6Peter NivenMary Reveley
1995See More Business5Tony McCoyPaul Nicholls
1996Yahmi6Jamie OsborneJim Old
1997Song of the Sword4Graham BradleyJim Old
1998Barton5Lorcan WyerTim Easterby
1999What's Up Boys5Richard JohnsonPhilip Hobbs
2001Rouble5Leighton AspellJosh Gifford
2002Coolnagorna5Tony DobbinJonjo O'Neill
2003Inglis Drever4Graham LeeHoward Johnson
2004Ladalko5Ruby WalshPaul Nicholls
2005Neptune Collonges4Barry GeraghtyPaul Nicholls
2006Labelthou7Barry FentonEmma Lavelle
2007Lightning Strike4Tony McCoyVenetia Williams
2008Junior5Robert ThorntonAlan King
2009Manyriverstocross4Wayne HutchinsonAlan King
1989no race 2010 [b]
2011Fingal Bay5Richard JohnsonPhilip Hobbs
2012Taquin de Seuil5Tony McCoyJonjo O'Neill
2013Killala Quay6Richard JohnsonCharlie Longsdon
2014Vyta Du Roc5Barry GeraghtyNicky Henderson
2015Label Des Obeaux4Wayne HutchinsonAlan King
2016Messire Des Obeaux4Daryl JacobAlan King
2017On The Blind Side5Nico de BoinvilleNicky Henderson
2018Alsa Mix6Wayne HutchinsonAlan King
2019Enrilo5Harry CobdenPaul Nicholls
2020Star Gate4Nico de BoinvilleEvan Williams
2021Lossiemouth6Stan SheppardTom Lacey
2022Henri the Second5Harry CobdenPaul Nicholls

Winter Novices’ Hurdle Previous Result

Famous Winter Novices’ Hurdle Winners

See More Business (1995) was the first high-profile winner of this race. He won the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 1999 and the King George VI Chase in 1997 and 1999. He also won the Charlie Hall Chase in 1999 and 2000 and the Betfair Bowl in 2000.

2003 winner Inglis Drever went on to become a Cheltenham Festival legend, winning the Stayers Hurdle three times. He won it in 2005, 2007 and 2008, also winning the Long Distance Hurdle three times and the Cleeve Hurdle in 2008.

What’s Up Boys (1999) went on to finish second in the Aintree Grand National later in his career but 2005 winner Neptune Collonges went one better. A high-class chaser, he won the Punchestown Gold Cup in 2007 and 2008, the highlight of his career was his final start at Aintree in 2012. He defeated Sunnyhillboy by a nose to become only the third grey in history to win the Grand National.

Key Winter Novices’ Hurdle Trials

Winners of the Winter Novices’ Hurdle have come from a wide range of races.

Seven of the last eleven winners won their last start and all had won at least once during the current season.

The next target for winners of this event is usually the Challow Novices’ Hurdle at Newbury. Nine of the eleven ran in that race with three of them winning; Fingal Bay (2011), Taquin Du Seuil (2012) and Messire Des Obeaux (2016). Four of those winners ran in the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle but none were successful.

Winter Novices’ Hurdle Betting Trends

There have been four winning favourites in this race in the past eleven years.

Fingal Bay (2011) returned odds-on at 4-5 while Vyta Du Roc (2014), On The Blind Side (2017) and Star Gate (2020) returned at 7-4, 6-5 and 5-4 respectively.

Eight of those eleven winners were in the first three in the betting.

Shock results are rare with Alsa Mix (2018) at 12-1 the longest-priced winner during that period.

Horses aged four to six have been almost completely dominant in the Winter Novices’ Hurdle. Only Glen Lochan (1992) and Labelthou (2006), both aged seven, have won from outside that age group since 1987.

Winter Novices’ Hurdle – Top Trainers and Jockeys

Alan King is the leading trainer in the history of the Winter Novices’ Hurdle with five victories; Junior (2008), Manyriverstocross (2009), Label Des Obeaux (2015), Messire Des Obeaux (2016) and Alsa Mix (2018).

Paul Nicholls has won it four times; See More Business (1995), Ladalko (2004), Neptune Collonges (2005) and Enrilo (2019).

Three jockeys share the honours for leading rider in the race; Tony McCoy, Richard Johnson and Wayne Hutchinson have three winners apiece.

Betting on the Winter Novices’ Hurdle

The market is often a good guide to the Winter Novices’ Hurdle.

Although the record of winners in the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle at Cheltenham is poor, the race has produced several chasing stars of the future.

Popular Questions

What are important facts about Winter Novices' Hurdle?

Here are some important facts about Winter Novices’ Hurdle:

  • The Winter Novices’ Hurdle is run at Sandown Park, Great Britain
  • The Winter Novices’ Hurdle is for horses aged 4 and over
  • The Winter Novices’ Hurdle is a National Hunt Hurdle race in Great Britain
  • The Winter Novices’ Hurdle distance is 2 miles and 4 furlongs

Summary of the Winter Novices’ Hurdle

Thank you for reading our Winter Novices’ Hurdle guide.

We have looked at previous winners, trends, betting, odds, tips and more.

We hope you have found the information useful, whether placing a bet or just wanting to enjoy the race.

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As the Founder of British Racecourses, I have a life-long passion for horse racing and have loved the sport as long as I can remember. I am also a keen racehorse owner and have worked in the gambling industry for several years. I set up British Racecourses with the desire to share my passion for racing with other like-minded people.