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The Festival 2017 - all the updated statistics

Press Release 27th March 2017 Cheltenham

Please click here for the media information pack in full as a PDF document

The Festival 2017 was staged from Tuesday, March 14 through to Friday, March 17 and, for the second year in succession, saw over 260,000 racegoers in attendance at the Home of Jump Racing. 
 
A number of landmarks were set at The Festival this year:
 
* There were a record 19 winners trained in Ireland, from the 28 races, enabling Ireland to easily take home the BetBright Cup. Irish-trained horses won six of the seven races on St Patrick's Thursday, March 16. The previous record number of Irish-trained winners at The Festival was 15, achieved in 2016.
 
* Nicky Henderson is now the most successful trainer of all time in the Stan James Champion Hurdle, with six victories, after Buveur d'Air came home in front. Henderson's previous five winners in the two-mile hurdling championship were See You Then (1985, 1986, 1987), Punjabi (2009) and Binocular (2010).
 
* J P McManus is now the most successful owner in the Stan James Champion Hurdle. In addition to Buveur d'Air, his famous silks were carried to Champion Hurdle success by Istabraq (1998, 1999 & 2000), Binocular (2010) and Jezki (2014). McManus also broke the 50-winner mark for wins at The Festival. His three victories in 2017 mean his total now stands at 52, way ahead of any other current owner.
 
* This year at The Festival saw the introduction of the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Award for Leading Owner. McManus was narrowly beaten by Michael O'Leary's Gigginstown House Stud, which enjoyed four winners during the four days.
 
* For the first time, all three contests for amateur jockeys at The Festival were won by female riders. Lisa O'Neill took the J T McNamara National Hunt Chase on Tiger Roll, Gina Andrews landed the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase on Domesday Book and the St James's Place Foxhunter Chase went to the Bryony Frost-ridden Pacha Du Polder.
 
* Gordon Elliott won his first Irish Independent Leading Trainer Award, narrowly edging out Willie Mullins having had more placed horses. Both Elliott and Mullins recorded six winners, while Elliott had three second places to Mullins' two.
 
* Jessica Harrington is now the most successful female trainer of all-time at The Festival. She started the week level on eight winners with Jenny Pitman but her total grew to 11 over the four days, headed by the victory of Sizing John in the Timico Cheltenham Gold Cup.
 
* Ruby Walsh took the Boodles Leading Jockey Award for the 11th time. Walsh drew a blank on the first two days but achieved the first four-timer for a jockey at The Festival on Ladies Day, Thursday, March 16 with a 179/1 accumulator. Robbie Power was second to Walsh with three winners, while six jockeys - Noel Fehily, Bryan Cooper, Nico de Boinville, Richard Johnson, Mr Jamie Codd and Paul Townend - enjoyed two winners each. Walsh increased his lead as the winning-most rider ever at The Festival. He has had 56 successes in total, 22 ahead of Barry Geraghty who missed last week due to injury.
 
The next racing at Cheltenham is The April Meeting (Thursday & Friday, April 19 and 20) followed by The Hunter Chase Evening (Friday, May 5).
 
The Festival 2018 takes place from Tuesday, March 13 to Friday, March 16 at Cheltenham Racecourse and tickets can now be bought from through http://cheltenham.thejockeyclub.co.uk/events-tickets/whats-on/the-festival

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