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National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls to sponsor Mares' Novices' Hurdle at The Festival

Press Release 28th February 2019 Cheltenham

Thursday, February 28, 2019 - Cheltenham Racecourse is pleased to announce today that National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls is the new title of the G2 Mares' Novices' Hurdle at The Festival™ presented by Magners.

The £90,000 G2 contest takes place over an extended two miles and is the sixth race (4.50pm) on St Patrick's Thursday, March 14.

The new sponsorship involves breeders Shade Oak Stud, Upton Viva Stud, Trull House Stud, James and Jean Potter Ltd, Martyn Meade Racing and Overbury Stud.

The National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls Mares' Novices' Hurdle was introduced to The Festival in 2016 to give more opportunities for fillies and mares.

It is the second race exclusively for female horses at The Festival, following on from the G1 OLBG Mares' Hurdle on Champion Day, Tuesday, March 12, and is open to four-year-olds and upwards.

The first three runnings were sponsored by Trull House Stud, which is continuing as one of the contest's backers.

The registered title of the race is the Dawn Run Mares' Novices' Hurdle in recognition of the great mare Dawn Run, who is the only horse to win both the Champion Hurdle (1984) and the Cheltenham Gold Cup (1986).

Willie Mullins, the most successful trainer of all-time at The Festival, has dominated the race so far, being victorious with the Susannah Ricci-owned pair of Limini (2016) and Let's Dance (2017), plus Laurina (2018), all five-year-olds.

Laurina, who races in the colours Sullivan Bloodstock Limited, has developed into a leading contender for this year's G1 Unibet Champion Hurdle, while Limini could head to the OLBG Mares' Hurdle.

Ian Renton, Regional Director, Cheltenham & The South West, The Jockey Club, said today: "Since we introduced this race three years' ago, we have had some impressive mares winning including Laurina and Limini.

"This just shows the strength of the mares' division and I am sure that the race will only continue to grow in profile with the support of the National Hunt Breeders and Tattersalls."

Commenting on the sponsorship, Tattersalls Ireland CEO, Matt Mitchell, said: "We are delighted to be sponsoring the G2 Mares' Novices' Hurdle at The Festival which will also be backed by National Hunt Breeders.

"National Hunt breeders are the backbone of this industry and their continuous efforts, along with our support, brings together what they strive to achieve to the forefront of racing.

"This sponsorship further strengthens Tattersalls relationship with Cheltenham Racecourse; the Cheltenham Sales have established themselves as a constant source of winners and we are excited about this further association with the Home of National Hunt Racing."

Robert Waley-Cohen of Upton Viva Stud and Chairman of Cheltenham Racecourse further endorsed this new sponsorship.

Waley-Cohen said: "Upton Viva Stud is delighted to support the G2 National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls Mares' Novices' Hurdle.

"It is important for mare owners to have a target at The Festival to aspire to win as this has a beneficial impact for breeders both financially and for the breed as a whole.

"The best mares are those who have proven their ability on the racecourse and this race provides a valuable opportunity."

Another of the contest's supporters, trainer and breeder Martyn Meade added: "National Hunt racing and breeding has been a big part of my racing career and I am really pleased to support the National Hunt Breeders by sponsoring the Mares' Novices' Hurdle.

"It is fantastic to be associated with the best National Hunt Festival in the world."

The 40 entries for the National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls Mares' Novices' Hurdle were announced yesterday. Willie Mullins is responsible for 13 of the 40 entries, including G1 Future Champions Novice Hurdle second Sancta Simona.

Unbeaten G3 winner Honeysuckle and Punchestown Listed scorer Sinoria could both line up for another Irish trainer, Henry de Bromhead.

Posh Trish, trained by Paul Nicholls, twice successful at Listed level this season, and two from Nicky Henderson's yard, Epatante, an impressive winner at Exeter on February 22, and the Waley-Cohen-owned Elusive Belle, feature among the British contenders.

National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls

Mares' Novices' Hurdle

Grade 2, £90,000 Total Prize Fund. New Course, Cheltenham, 4.50pm, Thursday, March 14, 2019, two miles and a furlong (2m 179y). For novice four-year-olds and upwards, fillies and mares only. Weights: four-year-olds 10st 8lb, five-year-olds and up 11st 2lb. Penalties: a winner of a Class 2 weight-for-age hurdle or a Class 1 handicap hurdle 3lb, a winner of a Class 1 weight-for-age hurdle 5lb. Entries closed February 26, entries revealed February 27 (40 entries), six-day confirmation stage March 8, final declaration stage 10.00am, Tuesday, March 12. Maximum 22 runners.

Horse

Age

Owner

Trainer

ALLEZ DANCE (FR)

5

Simon Munir/Isaac Souede

Willie Mullins IRE

AWAYINTHEWEST (IRE)

7

Mrs Una Brady

Pat Fahy IRE

BLACK TEARS

5

Mrs C Walsh/J Lightfoot

Gordon Elliott IRE

BUILDMEUPBUTTERCUP

5

J Turner

Willie Mullins IRE

BULLFROG (IRE)

6

Galloping On The South Downs Partnership

Gary Moore

CALIE DU MESNIL (FR)

7

Andrea & Graham Wylie

Willie Mullins IRE

CARDIGAN BAY (FR)

6

Birch, Djivanovic & Doel

Charlie Longsdon

CONCERTISTA (FR)

5

Simon Munir/Isaac Souede

Willie Mullins IRE

COPPER GONE WEST (IRE)

6

Paul & Louise Bowtell

Tim Vaughan

COURT MAID (IRE)

6

Rory F Larkin

Thomas Mullins IRE

DAME DU SOIR (FR)

6

CWB Plus 1 Partnership

David Bridgwater

DAPHNE DU CLOS (FR)

6

Sullivan Bloodstock Limited

Nicky Henderson

DEFINITELYANOSCAR (IRE)

6

Jago and Taylor

Harry Fry

DIAMOND GAIT

6

Norman Carter

Kim Bailey

DUHALLOW GESTURE (IRE)

7

Galveston Partners

Anthony Honeyball

EGLANTINE DU SEUIL (FR)

5

Sullivan Bloodstock Limited

Willie Mullins IRE

ELFILE (FR)

5

K Alexander

Willie Mullins IRE

ELUSIVE BELLE (IRE)

5

Robert Waley-Cohen

Nicky Henderson

EMILY MOON (IRE)

5

Mrs P Myerscough

Jessica Harrington IRE

EPATANTE (FR)

5

J P McManus

Nicky Henderson

FRENCH MADE (FR)

4

Exors of the Late Mrs M McManus

Willie Mullins IRE

GREAT WHITE SHARK (FR)

5

Malcolm C Denmark

Willie Mullins IRE

HONEYSUCKLE

5

K Alexander

Henry de Bromhead IRE

INDEFATIGABLE (IRE)

6

Philip Rocher & John B O'Connor

Paul Webber

INESSA (FR)

6

David J Smith

Dr Richard Newland

LA SORELITA (FR)

4

K Alexander

Willie Mullins IRE

LUST FOR GLORY (IRE)

6

Grech & Parkin

Nicky Henderson

MOSKOVITE (IRE)

6

R V Hennelly

Denis Hogan IRE

MY SISTER SARAH (IRE)

5

Barnane Stud

Willie Mullins IRE

OFF THE HOOK (IRE)

7

Mrs I Hodge

Nick Alexander

POSH TRISH (IRE)

6

Highclere T'Bred Racing - Posh Trish

Paul Nicholls

PRESIDENTE LINE (FR)

5

Ecurie Cerdeval & Elevage Couetil

Alain Couetil FR

QUEENOHEARTS (IRE)

6

The Sherington Partnership

Stuart Edmunds

ROBIN DE CARLOW

6

Supreme Horse Racing Club/Brett Graham

Willie Mullins IRE

SALSARETTA (FR)

6

Susannah Ricci

Willie Mullins IRE

SANCTA SIMONA (FR)

6

J P McManus

Willie Mullins IRE

SINORIA (IRE)

6

K Alexander

Henry de Bromhead IRE

SURIN (FR)

4

Gigginstown House Stud

Gordon Elliott IRE

TINTANGLE (IRE)

6

Gigginstown House Stud

Gordon Elliott IRE

WESTERN VICTORY (IRE)

6

S O'Neill

Colin Bowe IRE

 

40 entries

23 Irish-trained

1 French-trained

National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls Mares' Novices' Hurdle Facts & Figures

BACKGROUND INFORMATION - DISTANCE 2M 179y

The National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls Mares' Novices' Hurdle was introduced to The Festival in 2016 to give more opportunities to fillies and mares.

It is the second race exclusively for female horses at The Festival, following on from the OLBG Mares' Hurdle.

There was a place on the third day, St Patrick's Day Thursday, following the decision to cease running the charity Flat race.

FIELD SIZE

The maximum number of runners allowed is 22. There were 16 runners in both 2016 and 2017, while 2018 saw 14 runners face the starter.

MOST SUCCESSFUL TRAINER

Willie Mullins has won all three runnings to date with the Susannah Ricci-owned pair of Limini (2016) and Let's Dance (2017), plus Laurina (2018).

MOST SUCCESSFUL JOCKEY

Ruby Walsh partnered both Limini (2016) and Let's Dance (2017) to victory.

BETTING

Favourites have a 100 per cent record.

National Hunt Breeders supported by Tattersalls Mares' Novices' Hurdle Previous Results

2018-WINNER-LAURINA 5-11-07 Owner-Sullivan Bloodstock Limited; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-Paul Townend; SP-4/7 Fav

2ND-Cap Soleil 5-11-07 Owner-Mrs S A Noott; Trainer-Fergal O'Brien; Jockey-Paddy Brennan; SP-10/1

3RD-Champayne Lady 6-11-02 Owner-Rory Connell; Trainer-Alan Fleming IRE; Jockey-Denis O'Regan; SP-80/1

14 ran, Time-4m 15.40s, Dist-18, sh

2017-WINNER-LET'S DANCE 5-11-07 Owner-Susannah Ricci; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-Ruby Walsh; SP-11/8 Fav

2ND-Barra 6-11-02 Owner-Gigginstown House Stud; Trainer-Gordon Elliott IRE; Jockey-Bryan Cooper; SP-12/1

3RD-Dusky Legend 7-11-05 Owner-Richard & Lizzie Kelvin-Hughes; Trainer-Alan King; Jockey-Wayne Hutchinson; SP-20/1

16 ran, Time-4m 2.00s, Dist-2¾, nk

2016-WINNER-LIMINI 5-11-07 Owner-Susannah Ricci; Trainer-Willie Mullins IRE; Jockey-Ruby Walsh; SP-8/11 Fav

2ND-Dusky Legend 6-11-02 Owner-Richard & Lizzie Kelvin-Hughes; Trainer-Alan King; Jockey-Wayne Hutchinson; SP-50/1

3RD-Bloody Mary 5-11-07 Owner-J P McManus; Trainer-Nicky Henderson; Jockey-Barry Geraghty; SP-7/1

16 ran, Time-3m 58.00s, Dist-4½, 2½

Cheltenham Racecourse

Cheltenham Racecourse is situated in Prestbury on the northern outskirts of the historic spa town of Cheltenham. The Home of Jump Racing, Cheltenham Racecourse is the venue for the world's pre-eminent Jump meeting. The Festival™ presented by Magners, which happens in March over four days every year, next takes place from Tuesday, March 12, to Friday, March 15, 2019 inclusive and tickets are on sale. Set against the beautiful backdrop of the Cotswolds, Cheltenham Racecourse is a stunning natural arena and offers the highest-quality action throughout the Jump season.

More information is available at www.cheltenham.co.uk and through Twitter (@CheltenhamRaces), Facebook www.facebook.com/thehomeofjumpracing and Instagram (@CheltenhamRaces).

About The Jockey Club

Cheltenham is part of The Jockey Club which stages thrilling sporting occasions including The Randox Health Grand National, The Festival™ presented by Magners and The Investec Derby. Millions of people every year enjoy the special experiences The Jockey Club offers through racing, music, food and entertainment. Governed by Royal Charter, every penny made goes back into British Racing to help the sport thrive. The Jockey Club was founded in 1750 and today is the largest commercial group in Britain's second-biggest spectator sport, operating 15 racecourses nationwide, The National Stud, Jockey Club Estates, Jockey Club Catering, Jockey Club Live and the charity, Racing Welfare. For more information, visit www.thejockeyclub.co.uk

If you need any information about racing at Cheltenham, please contact: Sophia Dale, Communications Manager - Jockey Club Racecourses South West 01242 537 683

sophia.dale@thejockeyclub.co.uk

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