The Arkle Challenge Trophy is a race steeped in history and heritage, with the best two-mile novice chasers going up against each other on the Old Course. The Supreme Novices’ Hurdle is the ideal way to kickstart the Festival but the Arkle really kicks things up a notch.
Some of the sport’s greatest two-mile chasers have won the Arkle, with the likes of Sprinter Sacre, Un De Sceaux, Douvan and Altior claiming victory in recent years. Here, we look at the main Arkle Challenge Trophy trends and statistics to follow ahead of the 2020 Cheltenham Festival.
Arkle Trends & Statistics
Following Cheltenham Festival trends and statistics can be key to success when it comes to horse racing betting at Prestbury Park. Here are some of the most important Arkle Challenge Trophy trends:
- 20/20 winners either won or were beaten by less than 4.5 lengths last time out.
- 20/20 winners were 9/2 or shorter in the betting last time out.
- 20 of the last 20 winners had been ridden at least three times by the jockey.
- 20/20 had between one and five starts over fences.
- All 20 winners had ran at least once in the 90 days prior to the Arkle.
- 20 out of 20 had won previously with jockey on board.
- 19 of the last 20 winners were shorter than 11/1 in the betting.
- 18/20 winners were in the top five in the Arkle betting odds.
- 19 out of 20 winners had ran in a field of less than eight runners last time out.
- 18/20 winners had placed at Grade 2 level or higher.
Most Successful Trainers In Arkle History
Nicky Henderson is the most successful trainer in Arkle Challenge Trophy history with six winners, most recently with Altior in 2017. Nine of his 17 entries in the race over the last 20 years have finished in the places – making him a trainer to follow for the Arkle.
However, Willie Mullins has been the dominant trainer in recent years, winning the Arkle in four of the last five years. Duc des Genievres claimed victory for the Irish trainer in 2019 and Mullins will be hoping for more Arkle success at the 2020 Cheltenham Festival.
Cheltenham Festival 2020: Arkle Prize Money
According to the Racing Post, the total prize money for the Arkle Challenge Trophy at the 2019 Cheltenham Festival was £175,000. Confirmed prize money for this year’s meeting will be available in due course.
Trial Races To Follow Ahead Of The Arkle
There are two major trial races to follow over the busy Christmas period. The Wayward Lad Novices’ Chase at Kempton Park on Boxing Day is usually a good indicator for British horses, with Altior and Sprinter Sacre emerging victorious in recent years.
Another is the Racing Post Novice Chase at Leopardstown. With the likes of Douvan, Min and Footpad winning in years gone by, this is a hot Arkle trial. Notebook claimed victory in 2019 and is the current ante post favourite for the 2020 Arkle Challenge Trophy.
Meanwhile, the Dublin Racing Festival at the start of February is becoming more important in the build-up to the Cheltenham Festival. Four Arkle winners have competed in this race in recent years and the form of this Leopardstown meeting is well worth following.
2020 Arkle Challenge Trophy Odds
The clock is ticking and the 2020 Cheltenham Festival is edging closer. Here are the latest Supreme Novices’ Hurdle odds available with 888sport:
- Notebook – 4/1
- Fakir D’Oudairies – 11/2
- Melon – 12/1
- Brewin’upastorm – 14/1
- Global Citizen – 14/1
- Esprit Du Large – 16/1
- Laurina – 16/1
- Bar – 20/1
Cheltenham Festival 2020: Arkle Betting Tips
The Arkle Challenge Trophy market is beginning to take shape. Notebook heads the ante post betting odds but lots can change between now and the 2020 Cheltenham Festival – though it is important to remember that favourites historically do well in the Arkle.
Our horse racing writers will be here to give their insight into all of the biggest races at the 2020 meeting and the Arkle could be one of the standout races on Day One.
*Credit for the main photo belongs to Jon Super / AP Photo*