Queen Mother Champion Chase Betting

Established in 1959, the Queen Mother Champion Chase is held as the feature race on the second day of the Cheltenham Festival each March. It was originally called the National Hunt Two-Mile Champion Chase, but in 1980, to recognize the Queen Mother’s support of jump racing and celebrate her 80th birthday, the event was given its present name.

Today, the Queen Mother Champion Chase is still run over a distance of two miles on the left-handed turf of Cheltenham’s Old Course. It presents twelve fences to be jumped and is open to horses aged five years and up. The weight allocation is 11 stone 10 pounds, with an allowance of seven pounds for mares.

Traditionally, this minimum-distance race has fewer entrants than Cheltenham’s other Grade 1 events, with never more than 13 starters (1999) and many times as few as five, the latest such occasion being in 1985. In 2009, there were a dozen runners, and in 2010 the number was nine. Although the field may be small, it is certainly a select group that lines up to participate, and many believe this to be the most exciting race of the entire four-day Festival.

The most successful horse in the history of the race was Badsworth Boy, claiming a hat-trick of first-place finishes in 1983~85 for owner Doug Armitage, who employed both Michael and Monica Dickinson as trainers. Jockey Robert Earnshaw was on board for all three wins.

Among successful trainers at the Queen Mother Champion Chase, Tom Dreaper leads the pack with six victories, including repeat winner Fortria in 1960~61. The other four were Ben Stack in 1964, Flyingbolt in 1966, Muir in 1969, and Straight Fort in 1970.

The rider with the most wins here was Paul Traffe, chalking up five first-place finishes on Dreaper-trained mounts. The only one he missed was the ride in 1969, when Ben Hannon held Muir’s reins.

The Queen Mother herself was a successful owner of National Hunt horses. The royal matriarch’s chasers claimed numerous victories over the years but, as fate would have it, never her namesake race. The best finish posted by her stable here was a second place finish in 1976, when Game Spirit came in runner-up to Matt Magee’s veteran Skymas, who would win again at age twelve the following year.

In 2007, the Queen Mother Champion Chase added its first-ever sponsor, the British-based timeshare operator and resort owner known as Seasons Holidays. The relationship lasted until 2011, when the online gambling firm sportingbet.com became the new sponsor, signing and agreement that will be in force until at least 2015. The total prize fund for 2011 is £320,000, unchanged from its previous year’s level.

In 2010, Big Zeb dashed away with the top prize of £182,432, beating Forpadydeplasterer by a full six lengths. The win paid 10/1, which was the highest payout since 1993 other than the 16/1 victory posted by Newmill in 2006. Repeat winners are quite common, with eleven in the history of the event and the most recent being Paul Nicholls-trained Master Minded in 2009~10.

In general, look for horses that have Festival experience to do well. Out of the last 26 winners, 19 of them had won or placed at Cheltenham in the past. In fact, the Arkle Challenge Trophy is a good indicator of which runners will do well in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. All but two of the last dozen winners here finished first or second in the Arkle the preceding year.

Not surprisingly, winning at single-figure odds is quite common, as has been the case in 26 of the most recent 29 runnings. Favourites have triumphed in eight of the last 21 contests, the lowest winning odds being associated with Nicky Henderson’s Remittance Man in 1992, when he paid Evens.

Go To bet365
Open Account Offer
Up to £100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365.
Min deposit £5 and 1x settled bet requirement to release Bet Credits. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply.
Comment on this event
Your Name:
Your Email:
What is  + 7