The Arkle Challenge Trophy

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What You Need to Know

  1. The Arkle Challenge Trophy is a Grade 1 National Hunt Steeplechase and one of the highlights of the jumping season.
  2. The race is held each March as part of the famous Cheltenham Festival. Free race tips for Cheltenham Festival
  3. It's named after legendary thoroughbred Arkle, who won the Cheltenham Gold Cup a remarkable three times.
  4. As well as being popular with the Cheltenham crowds, it's also a big hit with sports betting fans and it's never been easier to have a flutter.
  5. By far the best way to bet on the Arkle Challenge Trophy is to sign up for an online sports betting account and have a flutter this way.
  6. Statistics show that horses who are in the best form tend to do best in the race, so consider this before putting any money down.
  7. Should you wish to watch the race in person, getting to Cheltenham is very easy, particularly from London, Bristol or Birmingham.
  8. The latest odds and horses are displayed below automatically for you from Bet365.
  9. The Arkle Challenge Trophy will start on the 15th of March at 14.10 2016.

The Arkle Challenge Trophy is a Grade 1 National Hunt Steeplechase and one of the highlights of the jumping season. Traditionally, it is the second race of the opening day of the world-famous Cheltenham Festival, which is held every March. 

History of the Arkle Challenge Trophy

The Arkle Chase was first held in 1969, the year in which it was introduced as a replacement for the old Cotswold Chase.

Originally, the race was scheduled to be run on the second day of the Cheltenham Festival, but it was soon moved to the opening day. From the start, it was named in honour of the legendary thoroughbred Arkle, who won the Cheltenham Gold Cup a remarkable three times back in the 1960s.


The Race Today

These days, the Arkle Challenge Trophy is a real highlight of the Cheltenham Festival, attracting a high level of attention from race-goers, sports betting fans and TV viewers.

The race is run over precisely two miles along a turf, left-handed track, with competitors required to jump 13 fences. Just as it was in its first year, the race is open to novice jumpers aged five years or older. It is now firmly acknowledged as the leading minimum-distance chase for novices in the whole National Hunt calendar, with a prize pot of around £150,000 on offer.


Arkle Chase 2016 Horses with The Latest Odds

Betting on the Arkle Challenge Trophy

The Arkle Challenge Trophy is great for betting, whether you're a novice or an experienced sports gambler. The race is fast and furious, attracting some of the brightest new stars in the sport, as well as the biggest trainers and jockeys.

If you are looking for free horse racing tips then see UK Net Guides horse racing tips for Cheltenham with all the other days’ races and tips in our horse racing section.

The 2016 favourite is Douvan, aged 6 years with the trainer being Willie Mullins, the horse has alreadt faced five of the horses in the race and came out on top, Douvan also won the Racing Post Novice Chase at Leopardstown in December following on from his win at Navan in November.  

All bookmakers, both online and on the high street, will offer a great selection of betting markets for the race itself, with odds updated constantly until the starting gun goes. For the best selection of betting markets and the most competitive odds, though, you should open an online sports betting account. Check out this guide to the best sports betting sites out there and get started today.

As a rule, the Arkle Challenge Trophy tends to be won by horses in top form. Indeed, an analysis of recent winners suggest that novices coming into Cheltenham on the back of an impressive season tend to do best. So, always check a horse's recent form before putting any money down and always shop around to make sure you get the best odds.


Facts and Records

The Arkle Challenge Trophy is one of the best-loved races on the jumping calendar and it boasts a rich and colourful history. Here are just a few fascinating facts about this famous race:

  • The race has been sponsored since the 1990s. Past sponsors include Guinness and the Irish Independent newspaper. These days it's sponsored by the Racing Post paper.
  • A number of winners have gone on to win other National Hunt chase events. For example, the 1978 winner Alverton went on to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup the following year, while former Arkle winner Sprinter Chase graduated to winning the 2013 Queen Mother Champion Chase.
  • Only one jockey has won the race on four occasions; Barry Geraghty rode to victory on four different horses between 2002 and 2013.
  • Older horses tend to do better than younger ones. Victorious five year-olds are rare, while seven year-olds tend to win on a regular basis.

Recent winners of the Arkle Challenge Trophy


2002 Moscow Flyer 8 Barry Geraghty Jessica Harrington
2003 Azertyuiop 6 Ruby Walsh Paul Nicholls
2004 Well Chief 5 Tony McCoy Martin Pipe
2005 Contraband 7 Timmy Murphy Martin Pipe
2006 Voy Por Ustedes 5 Robert Thornton Alan King
2007 My Way de Solzen 7 Robert Thornton Alan King
2008 Tidal Bay 7 Denis O'Regan Howard Johnson
2009 Forpadydeplasterer 7 Barry Geraghty Tom Cooper
2010 Sizing Europe 8 Andrew Lynch Henry de Bromhead
2011 Captain Chris 7 Richard Johnson Philip Hobbs
2012 Sprinter Sacre 6 Barry Geraghty Nicky Henderson
2013 Simonsig 7 Barry Geraghty Nicky Henderson
2014 Western Warhorse 6 Tom Scudamore David Pipe
2015 Un de Sceaux 7 Ruby Walsh Willie Mullins


Getting to the Race

As always, the Arkle Trophy is held at the famous Cheltenham Racecourse, just outside of the city of Cheltenham in Gloucestershire, England. Getting to the course is very easy, whether you're travelling by car or by public transport.

  • For the duration of the festival, regular shuttle buses run to the racecourse from Cheltenham Spa railway station, with the station offering direct links with London, Bristol, Birmingham and many other places.
  • If you're driving, then the racecourse can be found at GL50 4SH and is easily-reached from Junctions 9 or 10 of the M5 motorway. For the Cheltenham Festival, visitors are able to make use of plenty of free parking within easy walking distance of the famous old course.

For more information about getting to Cheltenham, visit the official website.


Further Reading


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