The Stayers’ Hurdle is one of the biggest betting events of the festival, and the market regularly changes throughout the season. Make sure you keep your eyes peeled on horseracing.net for expert views and analysis on the 2020 Stayers’ Hurdle as the picture becomes clearer.
The latest odds for the Stayers Hurdle will be listed below just as soon as they become available.
Stayers’ Hurdle Tips
Tips for the 2020 Stayers’ Hurdle will appear here.
What is the Stayers’ Hurdle?
The Stayers’ Hurdle is feature race on the third day of the Cheltenham Festival, which is traditionally held on a Thursday in March. A Grade One contest, the Stayers’ Hurdle is run on the old course over a distance of just shy of three miles (two miles, seven furlongs and 213 yards).
The history of the Stayers’ Hurdle
The Stayers’ Hurdle was first introduced to the festival line-up in 1912, before earning a full-time slot in 1946. The race was known as the Spa Hurdle from this point until 1967, before picking up its current title in 1972. The race has had several sponsors, including Ladbrokes, who changed the name of the race once again to the World Hurdle when beginning their sponsorship of the race in 2005, and that remained for 12 years, until returning to its previous name in 2017. The race has really come into its own since the turn of the century, with several multiple winners, including Inglis Dreaver, who won three renewals between 2005-2008, and Big Buck’s, who won four straight renewals from 2009-2013. The most recent winner of the Stayers’ Hurdle was Paisley Park, who struck for the Emma Lavelle team.
What happened in the 2019 Stayers’ Hurdle?
Since the retirement of Big Buck’s, no horse has been able to dominate this particular division, and as such the 2019 renewal was one of the most open for years, with a bumper field on 18 taking their chance. However, Paisley Park had been making plenty of waves prior to the festival, and his wins in the Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot and the Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham ensured he was sent off as an 11/8 favourite. Paisley Park looked to be in trouble rounding the bend, but he showed an excellent burst of speed to pick up the lead before the last, before defying a final flight error to score by two and three quarter lengths and announce himself as the one the beat in the division.
As mentioned above, Big Buck’s was the undisputed king of the division for Paul Nicholls, and is the only horse to win the Stayers’ Hurdle four times, doing so between 2009-2012. Having been imported from France in 2007, Big Buck’s initially plied his trade as a chaser, and although he showed plenty of ability he regularly let himself down with his jumping, something which prompted a switch to the smaller obstacles the following season, with his first start over timber in Britain coming at Cheltenham on New Years’ Day 2009. The switch proved to be a masterstroke, and Big Buck’s would go on to enjoy an 18-race winning run which would see him win four World Hurdles on the spin. Serious injury prevented Big Buck’s from attempting to win a fifth straight title in 2013, and he suffered his first defeat for over five years when beaten on reappearance in the Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham in January 2014. Big Buck’s couldn’t build on that reappearance run in the 2014 World Hurdle, finishing fifth, but he bowed out as a great of the sport regardless.
Are there any trials for the Stayers’ Hurdle?
There are several trials for the Stayers’ Hurdle throughout the season, with the most significant of those considered to be the Long Distance Hurdle at Newbury, the Long Walk Hurdle at Ascot and the Cleeve Hurdle at Cheltenham. Other race to note include the West Yorkshire Hurdle (Wetherby), the Stayers’ Handicap Hurdle (Haydock), the Relkeel Hurdle (Cheltenham) and the Rendlesham Hurdle (Haydock). Over in Ireland, significant trial races for the Stayers’ Hurdle are the Lismullen Hurdle at Navan, the Hatton’s Grace Hurdle at Fairyhouse, the Christmas Hurdle at Leopardstown and the Limestone Lad Hurdle at Naas.
Who is the most successful jockey in the Stayers’ Hurdle?
The most successful jockey in the history of the Stayers’ Hurdle is Ruby Walsh, who has won the race five times. Four of those wins came on Big Buck’s (2009, 2010, 2011 & 2012), while Walsh also won the Stayers’ Hurdle with Nichols Canyon in 2017.
Who is the most successful trainer in the Stayers’ Hurdle?
The most successful trainer in the history of the Champion Hurdle is Paul Nicholls, who has won the race four times. Each of Paul Nicholls’ wins in the Stayers’ Hurdle came courtesy of Big Buck’s who won the race in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.