The Weatherbys Champion Bumper is the only flat race at the Cheltenham Festival.
The event, open to four, five and six-year-olds only, has been a huge success since its inception in 1992.
It has proven to be a stepping stone for a host of future stars, including past winners Florida Pearl and Cue Card.
Horses that finish further down the field also often go on to bigger and better things, so it is definitely a race to note when it comes to future Festivals.
Leading flat racing jockeys have sometimes ridden in this race, including Pat Smullen, Kieren Fallon, Joseph O'Brien and Jamie Spencer (who won on Pizarro in 2002).
CHAMPION BUMPER TRENDS
In-form horses with a fair amount of experience should be high up on anybody’s shortlist for the Champion Bumper.
That said, five-year-old's (19 wins) have done better than six-year-old's (8 wins).
The aforementioned Cue Card is the only four-year-old winner this century, despite their weight allowance.
Willie Mullins has dominated since his first win in 1996 - winning 12 of the 27 renewals from that year, including 4 of the last 5.
Notably it's not always his first string that prevails and since 2012 he has had winners at 16/1, 25/1 (twice) and 11/1.
The winner and runner-up in the last six Champion Bumper's have all been Irish trained.
LAST 5 WINNERS’ DATA
Facile Vega won in heavy conditions in 2022 to make it three Champion Bumper's in a row for Willie Mullins.
The son of the legendary Quevega, six time winner of the Mares Hurdle, was patiently ridden by Patrick Mullins but powered clear of his rivals up the hill:
The 2021 Champion Bumper winner was Sir Gerhard, ridden by Rachael Blackmore:
Ferny Hollow came with a late run to beat stablemate and hot favourite Appreciate It in a 1-2 for Willie Mullins in 2020:
£400,000 buy Envoi Allen justified strong market support in 2019, ridden by amateur jockey Jamie Codd for Gordon Elliott:
The mare Relegate led home a 1-2-3 for Willie Mullins in 2018, ridden by amateur jockey Katie Walsh:
Another mare won in 2017, despite jumping off late and spending most of the race at the back of the field.
But Fayonagh, ridden by Jamie Codd, came from last to first up the hill:
Looking back further, four-year-old Cue Card won the 2010 renewal at a huge 40/1:
Monsignor, who went on to win what is now the Ballymore Novices' Hurdle the following year, was another Champion Bumper winner at a monster price (50/1) in 1999:
Meanwhile, jumps racing great Florida Pearl won this race with Richard Dunwoody in 1997: