STAYERS’ HURDLE

The Stayers' Hurdle is the season’s premier event for staying hurdlers.

It is the second of the two feature races that take place on Day 3 of the Festival.

Stayers Hurdle Trophy
Grade 1 | 4yo+ | Thursday 15.30 
3 miles | 12 hurdles | New course
Weight: 10st 9lb (4yo) / 11st 10lb (5yo+) | Allowance: 7lb for fillies & mares
Prize money (2022): £325,000 | 1st: £182,878

From 2005 to 2016 the race was known as the World Hurdle, but reverted to its earlier Stayers’ Hurdle name in 2017.

Paddy Power took over sponsorship in 2020, introducing a unique musical trophy:

13 of the last 21 winners were second season hurdlers (7 of the last 8)
7 of the last 8 winners were aged either 6 or 7
5 of the last 7 winners were priced 10/1 or higher
3 of the last 4 winners ran in the previous years Albert Bartlett Hurdle
8 of the last 25 favourites won

A number of horses have won the Stayers' Hurdle more than once, most notably four-time winner Big Buck’s, triple winner Inglis Drever and dual winner Baracouda.

Crimson Embers's two victories in this race came four years apart (1982 & 1986).

But since Big Bucks' domination from 2009 until 2012, the race has been farmed by second-season hurdlers. 

Just 3 nine-year-old's have won in the last 32 renewals, including the aforementioned Inglis Drever and Big Buck's.

The other 29 winners in that period were all aged six, seven or eight - but those aged either six or seven have dominated lately.

That includes last years' winner, Flooring Porter, the only six-year-old in the race (11 of the 15 field were aged eight or older).

The Stayers' Hurdle winners in 2018, 2019 and 2020 had all competed in the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle 12 months earlier.

LAST 5 WINNERS’ DATA

YEAR
AGE
OFFICIAL RATING
WEIGHT
2022
7
164
11-10
2021
6
144
11-10
2020
7
146
11-10
2019
7
168
11-10
2018
7
153
11-10

RECENT WINNERS

YEAR
WINNER
JOCKEY / TRAINER
SP
2022
Flooring Porter
Danny Mullins / Gavin Cromwell
4/1
2021
Flooring Porter
Danny Mullins / Gavin Cromwell
12/1
2020
Lisnagar Oscar
Adam Wedge / Rebecca Curtis
50/1
2019
Paisley Park
Aidan Coleman / Emma Lavelle
11/8f
2018
Penhill
Paul Townend / W P Mullins
12/1
2017
Nichols Canyon
Ruby Walsh / W P Mullins
10/1
2016
Thistlecrack
Tom Scudamore / Colin Tizzard
Evensf
2015
Cole Harden
Gavin Sheehan / Warren Greatrex
14/1
2014
More Of That
Barry Geraghty / Jonjo O'Neill
15/2
2013
Solwhit
Paul Carberry / Charles Byrnes
17/2
2012
Big Buck's
Ruby Walsh / Paul Nicholls
5/6f
2011
Big Buck's
Ruby Walsh / Paul Nicholls
10/11f
2010
Big Buck's
Ruby Walsh / Paul Nicholls
5/6f
2009
Big Buck's
Ruby Walsh / Paul Nicholls
6/1
2008
Inglis Drever
Denis O'Regan / Howard Johnson
11/8f
2007
Inglis Drever
Paddy Brennan / Howard Johnson
5/1
2006
My Way de Solzen
Robert Thornton / Alan King
8/1
2005
Inglis Drever
Graham Lee / Howard Johnson
5/1
2004
Iris's Gift
Barry Geraghty / Jonjo O'Neill
9/2
2003
Baracouda
Thierry Doumen / François Doumen
9/4jf
2002
Baracouda
Thierry Doumen / François Doumen
13/8f
2001

Festival Cancelled

2000
Bacchanal
Mick Fitzgerald / Nicky Henderson
11/2

Substitute jockey Danny Mullins claimed his first winner at the Festival with a bold front running ride on Flooring Porter in 2021.

It capped a rapid rise to prominence for the six-year-old, who had been a handicapper rated at just 122 at the start of the season:

‘I JUST HAD TO STEER THIS ONE, IT’S SPECIAL’

Lisnagar Oscar ran out a shock 50/1 winner in 2020, with the defending champion and 4/6 favourite, Paisley Park, disappointing.

Back hurdling after an aborted novice chase campaign, the Rebecca Curtis trained seven-year-old provided jockey Adam Wedge with his first Festival win:

‘I COULDN’T BELIEVE IT WHEN I HIT THE FRONT, I WAS JUST PRAYING HE’D KEEP GALLOPING - HE FOUGHT LIKE A LITTLE LION UP THAT HILL’

Paisley Park was a well-backed winner for trainer Emma Lavelle in 2019, with former Champion Hurdle winner Faugheen third.

Looking outpaced with a mile to go, he came charging around the outside to win, despite making a mess of the final hurdle:

‘WE’RE GOING TO ENJOY THE MOMENT. I CAN'T SAY QUITE HOW BAD OUR HANGOVER IS GOING TO BE IN THE MORNING!’

Penhill secured back-to-back Cheltenham Festival wins in 2018, having previously won the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle.

It was a remarkable training performance from Willie Mullins, with the victor having been off of the track for 323 days:

Mullins had trained his first Stayers' Hurdle winner a year earlier with Nichols Canyon, who came up on the stands rail to collar Lil Rockerfeller.

It was owner Graham Wylie's fourth win of the race, after those with Inglis Drever:

‘WHEN I TOLD WILLIE TO BUY A HORSE FOR ME, HE RANG ME UP AND SAID: I THINK I’VE FOUND YOU THE NEXT INGLIS DREVER’

Thistlecrack stormed up the hill to beat Alpha Des Obeaux by 7 lengths in 2016, with 2013 Gold Cup winner Bobs Worth a distant third.

The even-money favourite, ridden by Tom Scudamore, stalked the leaders before easing into the lead approaching the last:

‘THAT WAS FANTASTIC, WHAT A RACEHORSE. I THINK IT’S FAIR TO SAY HE’S THE BEST I’VE SAT ON’

Cole Harden was relentless in 2015, making every yard of the running.

It was a first Festival winner for both jockey Gavin Sheehan and trainer Warren Greatrex - who was memorably reduced to tears:

‘IF YOU’RE GOING TO BREAK YOUR DUCK, YOU MAY AS WELL DO IT IN A BIG ONE’

The 2014 renewal was billed as a two-horse-race between unbeaten mare Annie Power and four-times champion Big Buck's - but More Of That had not read the script.

Big Buck's, who was returning from an injury that had kept him on the sidelines the previous year, finished fifth in what was immediately announced to be his final race:

Big Buck's had made history in 2012, when winning that remarkable fourth successive stayers' championship with Ruby Walsh.

It was also his 16th win in a row, equalling the all-time record over hurdles - which he would break the following month at Aintree:

‘WE WON’T SEE HIS LIKE FOR MANY YEARS’

Looking back further, Inglis Drever had to call on all his reserves of stamina to secure a Stayers' Hurdle hat-trick in 2008:

While five years earlier the brilliant French challenger Baracouda won an epic renewal, beating the big hopes of Britain and Ireland in Iris's Gift and Limestone Lad:

‘DOWN TOWARDS THE FINAL FLIGHT, IT’S THE CLASH WE’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR’