CAUSE OF CAUSES NO LOST CAUSE IN LATE RUN FOR THE LINE
Gordon Elliott trained his second winner this week at The Cheltenham Festival when Cause Of Causes came from a long way off the pace to win the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Chase.
On St Patrick's Day the Jamie Codd-ridden winner, who started at 9/2, became the sixth success of the afternoon for Irish stables. Cause Of Causes won the four-mile National Hunt Chase last year, and his stamina really kicked in as the field straightened for home. Owned by J P McManus, he won going clear by 12 lengths and half a length from A Good Skin and Silvergrove.
Cause Of Causes has an entry in the Crabbie's Grand National at Aintree, but the top 40 in the handicap are guaranteed a run and he is 67th in the list. Despite that his price was cut by bookmakers for the big race, although he also holds an entry in the Irish Grand National.
Elliott was largely non-committal about future plans, but said: "Jamie said they went very fast early on and he was flat out to go with them, but it ended with the right result. Cause Of Causes does like this track.
"We'll enjoy today and worry about the future after we've talked with Frank [Berry, McManus's racing manager] and J P. He has the right profile [for the Crabbies Grand National], but whether he would get in at the weights I don't know."
CAUSE CERTAINLY NO LOST CAUSE FOR CODD
Jamie Codd secured his fourth victory in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup with a facile 12 length success aboard Cause Of Causes for Gordon Elliott and J P McManus. The well-backed 9/2 shot was held up throughout and looked out of contention four fences from home. However, coming down the hill, the son of Dynaformer stayed on very strongly and quickened clear at the second last to win easily.
Codd and Cause Of Causes were successful together in the National Hunt Chase at last year's Festival and the jockey was delighted to have won another Festival race with the eight-year-old. He said: "Cause Of Causes won the National Hunt Chase last year and has been a great horse for me. Gordon Elliott has brought him back to this race in top form. I have been riding him out for the last three weeks and he has really come to form. He loves the spring and the sun on his back. I am grateful to J P McManus and Gordon Elliott. They are a brilliant bunch of people and it is great for me to be involved.
"This horse's biggest asset is he is Flat-bred and has a lot of speed but also stays very well. I didn't want to be that far back and he takes a long time to warm up. He is not a very big horse but he is very economical over his fences and once you get him into a rhythm popping over them, he always comes home for you, well he has for me thankfully anyway.
"It was not a straightforward race, I wanted to get him into a rhythm but I was never happy the whole way. I was hoping they had gone too quick as he is not the sort of horse you can ask to make big jumps so I was trying to get him to the top of the hill on the bridle. Coming down the hill, he then came alive and started to pass horses. Once I passed one, I passed another six or seven in 10 or 15 strides. I was probably there too soon but there was no looking back once I had got to the front.
"It is just incredible to win for Gordon and J P. It's magic. Cheltenham is Cheltenham. There is no better way place to ride horses in the world. When you have winners and horses with chances like I am, it is a great position to be in."
Codd added: "I am in the latter stages of my riding career but I am just so lucky to be associated with Gordon Elliott who has looked after me since he started training so it is great to be associated with his team."
1) Cause Of Causes (J P McManus) Gordon Elliott IRE 8-11-09 Mr Jamie Codd 9/2 2) A Good Skin (Power Panels Electrical Systems Ltd) Tom George 7-11-02 Mr Michael Legg (3) 14/1 3) Silvergrove (Nicholas & Claire Piper) Ben Paukliong 8-11-05 Mr Tom David 16/1 4) Knock House (Tim Radford) Mick Channon 7-11-11 Ms Nina Carberry 16/1
4/1 Fav Doctor Harper (UR)
22 ran Distances: 12, ½, 5
7th winner at The Festival for trainer Gordon Elliott 5th winner at The Festival for jockey Mr Jamie Codd
BetBright Cup: Great Britain 10, Ireland 11
PAULING TAKES PLACE AS GOOD OMEN FOR BARTERS HILL TOMORROW
Twelve lengths behind winner Cause Of Causes was A Good Skin, trained by Tom George.
George said: "I'm delighted, he's run a great race and everything went right - he's just bumped into one better handicapped on the day, but he's improving. He's loved the better ground today and there's a big race in him one day."
Silvergrove, trained locally near Bourton-on-the-Water by Ben Pauling, was half a length further back in third.
Pauling said: "When you bring horses here it's never easy. He's an honest horse and he jumps and he gallops, but you just don't know how much he's improving, and he's probably improved again I'd say.
"Just on this quicker ground his jumping isn't as much of an asset as it is on soft ground; he's taking lengths out of them on the softer ground, but he's run a cracker and we can't complain. He's possibly one of the slowest horses in the yard, so he's got to be up there and you aren't going to be making ground up from half way.
"It's the first time we've been in the winner's enclosure at The Festival, so it's a good start and hopefully a good omen for tomorrow [when Pauling's yard star, the unbeaten Barters Hill, runs in the Albert Bartlett Novices' Hurdle].
"I couldn't have him [Barters Hill] any better. It's been well reported that he wasn't quite right yesterday, he was a bit stiff and we think he got cast, but I've just had a phone call from the yard to say he's 100% sound this evening so it's all systems go and I can't wait."
The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup is run on Thursday of the Cheltenham Festival. It is handicap steeplechase resticted to amateur riders over a distance of about 3 miles 1 furlong.
Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Stats
Age: 10 of the last 13 winners aged 8yo+
Jockeys: non claiming amateurs outperform their representation winning 9 of the last 11
Jamie Codd has ridden 3 winners since 2009 ( twice for David Pipe)
Trainer: Spring Heeled the first Irish trained winner in over 30 years
Owner: Respect Trevor Hemmings owned runners - they have won 3 of the last 11
Rating: 6 of last 7 rated bettwen 137 and 142
Weight: last 7 winners carried at least 11-4
Fate of Favourite 2 8 8/9 1 U 7 3 1 1 2 7 7
Market Position of Winner 1 0 5 1 7 5 3 1 1 0 4 3
Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup winners 2006-2015
Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Trivia
The Kim Muir Amateur Riders’ Chase was introduced to the National Hunt Meeting in 1946 by Mrs Evan Williams, sister of Kim Muir, a young cavalry officer who lost his life in the early years of the Second World War. The addition of Fulke Walwyn to the title of the race occurred in 1991, reflecting the career of Cheltenham's most successful trainer. Walwyn trained 211 winners at Cheltenham and 40 at The Festival - his haul included four Gold Cups, two Champion Hurdles and seven Cathcart Challenge Cups. His Festival total was a record until Nicky Henderson surpassed the mark in 2012.
FIELD SIZE The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase now has a safety limit of 24 and a maximum field has gone to post in five of the past six renewals, while 26 ran in 1989. Just six horses lined up in 1950.
WEIGHTS Arctic Gold defied 12st 3lb in 1954, while Jack Tatters scored off 12st 2lb in 1949. More recently, both Character Building (2009) and Ballabriggs (2010) carried 11st 12lb to victory. In Truth won under 9st 9lb in 1998.
MULTIPLE WINNERS There have been two dual winners - Chu-The (1967 and 1968) and Glyde Court (1985 and 1986).
MOST SUCCESSFUL TRAINER Fred Rimell saddled four winners - Mighty Fine (1951), Gay Monarch II (1955), Nicolaus Silver (1961) and Double Negative (1977). Nicky Henderson is the most successful current handler with three wins to his name - Master Bob (1990), The Bushkeeper (2002) and Juveigneur (2005).
MOST SUCCESSFUL JOCKEY Jamie Codd last year on The Package became the first 3 time winner he also won on Character Building (2009) and Junior (2011) Seven amateur riders have recorded a pair of wins in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase, including Richard Burton (Juveigneur (2005) and Cloudy Lane (2007)), Richard Harding (You're Special (2006) and Ballabriggs (2010)) .
OVERSEAS-TRAINER WINNERS Irish-trained horses have prevailed on five occasions. The most recent was Greasepaint, who scored for Michael Cunningham in 1983.
BETTING Lochroe won at odds of 10/11 in 1958, while Royal Predica (2003) and You’re Special (2006) were both successful at 33/1.
DID YOU KNOW? Most of the top amateur riders appear in the winners’ list, including some subsequently well-known professional jockeys and trainers. Gay Kindersley, John Oaksey, Nick Gaselee, Roger Charlton, Michael Dickinson, Ridley Lamb, Ted Walsh, Jim Wilson, Simon Sherwood, Gee and Marcus Armytage, Robert Thornton, Adrian Maguire, Seamus Durack, Ken Whelan, David Crosse and Robert Walford are among the familiar names. Cool Ground is the only horse to have progressed from winning this handicap to a Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup victory. Nicolaus Silver and Ballabriggs both subsequently won the John Smith’s Grand National after capturing the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase, while 2012 winner Sunnyhillboy was beaten a nose in the Aintree race.