By News Team
12th March 2020
The highlight of the Cheltenham Festival is the Gold Cup. It’s the race in which every trainer, jockey and owner wants to win.
The race has seen some incredible winners over the years, creating stable stars around the country. Many trainers have won the Gold Cup, some even multiple times.
This year’s renewal of the Gold Cup, which takes place on Friday, looks wide open with many fancies for every type of punter. Be we look at the most successful trainers in the Gold Cup, past and present.
Tom Dreaper is the leading trainer in the race with an incredible five wins. His first Gold Cup glory came in 1946 with Prince Regent. Dreaper’s next success would come with a very special horse, the famed Arkle who won consecutive Gold Cups, winning in 1964, 1965 and 1966.
He was the first horse to win three on-the-spin since the legendary Golden Miller and both horses have been recognised with statues within the Cheltenham grounds. Dreaper capped off his fourth and final Gold Cup win with Fort Leney in 1968. All but one Dreaper-trained winners were ridden by Pat Taaffe who is the leading jockey in the race with four wins.
Basil Briscoe has only won the Gold Cup with one horse, but that horse won it four consecutive times. The legendary Golden Miller is the Gold Cup’s most successful horse, winning back-to-back renewals between 1932-1936. This feat has never been matched and it is one that solidified Briscoe as one of the most successful Gold Cup trainers of all time.
When you talk about the Gold Cup, you automatically think of three horses: Golden Miller, Arkle and Best Mate. The latter was trained by Henrietta Knight and gave her a Gold Cup hat-trick between 2002 and 2004; the 7/1 winner in 2002 became a legend and an instant fan favourite; Best Mate was the first thoroughbred to win three renewals consecutively since Arkle. Knight’s success with Best Mate will cement her place in the history books.
Current trainer Paul Nicholls has established himself as a household name. He is an extremely successful trainer and has made a habit of having winners at the Cheltenham Festival. Nicholls has trained Gold Cup greats like Kauto Star and Denman, but one of his finest hours was when he saddled the first three horses home (Denman, Kauto Star and Neptune Collenges) in 2009.
Nicholls will be looking to extend his success in the race when his hopeful, Clan Des Obeaux, runs on Friday. He is currently priced at 7/1 after a successful season.