JLT Novices' Chase
The JLT Novices' Chase (1:30pm) is a Grade 2 listed weight-for-age chase run over two and a half miles. The total prize-pool in 2016 is £100,000 and the race will be run on Thursday, March 17.
The race was a new event for the 2011 Cheltenham Festival, not to be confused with the old Jewson Novices' Handicap Chase, which has been renamed the Pulteney Land Investments Novices' Handicap Chase and is now Tuesday's seventh race.
This new contest gives the leading novice chasers an additional middle distance opportunity between the Grade 1 Arkle Chase (run over two miles) and the Grade 1 RSA Chase (run over an extended three miles).
Cheltenham’s Director of Racing, Simon Claisse said: “We have always maintained that we would extend the number of races at The Festival if the right contest could be identified which would not diminish the overall quality of the meeting, and would get the support of trainers, owners and breeders.
“A weight for age novices’ chase over two and a half miles has been at the top of the list for some time and we have agreed with the British Horseracing Authority that it will be introduced in 2011.
“An additional race at The Festival is good news for the industry. It gives another winning opportunity for jockeys, trainers, owners and stable staff; it gives our customers at Cheltenham better value and it is bound to produce more betting turnover, which means more Levy."
Bradley Moore, Marketing Services Director of Jewson, the UK’s leading supplier of sustainable timber and building materials, added: "We are delighted to be renewing our association with Cheltenham for a further three years by moving our backing to the Grade 2 Jewson Novices’ Chase at The Festival.
“We are proud that our support of the Novices’ Handicap Chase over the last few years has helped prove the case for this new Grade 2 race for two and a half mile novice chasers."
2016 Black Hercules
2015 Windsor Park
2014 Taquin Du Seuil
2012 Sir Des Champs
2011 Noble Prince
2012 Jewson Novices' Chase Review
This new race received a significant boost with the victory of SIR DES CHAMPS, who promises to be top-class, and future renewals look set to similarly classy.
The Irish raider was also one of the best-backed winners at the meeting, going off at just 3/1, and those who had got involved had few anxious moments with the Willie Mullins-trained gelding coming home four and a half lengths clear of Champion Court. For Non Stop was a further nine lengths away in fourth.
The disappointment of the race was Peddlers Cross, who had finished runner-up in the previous season's Champion Hurdle and had looked a useful recruit to chasing when winning twice at Bangor earlier in the season. In the end, the 5/2 favourite trailed home in eighth, having made several errors.
2011 Jewson Novices' Chase Review
Legendary jockey AP McCoy partnered Noble Prince (4-1) to victory in the Jewson Novices' Chase for his first winner at the 2011 Cheltenham Festival, and his 200th of the season.
The champion jockey swept past Richard Johnson and Wishfull Thinking (7-2 favourite) at the final fence and powered clear for a mightily impressive four-length success.
High class second Wishfull Thinking put in a super round of jumping until a mistake at the last, with Henry de Bromhead's Loosen My Load (11-2) a further five lengths back in third.