If you’re trying to decide who will win the most prestigious chase in the racing world – the 2024 Cheltenham Gold Cup – then maybe it’s worth looking back to see what the great race has to tell us.
Looking through history sheds a lot of light on the likely winner this year as there are certain patterns that begin to emerge.
For Cheltenham 2024, many offers are available from several good sources. But before deciding which offers to take advantage of, let’s look at a few Gold Cup historical stats.
Average Odds For A Gold Cup Winner
Since the contest was first run on 12 March 1924, there have been 94 Cheltenham Gold Cups.
And of those 94 winners, 27% (26 out of the 94) have been favourites.
But in the modern era (since 2000), the average odds of the winner are around 6/1.
The only real anomaly, a winner that defied their long odds, was the 2014 winner, Lord Windermere, at odds of 20/1. But even that stat doesn’t alter the average over a 23-year period.
The shortest-priced winner in the modern era (again since 2000) was the 2004 winner Best Mate with odds of 8/11 – as he landed his third Gold Cup in a row. He was the only horse to do since the legendary Arkle.
Three of the last four winners have been favourite, with the only upset being Minella Indo who went off at 9/1 in 2021.
We should point out that Al Boum Photo was that year’s favourite, having already won the race in the two previous years.
Bookies hedged their bets that he could repeat the amazing achievement of Best Mate and Arkle and priced him accordingly. But it was always a long shot and unlikely to happen.
So Minella Indo swept in with jockey Jack Kennedy bagging her first Gold Cup.
Betting On The Gold Cup
There’s always a lot to consider when it comes to the Gold Cup and the betting markets.
Obviously, the biggest decision is which runner to back, and after that, what are the odds? You may be surprised to learn that not all bookies are equal when pricing up the market.
So always look around for the best odds. The variation between what’s on offer can make a big difference.
For example, if you decide to bet £20 on a runner with odds of 6/1 at one bookmaker and 8/1 at another, here is what you would win:
£20 at 6/1 = £120 + £20 (stake returned) = £140
£20 at 8/1 = = £160 + £20 (Stake returned) = £180
That’s a £40 difference on the same horse and with the same bet.
So it’s always worth the time to hunt around for a bargain. Think outside the box and consider alternatives like Paypal payment option casinos, which are safe and secure, as well as traditional bookmakers that have promotions for the Cheltenham Festival.
Ideal Age For A Gold Cup Winner
Meanwhile, the average age of a Gold Cup winning horse, in the last 10 years, is 7.8 years old, and the most common age for the winner is 8 years old.
Nine of the last ten winners have either been seven or eight years old. The only exception was Don Cossack in 2016; he was nine years old.
The only horses outside the 7-9 age range to win since 1970 were:
- 2011 Long Run aged 6
- 1998 Cool Dawn aged 10
- 1992 Cool Ground aged 10
- 1989 Desert Orchid aged 10
- 1988 Charter Party aged 10
- 1982 Silver Buck aged 10
- 1973 The Dikler aged 10
No horse aged 11 or over has won the Gold Cup since 1969. That was What A Myth and he was 12-years-old.
When Speed Really Counts
So here’s the thing with whittling down statistics when you are looking for a Gold Cup winner, speed matters.
The distance of the Gold Cup is 3m2½f, and in the last five years, the winner has crossed the post in less than 6 minutes 51 seconds.
When it comes to the entries and runners on the day, most will have ticked a lot of the boxes, otherwise they wouldn’t be in the race.
However, a quick glance at their Top Speed (you can find this on the Racing Post race card) will tell you whether they have that burst of energy needed to get over the finishing line.
Compare how fast they finished a previous race over that distance and one or two will always come out ahead as being faster than the others.
What you have to remember is that all of the horses will carry the same weight. So what separates them is how fast they can run. The faster the horse, the higher the chance of success.
The Importance Of Training
Training also seems to play a huge part in deciding who’ll win. From the last 15 Cheltenham Gold Cups, seven of the winners have been British trained and eight in Ireland.
The dominance of the Irish at the Cheltenham Festival can really be felt in the Gold Cup.
Eight of the last ten wins have gone to the Irish with Willie Mullins and Henry De Bromhead winning the last five between them.
With the likes of Galopin Des Champs, Allaho, and Gerri Colombe potentially contending in 2024, it could just head back to the Emerald Isle again.
Gold Cup Winner Stats
When you’re deciding who will emerge victorious for this year’s Gold Cup, bear in mind that history tells us a lot.
The winner is statistically likely to be fairly short-priced (at less than 7-1). It will most likely be aged 7 or 8, and will probably be trained in Ireland.
This year’s favourite Galopin Des Champs won the race last year, is trained by Willie Mullins in Ireland and is 8-years-old.
Likewise two of the next three in the Gold Cup betting markets are Gerri Colombe from Gordon Elliott, Shiskin from Nicky Henderson, and Factorslow from Martin Brassil.