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10 things you may not know about the Sky Bet Chase

Racing
|
08 January 2019

With the 71st running of the Sky Bet Chase just around the corner, we take a look at ten interesting facts you may not know about one of Yorkshire's most valuable races...

  1. Striking grey ZIGA BOY is the only horse to have won the race more than once. He won in 2016 (ridden by Brendan Powell Jr) and in 2017 (ridden by Tom Bellamy).
  2. Sky Bet have been sponsors of the race since 2003, therefore celebrating their 17th year in sponsorship this year. 
  3. 1982 winner BREGAWN went on to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup the following year. 
  4. This year, the prize money has increased by £20,000 to make the total prize money an impressive £100,000. 
  5. In the past 10 years, the average age of the winning horse in 8. The oldest horse to win the race was ESB who was 11 years old when he took the honours in 1957. 
  6. Six of the past ten winners were rated between 136 and 151. 
  7. The Sky Bet Chase Raceday also features the Grade 2 OLBG.com Yorkshire Rose Mares' Hurdle previously won by the likes of VROUM VROUM MAG and ANNIE POWER. 
  8. Both ESB (winner in 1957) and NICOLAUS SILVER (winner in 1962) went on to win the following years Grand National. 
  9. The 1965 race was run on the day of Sir Winston Churchill's funeral when the insistence on racing going ahead was apparently less than universally popular. It was won by King Of Diamonds but the race is best remembered for the fatal fall of dual Cheltenham Festival winner Buona Notte, one of the lowest points of jockey Johnny Haine's career.
  10. Since the inauguration in 1948, the Sky Bet Chase is known as one of the top staying handicaps of the season. 

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