The Marsh Novices Chase tips 2023

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Marsh Novices Chase TipsWhen is the Marsh Novices Chase?

Cheltenham Thursday 16th March 1.30pm

Marsh Novices Chase (Grade 1) (5yo+)

Distance: 2 Miles 4 furlongs

Weights – 11st 3lb (5yo), 11st 4lb (6yo+), 7lb allowance for mares

Day three kicks off with the Marsh Novices Chase (Formerly the JLT Novices Chase), a championship race for novices over a distance of two and a half miles on the new course, where they have to clear 17 fences.

This is for those horses that are not quite fast enough to run in the Arkle, but don’t have the stamina for the RSA Chase.

Willie Mullins has trained the winner of four of the eight renewals.  A lot of these horses are also entered in the RSA Chase and the Arkle which muddies the waters a little bit when you’re trying to pick a selection.  This race was first run in 2011.


Marsh Novices Chase Records

Fastest Win (since 2011): Vautour 2015 ridden by Ruby Walsh trained by Willie Mullins finished in 286.3s – 4 minutes 46.3 seconds

Leading jockey (3 wins):

Ruby Walsh – Vautour (2015), Black Hercules (2016), Yorkhill (2017)

Leading trainer (4 wins):

Willie Mullins – Sir Des Champs (2012), Vautour (2015), Black Hercules (2016), Yorkhill (2017)

Source: Wikipedia

Marsh Novices Chase Trends and Statistics

11 Year Trends and Statistics 

  • Age – 10 of the last 11 winners were aged between 6 and 7.
  • Sex – 10 of the last 11 winners were geldings. The 1 winning mare came from just 5 runners.
  • Trainer – Willie Mullins and Gordon Elliott are the only trainers to saddle more than 1 winner in the last 11 years with 4 and 2 wins respectively. 
  • Country – 6 of the last 11 winners were bred in Ireland and 4 in France and 1 in Germany.
  • Colour – 5 of the last 11 winners were bay, 3 were chestnut.
  • Starting Price (SP) – 8 of the last 11 winners returned a SP 4/1 or less.
  • Starting Price Rank – 4 of the last 11 winners started as favourite and 9 were in the first 4 in the betting.
  • Headgear – 10 of the last 11 winners wore no headgear
  • Days Since Last Run – 8 of the last 11 winners had run between 31 and 60 days ago. 
  • Last Run Form – 8 of the last 11 winners had won last time out, 10 were in the top 2.

Who are the Marsh Novices Chase Leading Contenders?

The Irish hold a potentially strong hand with both Bob Olinger – who won at the Festival last term – and Galopin Des Champs both at the head of the market; but L’HOMME PRESSE could make them both work and Venetia Williams’ rising star can make his presence felt.

Unbeaten in four runs over the larger obstacles this term which includes the Dipper Novices’ Chase over course and distance he was impressive again in winning the recent Scilly Isles Chase at Sandown, beating Mister Coffey by more than twenty lengths despite a tendency to jump to his left.

That quirk won’t be an issue at this track and he won with plenty to spare, jumping soundly and taking up the running mid-race there was only going to be one winner from a long way out. He had beaten a decent field the time before in the New Years’ Day feature at this venue and he’ll surely give a good account of himself with his sound jumping and strong travelling; he may prove hard to peg back and he can exploit any jumping frailties in the Irish challengers.


ENVOI ALLEN –  Unbeaten in a point to point and 11 races under rules. Champion Bumper winner in 2019, Ballymore Hurdle winner in 2020. Landed a Grade 1 chase at Fairyhouse in November.

ENERGUMENE – Lightly raced, unbeaten since his bumper days, easy winner of the Irish Arkle.

SHAN BLUE – Stepped up from his hurdle form when landing the Grade 1 Kauto Star Novices Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day but was beaten fair and square when runner up at Sandown subsequently.

ALLART –  Grade 2 winner at Ascot in December, failed to build on that when falling at Haydock.

What’s our Marsh Novices Chase Tips?

With many of these holding multiple entries at Cheltenham you need to be able to second guess the stable plans. ENVOI ALLEN looks to have been aimed at this though and will likely frighten off some off the opposition.

To be sure to find out who we select on the morning of the race, join our VIP Club

On the day Keith selected ENVOI ALLEN 13:20 Cheltenham 4/9 – The unbeaten ENVOI ALLEN has been aimed at this all season and has frightened any serious opposition.

How did he do?  Unfortunately Envoi Allen fell at the 4th fence.


Here was what Keith said about the 2020 Marsh Novices Chase.

At the time of writing, the top four in the ante-post market were priced at either 7/1 or 8/1. However, in my opinion it is not as wide open as that market suggests.

To my mind, this is a two horse race between the rejuvenated FAUGHEEN and the progressive ITCHY FEET.

Nobody would be happier than me if FAUGHEEN can continue to roll back the years but I feel he is vulnerable to younger legs up the Cheltenham hill, and I also think that  ITCHY FEET is going to be a force to be reckoned with for years to come in all the top chases.

My selection: ITCHY FEET 7/1 each way

As this article is written in advance of the 2020 Cheltenham Festival, the likely contenders are expected to change as we get closer to St Patrick's Day. The picture also starts to get much clearer as we approach the festival, with trainers starting to show their cards in the weeks leading up to Day 3. 

On the day, Keith selected: ITCHY FEET

How did he do? Thursday began badly when ITCHY FEET unseated at the 6th in the Marsh Novices Chase.

Marsh Novices Chase Results

Turners Novices Chase (Grade 1) (Registered As The Golden Miller) (GBB Race)
Distance: 2m4f (4348 yards +38 yards rails adjustment) Prize (winner): £98472 Dir: Left Handed
Runners: 4    Going: Soft    Class: Class 1 Grade 1    Age Restrictions: 5yo+
Winners Time: 5 mins 7.65s   Avg OR: 153     Median OR: 153     Fences: 14

NoPlaceDist BtHorseAgeWeightORTrainerJockey (Claim)Odds
11stBob Olinger (IRE)711-4161Bromhead, Henry DeBlackmore, Rachael6/5
not always fluent, chased leader, bad mistake 4 out, pushed along after next, ridden, edged left and no impression before 2 out, 11 lengths down when left in clear lead last BF IP MIN 1.01 BF IP MAX 1000 Owner: Robcour
42nd40Busselton (FR)511-2145OBrien, Joseph PatrickSlevin, J J50/1
chased leaders, getting adrift from front pair 3rd, slow 6th, tailed off 10th, left 2nd last BF IP MIN 40 BF IP MAX 1000 Owner: Chanelle Phar Ltd
23rd28El Barra (FR)811-4143Mullins, W PMullins, Mr P W18/1
jumped right in rear, mistake 2nd, getting adrift from front pair 3rd, tailed off 10th, left 3rd last BF IP MIN 17 BF IP MAX 1000 Owner: Mrs S Ricci
3FGalopin Des Champs (FR)611-4164Mullins, W PTownend, P5/6 (Fav)
led, jumped big early, reached at 9th, going well 3 out, asserting next, 11 lengths ahead when slipped on landing and fell last, unlucky BF IP MIN 1.01 BF IP MAX 1000 Owner: Mrs Audrey Turley

Marsh Novices Chase (Grade 1) (Registered As The Golden Miller) (GBB Race)
Distance: 2m4f (4348 yards +57 yards rails adjustment) Prize (winner): £73854 Dir: Left Handed
Runners: 8    Going: Good To Soft    Class: Class 1 Grade 1    Age Restrictions: 5yo+
Winners Time: 5 mins 1.75s   Avg OR: 154     Median OR: 152.5  

NoPlaceDist BtHorseAgeTrainerJockey (Claim)OddsBFBFP
31stChantry House (IRE)7Henderson, N JBoinville, Nico9/115.002.35
tracked leaders on outside, not fluent 9th, challenged before 2 out, led approaching last, driven flat, stayed on well BF IP MIN 1.01 BF IP MAX 17
72nd3Fusil Raffles (FR)6Henderson, N JJacob, Daryl14/115.113.04
led until after 7th, chased leader, led again before 2 out, headed before not fluent and pecked last, held by winner flat, kept on BF IP MIN 1.66 BF IP MAX 1000
13rd2Asterion Forlonge (FR)7Mullins, W PTownend, P14/115.603.83
held up rear of mid-division on outside, closed when not much room 11th, went 3rd from 2 out, soon ridden and hung left, not fluent last, held flat, kept on BF IP MIN 1.65 BF IP MAX 1000
44th3Chatham Street Lad (IRE)9Winters, MichaelOKeeffe, Darragh14/125.212.93
chased leaders on inside, not fluent 6th, mistake 3 out, not much room and switched right before 2 out, went 4th from last, hung left, no impression BF IP MIN 4 BF IP MAX 1000
85th4Shan Blue (IRE)7Skelton, DanielSkelton, Harry10/111.042.48
tracked leader, challenged 7th, soon led and upped tempo, not fluent 8th, clear 10th, hit 4 out, reduced lead after 3 out, headed before 2 out, soon beaten, not much room and weakened flat BF IP MIN 2.52 BF IP MAX 1000
26th30Blackbow (IRE)8Mullins, W PCooper, Bryan J40/144.045.80
held up in rear, slightly hampered 4th, lacked pace to ever get on terms, well beaten before 3 out, tailed off BF IP MIN 22 BF IP MAX 1000
57th25Darver Star (IRE)9Cromwell, Gavin PatrickDonoghue, K M33/134.004.40
lacked fluency and slow at times, always in rear, behind 8th, tailed off BF IP MIN 17.5 BF IP MAX 1000
6FEnvoi Allen (FR)7Bromhead, Henry DeKennedy, J W4/9 (Fav)1.621.20
chased leaders, fell 4th BF IP MIN 1.56 BF IP MAX 1000

Marsh Novices Chase (Grade 1) (Registered As The Golden Miller)
Distance: 2m4f (4348 yards +38 yards rails adjustment) Prize (winner): £84405 Dir: Left Handed
Runners: 12    Going: Soft    Class: Class 1 Grade 1    Age Restrictions: 5yo+
Winners Time: 5 mins 7.32s   Avg OR: 150     Median OR: 151

NoPlaceDist BtHorseAgeORTrainerJockey (Claim)Odds
91stSamcro (IRE)8157Elliott, GordonRussell, D N4/1
tracked leaders, joined leader going well 3 out, mistake and shaken up after next, ridden to lead narrowly after last, stayed on well under pressure flat, joined near finish, just prevailed on nod BF IP MIN 1.2 BF IP MAX 15
42ndNSEMelon8151Mullins, W PMullins, Mr P W14/1
tracked leader, led after 4th, joined 3 out, ridden after next, headed narrowly after last, rallied gamely flat, upsides near finish, just lost out on nod BF IP MIN 1.07 BF IP MAX 75
23rd1Faugheen (IRE)12158Mullins, W PTownend, P3/1 (Fav)
led to after 4th, tracked leader, lost place when pecked 3 out, chased front pair when switched inside between last 2, ridden and switched right after last, rallied flat, not quite able to get back on terms near finish BF IP MIN 2.5 BF IP MAX 1000
64th3.25Mister Fisher (IRE)6153Henderson, N JBoinville, Nico7/1
tracked leaders on inside, not fluent 5th, mid-division after next, headway to chase leaders before 2 out, ridden and kept on same pace in 4th before last, no impression BF IP MIN 4.3 BF IP MAX 1000
105th4.75Tornado Flyer (IRE)7149Mullins, W PMullins, D E10/1
held up behind, driven and outpaced after 3 out, ridden after next, kept on under pressure flat, never nearer BF IP MIN 12.5 BF IP MAX 1000
56th1.25Midnight Shadow7150Smith, Mrs S JCook, Danny22/1
mid-division on outside, headway before 3 out, soon every chance, driven and one pace approaching next, no impression between last 2 BF IP MIN 14 BF IP MAX 1000
117th2.75Saint Sonnet (FR)5145Nicholls, P FCobden, Harry33/1
mid-division, lost place and behind 11th, headway before 3 out, chased leaders turning in, ridden after 2 out, no impression before last BF IP MIN 20 BF IP MAX 1000
18th12Bapaume (FR)7153Mullins, W PBlackmore, Rachael20/1
mid-division, chased leaders 3 out, outpaced before next, ridden and weakened last BF IP MIN 9 BF IP MAX 1000
129th40Annie Mc (IRE)6145ONeill, JonjoONeill, Jonjo (Jr)18/1
held up towards rear, outpaced after 3 out, soon ridden, never able to challenge, weakened next, tailed off BF IP MIN 13 BF IP MAX 1000
710th16Poker Play (FR)7137Pipe, D EScudamore, Tom100/1
close up on outside, lost place 8th (water), in rear when jumped slowly 10th, lost touch 4 out, continued tailed off BF IP MIN 260 BF IP MAX 1000
8PUReserve Tank (IRE)6151Tizzard, C LPower, R M12/1
prominent on inside, ridden and lost place after 3 out, weakened quickly and pulled up before next BF IP MIN 8.2 BF IP MAX 1000
3URItchy Feet (FR)6155Murphy, OllySheehan, Gavin7/2
held up behind, mistake 4th, blundered and unseated rider 6th BF IP MIN 5.3 BF IP MAX 1000

Novices Chase Previous Winners

New Race in 2011

DateGoingRunnersWinnerStallionAgeJockey (Clm)TrainerOddsWeightORDays
Good To Soft879/111-415129d
Good To Soft1063/111-415140d
Good To Soft13720/111-414747d

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Cheltenham Festival Thursday

Race Schedule

13:30The Marsh Novices’ Chase (Grade 1)2m abt 4fChase
14:10The Pertemps Network Final (A Handicap Hurdle Race) (Listed)Abt 3mHurdle
14:50The Ryanair Chase (Grade 1)
(feature race)
2m abt 5fChase
15:30The Paddy Power Stayers’ Hurdle (Grade 1)abt 3mHurdle
16:10The Craft Irish Whiskey Co Plate (A Handicap Steeple Chase) (Grade 3)2m abt 5fChase
16:50The Daylesford Mares Novices’ Hurdle (Grade 2)2m 1fHurdle
17:30The Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Steeple Chase (0-145)3m abt 2fChase

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