The New One is the one for Nigel

Nigel Twiston-Davies Stable Visit

Grange Hill Farm, Gloucestershire




Nigel Twiston-Davies showed off to the media his pride and joy, The New One, who led the string up the famous stiff Grange Hill Farm gallops this morning, Thursday, February 27.


The six-year-old, going for the Stan James Champion Hurdle on the opening day of The Festival, Champion Day, Tuesday, March 11, is the horse he would love to see winning at The Festival.


The trainer said: “He looks very glossy and happy. He is as easy as you can get. We have not had to do any racecourse gallops as we have the proper facilities here.


“He is just a nice horse – totally uncomplicated. There will be pace but, if there is no pace, others will struggle more than us. The New One quickens and has a phenomenal turn of foot. Someone showed me some statistics. He covered the last two furlongs, over the same track as Hurricane Fly last year, unbelievably quicker. I don’t understand how to access such information.


“I hope his turn of foot will win him the day. We don’t know if he will win – he has never met Hurricane Fly and Our Conor.


“He was on an impossible stride at the last in the Christmas Hurdle at Kempton – that was the problem. His jumping has been absolutely superb all along and it was just bad luck. The reason we got beat at Kempton was that mistake at the hurdle. At Cheltenham you can make a mistake at the last because there is the great big hill to put it right, but at Kempton there is only short-run-in. He did very well to get back within a half-length of My Tent Or Yours.


“There are not many people who would disagree me when I say he would have won if he had jumped the last properly. It was just hard luck. One horse was on a good stride and other wasn’t.


“We won the Champion Hurdle four years ago but the horse who was taken out of the race, Binocular, turned up again! Khyber Kim won by seven lengths I think but some apparition came and stuffed him. There you are.


“We are looking forward to putting that right. It would be great, especially with Sam riding. I cannot emphasise enough that with your son riding, it is twice the enjoyment. Financially it helps too, as he is part of the business.


“If The New One gets comprehensively stuffed, I would then look at three miles over hurdles. Big Buck’s is not going to be around forever. The New One could go over fences but he seems so good over hurdles why bother with fences. We will probably school him at the end of the season to see how he likes fences.


“I don’t think Sam (Twiston-Davies) has many weaknesses. His strengths – his balance is amazing and he seems to be a very good judge of pace.


“If a horse makes an earth-shattering mistake, you never see him move but most jockeys do. He does like to be handy in races but does not make too much use of them. He seems to understand when they are going too quick.


“He watches a lot of racing and other jockeys. One of his attributes is that he doesn’t think he is any good. He does learn. He is a very modest bloke.


“It was hideous three years ago. I would worry myself to death about him letting owners down but he hasn’t let anybody down and hopefully never will.


“You can think of a few trainers’ sons who have not been as good as their parents thought. I think we all agree that I have been lucky. He is a joy to have around.


“Hurricane Fly must be the one to beat in the Champion Hurdle. He has stuffed the others twice. You make a case for us beating My Tent Or Yours and Hurricane Fly has beaten the others.


“It is less than two weeks to the Champion and things can go wrong – hopefully they don’t.


“We have a very good amateur called Jamie Bargary. He won on Hunters Lodge at Cheltenham in October but was unfortunate to go the wrong way at Towcester when they moved the whatsits. He had to have 14 days off but, as this covered amateur races, he had nearly three months on the sidelines. He is an up and coming jockey and I think an awful lot of him.


“The horses have been good form all season. This time last year, we had a few coughing. We have not had that so far but it could happen next week!


“We have many less (horses) than normal. We have Same Difference again and perhaps he can win the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir again, we have The New One and the handicaps are there to be won. Let’s hope.


“None of my Cheltenham runners has been expensive. We have never had expensive ones so the 15 Festival winners have been done by tilting at rainbows a bit.


“At one time, in 2007, we had 120 horses and are down to about 60. It is down to the recession.


“I would like to send 13 horses to The Festival but, realistically, nine will get in.”




Nigel Twiston-Davies initially combined training as a permit-holder with his farming interests throughout the 1980s, having his first winner with Last Of The Foxes at Hereford in March, 1982, before the agricultural recession prompted him to make training his full-time profession.


He took out a full training licence in 1989, recording his first win as a public trainer in December of that year with Babil at Newbury. He has since gone on to register more than 1,500 successes.


Born on May 16, 1957, Twiston-Davies rode 17 winners as an amateur under Rules and gained a further 17 point-to-point victories, and served as assistant trainer to Richard Head and Fred Rimell.


A childhood neighbour and friend of Peter Scudamore, he went into partnership with the former champion jump jockey to set up stables at Grange Hill Farm, Guiting Power, Gloucestershire, although Scudamore is no longer involved in the venture and currently assists Lucinda Russell.


Twiston-Davies adopted and developed the pioneering techniques of Martin Pipe, such as interval training and regular blood tests for his string, enabling him to rapidly raise his profile among the training ranks.


He is the only current trainer to have won the Grand National more than once, saddling Earth Summit to victory in 1998 and Bindaree four years later.


The 2001/2002 campaign had been relatively quiet by Twiston-Davies’ high standards before Bindaree provided him with his second John Smith’s Grand National success. Afterwards he revealed that he had been intending to give up training, but despite “having a bigger debt than Argentina” after buying out Scudamore, the Aintree victory made him have a change of heart.


His best season numerically was in 2010/11, when he saddled 97 winners.


His sons Sam and Willie are both jockeys. Sam is stable jockey to his father, while Willie, who also started out over Jumps, is now a Flat apprentice.


Nigel Twiston-Davies’ 15 winners at The Festival


Tipping Tim Baylis & Harding Affordable Luxury Handicap Chase


Gaelstrom Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle


Young Hustler RSA Chase


Arctic Kinsman Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle


Upgrade JCB Triumph Hurdle


Rubhahunish Pertemps Network Final


Fundamentalist Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle


Ballyfitz Pertemps Network Final


Tricky Trickster Terry Biddlecombe National Hunt Chase


Imperial Commander Ryanair Chase


Imperial Commander Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup


Baby Run CGA Foxhunter Chase


Pigeon Island Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase


The New One Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle


Same Difference Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase


Sam Twiston-Davies


Born October 15, 1992, Sam Twiston-Davies was still studying for AS-level exams at school in Gloucestershire when he had both his first Cheltenham Festival winner and first Grand National ride.


The son of trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies and his estranged wife, Cathy, (who both rode as amateurs), Sam was successful in pony racing before starting in point-to-points in the 2008/09 season when becoming eligible at the age of 16.


Within a few weeks, on December 28, 2008, he rode his first winner between the flags, taking a race at Cottenham in Cambridgeshire on Grenfell, trained by his mother.


At Ludlow on February 18, 2009, he scored his first success under Rules when partnering Baby Run, owned and trained by Nigel, to victory in a hunter chase.


A career that was bound to flourish gained added lift through Baby Run, for he and Sam went on to finish third in the following month’s CGA Foxhunter Chase at the 2009 Cheltenham Festival and later gained one of the season’s biggest prizes in the Champion Hunters’ Chase at the Punchestown Festival.


Sam and Baby Run capped that in March, 2010, when returning to Cheltenham and running out easy winners of the CGA Foxhunter Chase at The Festival. Sam then went to Aintree and partnered Hello Bud into fifth on his Grand National debut. He turned professional shortly afterwards.


Sam has a younger brother, William, who took over on Baby Run in the 2011 CGA Foxhunter Chase, only to be unseated when leading at the second-last fence although he landed the Fox Hunters’ Chase at Aintree on the horse a few weeks later.


Sam partnered Hello Bud to victory in the 2010 Becher Chase over the Grand National course at Aintree and that same month gave Little Josh a brilliant ride to land the Grade Three Paddy Power Gold Cup at Cheltenham.


Twiston-Davies had his best ever season in terms of number of winners (87) in 2012/2013 and not only rode Hello Bud to win the Becher Chase in November but enjoyed a profitable partnership with his father’s The New One who won the Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.


He is already well on the way to surpassing that total this season with 85 wins already (up to and including Tuesday, February 25). At The Festival, as well as partnering The New One in the Stan James Champion Hurdle, Sam will also ride the Paul Nicholls-trained Big Buck’s as the 11-year-old bids for an amazing fifth Ladbrokes World Hurdle.



Sam Twiston-Davies’ two winners at The Festival


Baby Run CGA Foxhunter Chase


The New One Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle


The New One (IRE)

6 b g King´s Theatre (IRE) – Thuringe (FR) (Turgeon (USA))

Form: 1161/111212-112 Owner: Sarah Such Breeder: R Brown & Ballylinch Stud


See the introduction for Nigel Twiston-Davies’ comments.


* On course to run at The Festival for a third consecutive year. Finished sixth in the 2012 Weatherbys Champion Bumper (his only finish out of the first two) and stormed to a four-length success in the Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle last year.

* Has won on four of his six starts at Cheltenham, including when easily beating Zarkandar in the Grade Two International at The International on December 14.

* Went down by a half-length to My Tent Or Yours (after making a mistake at the final flight) on his latest appearance in the Grade One Christmas Hurdle at Kempton Park on December 26.

* Set to re-oppose My Tent Or Yours and take on 19-time Grade One winner Hurricane Fly in the Stan James Champion Hurdle at The Festival on Tuesday, March 11.

Race Record: Starts: 13; Wins: 9; 2nd: 3; 3rd: -; Win & Place prize money: £280,248


Double Ross (IRE)   

8 ch g Double Eclipse (IRE) – Kinross (Nearly A Hand)

Form: 3/35132082/32F14453P-6132112 Owner: Options O Syndicate Breeder: T McIlhagga

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “Double Ross has done lots of good stuff at Cheltenham. He will go for the JLT Novices’ Chase rather than the handicaps because there might be some improver lower in the weights. He is more experienced over fences than most of the novices. I think experience over the Cheltenham fences is quite important. He has been around there three times this season. Oscar Whisky does not look as fluent in his jumping. Double Ross can go on any ground. It is a question of whether he will be good enough. He will take the race to them, being up with the pace.”

* Eighth in the 2012 Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle at The Festival and third in the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle at the meeting last year.

* Made two appearances without success over fences during the 2011/2012 campaign, but has excelled over the larger obstacles this season, winning a pair of valuable Grade Three handicap chases at Cheltenham – the Stewart Family Thank You Gold Cup on December 14 and the Fairlawne Handicap Chase on January 1.

* Runner-up, beaten a length and three quarters by Wishfull Thinking, in the Grade Three Trophy Chase on Festival Trials Day at Cheltenham on January 25.

* Remains engaged in two of the novices’ chases at The Festival – the RSA Chase and the JLT Novices’ Chase – as well holding entries in the Baylis & Harding Affordable Luxury Handicap Chase Handicap Chase and Byrne Group Plate.

Race Record: Starts: 25; Wins: 5; 2nd: 5; 3rd: 6; Win & Place prize money: £157,151


Same Difference (IRE)

8 b g Mr Combustible (IRE) – Sarahs Reprive (IRE) (Yashgan)

Form: 143371/23413612-00P Owner: Mrs R Vaughan Breeder: Marie Fenlon

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “He will attempt to win the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Handicap Chase for the second year in a row.”

* Got up in the dying strides to gain a head success over Super Duty in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase at The Festival in 2013.

* Followed up that victory with another excellent run in a handicap chase, filling the runner-up spot in the Bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown Park the following month.

* Has failed to match those heights so far this term in three Grade Three contests, coming home 11th in the United House Gold Cup at Ascot on November 2 and 10th in the Hennessy Gold Cup at Newbury on November 30. Pulled up on latest start in the Betfred Classic Chase at Warwick on January 11.

* Could bid for a repeat win in the Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase (rated 4lb higher compared to last year) or run in the Baylis & Harding Affordable Luxury Handicap Chase.

Race Record: Starts: 17; Wins: 4; 2nd: 2; 3rd: 4; Win & Place prize money: £91,239


Splash Of Ginge

6 b g Oscar (IRE) – Land Of Honour (Supreme Leader)

Form: 464-4241331 Owner: John Neild Breeder: Stewart Pike

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “He will go for the Supreme. The winner of race last year was rated 148, while Splash Of Ginge is 142, only 6lb lower. There won’t be many runners -10 to 12 – and in the handicaps there will be 24. He has improved a lot according to the form book. I wasn’t surprised by Newbury because he ran well behind Irving at Ascot when he jumped poorly – it was the wrong way around for him and still was beaten only seven lengths. This way around, he is so much better – it gives a little bit of hope. If he keeps improving, he can win the race. Sadly Ryan (Hatch) will probably not get a ride at The Festival but he had two superb weekends. It was lovely to give him a boost.”

* Sprung a 33/1 surprise with a game victory under Ryan Hatch in the Grade Three Betfair Hurdle at Newbury on February 8 for enthusiastic owners.

* Easily won a maiden hurdle at Aintree on December 7 and followed up with a pair of thirds in Grade Two contests – the Kennel Gate Novices’ Hurdle at Ascot on December 20 and the Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle at Warwick on January 11.

* Has yet to run at Cheltenham; holds Festival entries in the Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle, the Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle, the Coral Cup, the Vincent O’Brien County Handicap Hurdle and the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle.

Race Record: Starts: 10; Wins: 2; 2nd: 1; 3rd: 2; Win & Place prize money: £101,306


Kaylif Aramis

7 b g Kayf Tara – Ara (Birthright)

Form: 2025/3351315-3F651 Owner: The Grangers Breeder: Isobel Phipps Coltman

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “Hopefully, he will get in the Coral Cup. He would have a chance. Otherwise, he would go for the Martin Pipe and Ryan (Hatch) would ride.”

* Three-time winner over hurdles, most recently when winning a valuable handicap contest over just shy of two and a half miles at Ascot on February 15.

* Entered in the Coral Cup and the Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle at The Festival.

Race Record: Starts: 16; Wins: 3; 2nd: 2; 3rd: 4; Win & Place prize money: £49,270


Astracad (FR)

8 br g Cadoudal (FR) – Astre Eria (FR) (Garde Royale)

Form: 2550/11318660/1321721/47F-452033 Owner: Raymond Mould Breeder: Charlotte Thoreau

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “He is in the last race of The Festival, the Johnny Henderson Grand Annual (5.15pm Gold Cup Day, Friday, March 14). He has won a lot at Cheltenham so he could be all right.”

* Dual winner at Cheltenham, having landed a conditional jockeys’ handicap hurdle at The Showcase in 2010 and the Jenny Mould Handicap Chase over an extended two miles at The International in December, 2011.

* Third, beaten 30 lengths, on latest appearance in Grade Two Desert Orchid Chase at Kempton Park on December 27.

* Has won six times in his career, over distances between two miles and an extended two and a half miles. Latest victory came in two-mile novices’ chase at Perth in April, 2012.

* Holds Festival entries in the BetVictor Queen Mother Champion Chase and the Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase, in which he was seventh in 2012.

Race Record: Starts: 28; Wins: 6; 2nd: 4; 3rd: 4; Win & Place prize money: £97,444



Full list of Nigel Twiston-Davies’ entries at The Festival


Champion Day, Tuesday, March 11

Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle

Splash Of Ginge

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “This is the race for him.”


Baylis & Harding Affordable Luxury Handicap Chase

Double Ross

Tour Des Champs

Same Difference

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “Tour Des Champs probably won’t get into this race, but we will try. If he had been fluent over any of the last three jumps the other day with headgear on, he could have been right there.”


Stan James Champion Hurdle

The New One


Terry Biddlecombe National Hunt Chase

According To Trev

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “He is going for the race and it would be lovely to win because it is named after Terry Biddlecombe. But some superstar Irish horse normally takes this race.”



Rewards4Racing Novices’ Handicap Chase

The Cockney Mackem

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “He will probably struggle to get into the race.”

Ladies Day, Wednesday, March 12

Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle


Splash Of Ginge


RSA Chase

Double Ross


Coral Cup


Splash Of Ginge

Kaylif Aramis


BetVictor Queen Mother Champion Chase



Glenfarclas Cross Country Handicap Steeple Chase

Hunters Lodge

Red Rocco

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “Red Rocco probably won’t get in.”


St Patrick’s Thursday, March 13

JLT Novices’ Chase     

Double Ross


Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle

Imperial Leader

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “There is a possibility that he can get in. He may get in because of the change in conditions. He qualified at Exeter the other day. He needs better ground than that.”


Byrne Group Plate

Double Ross


Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase

Same Difference

What A Warrior

According To Trev

Count Guido Deiro








Gold Cup Day, Friday, March 14

Vincent O’Brien County Handicap Hurdle

Splash Of Ginge

Little Jon

Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “Little Jon was second at Newbury to a Nicholls’ one, beaten five lengths, and is rated 133 in the County. I love him – he cost me three grand and he is for sale if anybody wants a Cheltenham Festival runner. He is a horse who will win a National one day – a great big lovely horse. For you lot it will be 40 grand, for anybody else 50!”


Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle


Nigel Twiston-Davies said: “Cogry will go for the Albert Bartlett, even though he is a bit lowly rated for the race. He has won two novice hurdles and is very nice. He has got a good chance and is by the same sire – King’s Theatre – as The New One.”


Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle

Little Jon

Splash Of Ginge

Kaylif Aramis



Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Handicap Chase




The Festival 2014

Champion Day, Tuesday, March 11 (Old Course)

1.30 Sky Bet Supreme Novices’ Hurdle (Grade One)  2m ½f £120,000

2.05 Racing Post Arkle Challenge Trophy Chase (Grade One) 2m £150,000

2.40 Baylis & Harding Affordable Luxury Handicap Chase (Grade Three) 3m ½f  £90,000

3.20 Stan James Champion Hurdle Challenge Trophy (Grade One) 2m ½f  £400,000

4.00 OLBG Mares’ Hurdle Race (Grade Two) 2m 4f £85,000

4.40 Terry Biddlecombe National Hunt Chase (Listed) 4m £85,000

5.15 Rewards4Racing Novices’ Handicap Chase (Listed) (0-140) 2m 4½f £60,000


Ladies Day, Wednesday, March 12 (Old Course)

1.30 Neptune Investment Management Novices’ Hurdle (Grade One)  2m 5f £120,000

2.05 RSA Chase (Grade One) 3m ½f £150,000

2.40 Coral Cup (Grade Three Handicap Hurdle)  2m 5f £80,000

3.20 BetVictor Queen Mother Champion Chase (Grade One) 2m £350,000

4.00 Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase  3m 7f £50,000

4.40 Fred Winter Juvenile Handicap Hurdle (Grade Three) 2m ½f £75,000

5.15 Weatherbys Champion Bumper (Grade One) 2m ½f £60,000


St Patrick’s Thursday, March 13 (New Course)

1.30 JLT Novices’ Chase (Grade One) 2m 4f £120,000

2.05 Pertemps Network Final (Listed, Handicap Hurdle)  3m £80,000

2.40 Ryanair Chase (Grade One) 2m 5f £275,000

3.20 Ladbrokes World Hurdle (Grade One) 3m  £275,000

4.00 Byrne Group Plate (Grade Three Handicap Chase)  2m 4f £90,000

4.40 Fulke Walwyn Kim Muir Challenge Cup Handicap Chase (0-145) 3m 1½f £60,000

5.15 St Patrick’s Derby 1m 5f


Gold Cup Day, Friday, March 14 (New Course)

1.30 JCB Triumph Hurdle (Grade One) 2m 1f £120,000

2.05 Vincent O’Brien County Handicap Hurdle (Grade Three) 2m 1f £80,000

2.40 Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle (Grade One) 3m £120,000

3.20 Betfred Cheltenham Gold Cup (Grade One) 3m 2½ f £550,000

4.00 CGA Foxhunter Chase Challenge Cup 3m 2½ f £40,000

4.40 Martin Pipe Conditional Jockeys’ Handicap Hurdle (0-145) 2m 4½ f £50,000

5.15 Johnny Henderson Grand Annual Chase Challenge Cup (Grade Three) 2m ½ f £90,000

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