Champion Bumper

The Champion Bumper, currently sponsored by Weatherbys (which administers racing under contract from the British Horseracing Authority), is run over 2 miles and 110 yards on the Old Course at Cheltenham. Like other races of its kind, the Champion Bumper is restricted to National Hunt horses aged between four and six years and is run under National Hunt rules, but there are no obstacles to be jumped.

In the past, these races were restricted to amateur riders and became known as ‘bumpers’ because of the dubious riding style of some of the participants, which caused them to bump up and down in the saddle, or even bump into rivals, during the course of the race. Officially, the Champion Bumper is a National Hunt Flat Race, run at level weights, with weight-for-age and sex allowances, and is currently scheduled as the last race on the second day of the Cheltenham Festival in March each year.

County Carlow trainer Willie Mullins is far and away the most successful trainer in the history of the Champion Bumper, having saddled Wither or Which (1996), Florida Pearl (1997), Alexander Banquet (1998), Joe Cullen (2000), Missed That (2005), Cousin Vinny (2008), Champagne Fever (2012) and Briar Hill (2013) for a total of eight wins. Ruby Walsh rode Alexander Banquet (1998), Missed That (2005) and Briar Hill (2013) to victory and is the most successful jockey with three wins.

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