Nowadays, the Champion Hurdle Trial is the penultimate leg in a season-long series of six races sponsored by Unibet and hence known as the 'Unibet Road to Cheltenham'. The series starts with the Elite Hurdle, run at Wincanton in November, and culminates with the Champion Hurdle itself, run at the Cheltenham Festival in March.
The New One aside, Nigel Twiston-Davies also saddled Mistinguett (1997) and Ballyandy (2020) to victory in the Champion Hurdle Trial and is the leading trainer in the history of the race with six winners. Other notable winners of the race include Granville Again (1992), Flakey Dove (1994) and Rooster Booster (2004), all of whom won the Champion Hurdle – although only the second-named did so in the same year as her victory at Haydock Park – together with three-time Stayers' Hurdle winner Inglis Drever (2005) and three-time Aintree Hurdle winner Al Eile (2006).
If recent seasons are anything to go by, the likes of Constitution Hill, Honeysuckle and State Man, who currently head the ante-post betting market for the Champion Hurdle are unlikely to run at Haydock. Nevertheless, recent trends suggest that a likely winner of the Champion Hurdle Trial will be aged 7 years and upwards, rated 150, or higher, and possess recent, preferably winning, form.
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