The familiar racing colours of the Cheveley Park Stud – red, with a white sash and a blue cap – have become an increasingly common sight on National Hunt racecourses in recent years. Indeed, the renowned thoroughbred breeding operation has an exceptional record at Cheltenham, where 16 runners have produced seven winners, at an astonishing strike rate of 44%, and garnered over £625,000 in prize money.
As far as the Cheltenham Festival is concerned, Envoi Allen, originally trained by Gordon Elliott and, more recently, by Henry de Bromhead, has flown the flag for the operation. Unbeaten in his first 11 starts under rules, he won the Weatherbys Champion Bumper in 2019, followed up in the Ballymore Novices’ Hurdle in 2020 and was odds-on when coming to grief at the fourth fence in the Marsh Novices’ Chase in 2021. Another non-completion, at Punchestown the following month, as the result of a chipped hind joint, was disappointing, but Cheveley Park Stud continued its success at the Cheltenham Festival.
In 2021, Sir Gerhard won the Weatherbys Champion Bumper, making it three in a row for Cheveley Park Stud after the victory of Ferny Hollow in 2020, Allaho won the Ryanair Chase and Quixilios won the JCB Triumph Hurdle. A Plus Tard, who won the Close Brothers Novices’ Chase in 2019, was sent off 100/30 second-favourite for the Cheltenham Gold Cup and was beaten just 1¼ lengths by Minella Indo, with previous dual winner Al Boum Photo a further 4¼ lengths further behind in third place.