Wellington Steeplechase Winners

WINNERS OF THE WELLINGTON STEEPLECHASE

The first Wellington Steeplechase was run over 3 miles in 1884 (not 1885 as shown in most records). The distance was increased to 3¼ miles in 1906 and to 3 miles 3 furlongs in 1952. The figure-eight course was first used in May 1973, and, with metrication, the distance was altered to 5400 metres in 1974. It was increased by 100 metres the following year and the times below are for the current distance.

There was no meeting in 1915, 1941 or 1946 (due to the Army’s use of Trentham), or in 2004, 2005. The 2006 meeting was held at Awapuni due to reconstruction of the Trentham track while the 2008 meeting was again the victim of atrocious weather and conditions that caused the meetings to be abandoned. 

Fastest times:

6:58.18 - Bodle - 2001

6:59.13 - High Impact - 1988

7:01.03 - Long Acre - 1985

7:05.27 - Royal Hush - 1990

 

Slowest times:

7:50.89 - Hadfield - 1996

7:44.65 - Stitched (run at Awapuni over 5400m) - 2006

7:42.23 - Mi Senor - 2002

7:40.79 - Mr Align - 2011

7:36.63 - Lord Zirito - 1995

 

Highest winning weights:

12 st 11 lb (81 kg) Coalition - 1921

12 st 5 lb (78½ kg) - Master Strowan - 1918

12 st 0 lb (76 kg) - Plain Bill - 1900

12 st 0 lb (76 kg) - Brookby Song - 1948


Since metrication in 1974, the highest winning weight carried has been 67.5 kg by Mr Mor in 2015 followed by 66.5kg by Brushman in 2013 (65 kg minimum) , 66kg by both Black Eagle in 2007 and Rangatira in 2014, 65½ kg by Even Terms in 1975 (57 kg min) and Kildary King in 1999 (60 kg min).


Winning mares

The great mare Denbigh set a weight-carrying record for a mare of 11 stone 5 lb (72 kg) when she won this race in 1886 after winning the Hawkes Bay Steeplechase a couple of weeks earlier. She later left the top steeplechasers Ruby (1899 Hawkes Bay Steeplechase) and Moifaa (1901 Great Northern and Hawkes Bay Steeples and 1904 English Grand National).

Other mares to win:Victrix (1893), Nadador (1908), Nedra (1913), Chat (1940), Anini (1943) and Gaiety (1949).

Oldest winners

The oldest winners whose ages are definitely known were Orient in 1890, Haydn in 1907, Teak in 1971 and Lord Zirito in 1995, all aged 12. The only four-year-old to win was Whalebone, which dead-heated with Oeo in 1891.

Horses that have won twice

The following horses won twice:

Gobo (1901, 1902)

Nor’-West (1898, 1903)

Kiatere (1904, 1905)

Master Strowan  (1918, 1922)

Omahu (1924, 1925)

Billy Boy (1932, 1934)

Dunray  (1959, 1961)

High Chief (1978, 1979)

Kildary King (1998, 1999)

Brushman (2010, 2013)


Jockeys who have won three times are:

Percy Johnson: Whalebone (1891 – dead-heat), Nat (1896), The Friar (1897)

Graeme Walters: Sifta Sam (1970), Bright Blue (1972), Destino (1973)

Isaac Lupton: Black Eagle (2007), Triplepan (2009), Brushman (2013)

 

The only women jockeys to win 

Sue Thompson - Storm - 1987

Michelle Hopkins - Flash Hunter - 1997

Tina Egan - Kildary King - 1998, 1999

Ann and Ken Browne created history when they owned and trained the first three home in 1990 – Royal Hush, Trelay Boy and Injun Joe.
Only two trainers have trained three winners -J J Waller scored with Gaiety (1949), Tabor Islet (1952) and Personality (1953), while Ann Browne trained Royal Hush (1990), Flash Hunter (1997) and Tom's Myth (2012)

(The Wellington Racing Club sincerely thanks Chris McQuaid, New Zealand’s jumping historian and statistician, for supplying the above information.)

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Wellington Steeplechase winners