Rachael Blackmore: Cheltenham 2023 – Festival rides and record – The Telegraph

Our expert selects the runners the most successful female rider in Festival history is hoping can give her further success at Cheltenham
Can Ireland’s leading female rider add to her record-breaking achievements at the 2023 Cheltenham Festival (14-17 March)? Our expert picks the runners that could give the “Queen of the Cotswolds” further glory in Gloucestershire.
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The Irish jockey rewrote the Cheltenham record books in 2021, riding six winners – including Honeysuckle in the Champion Hurdle – en route to becoming the first female to be crowned the leading rider at the meeting. 
The likes of Bob Olinger, Sir Gerhard, Allaho and Telmesomethinggirl followed that season and it was “six of the best” when Quilixios came home in front in the Triumph Hurdle on the Friday.
Remarkably, Blackmore was an agonising second in the Gold Cup that same year as A Plus Tard was denied by Minella Indo, both trained by Henry de Bromhead, with the rider having had to make the tough choice between the pair.
Last year, Blackmore stuck with A Plus Tard for the Gold Cup rematch and she rode a perfect stalking race before a perfectly timed challenge at the final fence, after which A Plus Tard shot clear for a 15-length win and more history for the jockey. 
With accolades such as BBC’s Sports Personality World Sport Star of the Year and RTE’s SportsPerson of the Year in her home nation in 2021, Blackmore has given female riders a profile previously unmatched. She is an inspiration to the future generation that is following her every move and eager to be like her. 
Blackmore has truly raised the bar for achievements by female riders at the Cheltenham Festival and her running tally of 12 winners at the meeting is a record. 
She already has two Champion Hurdle wins and a Gold Cup on her CV and, in 2023 and the years that follow, it is very likely that she will be adding more victories to her record. Blackmore’s Festival wins are listed below.
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Blackmore is 10/1 with bet365 to be crowned top jockey at the 2023 Cheltenham Festival. 
This season has not been as good as the few that have gone before for the jockey and her boss De Bromhead, but they will be aiming to peak for the major spring festivals, starting at Cheltenham. 
Since her maiden Festival winner in 2019, Blackmore has continued to enjoy success in the Cotswolds and is now on a four-year winning streak at this most prestigious of National Hunt festivals. 
Rachael Blackmore to be the top jockey at Cheltenham 2023 @ 10/1 with bet365
Her main hopes of further glory include the defending Gold Cup champion A Plus Tard, trading at 8/1 but pulled up in his only start this season at Haydock all the way back in November. 
De Bromhead is hoping to have him in top form for the Gold Cup on March 17.
Honeysuckle, meanwhile, is bidding to maintain her perfect record at Cheltenham by winning a second Mares’ Hurdle on March 14, and she is the 5/2 favourite for that race after connections opted not to go back for another Champion Hurdle.
Blackmore could also be on board 12/1 Magical Zoe in the Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle on March 16 for De Bromhead, while she is sure to have plenty of other chances across the four days.
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